Let tax rate be equal, fair to all
A school system that is falling further behind in the nation because of lack of pay for teachers, a college system where we are draining the best professors off, and we still seem to have a problem in Florida figuring out how to pay for this.
The solution is not to further tax people who pay taxes, but to tax everyone equally. We don't need homestead exemptions and Save Our Homes, we need to have a tax rate like Georgia's, where you pay a percentage on the fair market value on every piece of real estate in the state.
There should be no exemptions, since those who don't pay taxes still benefit from the services offered by the government and school system.
This is a simple solution and I am amazed that the politicians cannot come up with the answer. It may be that we are going to have to leave this up to the court system to decide what is fair and equitable rather than trust the incompetency of our Legislature and governor.
Stanley S. Moles, Largo
Minorities, join donor program
My name is Ethel Grimsley. On Aug. 29, 2006, my son, Joseph Grimsley, was diagnosed with an aggressive blood and marrow disease called acute myelogenous leukemia, or AML. We were told by doctors that he needed a bone marrow transplant or he would not survive another year.
In an effort to find a bone marrow donor for Joseph, I began a campaign to raise awareness and educate people in the community about the disease and the urgent need for minorities to join the National Marrow Donor Program registry.
We were unable to find a donor match for Joseph and on Aug. 19, 2007, he passed away. During his illness, we often talked about helping others find donors. Even though we were unable to find a match for him, Joseph wanted me to continue the mission to raise awareness and educate and encourage minorities to join the National Marrow Donor Program registry in an effort to help save lives.
A nonprofit organization, Faith Hope And Determination Inc., or FHAD, has been formed in memory of Joseph. I am in the process of obtaining 501(c)(3) (federal tax exemption) status.
In the meantime, the original campaign has become the FHAD Inc. mission, with the focus on raising greater awareness by getting the word out to the masses through education, community participation and registering potential donors. This need is particularly critical in the minority community. All volunteer efforts are combined with Florida Blood Services, which is the local marrow donor center.
Funds or donations raised by FHAD will be used to start a scholarship fund for students pursuing their education in the field of blood and marrow cancers. The funds will also be used to help provide assistance to leukemia patients and their immediate families.
Your support in this endeavor would be greatly appreciated.
Ethel Grimsley, Largo