City's sound rule hurts waterfront
The Port Richey City Council's latest assault on the citizens of Port Richey — after raising property taxes and the cost of water — is to kill the possibility of enjoying any outdoor entertainment in our beautiful waterfront establishments.
Several weeks ago, Council member Nancy Britton and her posse ran around the waterfront with a sound meter. In her attempt to prove the local establishments were offensive, it turned out the local birds had a louder say. The birds kept setting off the meter before Britton could attack the establishments. It was pathetic.
The ongoing harassment of the property now called Whiskey River is legendary. I even witnessed as the police just staked out the place waiting for something to report. I guess the drug deals and prostitution around the city is low on the list of priorities compared to possible noise violations. No that's a crime.
Catches General Manager Louis La Macchia reported the police have told him they could tell him to turn off a radio if they wanted to. The further insult is the attack on patrons' parking. The police also have warned of ticketing any street-side parking. The street leading to Catches is adjacent to commercial property that is not even in use in the evenings.
The other towns on the water, both north and south of us, recognize the huge tourist draw that waterfront entertainment provides. It is expected and it brings in massive revenues. Why is it Port Richey always gets it wrong?
The lack of any flexibility or common sense has again strangled the city at the hands of the current leadership. The Council has determined to drive the businesses and the citizens out of Port Richey.
Amy Scott, Port Richey
A community also needs its art
When budget cuts play art and layoffs against each other, art usually loses. You can put a face on layoffs, but it's hard to put a face on art. Let's try, specifically as it applies to the Progress Energy Art Gallery at the Greater New Port Richey Main Street.
Under the guiding hand of Judy DeBella Thomas, here are a few of the many accomplishments at the Main Street Art Gallery:
•Artists and photographers from the Czech Republic, at their own expense, came to exhibit for a month.
• An NR-17 avant garde exhibit of art and photography from noted artists from Tampa, Clearwater, Tarpon Springs and other areas. No children were admitted and the exhibit had thousands of dollars in sales.
• An Old Time Radio Show became a staple at the monthly art exhibits and drew large crowds.
• A venue for several "Heart Gallery'' exhibits in partnership with Progress Energy and the Richey Suncoast Theatre. There were fundraisers, big affairs with artists and spectators all along Grand Boulevard.
• Classes for the public in drawing, painting, jewelrymaking, photography, art history and other pursuits. Children exhibited there as well as adults showing the work of tomorrow's emerging artists.
This list of activities is extensive and perhaps little known to many in power who hold the fate of Greater New Port Richey Main Street in their hands. If they are interested in the future of New Port Richey, then don't make a hasty decision in this matter. Judy has done great things for this town and I'm sure has great plans in the making.
The little gallery run by Main Street is the jewel of Grand Boulevard.
Ralph Annan, Hudson
Preserve Sims Park events
Last weekend I spent a delightful afternoon in Sims Park, New Port Richey, enjoying good music and watching all the young families with little children having such a good time and for very little money.
The squeals of delight from the children and the big smiles on their parents' faces made me realize that New Port Richey is one of the very few cities along Florida's West Coast that offers a lovely park along the river.
Greater New Port Richey Main Street puts on these wonderful events that cost so little and give so much happiness to so many people.
Please do not take these events away. We badly need them.
Gloria Curneal, New Port Richey
Denying sheriff funds a fatal error
Only two days after the sheriff's request for money to hire more deputies was denied, an elderly woman was murdered in her own home. In 2008, a World War II veteran also was murdered in his home and his wife was left to watch him die. These people were still vital and contributing to the community and did not have to have their lives end in this horrible way.
What is it going to take for the commission to wake up and face reality of what is happening in our area? Does the next murder victim have to live in Beacon Woods or Gowers Corner or the neighborhoods where any of the commissioners live to make them do something to give us better protection?
The commission must put aside its personal vendetta (for whatever reason) against Sheriff Bob White and remember his department is always the first one people call when they need help. If he does not have the personnel to provide this help, we are all going to suffer.
I notice as election time gets closer, some of these commissioners manage to come out of the woodwork to attend meetings and various functions to make sure we remember their names. We all will remember who the ones were who were elected by us to represent us and did not do so.
I am very sorry no one saw fit to give Sheriff White what he needed as he seems to be the only one in office who really is for the people and their safety. I have to give him kudos for still doing his utmost to get the money he needs to help the citizens of this county.
John Nicolazzi, Port Richey