Friday, April 20, 2018
Letters To The Editor

Letters: Public will have input on elevated toll road plan

Public has voice on private road

The Florida Department of Transportation (DOT) received a proposal from a private company to build elevated express lanes on State Roads 54/56 from U.S. 19 to U.S. 301. At this time, the private company has been approved to study only the feasibility of the project. This includes determining the impacts to surrounding communities.

In the second part of this process, the public is encouraged to voice its opinions about the project at one or more of three public meetings along the corridor. At each of these meetings, residents will have the opportunity to get a better idea of what the proposed project could look like. The meetings will take place this summer.

Based on public input, alternatives will be considered. The current concept could be revised to incorporate more of a ground level facility, sections of the project could be omitted, or the choice could be made to not build the proposed project.

The DOT will not move forward with any proposal without public support and a resolution by the Pasco County Commission endorsing a specific project proposal. In short, your voice matters.

Kris Carson, Florida Department of Transportation, Tampa

Questions dog elevated road idea

I realize that a "no-cost-to-the-state" $2 billion elevated toll road is very tempting. However, I believe there are some not-so-appealing considerations

Do we need an elevated highway in a County that is prone to sink holes? Local businesses will be bypassed by the traffic.

There will be a construction mess and more traffic problems for who knows how many years that the road is being built.

What would the tolls be and who would control the increases? Is the toll road justified and would people pay the tolls or use the existing and free State Road 54/56. What happens if the road is built and it does not get the use predicted? Is the state or county stuck with an elevated elephant?

It would be an eyesore not to mention create privacy issues for people living nearby.

Considering these aforementioned problem areas, highway overpasses or light rail connecting east and west Pasco to Tampa makes more sense. Don't forget public transportation.

Raymond Kobasko, Wesley Chapel

Ridge Road plan caught in politics

Pasco is back at it again. Instead of allowing the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers to judge the Ridge Road Extensions on the merits of its application alone, the county is trying to politicize the process. Having already spent $255,000 on wheel greasers in the first go round with nothing to show for it, they intend to waste even more money for an unwarranted road. It already has a $9.6 million price tag without the first shovel of dirt being turned. Imagine how many of the county's hundreds of miles of dirt roads that would have paved.

The idea that a Ridge Road Extension would serve as a hurricane evacuation route is absurd as the road will only take you to the Suncoast Parkway, which goes west toward the coast in both directions, and to U.S. 41 where one would have to go north or south to State Road 54 or SR 52 further exasperating that gridlock. It is hollow justification for destroying the Serenova Preserve.

Clay G. Colson, Land O'Lakes


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...
Updated: 10 hours ago

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

Saturday’s letters: Health Department should butt out

Judge: Grow pot, Mr. Redner | April 12Health officials should butt outThe Times reports that the Florida Department of Health filed an appeal to the decision allowing a man who is a Stage 4 lung cancer survivor to grow pot in his backyard for his ...
Published: 04/11/18
Updated: 04/13/18

Friday’s letters: Open and shut: Enforce the law

Sheriff’s ICE aid policy blasted | April 10Open and shut: Enforce the lawPeople and institutions that insist on the using the euphemism "undocumented immigrant" do nothing but affirm their lack of objectivity by using such a phrase to support an ...
Published: 04/11/18
Updated: 04/12/18