Transit wishes | May 11
Bosses should help commuters
Reading this article makes me wonder why the CEOs highlighted don't do more to solve their employees' commuting problems. It's easy to look at public transit as a solution, but even if the Pinellas County transit vote passes in November, many employees may still not be able to use the new public transit options.
With CEO pay running into the millions and corporations showing revenues in the billions, companies can afford to provide transportation options for their employees including private shuttle buses, staggered start times and telecommuting where possible — rather than looking to the public to solve their employees' commuting needs.
Better yet, how about several companies getting together and providing shuttle buses for employees living in the same areas? Think how much easier it would be to attract employees if the company offered a corporate commuter shuttle to work.
Each 20-person shuttle bus would remove 19 vehicles from the roads.
Ken Gagliano, Clearwater
Bill improves oversight
Florida Court Clerks and Comptrollers thanks state Sen. Jeff Brandes, R-St. Petersburg, for exceptional work this session to add scrutiny by clerks over guardianship audits. House Bill 635, sponsored by Brandes and Rep. Kathleen Passidomo, R-Fort Myers, provides a mechanism for auditors to identify or investigate potential fraud or exploitation of the state's billions of dollars in guardianship assets.
Since 1989, Florida's court clerks have been directed by statute to audit guardianship reports and advise the court of their audit findings. However, these audits have been limited in scope.
Protecting our most vulnerable community members should be one of the highest priorities of public servants. And, as keepers of the state's court records and with the duty to provide cursory review of annual guardianship reports, the clerks are the logical governmental entity for uncovering waste, fraud and abuse in court-appointed guardianship cases. With the passage of this legislation, we've taken a step toward more accountability and curbing abuse by those who hold their own interests above the interests of those they're sworn to protect.
In addition to closer monitoring of guardians' fiduciary and financial responsibilities to the ward, this legislation allows clerks to create enhanced guardianship audits, thereby enhancing the courts' oversight of guardianship cases. The legislation also further codifies in statute the relationship between the clerks and the court.
This good bill makes Florida a leader in protecting its most vulnerable population by implementing a consistent and successful enhanced guardianship audit program.
Karen Rushing, Florida Court Clerks and Comptrollers, Tallahassee
Family's demise belies the picture | May 10
Behind closed doors
I've had the privilege to work at Avila for quite some time, and I can say that not all that glitters is gold.
I never met the Campbell family, but from all appearances they fit the Avila mold. I can't count the number of times I've driven down streets in Avila and looked at the gorgeous homes and well-manicured lawns and said to myself, "It must be nice." But what do you really know?
I've met some of the nicest people in Avila, and the majority weren't athletes or celebrities. I'll never be able to afford to live there, or be invited to any of their parties at the country club, but I'll continue show up to work and try to be content on the outside looking in.
But instead of thinking "it must be nice," maybe I should realize how good I've really got it.
Ray Brown, Tampa
Rutgers' affront to Rice | May 10, letter
It's her record, not her race
The letter writer assumes racism was behind Rutgers' rejection of Condoleezza Rice. As an accomplished African-American academic and intellectual, she might seem a fine choice.
However, Rice's pivotal role in the Bush administration's 9/11 intelligence failures and promotion of propaganda as facts to blame Saddam Hussein are not forgotten. From mobile weapons labs and yellowcake to the infamous mushroom cloud — at every turn she failed.
Anita Daniels, Dunedin
Psychology degree for Tiger Woods' ex-wife May 11
Graduate is out of touch
This article quotes Rollins College assistant dean Sharon Lusk as saying Elin Nordegren's application for Outstanding Senior "spoke to the determination of a single mom to complete her degree." Nordegren speaks of "the challenges she overcame in earning her degree."
I have nothing against Nordegren. She seems like a nice woman who did very well in college, but I would love to hear about these challenges she overcame. She received $100 million in a divorce settlement, at least one mansion, thousands more a month in alimony, and has a billionaire boyfriend.
I think she (and the assistant dean) may be a little out of touch with the many real challenges faced by the average student.
John Skey, Bradenton
Rules of the road
Keep right and let them pass
Those who insist on driving slowly in the passing lane should consult Rule 5.11.1 of the 2014 Florida Drivers Handbook: "Drive with the flow of traffic (within the speed limit). You should not drive so slowly that you block other vehicles moving at normal, safe speeds. When driving slower than the flow of traffic, keep right so others may pass."
Some people, myself included, have sense and courtesy enough to follow this rule.
Harold Der Garabedian, Madeira Beach
Obama touts gains in solar | May 10
In the voters' hands
We would have had solar programs in place long ago if we had elected Al Gore or John Kerry.
Now we have a president who is trying to accomplish what many have been encouraging for years. He needs our support and the support of Congress and our state and local governments. Please vote this November for candidates who support a cleaner and safer United States.
Peggy Goodale, Largo