Recycling change doesn't help at all
I received a notice regarding the Hernando Commission's decision to reduce the curbside recycling by half with no commensurate rate reduction for those areas in Spring Hill that have mandatory recycling. In addition, there is no plan by either the county or Waste Management to provide additional containers for storing the recyclables for the extra week. This is nothing more than a backdoor tax increase for the affected Spring Hill residents. And, to add insult to injury, the notice that was printed and mailed was incorrect and had to be redone.
The proposal by the county Solid Waste and Recycling Division and subsequent approval by the county commissioners is wrong on many levels.
First, this is nothing more than a tax increase on a portion of Spring Hill that was part of the trial for curbside recycling. For those of us who take recycling seriously, it's a penalty for keeping waste out of the landfill.
Second, this is only reducing the cost minimally. In this economy every penny does count, however, at the same time the county is moving forward with a multimillion-dollar expansion of the landfill. If recycling is less convenient, more recyclable material will end up in the landfill, resulting in the current landfill reaching capacity sooner. The consequence would be additional costs to the county to pay for transporting solid waste to Pasco County.
The county should address recycling seriously and either mandate curbside recycling countywide or stop curbside recycling and budget for the increased demand on the county landfill.
Anne Kraus-Keenan, Spring Hill
Cut in recycling is a disaster
I am disgusted at the changes regarding recyclables. We are fanatical about recycling every single thing that can be recycled — we shall now have rubbish picked up twice a week, but recyclables only every two weeks. What a disaster.
We have one lonely trash bag Monday and Thursday — not enough to warrant putting out the barrel, but our two recycling buckets are full to overflow each Monday.
So what do we do with the following week's recyclables? Do we throw everything back in the trash and fill up some more landfills?
It certainly does not seem environmentally friendly to us. Would love an answer to this ridiculous turn of events.
Joy Straz, Spring Hill
Business fine at Hawkins House
When I read Dan DeWitt's column, it amazed me that he missed some important points, glossed over others and then hinted that the closing of the Christmas House would lead to spreading decay and cause other businesses in the immediate area to close.
The physical decay he notes in the Christmas House and the nearby Saxon House has nothing to do with who is operating the business but rather is the result of the property owner's neglect.
Not 100 feet across the parking lot from the Christmas House is the Hawkins House, which houses three very successful businesses. These three businesses are run by three independent, entrepreneurial, business-savvy women. These businesses have survived various people attempting to operate the Christmas House; these successful women have offered their assistance to each operator only to be rebuffed.
The only reasons the Christmas House closed were mismanagement and limited working capital. Various visions, including those mentioned in the article, have been communicated to both the property owners and the business operators over the years to no avail.
There is virtually no chance that the three businesses inside the Hawkins House will close now or anytime in the near future. All three businesses have significant support locally and in surrounding counties, and, in fact, one of the businesses, the Paper Porch, has doubled its sales during the same time that the Christmas House sales have decreased. Mallie Kyla's Cafe has done so well that it has expanded to an additional location in Dade City.
Dan needs to do a better job gathering his facts.
Thomas Lovelock Sr., Brooksville
Let's vote to kick out the ideologues
As the teachers are finding out this very day, this current batch of representatives at any level of government, in my opinion, do not represent the American people, much less the average Joe and family. Those with money are okay with them. Are you?
Facts are that regardless of party, if one truly examines their work, one finds the same ones over and over again voting for their agenda and ideology. One only need to take a walk through Hernando County to see the disaster at their hands. And for them to claim they had no part, well, what can one say?
The paradigm will only come when all eligible voters get up and vote them out. Sit on your tail and get what you sow. It will be more of what we have from the so-called majority, which is less than half of those who can vote.
Robert Melaccio Sr., Spring Hill
Situation at jail raises questions
Let me see if I understand this: Hernando County Sheriff Richard Nugent tours the county jail managed by Corrections Corporation of America and discovers the need for millions of dollars of repairs. The contract with CCA requires it to maintain the facility other than "major" repairs.
One has to wonder what category the problems discovered by the sheriff fall under. Commissioners are shocked, absolutely shocked.
Well, where have you all been? It appears that Hernando facility managers had not been to the jail in over a decade. Huh?
CCA is in this business for a profit. If it's going to cost money and affect the bottom line for its shareholders, then it is going to think twice before expending money.
Now the irony of all this is that the Hernando County Jail is ACA (American Correctional Association) accredited. One has to wonder if the ACA actually toured this jail or if ACA accreditation has nothing to do with running a jail. I wonder how much CCA paid the ACA for this?
Ken Kopczynski, Private Corrections Working Group, Tallahassee
Monitor at jail needed oversight
This is specifically related to Jim Gantt and his comment that "someone needs to tells us if it needs to be done." Wait a minute, Jim, weren't you on the three-member committee that hired a jail monitor who was supposed to report back to the county regarding issues at the jail?
Don't tell me that this person was only hired to monitor CCA practices and its enforcement of policies. This person also took over most if not all of your administrative assistant's clerical work and should have been reporting everything back to the county. On paper, this person wasn't qualified to monitor a jail, but instead was your pick over several who were much more qualified to monitor operations of a jail facility.
You had the person in place to keep you updated daily, Jim, so I guess you are right when you said later that if the commission needed someone to blame it could blame you.
Maybe you need to hire someone to monitor the monitor.
Howard Dahill, Spring Hill