County seeks system reboot Sept. 8, story
Taxpayers bail out inept leadership
It continues to amaze me that management and elected officials in Pinellas County government retain their jobs during this financial crisis.
Almost $10-million was spent on the Consolidated Justice Information System, which an auditor described as "poorly planned, managed and overseen." The audit attributes the debacle to "failed leadership and a mission rashly undertaken."
When are we, the taxpayers, going to wake up and demand accountability from our local government? We are being told that Amendment 1 is resulting in a decreased level of service when in actuality it is the massive waste we see like this and the nonchalant attitude of the hierarchy.
Well, we tried and failed so let's take another $8-million of the taxpayers' money and see if we can get someone in the private sector to do it right. Unbelievable!
David Hollingsworth, St. Petersburg
What a waste
Little surprises me anymore when it comes to the disregard for the taxpayer in St. Petersburg by our elected so-called representatives.
City Council has decided the best way to spend almost $200,000 is by building a dog park! We hear the crying about budget cuts and positions being eliminated, but we have all this money for a dog park.
It is about time we have a recall election in this city and throw these bums out of office.
I guess we will hear next that it was not really tax dollars because it came from a slush fund that the city has from selling an important resource that it should have never sold in the first place.
I for one have had enough, and I don't think I am alone. Vote against any and all incumbents in the next election. It is time for fresh leadership in this city.
Jim Shanklin, St. Petersburg
I question the wisdom of taking more than $188,000 out of the recreation and beautification fund to create another dog park. While these parks are certainly nice to have, we already have several such parks.
Thank you to City Council members Bill Dudley and Wengay Newton for opposing this project. When economic times improve, we can consider such requests; however, now is not the time for pet projects.
Diane Nicola, St. Petersburg
Pork for dogs
I'm astounded at the report that the city will spend more than $188,000 for a new dog park, and I'm reminded of those infamous palm trees in the news a short time ago. Someone just doesn't get it.
I realize that the fund that the money for the new dog park comes out of is a designated recreation fund, but I don't understand why that makes those dollars more prone for "pork" spending.
My dog will run and play on any piece of turf, and doesn't care how "beautified" it is.
In this economic climate and with tax dollars involved, there are much better places to spend the money.
Virginia Lazar, St. Petersburg
No fun anymore
When I moved here from Pennsylvania, I was greatly impressed by the wonderful beaches and many forms of family recreation that were available. And it was free. Could I ask for more?
Since then, there have been many changes, all for the worse, mostly by our governments trying to get more of our money. What used to be a great location for a day at the beach, Pass-a-Grille, was put off- limits by the installation of parking meters. It was bad enough when you had to go put money in the meter every couple of hours, but then they replaced them with the stations where you not only have to put the money in but have to walk half a block to do so.
Using our boat to go to the many islands in the gulf and bay was nice. Then suddenly we could not go there without the police telling us: No glass, no beer, no dogs, etc. It's the environment.
The beaches along the causeways were next to be put off-limits, including the hot dog girls. Last I heard, Fort De Soto Park was going to cost us more now. Road tolls to get there increased.
I could go into the fishing piers, but that would take another letter.
Jim Bardsley, Madeira Beach
Cyclists, light up
Every morning I commute to work by way of the Pinellas Trail. Because of the time, 6:15 to 6:35 a.m., it is dark. I have lights front and rear flashing all the way.
I pass at least six other riders every morning who have no lights at all. Because there are some parts of the trail that are not well lit, you cannot see these riders until you are right on them.
These are adults. Some are training on performance bikes, some are commuters on hybrid bikes. Others whom I see do have lights, and I thank them.
It amazes me to see a rider down on his aero bars with a helmet on but with no lights. This is a dangerous situation. It's great to see people out exercising, but let's be smart about it.
Ted W. Keirnan, St. Petersburg
I just finished reading Jerry Blizin's Sept. 7 guest column (Who's whistling? Hardly anyone) and couldn't help but give my opinion on whistling.
I am an 86-year-old great-grandmother and have whistled for years. I still whistle along with tapes of Roger Whitaker and songs on the radio. Our park puts on a variety show for our residents, and I have whistled in several of our shows. It's too bad people don't enjoy it the way I still do.
I may have to get around with a walker but my "whistler" still works!
Agnes Slater, St. Petersburg