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Learn from Hernando Capt. Scott Bierwiler's death: Raise teen driving age to 18

Raise driving age minimum to 18

How many more deaths will it take to convince the state of Florida that teens younger than 18 should not be behind the wheel of a 3,000-pound vehicle? The life of one of our finest law officers in Hernando County, Capt. Scott Bierwiler, was taken needlessly when a 16-year-old took a joyride.

If a boy this age is not allowed to vote, drink or own property, why do we trust him with a killing machine? The legal age for driving must be changed to 18 and each teen must take at least one year of driver's education and pass a test before they apply for a license.

We can never give back the captain's life, but we can drastically reduce future tragedies like this.

Bruce Miller, Spring Hill

Program targets Spring Hill March 3 article

County housing plan is foolish

According to your article, Hernando County commissioners are planning to spend $4.3 million to acquire and improve foreclosed and abandoned properties, then turn around and assist in the purchase of these homes by people who cannot afford a down payment on a home but at the same time have been approved for loans.

How much sense does that make? It is a repeat of exactly what happened to the housing market that got us into this mess in the first place. People buying homes with no down payment and getting loans they couldn't afford with low payments that eventually increased to the point they couldn't afford which ended in foreclosure. Do we really want to do that again?

If people have no investment in their property, a monthly note means little more than a rent payment to them. Why rent an apartment when they can buy a house?

And the plan will see that the people to benefit the most are the private-sector appraisers, real estate professionals, bankers and contractors who will be helping to refurbish homes. Sounds like a real Republican plan to me.

Pat Hernandez, Brooksville

Protest Bright House rate hike

Here we go again folks, Bright House raising its rates.

I changed over to Direct TV the last time it raised rates and found out I liked it better. The only drawback is, at times in the summer, during really heavy rains, you may lose the signal briefly. But, I had also lost the signal with Bright House on many occasions.

I am also ready to go to another high-speed Internet provider because Road Runner just raised those rates also to $47.95. That is outrageous. They should hold the line a bit during these hard times but they don't care, so my advice is to now make them pay, and go another way to a satellite company.

Robert Van Istendal, Spring Hill

Program can tamp down drug abuse and crime | C.T. Bowen column March 2

Recycle unused medications

A huge amount of medication that becomes trash comes from the elderly. We now have a system in Oklahoma that allows us to reuse, through recycling, some of these medications. Tulsa has a very effective program to recycle, and redispense unopened, unexpired, noncontrolled medications from nursing homes to the Tulsa County Pharmacy.

The program is approaching $5 million worth of medications (average wholesale cost) recycled and dispensed for indigent Tulsa County residents. For more information, go to the Tulsa County Medical Society Web site and click on drug recycling.

This is a multiple win-win program. It keeps people on medications, removes chemicals from water, reduces expenses and reduces the labor required to pop out all those medications during disposal in nursing homes.

Unused, unexpired, sealed nonprescription medications are transferred to the Tulsa County Pharmacy to see if they can be used elsewhere, including charity clinics, missionaries, government agencies, sports teams and jails.

Some was sent with emergency response teams to areas hit by Hurricanes Katrina, Rita, and Ike. Milk of magnesia, pain relievers, antacids, antidiarrhea medication, ointments and creams are recycled in large amounts.

Dr. Gerald E. Gustafson, Tulsa, Okla.

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Learn from Hernando Capt. Scott Bierwiler's death: Raise teen driving age to 18 03/03/09 [Last modified: Tuesday, March 3, 2009 7:41pm]
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