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Low morale in Clearwater can't be ignored

Editor: I would like to take this opportunity to comment about the sad condition of the city of Clearwater employees' morale. I believe the reason for this condition is painfully obvious after Commissioner Nunamaker's statements in your paper. The survey, which the city requested and paid for, shows that 77 percent of the employees are not happy with the way things are being run. The most glaring point of the survey was that the employees feel that the commissioners bury their heads in the sand and pretend that everything is wonderful.

Mr. Nunamaker stated that he has spoken to supervisors who told him that the morale problem is overstated. Well, Mr. Nunamaker, if you had bothered to read your own survey, you would have discovered that the supervisors participated in the survey and were well-represented among the 77 percent with low or no morale.

Mr. Nunamaker refuses to hear the reports of independent people (USF) and refuses to see the problems in front of him. When he is confronted with hard facts, such as the survey, he simply denies that they exist.

Mr. Nunamaker also stated, "If we let that disgruntled employee run the city, we're going to have a lot of trouble." Mr. Nunamaker, the independent survey shows you, in black and white, that you already have big trouble.

The days of elected officials building dynasties at the expense of the wishes of the citizens and employees is over. Without the support of the rank and file, the well-oiled machinery that keeps this city running on a daily basis begins to rust and corrode.

The employees have already begun to scream that enough is enough. Soon the citizens will be saying it with votes.

The Fraternal Order of Police Lodge No. 10 has recently met with City Manager Wright and Assistant Manager Rice on the issue of morale and other problems. Mr. Wright and Ms. Rice seemed genuinely concerned over the problems, and assured the F.O.P. that they would work with us to end the strife.

I would like to tell Mr. Wright that we are going to have our hands full in trying to improve the working conditions of employees as well as the service to the community when we have to deal with a commission that apparently just doesn't care.

J.G. Slack

2nd Vice President

Fraternal Order of Police

Clearwater

Donation not used as intended

Editor: I responded to two telephone solicitations for the Humane Society. I sent them $45. I was quite annoyed to discover that the Humane Society received only 23 cents on the dollar and that my contribution had been whittled down to $10.35.

I assumed that the call was from a volunteer for the Humane Society and not a professional solicitor.

I certainly learned a lesson, and I'm going to return to my response to all telephone solicitors: "I'm sorry, I don't respond to telephone solicitation, so I can't help you."

I had made an exception for the Humane Society because we have two happy, healthy, loved pets _ a dog and a cat. We are responsible pet owners and we really care for our animals. We care about the welfare of all animals as well. We know that there are many that don't give this kind of care and that the society does a good job of caring for less fortunate animals.

Thank you for a most enlightening article on the use of professional telephone solicitors. I'm still upset that they collected 77 cents of each dollar that I sent in good faith. That seems to be an outrageously high fee.

Marianna S. Peterson

Clearwater

Times should write followup article

Editor: Part of an editorial you published in July 1990 dealt with the city of Tarpon Springs and its sign ordinance and also remarks made by our newly hired City Manager Carey Smith.

Your editorial stated that City Manager Smith gave our city commissioners a list of 11 possible goals, of which the commission chose to begin working with eight immediately.

Three of the adopted goals have to do with improving the city's appearance. One is to eliminate debris and abandoned cars. Another is to remedy deficiencies in maintenance, such as unmowed rights of way, and the third is to work on the sign ordinance.

Your editorial stated the above, yet your paper does not see fit to follow through on the statements that you print in your paper.

I strongly urge you to do a followup article to your editorial of last July. We have a serious health problem in an area located around Lime and Safford Avenue. This can be attested to by the County Health Department. Also, just take a look at 721 Lincoln Ave., Tarpon Springs, plus numerous other areas.

The housing authority has spent in excess of $1-million in rehabilitating the Mango Circle Housing Project. These are your taxes and mine that were used. Take a ride up to this area. Tenants are proud of this new program, but notice the area leading up to Mango Circle. It's a shame that we allow children to grow up in this environment.

Complaints to the administration during the past four years have brought no results. This includes my personal complaint to Commissioner Glenn Davis.

It has been estimated that to incarcerate a person costs the taxpayers approximately $37,000 per year. If newspapers such as yours do nothing to correct these simple problems, then we are all guilty of teaching our future leaders, our youths, that it is perfectly normal for them to live in filth and drug-infested areas, and that when they reach maturity they can disobey the laws and that the taxpayers will incarcerate them free of charge.

Is this what we want for our youngsters and future leaders? By cleaning up these areas, the taxpayers will save millions of dollars in the future.

I believe that it would be a good idea to run a contest naming the filthiest city on the West Coast of Florida. Tarpon Springs would win hands-down.

We remember that there is a limit to what the taxpayers will bear.

Lee Ricciardi

Tarpon Springs

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