Sunday, April 22, 2018
Letters To The Editor

Letters: Make schools, residents key ingredients in Hernando's future

Report cards affect business

County Administrator Leonard B. Sossamon claims to have big plans to lure new businesses and jobs to Hernando County.

Over half of the Hernando County Schools received a grade ranking of C or below and one school received an F. Some schools would have received an even lower grade if there were not a state mandate in existence that they could only drop one grade per year. A huge challenge facing Sossamon is the quality or lack thereof within the local education system. One of the things, if not the first thing, that a company looks at when considering location is the quality of its school system.

What does Hernando County have to offer to prospective businesses who have a real need to lure quality employees many of whom would likely have children attending these schools?

Sossamon touts his development of Concord Mills, which opened 14 years ago, one year after he left his position in Concord, N.C. This mall was built one mile from Charlotte Motor Speedway in the flight path of Charlotte Douglas International Airport.

How much promoting was done by him in this development? I have visited family numerous times over the years in Charlotte and I am aware that the main draw of this mall is Bass Pro Shops, which is a key sponsor of NASCAR. The Charlotte Motor Speedway was in existence long before Sossamon arrived on the scene and long before Concord Mills was considered for development.

So what does Sossamon really plan to do for Hernando County? And how can his development efforts regarding Concord Mills have any relevance for Hernando County? I will sit back and watch.

Susan Ayers, Brooksville

Open lines of communication

Recently, County Administrator Len Sossamon spoke in terms of hopes and expectations, but not much of concrete ideas. He said he was optimistic with possible new trends, spurts of economic recovery, planned shopping centers and expected new offices at the airport. He also referred to concepts like rebranding the airport, and surprisingly, even rebranding the entire county. Plus, he wants something that provides immediate recognition of the county without explaining what that might be. Mr. Sossamon has apparently already decided on his own that the county will focus on the development of high-tech and manufacturing companies.

More disturbing is Sossamon's plans to open more lines of communication with the county's business community and the Greater Hernando County Chamber of Commerce. Plus, he wants to form a committee of nine or 10 business leaders to brainstorm about new approaches.

Why is the county administrator putting all of his focus on company owners and business leaders for answers to the county's development? What about the community and its citizenry at large? What about asking or surveying citizens as to what kind of county they want, what are their needs and what are the ingredients to improving the quality of life of its present 176,000 residents? Does it have to be business development? Does it have to be based on growth?

Maybe Mr. Sossamon and the county commissioners should do a lot more listening and surveying, and include nonbusiness citizens whose priorities for the county may differ substantially from the political and for-profit business leaders.

Brian P. Moore, Spring Hill


Monday’s letters: Term limits don’t work

U.S. Senate campaignTerm limitsdon’t workGov. Rick Scott has begun his run for the U.S. Senate with TV ads promoting term limits for representatives and senators. Aside from the probability that this would require a constitutional amendment, I think ...
Published: 04/22/18

Sunday’s letters: Problems with high-speed rail

Thanks, Gov. Scott, for ghastly I-4 drives | April 18, Sue Carlton columnProblems with high-speed railIn her Wednesday column, the writer bemoaned the traffic on I-4 and blasted Gov. Rick Scott for turning down free government money for a high-sp...
Published: 04/21/18

Saturday’s letters: Don’t weaken rules on fisheries

Florida fisheriesDon’t weaken rules on fish stocksMembers of Congress are proposing changes to an important ocean law, the Magnuson-Stevens Fishery Conservation and Management Act, that would adversely affect coastal states including Florida.Since it...
Published: 04/19/18
Updated: 04/20/18

Friday’s letters: We owe it to our children to teach them history

If we don’t understand past, future looks grim | April 19, Daniel Ruth columnThe history we owe our childrenIt’s not often I agree with Daniel Ruth, but this article was spot-on. I’m not sure when the schools started ignoring Germany’s World War ...
Published: 04/19/18

Thursday’s letters: Gun research can save lives

Gun ownershipCommon ground: Find the factsThere are many areas in the current debate about guns and gun ownership where both sides must agree to disagree. But there is one area where common ground ought to exist. That concerns the need for continuing...
Published: 04/18/18

Wednesday’s letters:

Poverty and plenty in bay area | April 7, editorialStruggling poor are not a priorityI commend your newspaper for continuing to produce real and relevant news, particularly the recent editorial pointing out that a prospering Tampa Bay should not ...
Published: 04/16/18
Updated: 04/17/18

Hernando Letters to the Editor for April 20

Bar Association celebrates Law WeekPresident Dwight D. Eisenhower proclaimed May 1, 1958, as the first Law Day to mark the nation’s commitment to the rule of law. Every year on this day, we reflect on the significance of the rule of law and rededicat...
Published: 04/16/18
Updated: 04/17/18

Tuesday’s letters: Stop cooperating with ICE

Sheriff’s ICE policy blasted | April 10Pinellas should end partnership with ICEPinellas County Sheriff Bob Gualtieri recently participated in a community conversation on his controversial agreement with ICE to voluntarily detain immigrants in the...
Published: 04/16/18

Sunday’s letters: The future of oyster production

Shell game | April 15Future of oyster productionThanks to Laura Reiley for an excellent synopsis of the current state of oyster production in Florida. The collapse of the Apalachicola oyster fishery is merely the latest example of the demise of a...
Published: 04/14/18

Monday’s letters: Public education is foundation of the nation

Voters beware of ballot deceptionApril 13, commentarySchools’ role underminedIt was with great pain that I read (not for the first time) that we must be aware of "ballot deception." Public schools were founded to make sure that future generations of ...
Published: 04/13/18