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Making schoolkids cross SR 580 is absurd

Re: Parents fight for bus route | story, July 3

Making kids cross SR 580 is absurd

As a parent of an 8-year-old who will be attending Oldsmar Elementary School next school year, I could not help but be outraged all over again at the Pinellas County School Board's decision to deny transportation to students who have to cross State Road 580 to get to school.

Who in their right mind would want to cross SR 580 at any time of the day, let alone during morning rush hour?

We, the parents, are supported in our request to have buses make two or three more stops to Oldsmar Elementary by principal Schmitt, Oldsmar Mayor Jim Ronecker and our community liaison Cathleen Schmitt, through numerous meetings, letters and phone calls to Pinellas County Schools transportation and to the School Board, yet the issue is still not resolved.

The Pinellas County Sheriff's Office has written numerous citations for people running red lights, in addition to other dangers of crossing a six-lane highway.

One can only wonder: Is the School Board truly doing its job of looking out for our children's safety, is it a way to save money at our children's expense or is the School Board only a political springboard for its members?

Ivette Correa, Oldsmar

Re: Juvenile Welfare Board weighs tax hike options story, July 2

Voters already made views clear

Someone on the Juvenile Welfare Board seems to think she can read the minds of the voters. Let's see, when it comes to children, the sky is the limit, but "weaker" programs can be cut. I think another member said the same thing a few days back.

Floridians who voted for Amendment 1 did so with the objective to cut taxes and not to parse what is all right to keep and what can be subject to increases.

I did not vote for Amendment I because it did not go far enough. As a property owner, I am all for a sales tax, elimination of Save Our Homes, and elimination of using one's home as a line of equity for whatever group feels entitled to do so, barring none.

Harriet P. Sherwood, Clearwater

Re: Intruders plucked at Lake Seminole | story, June 27

Don't fertilize lawn in summer

The article makes the point that fertilizer runoff from surrounding homes has contributed to algae growth in Lake Seminole. Residents in the lake's watershed can help to ensure its future health by reducing or eliminating the use of fertilizers in their landscapes.

A recent forum by the Tampa Bay Estuary Program on fertilizer use pointed out that polluting fertilizer runoff is greatest in the summer months, June through September, and proposed that people not fertilize during this critical period.

A point of consensus among the forum participants (including a number from the landscape industry) was that phosphorus-containing fertilizers should not be used at all. Florida soils are naturally high in phosphorus, so our landscapes almost never need this pollutant.

Those who live directly on the lakeshore can fertilize their lawns and clean the lake by pumping nutrient-rich lake water onto their landscapes, where the nitrogen will be utilized by plants and thereby removed from the lake.

Pinellas County has been working for more than a decade to clean up the lake. That is commendable and we should all do what we can to keep the lake clean and healthy in the future.

Jan Allyn, Largo

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Making schoolkids cross SR 580 is absurd 07/05/08 [Last modified: Tuesday, July 8, 2008 1:18pm]
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