Greenlight's plan traverses county
Thank you for reporter Mike Brassfield's Feb. 28 article, Tarpon Springs candidates lukewarm on light rail but support medical marijuana. I appreciate the questions from the candidates and Mr. Brassfield's factual response.
The Greenlight Pinellas Plan was developed with the help of extensive public engagement, including several sessions in Tarpon Springs, in which we learned that current and potential riders wanted bus service that came more often, ran earlier and later, and had more weekend service. The Greenlight Pinellas Plan includes a 65 percent increase in bus service overall, but a 100 percent increase in bus service in North Pinellas County.
For some parts of Pinellas, light rail is part of that solution, but for other communities, their needs will be more directly met through a mix of services including increased access and more convenient routes.
The Greenlight Pinellas Plan will put the right kind of service in the right area — like the very popular Jolley Trolley and North County Connector routes that operate in Tarpon Springs, Dunedin, Palm Harbor, East Lake and Oldsmar using minibuses. If the referendum is approved, the connector routes would double their service.
As you highlighted, Greenlight Pinellas in north county will also mean rapid bus service on U.S. 19, direct connections to Tampa, new Park and Ride lots, and trolley service every 15 minutes from Clearwater Beach to the Sponge Docks. North county is not an afterthought; it is part of the robust transportation network that will be possible with the Greenlight Pinellas Plan.
I look forward to continuing dialogue with our elected leaders and Pinellas residents and encourage all of your readers to visit greenlightpinellas.com to learn more about what the Greenlight Pinellas Plan includes and how it will move our community forward.
Brad Miller, CEO, Pinellas Suncoast Transit Authority
Toilets, pickleball on parks wish list | story, March 5
Area deserves new rec center
The Clearwater Parks and Recreation Department presented its new master plan to City Council on March 3, and a new Morningside Recreation Center is No. 2 on the list of priorities.
This result did not come from a concerted or organized lobbying effort by Morningside-Meadows residents. It was the result of a lengthy and diligent process involving citizens from throughout the city.
The new master plan is an intelligent, responsible and honest assessment of where the city's parks and recreational facilities stand, and residents from all over Clearwater have concluded that the time has come for the city to fulfill its promise to replace the center.
We sincerely hope that City Manager Bill Horne, Mayor George Cretekos and our dedicated City Council members will do the right thing by following the plan's recommendations. A new Morningside Recreation Center is vital to the future of southeast Clearwater. Let's work together to move forward on this important project as quickly as possible.
Spencer Cook, president, Morningside-Meadows Homeowners Association
Golf wagers draw eyes story, March 6
Gambling issue out of bounds
"Unbelievable" seems to be the apropos word for the subject golf course and the present gambling investigation.
This golf course, and perhaps the investigating unit, will surely become the laughing stock of all golfers in America.
No gambling on a golf course? Are these people from another planet?
James J. ODonnell, Madeira Beach
Increase fine for running red light
Any program that discourages drivers from running red lights is commendable, but I believe the most effective and least costly solution would be to increase the penalty. As such, I would be in favor of a $500 fine for the first offense and $1,000 each time thereafter. I believe that the current $158 fine is a joke to continuous violators who feel they are merely paying for past sins when they do get caught.
Donald Barnes, Tarpon Springs