Saturday, June 23, 2018
Letters To The Editor

Monday's letters: Scott's hypocrisy on health jobs

Governor welcomes health care law's jobs | Sept. 19

Scott's hypocrisy on health jobs

It is unbelievable that Gov. Rick Scott is so pleased to announce health care jobs (and take credit for them) when he has done everything in his power to stymie successful implementation of the Affordable Care Act.

How can he possibly think that he has done anything to promote the presence of new health care employees when all his actions related to health insurance opportunities for Floridians have been so negative?

I also have to ask Tampa Mayor Bob Buckhorn: What exactly did Scott do that helped in the creation of these health care jobs? I'm glad for the jobs, no matter the field, but I find it difficult to deal with this hypocrisy.

Martha Hodge, Tampa

Where credit isn't due

That headline should have read: "Obama adds health jobs; Scott takes credit." Much of the slowly improving jobs situation here is due to federal stimulus and an improving national economy. Scott's austerity cuts and crony capitalism have only slowed the rebound and hurt Floridians.

William Adams, St. Petersburg

Missing in action | Sept. 19, editorial

We're minor-league market

I have never been as embarrassed to be a Rays fan as I was the other night when only 10,000 people showed up for one of the more important games of the year. My friends from around the country called to ask, "What's wrong with you guys?" and I gave them my usual answer: "Tampa Bay" has a good amount of core baseball fans who support the Rays, but beyond that core it is, basically, a minor-league baseball market.

Tampa Bay is football, football and more football. Any day of the week a football fanatic can tune in to see Unknown U take on Nowhere State. The buzz is all about the upcoming high school games and coverage of the college teams. The Rays are treated with "Oh by the way" status. Your publication is no different, with the Bucs score occupying a front-page headline and separate section on Monday, while the Rays are below the fold in the bottom corner.

And all the rhetoric and drum-beating for a new stadium will not change things no matter what side of the bay the stadium is on. Witness Miami and its $2 billion showpiece.

If I owned the Rays I would have had enough. Charlotte, San Antonio and Nashville would be good places to start a discussion, and by 2015 I would be there.

Larry Yurkonis, St. Petersburg

It's not Foster's fault

Your editorial seems to imply that the attendance problem at Tropicana Field is somehow the fault of St. Petersburg Mayor Bill Foster. You seem to be implying that a new stadium is the answer. Well, just look at what happened to the Marlins: a new stadium and still empty seats.

Let me give you a clue to some other problems: the high cost of everything you want to buy, spending three hours or more beside some moron who serenades you all night with a cowbell, and television coverage. Why should I fight traffic and pay parking fees when I can sit in my living room and have the game brought right to me?

Henry D. Reiss, St. Petersburg

Needs, public and private

Let me get this straight: Attendance at Tropicana Field is lowest in the majors, but this is somehow St. Petersburg Mayor Bill Foster's fault?

My understanding is this: A for-profit corporation signs a lease on a city (i.e., public)-owned facility but wishes to break the lease early without penalty. Try running that past any landlord.

This city, county and state have needs much more important than building sports facilities for private corporations. The Rays are welcome to move into a new stadium as long as they abide by the terms of their current lease and don't build a new one with my tax dollars.

Dale Kitt, St. Petersburg

Shooter's access prompts reviews | Sept. 19

Focus on mental illness

Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel promises to work hard to make government security more secure. Elsewhere there are references to the "red flag" that popped up on the killer at the naval installation.

One favors "security," but where was the vigilance that clearly could have stopped this current massacre and perhaps others before? Mental health is the prime culprit. Where are the "experts" who perceive but do not follow their leads?

Bea Donis, Tampa

Slow down flood insurance rate hikes Sept. 17, editorial

Needed insurance reform

The Biggert-Waters flood insurance reform measure you criticize uses the same kind of long-term phase-ins as Florida's Citizens Property Insurance Corp. The Citizens phase-in was actually the direct inspiration for the language in Biggert-Waters. In addition, it's worth noting that the rates will not soar for the overwhelming majority of homeowners — almost all primary residences are exempt from sizable increases. Even when the higher rates are fully phased in, FEMA's sample rates indicate that a home right at the waterline will pay only about $150 a month for coverage.

