Sunday, March 18, 2018
Letters To The Editor

Tuesday's letters: A proud and loyal legal immigrant

Plea rises for immigration | April 11

A proud and loyal legal immigrant

My nephew and I immigrated to the United States through legal channels.

I wonder how legal immigrants feel when they hear the chant of "the time is now" from thousands of illegal immigrants outside the U.S. Capitol.

We have worked and paid our taxes since arrival and have never drawn a penny of welfare, health benefit or unemployment payments from the U.S. government. We are proud and loyal citizens.

My hope is that if these illegals are granted citizenship they can say the same after 53 years.

Valerie Visnage, Seminole

Lack of respect for the law

If illegal immigrants are granted citizenship without going through the current process, what grounds would we have to forbid future illegals the same right?

The fact is, they are here illegally and have no right under our laws to be recognized outside of the established process for obtaining citizenship.

To read that some have been here illegally for decades, and haven't applied for citizenship during that time, proves a disrespect for our laws.

Richard Valentine, Palm Harbor

The public's right to know | April 6, editorial

Transparent, accountable

I am compelled to correct the misinterpretation of the intent of the motion I made. My motion was to revert to the previous way of sharing with the public and the press the names and actions of suspended employees coming to the School Board. That process does not deny the right of parents and others to have the information. That process does not protect employees. That process is transparent, it is accessible to all, and it is legal.

What is missing from the most recent way of disclosing the name of employees is a sense of compassion and sensitivity, and I make no apology for that kind of consideration. I would like to think that we can strike a balance between the public's right to know and our employees' right to dignity.

You speculated about my intentions and motivations. They had absolutely nothing to do with any specific case. My comments were in the context of cautioning board members about how we respond to emails or calls because of the possibility of hearing the case in the future.

Let me be clear about my intent: to adopt a process that ensures transparency and accountability, while showing compassion and sensitivity toward our employees. I still believe we can strike that balance.

Doretha Edgecomb, Hillsborough County School Board, Tampa

Vote looking close on gun bill | April 15

Holes in background checks

The likelihood of background checks reducing gun violence is slim at best. The proposed legislation does not cover private sales. How difficult would it be for anyone to have a friend or family member purchase a gun for them? Or, if one has no friends or family members, simply respond to a private ad for a gun for sale. I suspect the only reason for the bipartisan support for this legislation is that it gives a thin veneer of protection, while doing nothing to hurt the finances of those in the gun and ammunition business.

Also, the reality is that a background check would not have red-flagged the majority of those who have committed mass murder. The reader is advised to examine the National Instant Criminal Background Check System for a delineation of the criteria to deny gun purchases from federally licensed sellers. Some of these criteria appear arbitrary and based on hunches and prejudices, rather than data.

There is no system to identify angry and psychologically disordered people who lack any of these "markers" in their personal history. An al-Qaida member who is legally residing in the United States is not prevented from buying whatever guns he wants, unless he has one of the "markers." The politicians have, again, found a pretend solution that makes them look good while not alienating their campaign donors.

John Dalton, St. Petersburg

LaHood, Buckhorn push bike safety at summit | April 12

Breaking the rules

In my area of town, I would estimate that 90 percent of the bike riders pay no attention to the rules of the road. Perhaps this is different downtown, but not where I live. They bike against the traffic lights as they see fit, ride on the sidewalk, then dash to the road when it's to their liking.

I'm sure "real" riders don't do this. I must assume there are a lot more of the other kind of riders out there. In addition, biking to and from work in August does not appeal to me.

Dan Mason, Tampa

Sticker shock on way? | April 11

Crushing increases

Your headline screams "Sticker shock on way?" True, yet interesting that Citizens Property Insurance, with no help from the Legislature, has already "shocked" condominium owners across the state of Florida.

The "Transient Rental Rule" converts wind policies held by Citizens from "private residential" to "business exposure" policies for any condominium association that has 25 percent of its units "rented to guests more than three times in a calendar year for periods of less than 30 days."

