Who pays for this licensing hassle?
To get a new driver's license at the tax collector's office you must have proper identification. A birth certificate from a hospital is not good enough. A birth certificate from the state is required. Military discharge papers and your Medicare card issued by the United States government also will not suffice. Women who change their name when they marry must verify each name change.
Some people may get upset about the big runaround so the collector contacted the sheriff to provide security for his employees and innocent bystanders should someone go ballistic. A private company Allied Barton was contracted for $132,000 to provide armed guards.
I refer to the Miracle on 34th Street. The U.S. Postal Service delivered trucks full of mail to a man in court calling himself Kris Kringle. The judge said the post office couldn't make that many mistakes, so the man must be Santa Claus.
Well, if the state of Florida sends me an official document and it's delivered to me at my address by the Postal Service, that should be good enough for tax collector Mike Olson. Everybody is short on money so I wonder who's going to pay for the guards. We are, and I bet our fees will increase to cover the cost.
This is to protect us from terrorists trying to establish false identification. You can circumvent all this new stuff if you renew online or by mail for a few bucks more. That sounds very attractive to me.
Thomas Karcher, New Port Richey
Give us jobs, not false promises
Stop the bribery! Once again the promise of future jobs is being used as the justification to give our tax dollars to a prosperous corporation. The last time county commissioners did this was in 2008 for T. Rowe Price. Our commissioners and county administrator were falling over each other to take credit for bringing jobs to Pasco. Where were most of the jobs going to come from? Tampa. Tampa's loss is our gain, net gain for the region, zero.
Between the county and state government, multimillion-dollars' worth of incentives (bribes) were promised. That is our current or future tax income to pay for government services. The roads and other infrastructure to the proposed building site were put in at taxpayer expense. Local and national developers such as the Ryan Company who purchased or owned surrounding land didn't need to pay a dime for the infrastructure in impact fees. What is there today? An empty lot and no new jobs.
In 2011, T. Rowe Price's director of real estate said: "We are not coming any time soon. It will be more then a decade before the project may create any jobs." Not one job yet, maybe some jobs by 2021?
The commissioners are doing it again, bribing a profitable corporation, Raymond James, to move to Pasco. The initial incentive offer (bribe) is $10 million. The promise: 750 jobs. County Administrator John Gallagher beamed, "the county is coming of age." State Rep. Will Weatherford stated that "Pasco is stepping into the 21st century."
I am insulted. Evidently, we Pasco residents have been children living in some past century. We become adults and live in the 21st century by promoting pseudo economic growth through corporate welfare and by approving bribery with our tax dollars.
The way to promote job development and economic growth is not in bidding wars between neighboring counties. Business and industry will be attracted here because of the quality of life offered in Pasco County. We should be funding great schools, well-maintained parks and recreational facilities, libraries that are open more than they are closed, effective police and public safety services, a modern infrastructure and efficient county government. The very things our current commissioners have cut funding to support. The services paid for by our tax dollars that the commissioners have cut are what creates the quality of life that attracts business and industry. If our commissioners and county administrator are serious about job growth and economic development their priorities are wrong.
I want economic growth and jobs, not false promises. I want my tax dollars spent on services that improve the quality of life for all Pasco residents and attract jobs and economic growth.
Lynn W. Lindeman, Hudson