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Pasco letters: Libraries need to get back to basics

Which GOP values are we talking about? | C.T. Bowen column March 19.

The story behind closed primary

C.T. Bowen didn't give all the information in his column criticizing the Republican Party of Pasco and me. I admit that I was happy to see the Republican school superintendent primary between Heather Fiorentino and her opponent closed. Heather's opponent was a registered Republican supported by the teachers' union. Democrats urged him to run. As a Republican, he would get Republicans to vote for him not knowing he was the Democrats' choice. Then, the teachers' union would get their Democratic followers to vote for him also, thus securing the election for the Democrats' choice.

Without a candidate from another party, Democrats would have been allowed to vote in that Republican primary since it would have determined the outcome of an election. However, when there was a write-in candidate, the primary no longer determined the outcome of the election, so Democrats could not vote in the Republican primary. Having a write-in candidate in that race threw off their whole plan. So, yes, I was glad the write-in closed the primary. The Democrats were beaten at their own game. Bowen conveniently forgets about the whole story.

I am proud I donated my money to help get young Republicans elected in nonpartisan races. Zephyrhills City Council member Danny Burgess was in an ROTC program when I contributed to him. He is still at USF and has just been accepted to law school and doing a great job on the Zephyrhills council.

Recently, I met with Diane Steinle, editor of editorials for the North Pinellas edition of the St. Petersburg Times. She said she couldn't remember the Times ever endorsing a Republican for president. As I stated in the ad, I welcome "conservatives" in the Democratic and independent parties to switch to the Republican Party.

I guess the Times will endorse either Obama or Clinton.

Bill Bunting, chairman

Pasco County Republican Executive Committee

Libraries need to get back to basics

In the Pasco Times on Wednesday, March 19, on page one, Chuin-Wei Yap reports on the consequences of the limitations imposed on the Pasco library system by the county budget. Ten days earlier, the same newspaper printed Library Notes on page four on Sunday, March 9.

The New Port Richey Library section lists: Free Computer classes, Learn Flamenco, History Club, Garage Jams, Otaku - Kum, French Club, Ciarcia Opera Club, Lorna Bracewell Workshop, New Port Richey Explorer, Lorna Bracewell Concert, GED classes, Live Homework Help, and Reading for Life workshops (15 scheduled activities).

Further down on the same page, you can find the happenings at the Hudson Regional Library. The activities listed are: Ambiguous Adolescents, Digital Photography Series, Family Night Out, Noisy Story Time, and Painting Horses, Romeo and Juliet (five scheduled activities).

At the Regency Park branch, we have: Teen Movie Night and book sales; at Centennial Park branch, Sign Language and Basic Bunny Care; and at South Holiday branch, Video Gaming Party, Teens Video Gaming Party, South Holiday Book Club and G-men Barbershop Quartet. That is eight scheduled activities.

If the library function has shifted from literature to social activities (only three of 28 notices refer to reading or writing), perhaps we should acknowledge this evolution and adjust our limited county and state finances to build community centers instead of libraries. It is also possible that a community with a predominantly senior citizen tax-paying base doesn't want to support a computer chat room, a babysitting service or disrespectful noisy people dashing about aimlessly.

Perhaps library management needs to readdress their objectives to be certain they coincide with what the community thinks it wants and what it is willing to pay for, (or perhaps is certain it doesn't want and won't pay for).

Consider the library experience from a senior's point of view. Walking is not one of our strong points. Merchants who depend on our patronage for their existence recognize this, but the library buildings are too far from the closest parking spots.

The remodeled library on Little Road is less accommodating (accessible to the physically impaired) and less convenient when it rains than the older Hudson branch. Why would I drop someone off at the library on a rainy day when I could drop them at the mall or at Wal-Mart? Successful department stores, malls and shopping centers all cater to one-stop shopping, but libraries isolate themselves so they are one-function stopping centers.

Has anyone considered copying the drugstore industry? If I can order a prescription by phone, and pick it up at a drive- through, why not a book or a CD? Why don't the libraries want senior citizen (taxpayer) patronage? What does it take to get their attention?

It's a bitter pill, but please consider that the people who voted for the tax cut are the same people who have been looking to you for service — and wondering.

Robert H. Proctor, Port Richey

Pasco letters: Libraries need to get back to basics 03/25/08 [Last modified: Tuesday, April 1, 2008 1:29pm]
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