New Port Richey needs a fresh start,Bill Stevens column Oct. 19
Nice column, but perhaps a tad pessimistic.
There is not a lot the city can do while it is still under a contractual obligation to Mr. Ken McGurn and the Main Street Landing project. It would appear that situation will change in early 2009.
I was speechless after Mr. McGurn's suggestion that any extension in the agreement would just result in his putting the project on the shelf for another year. It would appear that he is in no hurry to fix the eyesore that I have to drive past every day on my way to work.
As you correctly pointed out, two of the three council members who voted against Mr. McGurn's Community Development District proposal are no longer on the council. Mr. McGurn has a window of opportunity to craft a solution to the Main Street Landing problem, but that window will close early next year.
I am open to considering any practical plan for finishing enough of the Main Street Landing project to solve the eyesore issue, but something must be done. Two years is too long for this mess to sit idle. The project needs to be built or bulldozed. If Mr. McGurn is not interested in the former, the city should have the money at the end of the contract to hire enough bulldozers to do the latter.
New Port Richey City Council
Re: School superintendent's race
System of electing officials must go
I really believe that neither candidate is the better choice for superintendent of schools for Pasco County. The best choice is to rid the county of its present system of electing commissions, tax collector, superintendent of schools, supervisor of elections and the other various positions that the voters elect.
I believe the days of the county commissioners have passed. It is now time for the county to create a county charter that elects a county executive and six or seven county council members, depending on the number of districts created, and would be subject to term limitations. Ever heard of that word?
The positions of superintendent of schools, tax collector and supervisor of elections would be hired positions. There would be a better choice of candidates to fill those positions; and if any of the individuals did not work out, they could be terminated. These positions would not be filled by appointment of the governor.
I am not impressed with the school system. There are a lot of better choices if we didn't have to elect.
Jerry Garfinkel, Dade City
Vandalizing signs will have its price
You may have noticed the vandalism and theft of political signs along Ross Lane recently. Seems one or two of our local teens or young adults (term used loosely) have yet to fully comprehend First Amendment rights in a free society and will need to learn one of life's lessons the hard way.
So now the sheriff is involved and the police report has been initiated. The other morning it was a (teen?) girl with long fingernails tearing at the signs. And when she and her friends are caught, and they will be eventually, they could end up with criminal convictions. A difficult burden to carry through life.
As all adults know, our kids often emulate those around them. So I say all this to ask you to have a talk with your family members about the consequences of hate crimes against folks with differing views and opinions, and the heartache they can cause themselves and their loved ones.
Oh, and one more thing, you may want to drive a little slower on Ross Lane. The police will be patrolling a little more in the days ahead. Don't forget to vote.
Jim Sample,New Port Richey
Vacant gas station needs to be razed,Oct. 19 letter
Vacant gas station becomes a danger
Thank you to the letter writer. I have also called several offices, many times and talked to many people and no one was willing to do anything or take responsibility to get rid of this blight in our community.
Hoodlums have torn off parts of the buildings to use as ramps for skateboarding. They have sprayed graffiti all over, trash has littered the area and now that the fence has been stolen they have bent the fence poles down. Cars and trucks park in there; and I, for one, am afraid to go near the place at times.
I also wonder how much gasoline and other kinds of pollutants are leaking into the ground. Is anyone listening?
David R. Buchwalter, New Port Richey
Near crash brings about new sign
It is almost three months since Commissioner Michael Cox took an interest in my near head-on collision on the northbound lanes of Little Road between Rio del Rancho and River Crossing.
I surmised that the woman driving south into the northbound traffic had probably turned out of the Publix shopping area and turned south instead of north. On investigation, we discovered that there was no sign at that exit indicating right-turn only. On further investigation, it was learned that the county was not responsible for a sign not being in position, as the land was private property.
With the help of the Publix manager, the owner was informed of the problem, and I am pleased to inform you that two signs are now in place indicating no left turn. This should eliminate any future chance of a driver taking a dangerous turn south. As the saying goes, better late than never.
T.S. Syme,New Port Richey
Let's pass along joy of sports wins
The Rays won! The Bulls won! The Bucs won!
There is much joy in our community this week, and while sports results certainly can bring temporary joy to our lives, I think we should see if we can transfer some of that joy into the lives of those who are facing tough times.
The Harvest for Humanity food drive/fundraising effort is in place right now, with collection boxes currently filling up at local schools, businesses and churches. The nonperishable food will go to Christian Social Services, which distributes food to families in need throughout the area.
The funds that are collected, usually pledge amounts per food item, will go to the local Habitat for Humanity affiliate so we can continue our work in building decent, affordable homes for economically disadvantaged families. We are currently building our fourth home, and we are in the process of purchasing our next lot for another home building project. All funds go directly into the home building projects. Since Habitat for Humanity of Central Pasco is an all-volunteer affiliate, no money is used for salaries, marketing or overhead.
Please help! These two local charities provide much-needed relief and joy to families in our communities. Let's continue our winning ways and support the Harvest for Humanity effort. On Saturday, Nov. 15 , around noon, bring nonperishable food items to Holy Trinity Church, 20735 Leonard Road, Lutz, and any amount of money for Habitat for Humanity of Central Pasco.
Why not ask your family and friends to pledge a dollar and a can of food for every run scored in the World Series? Let's show that no matter who wins that sporting event, our community will certainly win and we will all be champions!