The National Flood Insurance Program needs to charge more if it hopes to ever find firm fiscal footing. Higher rates may not please every homeowner, but they are necessary.

Eli Lehrer, president, R Street Institute, Washington, D.C.

GOP leads House vote to cut back food stamps | Sept. 20

Many need help

How disgusting that 217 representatives voted to limit SNAP funds. They might as well have said "Die!" to all those who, because of poor economic status or illness, need what we used to call "food stamps."

These 217 are not representing us, our children who need to have good education and good health which is nearly impossible without nutrition; our handicapped and elderly who cannot work for a living and depend on programs like SNAP; our neighbors who can find only poorly paid work that cannot support them and their families; our citizens who have been ravaged by storms, fire, theft, accident or other misfortune and need temporary assistance.

Esther Kirk, Riverview


Monday’s letters: College instructors need classes in active shooter training

Active shooter perceptions disproven | June 21We need active shooter trainingThe only guns that I had seen before coming to the United States of America were in glass cases in museums. When I came to America to get a Ph.D. in English at the Unive...
Published: 06/19/18
Updated: 06/22/18

Friday’s letters: What a new Rays ballpark would mean

Rays exec hints at stadium timeline | June 15What a new ballpark would doThe Tampa Bay Rays 2020 organization is working diligently with local business leaders and civic organizations to rally support for the Rays’ new ballpark in Ybor City. The ...
Published: 06/19/18
Updated: 06/22/18

Thursday’s letters: On immigration there has to be a better way

‘Zero tolerance’ ignites outrage | June 20Find better way on immigrationOver the years I’ve voted for candidates from both parties. My observation of the Trump administration’s policy on immigration is not about politics. It has to do with having...
Published: 06/19/18
Updated: 06/21/18

Wednesday’s letters: Charters and traditional public schools each have their place

Public school as public good | Letter, June 17Both kinds of schools can workAs a mother and grandmother of children raised in both traditional public and charter schools in Pinellas County (and a 25-year supporting-services employee for public sc...
Published: 06/18/18
Updated: 06/20/18

Tuesday’s letters: Keep programs that fight AIDS

For author Biden, it’s a father’s gift | June 6Keep programs that fight AIDSAfter former Vice President Joe Biden’s recent visit to St. Petersburg, I noticed an article that he co-wrote with former Sen. Bill Frist. It reminded everyone about the ...
Published: 06/18/18
Updated: 06/19/18

Is anyone watching the money?Hernando County’s budget shortfall is ever changing going from $6 million to $11.5 million to $14 million to what is assumed a final number of $12.6 million. Who knows the budget shortfall could change again.Who’s watchi...
Published: 06/14/18
Updated: 06/18/18

Re: County OKs solar zones | June 8Plea ignored at solar plant hearingThe Pasco County Commission on June 5 voted to identify a utility-sized solar electric plant as a "special exception" use on agricultural-zoned land in Pasco County. What thi...
Published: 06/14/18
Updated: 06/18/18

Monday’s letters: Skip those plastic bags and save the environment

To save our seas, overcome congressional apathy | Column, June 16Do your part and skip plastic bagsEvery day we read about the shame of our landfills and oceans filling up with plastic bags, yet most people don’t care. My wife and I always carry ...
Published: 06/14/18
Updated: 06/18/18

White House defends splitting up families as ‘biblical’ | June 15The suffering of the childrenI am a mother and attorney with more than 20 years of practice living in Tampa. For the past three years, I worked as a magistrate in a Unified Family C...
Published: 06/14/18
Updated: 06/15/18

Saturday’s letters: Community-based care requires community involvement

Fix foster care, and do it quickly | Editorial, June 15Involve the community itselfWhile the detailed article about the scathing state review of Hillsborough County’s foster care problems touched on leadership, a critical point was not addressed....
Published: 06/14/18
Updated: 06/15/18