1. Letters to the Editor

Letters: Keep traps to avoid inhumane treatment of cats

Hernando Animal Services' plan to stop loaning humane traps to residents who want to remove stray and feral cats from their property is ill-conceived and dangerous.

When citizens who consider cats a nuisance because they are scratching cars, using gardens as toilets, and/or killing birds and other small animals don't get help trapping and removing cats humanely, they often take matters into their own hands by cruelly killing cats themselves.

Ending this essential service would ultimately increase the costs and workload of Animal Services. Cats who are denied help will reproduce, creating more unwanted strays, and will likely become the victims in cruelty cases that must be handled by law enforcement and the courts. The unwarranted discontinuance of trap loans may reduce the intake and euthanasia of cats at the shelter, but it will undoubtedly increase the number of homeless cats who are suffering and dying on the streets, as well as the number of cruelty cases.

I urge Animal Services to protect cats from fates much worse than euthanasia by continuing to loan humane traps and getting stray and feral cats off the streets. To learn more, visit

Teresa Chagrin

People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA), Norfolk, Va.

What is the cost of trap program?

Don't let activists' agenda affect entire county's ecology. Domestic cats are a non-native introduced species. At times, they can be a nuisance to non-owners. They are also a nuisance to native wildlife. This county benefits from people visiting here to view wildlife.

By trapping and euthanizing the county is practicing sound conservation policies, as dictated by all state and federal wildlife authorities. That is why we must deal with our own "nuisance" native wildlife like alligators, raccoons, armadillos, etc.

The three people quoted in this article are known activists in favor of trap, neuter and release programs. The effectiveness of this has only be proven anecdotally (Dr. Centonze's own words), not scientifically.

Please, let's all take an unemotional and scientific look at the true costs of the trap lending program.

James Dowdell, Brooksville,

Seat in Congress belongs to voters

I hope that every voter from this congressional district keeps in mind how we the voters were cheated when Rich Nugent first ran for this office. The 11th hour deal between Nugent and then-U.S. Rep. Ginny Brown-Waite was nothing more than dirty politics. Other candidates were denied an opportunity to run and the voters were cheated.

Nugent's statement at the time was that he did it out of respect for her because it was her seat. He doesn't understand that it was not her seat, but our seat. It belongs to the voters. Such arrogance is inexcusable!

At last, now we have a choice of candidates and, in my opinion, either candidate is better qualified than what we already have.

Robert Bonnell, Brooksville

Candidate lacks basic experience

The Hernando County School Board is correct to offer a $101,000 two-year contract to Lori Romano to serve as superintendent. Romano is asking for a $130,000, performance-based three-year contract, but she lacks superintendent experience on her resume.

She has never even worked as a school principal let alone taken on the enormous responsibility of being a superintendent for an entire county school system. Granted, the pre-employment interview she had with School Board members showed she was the top candidate, I still believe the School Board is rolling the dice if they negotiate a contract on her terms for that amount of money.

Steven Lee, Brooksville