Wednesday, February 21, 2018
Letters To The Editor

North Pinellas Letters: Scientology, city relationship needs reciprocity

Future of downtown requires teamwork, Diane Steinle column, June 27

Revitalization, at what cost

You wrote an excellent, informative article on the latest analysis and advice by yet another group of experts to Clearwater officials and residents on the necessity of working with the Church of Scientology to insure progress in the successful growth of the city's downtown.

As a resident since 1967, I remember a vibrant Cleveland Street followed by a steady decline of businesses and the growth of empty storefronts, which was too sad. I agree with the expert panel from the Urban Land Institute that a relationship between the city and the church must come to fruition, but relationships are based on reciprocity. Without it, their suggestions are not going to have an environment conducive for revitalizing the area.

The experts had nothing to say about the gutted former 1100 Building on Cleveland Street or the lack of construction at the old bank building, which are both eyesores. Coachman Park and the waterfront would benefit from the razing of the Harborview Center on the north side of Cleveland Street. The giant condominium, Water's Edge, erected on the south side, and the bridge to Memorial Causeway block the view of the Intracoastal Waterway from the bluff at the western end of Cleveland Street.

For approximately 40 years, residents have watched the downtown disappear bit by bit. Agendas, plans and studies costing hundreds of thousands of dollars have not helped. How much more money will be added to this staggering sum?

Is a multimillion dollar aquarium the catalyst that will rejuvenate Clearwater or is it throwing good money after bad?

Patricia Bates Smith, Clearwater

Diversity builds strength

As our very small contingent of walkers from Unity of St. Petersburg rounded the corner from the staging area onto the St. Petersburg Pride parade route, I was immediately awed by the overwhelming show of support and love from the tens of thousands of people longing to be loved and accepted for who they are.

This has been the reason for our group's participation each year in the Pride Parade. We aren't trying to spread any religious doctrine or recruit people. We just want to share our love, support and acceptance of everyone no matter what our differences may be. The more we know about each other and the more we start understanding the beliefs and differences of each other, the stronger our communities will become.

I'm so proud of St. Petersburg for stepping forward and helping us spread the message that an open and diverse community is a healthy and stronger community. Good job St. Petersburg!

J. Larry McElveen, Safety Harbor

Library move opposed, story, June 27

Never too late to change

Interesting comment by the Clearwater mayor that it is too late (for residents to object to moving the Countryside Library, a decision the city made a year ago). Since when is preventing something costlier and unnecessary an action that is to be discounted?

The library really needs to stay where it is, and if more room is needed, use one of the conference rooms. It is a totally unnecessary move and not what many of us wanted. Where were we? Speaking out just as we are today.

Mrs. Harriet P. Sherwood, Clearwater


Wednesday’s letters:

House Bill 21Opioid proposal merits supportIn 2016, Florida recorded 952 heroin-related and 1,390 fentanyl-related deaths. Four in five new heroin users began by misusing prescription pain medications, also known as opioids. Despite the widespread op...
Published: 02/20/18

Hernando Letter to the Editor for Feb. 23

Re: Hernando business leaders push to loosen development rules | Feb. 9; Re: Deny Brooksville mine expansion, planning commissioners say | Feb. 16Wish to register my opposition to both the draft of the new Hernando County Comprehensive Plan that elim...
Published: 02/20/18

Tuesday’s letters: Making politics personal is one way toward reasonable gun control

The Parkland shootingMake gun politics personalAs an educator of 32 years, it encourages me to see our young people engaged after the horror at Stoneman Douglas High School. The tragedy at Parkland has awakened the sleeping giant that is the millenni...
Published: 02/19/18

Sunday’s letters: Congress must act on firearms

Deadly toll: 17 | Feb. 15Congress must act on firearmsIt’s time for Congress to be counted.The failure of Congress to act to: (1) limit access to assault rifles and (2) require meaningful background checks for all gun purchases is appalling.Surel...
Published: 02/17/18

Monday’s letters: Call it by its name: terrorism

Deadly toll: 17 | Feb. 15Call it whatit is: terrorismLet’s just call it what it is. It’s terrorism. No school in the country is immune. They all have procedures for sheltering in place or emergency evacuation from a shooter. It’s prudent to be pr...
Published: 02/16/18

Saturday’s letters: Payoff to porn star not front-page news?

Lawyer: I personally paid porn star | Feb. 14Where we’re at: This is 4A newsOnly under the Trump presidency does a story about the president’s lawyer paying off a porn star to cover up an affair with the president show up on page 4A. Never mind t...
Published: 02/16/18

Friday’s letters: Water quality too important to gamble on

State to update water rules | Feb. 10Don’t gamble with water safetyI wondered whether this front-page article was an early April Fool’s joke. The Florida Department of Environmental Protection "updated" its pollution regulations in 2016, with str...
Published: 02/15/18

Thursday’s letters: Bill protects pharmacy customers

House Bill 351Bill protects pharmacy customersWe all need the protections provided in Florida House Bill 351 to ensure pharmacy benefit managers, or PBMs, are transparently operating with patients. Currently, PBMs are not regulated by the state and o...
Published: 02/14/18

Wednesday’s letters: The ocean is no place for amateurs

Youthful dream sinks in two days | Feb. 12Ocean is no place for amateursFirst of all, let me say I am sorry this couple lost their boat and I do applaud their adventurous spirit. However, I have spent over 20 years at sea and would like to commen...
Published: 02/13/18

Pasco Letters to the Editor for Feb. 16

A vote against Pasco’s jail bond issueThere are two stories on the front page of the Feb. 9 Pasco Times that drew my attention.The top headline reports that the Pasco County commissioners are discussing submitting a $185 million bond issue to the vot...
Published: 02/13/18