Our county commissioners recently voted unanimously to allow the construction of a large cellular tower on a very small parcel of land in Hernando Beach. This property, commonly known as the triangle, abuts Shoal Line Boulevard, Calienta Street and Petit Lane, and is where the Coast Guard Auxiliary building is located.
The commissioners did not discuss the consequences of the proposed cellular tower collapsing, as happened on the Texas coast during the recent hurricanes, and blocking evacuation routes off the beach during a major storm. Because of the approved Coast Guard location, it is a very real possibility that Hernando Beach residents will be unable to evacuate due to a collapse of the tower onto Shoal Line Boulevard, Calienta Street or Petit Lane.
At no time did the commissioners consider the negative consequences of their vote. Alternatives were suggested, but they were ignored. A short distance away stands an elevated water storage tank no longer used by the Utilities Department. The water tank's only purpose now is to be a lighted beacon for mariners. A good location for a cellular tower, but our county commission doesn't think so.
Another location that could have been considered was Linda Pedersen Park, a large inland area and a perfect location for a cell tower without the potential for disaster.
Commissioner Rose Rocco, who represents Hernando Beach, strongly supported the proposed tower location at the auxiliary site. When she ran in 2006, she said she would talk to the community about their concerns.
Did she speak to Hernando Beach residents, those with the most to lose, or was she influenced by a small group of nonbeach residents?
There is no argument that a cellular tower is needed for the coastal areas because of dead zones, but the location, as approved, needs to be reconsidered by the County Commission.
Rose Rocco needs to be a person of her word and ask for reconsideration of this decision, thereby protecting Hernando Beach coastal residents from potential harm.
Paul H. Sullivan, Hernando Beach
Brown-Waite needs to debate
I am sure I am not the only voter who has concerns regarding the fact that our congresswoman in District 5 refuses to debate her challenger. How strange that she is afraid to debate John Russell. What is she hiding?
I believe she has forgotten that she works for us, the voters, and that as an elected representative, she has a duty to meet with all her constituents, not just fellow Republicans, while attending community festivals where she is not likely to get challenged.
How is the average voter to determine where she stands on issues that are so critical to our nation? Not everyone is capable or has the time to research her voting record to determine her positions.
LaVaunne Miller, Zephyrhills
Russell deserves to be ignored
I think U.S. Rep. Ginny Brown-Waite shouldn't debate John Russell, purely for the fact that people like John Russell should be ignored.
He is a man who not too long ago was ejected from a Democratic event and banned from Disney.
I have seen Russell firsthand at various events and, quite frankly, his behavior is embarrassing.
Peter Stathis,Spring Hill