Churches deserve praise on new role
On April 5, members of the clergy representing the Upper Pinellas Ministerial Alliance met with Clearwater Mayor Frank Hibbard and staff of the Clearwater Police Department to launch a pilot program based on the principles of the very successful Neighborhood Watch.
The difference in this program is the involvement of many different churches in the North Greenwood community, all coming together to intervene in the lives of juveniles who have been arrested on felony charges.
This will happen when Clearwater police notify geographically selected church contacts with allowable public records information on juveniles arrested for felony violations. Each church will then assume responsibility to contact the family of the arrested juvenile to provide counseling and referral assistance to guide the family through the juvenile justice system, with the goal of keeping the juvenile out of prison and in a productive life.
On behalf of Mayor Hibbard, the City Council, the city administration and Police Department, I want to acknowledge and commend the membership of the alliance for having the courage to step outside the traditional role of the church and into uncharted waters and very different roles. This is a significant first step, and I feel confident we will succeed.
Sid Klein, Clearwater chief of police
Re: Too bad for too-tall roof, story, April 4
Review decision on recreation roof
Palm Harbor Parks and Recreation has a building permit from the county for the roof. The Building Department had the blueprints, looked over the blueprints and permitted the project. The height was correctly given to the Building Department.
The county Board of Adjustments came into the equation only when the need for a variance from the street was needed. The variance was granted. This variance had nothing to do with height.
Palm Harbor Parks and Rec did what any citizen with a valid building permit would do: They built. Now, because of a verbal error that had nothing to do with the variance, the project is at a standstill and may have to be taken down.
This roof will protect our children at play and our adults at play. The Board of Adjustments should step back and take a second look at its decision to block construction and do what is best for the community. That is their job.
Ellie Sabol, Palm Harbor
Re: Standoff shuts down causeway, story, April 1
For traffic delay, throw him in jail
That nut who shut down the Dunedin Causeway gets no sympathy from me. Driving out to a bridge or causeway and parking beside a heavily traveled road and sticking your head out the car window with a gun to it takes a lot of planning and forethought. When he was finally removed, it was for a mental evaluation, not to jail as it should have been.
He caused a lot of folks long delays, my granddaughter being one. The police stopped all traffic.
When the doctors release him, he should be charged with a number of offenses and get a hefty jail sentence from a judge who should seriously consider the victims and not any tearful "I didn't know what I was doing."
Owen Allbritton, Clearwater
Angel drops off
a lost wallet
My husband's wallet fell out of a pocket while he was at the movies in Oldsmar recently. Afterward, I was at home and a young lady came to the door asking if this fellow in fact lived here. This gal explained she had dropped something on the movie theater floor and had reached down to pick it up and found the wallet. She drove to our house to deliver it!
I was so taken aback at this awesome good deed I forgot to ask her for her name. We would like to reward her for this good deed, so if she reads this, please put her in touch with us.
My husband had searched the theater and came home despondent and resigned to the fact that his identity would be exploited and ruined. Thanks to this angel, we are safe and sound, and would like to be able to say so.
With so much negative news, please print this to let this angel know we would like to say thank you and to let others know there are still really good people out there doing good and honest deeds!
Amy Ballou, Clearwater