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LONGTIME DEPUTY DESERVED BETTER

I would like the citizens of Pasco County to know how disrespectful and unprofessional Sheriff Bob White and his administration have been to my husband, former Sgt. Jeffrey Bousquet.

My husband had been employed by the Pasco Sheriff's Office for more than 22 years. He has served this county in many different positions throughout his career: patrol, warrants, burglary, crimes against children, school resource officer, homicide detective and patrol sergeant. He has worked on some of the most high-profile cases that took him to many different states just to put these criminals behind bars. His dedication throughout his 22 years has taken him away from his children's birthdays, holidays and many family events.

On Sept. 1, my husband put in his two weeks' notice to pursue a career at another law enforcement agency. The next day while he was on a call he received a phone call informing him that when he was done he needed to go home, pack up his gear and turn in his car. His services were no longer needed. He was unable to say goodbye to the people he had worked with for so many years.

The sheriff wanted to make an example out of him. The example he set is that he does not value the service of my husband and the many other officers who risk their lives every day to keep the citizens safe. I feel that my husband deserved more respect from Sheriff Bob White and his administration. They could have at least said, ''Thank you."

If my husband had died in the line of duty they would have called him a hero and the sheriff would have made a speech. But, because he chose to leave, they treated him with total disrespect. I hope that the sheriff and his administration take this as a wake-up call and change the way that they treat their employees.

Kim Bousquet, Trinity

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Modest rate hike pays off in future, Sept. 13, letter

Competition, yes; rate increase, no

This is in response to the letter extolling the virtues of the request by Progress Energy for an increase in its rates. I do not know how benevolent the Public Service Commission is on the letter writer's native planet, but I am sure he isn't speaking of the PSC here in Florida.

He claims that the increase will be a small one, that it would be repaid to the consumers in lower rates in the future, and that the investors in Progress Energy should be entitled to a 10 percent return on their investments. Huh? When oil was being sold for $145 a barrel and logically drove up the prices of other sources of fuel, we were quite fairly forced to pay a fuel surcharge. Now that oil is selling for around $70 a barrel, I for one do not see any reductions on my energy bill.

Where is this benevolent PSC now? More than likely pondering the ways to justify another rubber stamp increase. As far as the 10 or 12 percent return on investments goes, I am sure that anyone with any investment funds at hand would jump at the chance to invest in a semi-monopolistic electrical utility at a return of 6 to 7 percent, given the current economic climate.

Progress Energy is a business and I ask the readers how many of them would pay for an expansion of any business if they were given a choice to go shopping elsewhere. Further, there would be many people who would never see any future savings, if in fact they would exist, due to relocation or demise.

Instead of a rate increase I would love to see a new utility move in and build the nuclear plants to give competition to Progress Energy in the future. Much like Bright House did when Verizon got the okay to supply TV and high-speed Internet services, I am sure that instead of an increase Progress Energy would actually lower its rates and still make a profit.

Richard Back, Port Richey

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Our freedoms shield haters, too

While I believe that America is the greatest country in the world and live proudly each and every day respecting the freedoms I so enjoy, I am reminded from time to time how others easily abuse these freedoms, knowing how well they are protected by them.

A case in point was the Sept. 12 Tea Party at the corner of Ridge Road and U.S. 19. More than 200 people were there, waving flags and holding signs in protest to the agenda being put forth by the president and his advisers. Cars honked their horns in agreement; some flashed their lights; and yes, some stared ahead not knowing what was going on.

While I was encouraged by the apparent success of the demonstration, I was disgusted by the presence of two men who chose to show their true colors. One carried a pole-size flag of Iraq. The other walked back and forth with our beautiful Stars and Stripes hung upside down. They walked among us, knowing how this country allows them protection when displaying that hate.

Fortunately, they are in the minority. Those millions who believe in America, who uphold the laws and hold close its principles, who know that without our great country the world would be in chaos, these are the very people who will fight for the rights of those two sorry people.

Phyllis Grae, Port Richey

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Truth, not fear, is key to health reform, Sept. 6, column

Democrats lag in health care fight

I was so happy to see Jan Glidewell had written a column and it was awesome. When you are face to face with a medical crisis and find your insurance rationing your benefits or denying them, then you will understand why reform is so needed.

This whole reform is not written in stone and won't be for a while. I see no one organizing any rallies for us to support this reform. In fact, I contacted the Democratic Party in Pasco County and their response to me was a dissertation on the president's upcoming speech to the schools.

So, in my mind, if they as Democrats do not see the need to offset the negative energy, then they don't care. Maybe they do care to get re-elected and fear supporting reform will hurt that. I wonder if it has crossed their minds that by not supporting the reform and bringing in supporters as a group, they can lose just as well. Oh, and I am a registered Republican.

Christina Ennist, New Port Richey

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Health reform is obvious way to go

I couldn't agree more with Jan Glidewell's column about health care reform. He said it better than I could ever hope for.

I don't understand what the complaint is. Medicare, Medicaid and the prescription drug program are all government programs, but I don't hear anyone complaining about them. And end-of-life decisions have been going on for a long time. Unless one was involved with that, you wouldn't know about it.

Some people just don't listen carefully and let themselves be swayed. I attribute that to the general dumbing down of America.

Marianne Flanagan,New Port Richey

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Progress too slow in east Pasco

I have watched for years the many good folks who try to get some positive change here in east Pasco. I, as many other working-class families, want to know why nothing major has changed for the better.

Does this County Commission really care about the every-day person? We have wanted industry, better housing, infrastructure and much more. I think of a young lady named Isa Blanford trying to do something in Lacoochee. What happened to her? I used to read a lot about a man I admired named Denny Mihalinec, who everyone believes changed this area's image. He made people get up and start doing things in east Pasco. (I understand his job moved him elsewhere.) He started several groups that I understand still help thousands of folks to this day.

I hear and see others trying to follow in their footsteps over the last few years - like the Lacoochee Elementary School principal. People need jobs more than parks filled with activities. We need better housing conditions. Have you been to parts of Trilby and Lacoochee? Shotgun houses still exist. I was an original board member of the Greater Trilby Community Association back in 1998-2001, when it was started by Denny.

Denny worked so hard to change the way outsiders looked at this community. He brought publicity and many great leaders to the table to talk and get things done.

I moved to the Villages and wanted to come back to see what happened to the dream that these young folks set out so many years ago. I see progress, but not what I thought the county promised back then. I spoke to Dr. Rose Sims, who many years ago worked very hard to change the dynamics of the area. She had passed the torch to young folks like Denny.

I hope that someone steps up and tries to fill very big shoes. This area still needs it.

Clark Jones, Lake Sumter Villages

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