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Work to build Port Richey, not dissolve it

Editor: It seems history has a habit of repeating itself. It was not too long ago, that the city of Port Richey had a big problem. Our then-state Sen. Jack Latvala had an idea. He wanted the people to vote. Shall we dissolve and join New Port Richey or keep on going? That phased out quickly.

We now have a group sending out a petition to dissolve the city. Why? Instead of tearing the city down, let's build it up. The city has a money problem. It must conserve.

Here is an example: In your household, your income has dropped. You give up rib eye steak for chopped meat. You still have meat but not the finest. The same holds true in the city. We will still be covered by a dispatcher, but not our own. So what?

It is time we stopped bickering, and let's work together. The city needs help, let's give our energy to building it up.

Michael Starr, Port Richey

Much effort goes into getting tots their toys

Re: Toy for tot should not take two hours, Jan. 16 letter Editor: Did the letter writer realize that many adult volunteers and NJROTC students from the area gave up two days to help set up and distribute toys for kids who would not otherwise have toys under their Christmas trees?

These men and women gave their time to help those less fortunate pick out gifts for each child on a shopper's list. They stayed with each recipient and carried packages while the parents decided which items would be appropriate for their children. If the line moved slowly, it was because every parent got unlimited time to choose what they would like. This program is not about hurrying, but it is about people caring about other people. Perhaps she should realize how lucky she is that there are others who give their time and energy to help.

The Marine Corps, the gift donors, the adult volunteers and the NJROTC students should all be praised for their efforts.

Gayle Coker, New Port Richey

Tax increase a way to make millions off poor

Editor: Builders, bankers and developers have poured more than $45,000 into promoting the 1 percent sales tax increase.

Ann Bunting was right. The snake oil salespeople are only looking to make millions from the poor people of Pasco County. Beware of tax increases it will only help certain interest groups. Vote no for a tax increase.

Charles S Kreizer, New Port Richey

More positives come through for new Wal-Mart

Editor: I have listened patiently to the negatives and positives concerning the new Wal-Mart that I pray will soon adjoin Beacon Woods property.

U.S. 19 does have its traffic problems. Crime happens, but you can't buy a single one at Wal-Mart. Some residents of Beacon Woods are scheduled to vote on having the streets repaved (I am in favor), despite the huge number of shabby cars that will travel them.

Thirty-six thousand mailers were sent out by Wal-Mart and according to one writer, 4,300 positives responded, leaving the impression that 31,700 were against the project. But that is not true. My understanding is that fewer than 900 negatives were returned leaving 30,800 who, for reasons of their own, have withheld their opinion until a later time.

Facts are supposed to be truth, and so many seem to have stretched it a little. But I still see more positives in a new Wal-Mart on the site than I see negatives.

Joseph L. Glazebrook, Hudson

Safety Town deserves recognition for its work

Editor: Gov. Jeb Bush recently lauded the state's volunteer mentors for their participation in school activities. Pasco County's Safety Town does an outstanding job with the year-round program explaining the need for safety in everyday life.

The program caters to all children from preschool through second grade. It includes all of Pasco County, and I think schoolchildren are also accepted from Pinellas and Hernando counties.

In addition to administration by the Sheriff's Office, there are numerous volunteer instructors who donate their time many days a week. I feel this is a program that is designed for the welfare and safety of our young people.

W. Ryan, New Port Richey

Proposed tax a small investment in schools

Editor: It is fairly clear to me from the letters I keep reading that it would not make any difference if this Penny for Pasco cured cancer. Same old gang would be opposed to it. I'm not for taxes, but I am for good schools, less road congestion, protecting our environment, and improved public safety. It seems to me, given what's coming our way, that our County Commission and school system are doing a pretty good job. We need to step up to the plate and support the Penny for Pasco. Quit complaining! Sometimes you have to give a little to get a little. Maybe, give a little to get a lot!

Roseann Heyser, New Port Richey

Name-calling letter writer misses point about taxes

Re: People supporting tax must be brain-dead, Jan. 19 letter

Editor: The letter writer calls people who support the Penny for Pasco "brain-dead," in need of "professional help" and "liberals." Then, he goes on to accuse them of name-calling.

I have read anti-tax letters stating that a penny on a dollar was a 16 percent tax increase and that freedom of speech was granted in the Declaration of Independence. Name-calling would be too easy.

This is not about liberals vs. conservatives or Democrats vs. Republicans. It's about common sense. Growth in Pasco County is not debatable. It's here, and it's going to continue. We can either make the wise choice to invest in our communities and deal with it now, or we can bury our heads in the sand and pay a much higher price later.

Jim Sawl, Lutz

Republicans need just one stance on Penny for Pasco

Editor: Has anyone noticed that there seems to be two Republican parties in Pasco County lately? On the one hand, we have all the elected Republican officials strongly supporting the Penny for Pasco tax increase and, on the other hand, we have the party officials adamantly against it.

I thought when you are a member of a political party, you are bound to support that party's platforms. What gives here? Is this some new kind of strategy to confuse everyone? They should get it together and speak with one voice, or is that asking too much of Republicans?

Vincent Corelli, New Port Richey

Penny tax will only benefit those outside the county

Editor: I hope the fact that more than two-thirds of the money raised in support of the Penny for Pasco initiative comes from outside the county will trigger some alarm with Pasco voters.

The companies that have contributed so heavily are not based in Pasco County, the owners do not live in Pasco County and, therefore, these contributors pay no property taxes within Pasco County to support the schools and other infrastructure.

Why, then, do they support the 17 percent tax increase? The simple, bottom-line answer is that they are in a position to increase their own business profits when new construction of roads, schools and developments happens. As in most political campaigns, those who contribute, reap the benefits if their side wins.

The residents of Pasco will have a choice to make March 9. It's time for accountability, not new taxes.

Ed Estes, Dade City

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