1. Opinion

Find fairer ways to share the costs for Tampa water | Friday’s letters

These are the letters to the editor from Friday’s paper.
A pipe carrying reclaimed water at the Howard F. Curren Advanced Wastewater Treatment Plant in Tampa.
A pipe carrying reclaimed water at the Howard F. Curren Advanced Wastewater Treatment Plant in Tampa.
Published Sep. 12, 2019

Find fairer ways to share the costs

Chlorinated water flows over a weir at the Howard F. Curren Advanced Wastewater Treatment Plant.

Hefty hike for Tampa water | Sept. 7

Concerning the urgency of fixing Tampa’s sewage system, how did the leaders let this system deteriorate so long? The working and middle class will, once again, shoulder more of the burden of cost. There has got to be a better way to make this plan more equitable. If the transportation tax is defeated, then Tampa and Hillsborough should levy the same tax increase but on a temporary basis for sewer and other infrastructure. HART should then rally the whole region to implement a slight gas tax for the three-county area like other regions have done, particularly Philadelphia, which even has a substantial subway system, and it works for them.

Spreading out the costs of infrastructure via an excise/sales tax is much fairer for the many people living paycheck to paycheck. Invoking a slight regional gas tax would result in more comprehensive systems that serve more people and our many visitors. Who knows? Getting across Tampa Bay without a vehicle could actually become a reality at a much faster pace than present. A rapid transit bus line to the airport from St. Petersburg, Clearwater and Tampa could be funded as could a ferry service across the bay servicing commuters and not just weekend revelers.

Jeannie Cline, St. Petersburg

Just put away the guns

Derek Omasta, right, was fatally shot Saturday night during a dispute with a neighbor over parking, Clearwater police say. [Photo courtesy Samantha Omasta]

‘None of this makes any sense’ | Sept. 6

A person is shot and killed in an argument over parking in a handicapped spot. Another man is shot to death in a dispute over parking at a duplex. Is there no end to this madness?

John Waitman, Tarpon Springs

Photons are phenomenal

Solar power

The League of Women Voters of Hillsborough County is encouraging residents of Pasco County to go solar. Our league’s Pasco unit is co-sponsoring the 50th solar co-op in Florida, which recently formed in Pasco. This project aligns with our league’s continued support for increased use of clean renewable energy sources such as solar. Solar makes a great deal of sense, environmentally and economically. Going solar benefits the planet, lessening our carbon footprint and reducing our reliance on fossil fuels. Economically, a solar system is a positive investment. New technologies are making solar more affordable, and Florida residents are eligible for up to a 30 percent federal investment tax credit on their solar purchase. This credit begins shrinking next year, so it’s a great time to make the switch.

Idelia Phillips, Tampa

The writer is president of the League of Women Voters of Hillsborough County.

Your tax dollars at work

President Donald Trump's Mar-a-Lago resort is shown. [LYNNE SLADKY | AP]

Air Force reviews hotel options after Trump resort stay | Sept. 11

I am appalled by President Donald Trump’s profiteering from the use of his resort properties by himself, the military and Vice President Mike Pence. His proposal to host the 2020 G7 conference at the Doral Resort is so corrupt as to be laughable. Attorney General William Barr’s plan to host a $30,000 holiday party at a Trump hotel similarly reeks. What message does this send to the world? We were never really going to drain the swamp, but it’s getting deeper all the time. Time to issue flotation gear?

Karl Olander, Indian Shores


  1. Paula Dockery of Lakeland served in the Florida Legislature for 16 years.
  2. The United States' life expectancy has gone down four out of the last five years largely because of deaths in the 25-64 age range.
  3. Michael Bloomberg, Bernie Sanders and Donald Trump
  4. In this image from video, the vote total, 53-47 for not guilty, on the second article of impeachment, obstruction of congress, is displayed on screen during the impeachment trial against President Donald Trump in the Senate.
  5. Nurse manager Amy Hunt holds the special stethoscope that allows nurses at Tampa General Hospital to record a heartbeat while they listen to it during a routine exam.
  6. Pinellas County Supervisor of Elections worker Andrea West adds mail ballots to an inserter at the Pinellas County Supervisor of Elections Service Center in Largo. Workers are preparing to mail 260,000 vote by mail kits for the November General Election.
  7. Left tot Right: US Army Reserves Captain Jessica Purcell, 37, St. Petersburg, spends time with her 10-month-old son Jameson, and her attorney Natalie Khawam on Jan. 21, She has breast cancer and has filed a medical malpractice claim. Photo by SCOTT KEELER/Times
  8. Oil can be seen in the Gulf of Mexico on April 21, 2010, as a large plume of smoke rises from fires on the Deepwater Horizon offshore oil rig. The company at the center of that disaster, British oil giant BP, announced a zero emissions target this week.
  9. Three teens died in a fiery stolen SUV crash on Tampa Road in Palm Harbor in August 2017.
  10. Les Miller, Hillsborough County commissioner and chairman of the county's transit agency board, made the motion to fire chief executive officer Ben Limmer during a special meeting. Only one board member voted no.
  11. This columnist will participate in the St. Petersburg Conference on World Affairs.