Wednesday, December 13, 2017
Letters To The Editor

Letters: Greenlight Pinellas planning for the entire county

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 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


Wednesday’s letters: Proposal would restore Florida Forever funding

Florida ForeverPlan boosts land protectionMost of us thought funding for land conservation in Florida would be restored when we voted the Water and Land Conservation Amendment (Amendment 1) into law in 2014. It passed easily, with 75 percent of voter...
Published: 12/11/17
Updated: 12/12/17

Tuesday’s letters: Writer should look to his own mistakes

Is anyone ever wrong anymore? | Dec. 8Writer should look to own errorsIn Mitch Daniels’ article about people who have been wrong, he finishes with the statement that our lives would be greatly improved with more people saying, "I was wrong."He mi...
Published: 12/08/17
Updated: 12/11/17

Monday’s letters: Don’t drill in Arctic refuge

Arctic National Wildlife RefugeStop plan to drill for oil in refugeOur nation faces yet another effort to open up the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge reserve to oil and gas drilling. Drilling in the Arctic simply doesn’t make sound financial sense. W...
Published: 12/08/17

Sunday’s letters: Tax bill puts U.S. on right course

The GOP’s regressive tax plans | Dec. 5, editorialTax bill puts U.S. on right courseThe Times is already crying wolf over the new tax cuts, claiming that the new laws "could" result an increase in the national debt of $1.5 trillion over the next ...
Published: 12/07/17

Saturday’s letters: Don’t inject political money into churches

Tax billKeep political cash out of pulpitA provision buried in the 429-page House tax bill, Section 5201, nullifies the Johnson Amendment, which protects houses of worship from partisan politics by prohibiting them from endorsing or opposing politica...
Published: 12/06/17
Updated: 12/07/17

Friday’s letters: Most unpopular tax bill ever

Tax bill clears Senate | Dec. 3The most unpopular tax bill ever"Democracy dies in darkness" is the motto of the Washington Post. At 2 a.m. on the dark morning of Sunday, Dec. 3, 51 Republicans approved the most wildly unpopular tax bill in U.S. h...
Published: 12/06/17
Updated: 12/07/17

Thursday’s letters: Give your child the gift of reading

Fatherhood Involvement in Literacy CampaignGive your child the gift of readingPart of a successful game plan in sports is identifying plays that can put points on the scoreboard. Whether I was playing quarterback at Florida State or running the point...
Published: 12/05/17
Updated: 12/06/17

Wednesday’s letters: Bill gives small businesses tax relief

Tax bill clears Senate | Dec. 3Small businesses get tax reliefThe Senate and House have now passed their respective tax bills. Once Congress sends a final package to the White House, President Donald Trump will deliver us the most powerful tax re...
Published: 12/04/17
Updated: 12/05/17

Tuesday’s letters: Transplant bill will help Medicare patients

November Letter of the MonthThe winning letter addressed the unresponsiveness of elected officials.Representatives aren’t listeningFor whom do our legislators work? I ask because my Florida senator doesn’t appear to work for me. I drove 27 miles on N...
Published: 12/04/17

Monday’s letters: A citizen’s heroic act

Suspect arrested | Nov. 29A courageous citizen’s actOn Nov. 28, a courageous act occurred in the Tampa Bay area. It was one that law enforcement professionals applaud and hope becomes more frequent. An ordinary citizen did the right thing and spo...
Published: 12/01/17