Thursday, April 26, 2018
Letters To The Editor

Wednesday's letters: We've seen this election pitch before

Unmasking a candidate | Aug. 19

Voters have heard this line before

In logic, anecdotal evidence is not considered evidence. Your story was replete with such anecdotal evidence, and Ann Romney's assurance of Mitt Romeny's kindness and compassion.

Sorry, no sale. I bought the George W. Bush "compassionate conservative" lie and got: a spiraling deficit; thousands of dead American soldiers in two faraway, unfunded wars; corrupt, no-bid deals that obscenely enriched Dick Cheney's Halliburton; the huge growth of federal government, with the bloated Homeland Security Department and its invasive, plodding TSA; Wall Street causing an almost worldwide financial collapse followed by no-strings-attached bailouts; and the loss of world opinion because of Guantanamo and torture.

J. Steele Olmstead, Tampa

Citizens to make change in policy | Aug. 18

Hitting roof on inspections

Barry Gilway, president of Citizens Property Insurance Corp., complained his inspectors were not able to adequately check homeowners' attics that were blocked by boxes or insulation. Now Citizens says it will give homeowners one year to move property that is restricting attic access.

It cost me $1,000 to have insulation blown into my attic many years ago to aid in keeping the house cool. Imagine what it would cost me to have all that removed and then replaced so some inspector can crawl around in the attic looking at work already approved by building inspectors years ago as meeting the building codes of the time. It seems to me to be totally improper for the state to require a property owner to modify construction specifics that were fully complied with at the time of construction.

It is an American tradition to store stuff in the attic. It is an undue intrusion into the privacy of individual homeowners for the state to conjure up and promote these shady reasons for invading the personal property of the citizens of this state.

Merrill Friend, Tampa

Stop changing the rules

Thank you for this article on the revamping of Citizens' home inspection program due to public pressure. However, your story does not mention a questionable policy that went into effect this year.

From what I understand, Citizens recently ordered 500,000 home reinspections for wind mitigation credits. This was done after Feb. 1, 2012, when the Citizens' inspection form was changed to redefine the meaning of "clips/straps." The definition was changed to require three nails per clip/strap, and many people lost their credit with these inspections as they only had the two nails per clip/strap required before Feb. 1, 2012.

From what I understand, it is either not possible or feasible to add the third nails to the clips/straps as these are installed at the time the house is built. This discount being taken away adds a considerably higher premium to your Citizens bill.

When will Citizens finally be hit hard with regulations to prevent it from changing the rules in the middle of the game to benefit itself? This to me is just legalized stealing, and is hurting our housing market.

Michael E. Cote, Hudson

Republican National Convention

Not such a prize

I'm a Republican, but for the life of me I cannot understand why taxpayers are paying even $1 for security and other costs in connection with the coming Republican National Convention. And closing down the federal courthouse? Moving county employees for two weeks? Why?

Shouldn't the party be paying us to reimburse us for the costs and troubles? Would the cities pay for the Libertarians to come to town? Or the national Communist Party?

I am probably not the only one who thinks that maybe "winning" the title of host city to the RNC wasn't such a great prize after all.

Larry Heinkel, St. Petersburg

Next time go elsewhere

Pinellas and Hillsborough counties have virtually been shut down by the upcoming RNC. Highways, court systems, small businesses, even hospitals have been affected. There are restrictions on the waterways, air space, local roads and business access. Some schools are affected, public transportation altered, and banks within the RNC-restricted areas are going to be closed.

Enough. Next time let them go somewhere else.

Judy Lavaron, St. Petersburg

Ryan's tax rate at 20% in 2011 | Aug. 18

Facts on taxes

Thank you for this article. According to it, both Paul Ryan and Mitt Romney are in the top 1 percent and both are paying at a higher tax rate than the average middle class taxpayer.

The average taxpayer making $50,000 to $75,000 per year pays at a rate of 12.8 percent, while Romney paid at a rate of 13.9 percent in 2010 and 15.4 percent in 2011. Ryan paid at a rate of 15.9 percent in 2010 and 20 percent in 2011.

It seems to me that every time President Barack Obama says that the middle class are paying a higher tax rate than Romney, someone in the audience should shout liar. The media should also point out the discrepancy.

