Sunday, June 17, 2018
Letters To The Editor

Pasco Letters to the Editor for Sept. 8

Residential areas also need cleanup

Having moved to Pasco some 33 years ago, we have resided in the Embassy Hills section. When we moved here it was a very nice area. All property was well maintained, and it was a pleasure to drive around. In the last 10 to 15 years, I have seen a steady decrease in property upkeep. Soon it will be one big blighted area.

One only needs to drive around and see fallen-down fences, overgrown yards, junk and what have you piled in front of or next to homes; once well-maintained lawns hosting three, four or more cars; blue tarps over roofs, some for over five years; trailers parked in front, not on the side or in back, and I could go on and on.

One reads in the newspapers how the county wants to beautify U.S. 19. Is there a problem with starting with the residential areas first? This area is one of the first that visitors see, and I can only imagine what they think. The old story — "we need more code officers" — well you have them now, so how about some action?

A few months ago, we saw pictures in the paper of county commissioners all congratulating themselves on cleaning up the Colonial Hills area, another area that was sorely overlooked by Pasco County. How about a code enforcement push now through the Embassy and Regency Park area?

I urge commissioners to do so ASAP and tackle the problem before it's too late. I encourage my fellow residents of Embassy and Regency Park to contact the commission, especially Commissioner Jack Mariano, who is our representative in this area.

Ernie Stetz, Port Richey

Things looking up at Hacienda Hotel

Our once-grand and glorious roaring '20s-era Hacienda Hotel sat empty downtown for a decade. I felt embarrassed whenever I walked by and observed its broken windows and rundown condition.

A few years ago, our City Council put out a call to city residents to come out and start fixing the place up. Hordes responded, cleaned it up, and painted its outside. Enthusiasm ran wild.

The city then got a large Florida grant for structural repairs, put up a chain-link fence, and there she sat, vacant and still abandoned, after the repairs were done. No question much work remained. A potential outside partnership to develop it into a boutique hotel failed to move forward.

People continued to request that city management take down the fence. Meanwhile, Friends of the Hacienda decided to put on a roaring '20s-style gala ball, and the fence came down. The outside is already quite beautiful.

On a recent Saturday, nearly 200 of us experienced the first gala held in the hotel ballroom in 30 years. Citizen-members of Friends of the Hacienda skillfully used smoke and mirrors to decorate the ballroom superbly and got the place electrified and air conditioned. We enjoyed live music, dancing, appetizers and beverages. At least half the guests dressed in roaring '20s style. We had a blast.

New Port Richey folks, with the help of good government, got it done. I feel very excited to see what more can be accomplished as other major parts of the restoration continue to move forward.

Congratulations, Friends of the Hacienda!

Louis Parrillo, New Port Richey


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: 06/15/18

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

Friday’s letters: Freight trains are infrastructure that works in Tampa Bay

Railroads are infrastructure that worksFreight trains carry the loadCentral Florida is our state’s fastest-growing region. We’re on track to outpace South Florida’s growth 2-to-1 over the next several years. Great news for our local economy, but it n...
Published: 06/12/18
Updated: 06/15/18

Thursday’s letters: Charter schools aren’t the enemy

Don’t plug your ears when schools ask for tax | May 20, columnCharter schools aren’t the enemyAs an educator, I am astounded when I hear claims from school board members that charter schools take away funding from the local public school system. ...
Published: 06/12/18
Updated: 06/14/18

Wednesday’s letters: Trump’s words insult our Canadian visitors

Trade disputes torpedo G-7 summit | June 10Canadian visitors are owed apologyLike many Pinellas County residents, I’m pleased that we receive thousands of Canadian "snow birds" as part-year residents. Not only do they enhance our economy, but by ...
Published: 06/11/18
Updated: 06/13/18

Hernando Letters to the Editor for June 15

Opinion: Commissioners arrogant and incompetentMy wife and I live in Hernando County. As such, we are represented by a Board of County Commissioners where all the members manifest two common traits. Those traits are arrogance and incompetence.The arr...
Published: 06/11/18
Updated: 06/12/18

Tuesday’s letters: Fewer guns would reduce suicides

U.S. under suicide watch | June 8Fewer guns mean fewer suicidesIt is a fact that deserves more attention, but got only one sentence in the article about the U.S. "suicide watch:" "The most common method used across all groups was firearms." I spe...
Published: 06/11/18
Updated: 06/12/18

Pasco Letters to the Editor for June 15

New group to address real women’s issuesLast Saturday our Congressman Gus Bilirakis sponsored a "Woman’s Summit" at East Lake High School that was supposed to deal with women’s issues. Some topics covered were gardening, weight loss and quilting.Mayb...
Published: 06/11/18

Monday’s letters: Bring back the ferry, kick-start transit

Cross bay, but who’ll pay? | June 8Ferry could be a gateway to transitIt’s great news that St. Petersburg is committed to bringing back the world class cross bay ferry service. What a common-sense and practical thing to do in order to ease us int...
Published: 06/08/18
Updated: 06/11/18