1. Letters to the Editor

Gulf View Square will miss animal adoption center

Mall will miss adoption center

Having lived in west Pasco for 25 years, I have watched with growing sadness the decline of Gulf View Square. The mall still has the potential to be a community focal point, but its loss of the Nature Coast Humane Society ReTAIL and Adoption Center on Oct. 19 will only accelerate its downhill trajectory.

Since its opening in 2011, the Humane Society's unique window-front kitty cabana" has attracted people of all ages, many of whom visited regularly with the cats and/or adopted one. I did both and could not be happier with my playful, loving, feline companion Raven. The $25 adoption fee covered everything from spaying and vaccination to microchipping, even 30 days of pet health insurance.

I suspect many other mall patrons will be deeply disappointed by the closing of the Nature Coast adoption center. As human beings, we are part of the natural world. We are strengthened by the annual adoption of 3 to 4 million shelter animals and diminished by the euthanizing of 2.7 million adoptable animals.

Carmine Bell, Hudson

Don't forget about older children

I own a child development center and we have numerous families who, at different times, have had to utilize the state-subsidized care for their children.

The state has said it will use funding for children age 5 and younger. If there is money left over, parents of children age 5 to 8 can apply.

It seems that children 5 to 12 years of age need to attend child care as well, it shouldn't just be if funding is left over.

It's important for these children to have somewhere to go after school and to not be home alone. The way society is right now it's very scary to think of these children at home alone.

If a parent needs help from the state it should be available no matter what the child's age. These are still elementary-age children who need supervision and care.

Cherie Livernois, Trinity