Kenneth Leiser, Seminole

Romney: I paid at least 13 percent | Aug. 17

Tax rate rage

My blood was at the boiling point when I heard Mitt Romney say he paid a 13 percent tax rate. I just retired from the state of Florida and I received my payout for all the holidays I was not allowed to take since I was employed by the Department of Corrections in a prison. My $17,000 was taxed at 25 percent.

Most people are in the same place financially as I am, and we will never understand how the rich get the marshmallow and the middle class gets the stick.

Joyce A. Nelson, Sun City Center

Military service

Honor those who served

I recently returned from the Air Force Sergeants Association annual convention in Jacksonville. In remarks to the meeting, speakers noted that less than 1 percent of the U.S. population serves in the military. There is an awful lot asked of those few, to benefit so many. If you should see individuals dressed in military uniform, or whose apparel leads you to believe they are a veteran, please take the time to thank them for the dedication and sacrifices.

The third week in September has been declared National POW-MIA Recognition Week. There are thousands of families who have gone for years not knowing the fate of their loved ones.

Victor F. Bartholomew, Tarpon Springs


Friday’s letters: Why just single-member districts are a bad idea for Hillsborough

Murman’s bad idea on districts | April 20, editorialSingle-member districts’ flawYour editorial opposing single-member districts in Hillsborough County is totally correct. I have served as Miami-Dade county manager twice. The first time (1976-198...
Updated: 1 hour ago

Thursday’s letters: A surgeon responds to story about a needle being left in a baby’s heart

All Children’s surgeon left a needle in a baby’s heart | April 22My view as one of the surgeonsI am one of the physicians discussed (but not interviewed) in this article. Whatever the motive for such an article, I disagree with many of the claims...
Published: 04/23/18
Updated: 04/26/18

Wednesday’s letters: How we plan to improve foster care in Hillsborough

Improving foster care inHillsborough | April 19, editorialOur plans for helping kidsThis editorial poses many good questions. The Department of Children and Families’ peer review report is expected to be released soon. And while we welcome the an...
Published: 04/23/18
Updated: 04/25/18

Pasco Letters to the Editor for April 27

Stop Ridge Road extension, reader saysWhen I spoke at the Dade City meeting of the Pasco County Commissioners on my opposition to the Ridge Road Extension, three of them responded, but only when my three minutes of free speech expired, and I could sa...
Published: 04/23/18

Monday’s letters: Term limits don’t work

U.S. Senate campaignTerm limitsdon’t workGov. Rick Scott has begun his run for the U.S. Senate with TV ads promoting term limits for representatives and senators. Aside from the probability that this would require a constitutional amendment, I think ...
Published: 04/22/18
Updated: 04/23/18

Sunday’s letters: Problems with high-speed rail

Thanks, Gov. Scott, for ghastly I-4 drives | April 18, Sue Carlton columnProblems with high-speed railIn her Wednesday column, the writer bemoaned the traffic on I-4 and blasted Gov. Rick Scott for turning down free government money for a high-sp...
Published: 04/21/18

Tuesday’s letters: Student journalists push to save their newsrooms and independence

Save student newsroomsAs professional newsrooms shrink, student newsrooms have become an increasingly important source of local coverage, holding not only our universities accountable but also local government. We write these articles, attending meet...
Published: 04/20/18
Updated: 04/24/18

Saturday’s letters: Don’t weaken rules on fisheries

Florida fisheriesDon’t weaken rules on fish stocksMembers of Congress are proposing changes to an important ocean law, the Magnuson-Stevens Fishery Conservation and Management Act, that would adversely affect coastal states including Florida.Since it...
Published: 04/19/18
Updated: 04/20/18

Friday’s letters: We owe it to our children to teach them history

If we don’t understand past, future looks grim | April 19, Daniel Ruth columnThe history we owe our childrenIt’s not often I agree with Daniel Ruth, but this article was spot-on. I’m not sure when the schools started ignoring Germany’s World War ...
Published: 04/19/18

Thursday’s letters: Gun research can save lives

Gun ownershipCommon ground: Find the factsThere are many areas in the current debate about guns and gun ownership where both sides must agree to disagree. But there is one area where common ground ought to exist. That concerns the need for continuing...
Published: 04/18/18