Adjust stoplights to save some gas
I wonder if the people or agencies in charge of stoplights ever thought about ways to save gas. Can you imagine how much gas is burned (wasted) waiting for red lights to change?
For instance, there are hundreds of little streets where there could be a flashing yellow light instead of a red light.
When there is a green arrow involved in the traffic light rotation and there are 100 cars going straight and a few turning left, why not set the light so the 100 cars go first and the green arrow people go last?
There are so many lights that could be changed. On the Belcher Road extension in Palm Harbor at Nebraska Avenue, if you are heading east or west on Nebraska, you are doomed. Most of the time all the traffic is going east and west. Very little goes north/south. So after it is gone, we sit on Nebraska and wait, wasting gas.
Why not just have a flashing yellow light at Belcher and Klosterman Road? There's not much traffic there either.
On U.S. 19 in Palm Harbor at Innisbrook, there is now a left turn arrow. Since the arrow was put in, there are always a bunch of cars waiting to turn. There never used to be.
Up on East Lake Road north of Trinity, a new stop light was installed to get cars in and out of some subdivision. It is seldom used. It should be a flashing yellow light.
C'mon, whoever you are, let's use some common sense.
Jeffrey G. Mikres, Palm Harbor
Re: Island Estates should secede, letter, June 3
Lower taxes, fewer services
I have seen other articles like this. The argument for secession appears to be related to alleged mismanagement of local cities. Other arguments have surfaced and seem to be centered on so-called "high taxes."
I would like to "put my oar in the water" on this issue.
If you live in a city, you have police protection, garbage collection, fire protection, libraries and an assortment of parks and other departments that most individuals want or believe is in their best interests.
Because there is no government in these areas, you will not see any government buildings or services rendered to its citizens.
Those who prefer to live in unincorporated areas appear to be only interested in low taxes. My feeling has always been that you get what you pay for. If you pay cheap, you get cheap.
Ask the residents of Lealman if they feel the police protection is adequate or the fire protection is adequate. Because Lealman is not incorporated, they have no police department or fire department. The county sheriff provides coverage, but keep in mind that the sheriff has other responsibilities within the county, not just to the Lealman district. Fire protection is "coordinated" between the county and local municipalities. In other words, incorporated cities such as St. Petersburg and Clearwater provide fire protection.
There has been a fire in an unincorporated area of Pinellas County just north of the St. Petersburg boundary that did not have fire hydrants close enough for St. Petersburg fire trucks to quickly extinguish the fire. The result was significant damage to the facility. I am sure homeowners insurance rates are calculated regarding the availability of hydrants and the closest fire department.
Lastly, I remember traveling north on 49th Street in St. Petersburg just north of 38th Avenue soon after I moved here. I found that in the St. Petersburg section, street lighting was present along 49th Street — until we reached the northern St. Petersburg boundary. At that point, the street lighting stopped and it was quite dark.
I just checked my most recent tax bill and found that one-quarter of it went to the city in which I reside. The majority of the remainder went to the county and School Board.
I enjoy the benefits of being "annexed," and the cost is certainly worthwhile. This is in contrast to the concept of avoiding "high taxes" and getting reduced services.
Alan Merrell, Clearwater
Add flag on bike to be more visible
I was behind a girl on a black motorcycle the other day and she had "streamers" on each handle bar that were blowing in the wind as she traveled. It made the motorcycle appear to be wider in the lane. The movement of the streamers alerted me to the fact that she was in front of me while I was driving my vehicle.
As a suggestion to all motorcycle riders (as I once was), maybe you should think about putting an American flag or something that will move in the wind on the sides or back of your motorcycle.
My brother in Connecticut also has a black bike, and after I explained this to him, he will now have an American flag in the back of his bike to alert drivers that he is on the road.
And to all drivers of vehicles, please keep your distance behind a motorcycle like you would another car.
Ann Whisher, Oldsmar