This devastating rule forces homeowners associations to see increases in annual premiums ranging from 600 to 1,700 percent. The end results will be costs passed on to homeowners — and renters, Florida's valued tourists. Something must be done to prevent further damage to the economy in Florida.

April Schiff, Tampa

Face to face with Thatcher | April 10, commentary

A leader to respect

On opening day of the Rays season I always take my third-inning walk to see the what's new at the Trop. This year as I was walking I saw former Tampa Mayor Pam Iorio.

I am not from Tampa but have always felt she was one great leader. I walked up to her and had a two- to three-minute conversation. She gave me her undivided attention as we briefly talked baseball and then a little politics. I complimented her on what a superb job she did as mayor of Tampa.

When I read her essay in the Times I thought of what she said about Margaret Thatcher. Iorio showed me respect and interest, as Thatcher did her.

Wynne T. Black, New Port Richey


Sunday’s letters: Effort to stem pet cruelty pays off

Puppy millsEffort to stem cruelty pays offThank you to everyone who contacted their legislators, and a huge shout-out to the Tampa Bay Times for letting us know that state legislators were considering a bill to eliminate the hard-achieved gains on lo...
Published: 03/17/18

Saturday’s letters: Insurer focused on repairs, not fees

Citizens hit with $12.7M verdict | March 15Insurer’s focus: repairs, not feesCitizens Property Insurance Corp. has spent the past several years making sure that insurance proceeds for sinkhole repairs are used to restore a home and make it whole....
Published: 03/16/18

Friday’s letters: Put young people to work rebuilding infrastructure

Smart way to pay for infrastructure | March 13, commentaryMake rebuilding a youth project Raising gas taxes to pay for infrastructure may not be the best way to go. I suggest we re-invent the old WPA (Works Progress Administration) and draft high...
Published: 03/13/18
Updated: 03/15/18

Thursday’s letters: An alternative for giving: Breadcoin

Panhandling paradox | March 11Innovation in giving: BreadcoinPanhandling is destructive to the donor, panhandler and our community — a guilt trip that erodes personal dignity, respect and self-worth, making the recipient more beholden and entitle...
Published: 03/13/18
Updated: 03/14/18
Wednesday’s letters: Daylight bill is bad for business

Wednesday’s letters: Daylight bill is bad for business

Daylight saving timeDaylight bill is bad for businessI encourage Gov. Rick Scott to veto the daylight saving time extension bill. It makes no sense. It puts Florida out of sync with the rest of the country. Commerce will be affected. The entire Easte...
Published: 03/13/18

Pasco Letter to the Editor for March 16

Re: Pasco to test roadside recycling | March 9 column Pasco County (and its residents) have financial incentives to recycle, but the participation rate is low. Clearly, Pasco County either needs to make recycling mandatory — by making residents r...
Published: 03/13/18
Tuesday’s letters: Billionaire’s personal agenda

Tuesday’s letters: Billionaire’s personal agenda

Billionaire targeting young voters | March 7Using youths in personal agendaIs anyone surprised that Tom Steyer is using his extreme wealth to support his personal agenda and the liberal agenda of the Democratic Party? His real motive, hidden in h...
Published: 03/12/18
Updated: 03/13/18

Pasco Letters to the Editor for March 16

Re: Pasco to test roadside recycling | March 9 columnOur community, Briar Patch, in New Port Richey has really gotten on board with the recycling program. Many homeowners diligently separate garbage from recycling material and place it curbside f...
Published: 03/12/18

Thursday’s letters: Gun limits, maybe; confiscation, never

Gun controlLimits, possibly; seizures, neverThe antigun left-leaning media constantly refers to the "gun lobby" and the National Rifle Association when trying to ban and even take guns away from legitimate owners. They blame organizations for the act...
Published: 03/07/18

Wednesday’s letters:

February Letter of the MonthThe winning letter addressed the school shooting in Parkland.My generation is fearful, angryI’m a high school senior. I, and people like me, have grown up in a culture of fear — fear of getting shot in our schools, where w...
Published: 03/06/18