Editor: I was disappointed, but not surprised that the Times has chosen to recommend developer-supported-commissioner incumbency for the Pasco County Commission in next month's election. Surely the people of Pasco County deserve better than "business as usual" _ they deserve a commissioner who will listen to them and support their needs for a change. Your editors credit the incumbents with risking their standing with the building industry, yet developers and builders remain their major supporters. You credit them with such improvements as water and sewer, parks and libraries, because they let the voters decide to spend the money. You even suggest they should be lauded for building a state-mandated jail!
Happily, it is the people who will choose the new commissioners and not your editors. I am confident that the people of Pasco County will see through the haze of your endorsement and elect truly responsive and responsible commissioners. I expect to be elected to the county commission to replace Curtis Law on Nov. 6 and lead the county into the '90s.
Bonnie D. Zimmer
The Pasco Times has recommended Democrat Allan Safranek for re-election to the County Commission from District 4. His opponent, Ed Collins, replies:
Editor: I appreciate the opportunity to respond to your recommendation of my opponent in the District 4 County Commission race.
My candidacy gives the taxpayers of this county a real choice in the November election. If the voters of this county agree with you and Allan Safranek's "Proven Record," then they had better be prepared for four more years of taxation without representation.
Your comments stating Law and Safranek "have given us confidence that they will deal with problems competently" is very amusing. I think the citizens of this county have no confidence in Safranek due to his record of:
Voting in favor of spot rezonings that put commercial business in residential areas.
Voting in favor of tax increases because he says taxes are not too high.
Voting blindly on county budgets because he has not taken the time to understand what they are comprised of nor has he taken the time to research what the constitutional officers need to operate their departments.
Voting in favor of issues that have negative impact on the environment, such as the OMC Marina.
I truly believe that the taxpayers of this county want representatives on the commission who will not rubber stamp staff recommendations. I do not plan on doing the county administrator's job. I will be an active commissioner who will spend time in the various areas of county government so I can have a better understanding of how tax money is spent.
Your recommendation was a glowing endorsement of County Administrator John Gallagher, whom you have referred to in the past as the "King of Pasco County." There are no kings in Pasco County, and Gallagher is not running for office. The voters will be able to voice their opinion of Safranek on Nov. 6. They have a choice of four more years of "tax and spend" or the opportunity to elect Ed Collins, a taxpayer, who will represent the people of this county, not the special interest groups.