1. Letters to the Editor

Pasco letters: We need to step up fight against domestic violence

Published Oct. 9, 2014

We can help stop domestic violence

It is a good time to reflect on the importance of October serving as Domestic Violence Awareness Month. We would like to encourage Pasco County residents to become familiar with the services offered by the Clerk & Comptroller related to domestic violence prevention.

Unfortunately, one in four women and one in seven men in the United States suffers physical violence at the hands of their spouses, intimate partners, or family members. Additionally, three out of four Americans personally know someone who is or has been a victim of domestic violence. It shows the tremendous impact domestic violence has on our local communities.

However, it is vital that we recognize that this violence is not inevitable, and that it's not somebody else's problem. To effectively make progress against this issue and improve these statistics within Pasco County, we must not remain silent upon experiencing, witnessing or hearing about incidents of domestic violence.

It is important to focus on what we can do to help victims and, ultimately, how we can put an end to domestic violence in Pasco County. The Clerk & Comptroller is sensitive to the needs of domestic violence survivors. We are committed to assisting victims, with complete confidentiality and discretion, throughout the entire process of filing reports and connecting victims with advocate programs. We are grateful for the services provided by our partners helping with the fight against domestic violence: The Salvation Army Domestic Violence Prevention Center in New Port Richey; Sunrise of Pasco County Domestic Violence Prevention Center in Dade City; and Bay Area Legal Services.

If you or someone you know is suffering from domestic violence, please contact our office at (352) 523-2411, ext. 2211, or (727) 847-2411, ext. 2211, for information on available options. Or visit

Domestic violence is a prominent issue, and Florida's Court Clerks & Comptrollers stand ready to assist community members. We coordinate with the Pasco Sheriff's Office, other law enforcement agencies and local shelters to facilitate safety for victims and their families in domestic violence situations. Please help us help our community become a safer place to live.

Paula S. O'Neil, Ph.D., Pasco Clerk & Comptroller

Seek candidates who live among us

We sometimes feel that local elections are inconsequential and perhaps have no real effect on our daily lives. When was the last time you read about office seekers doing the real things that their constituents do every day?

Erika Remsberg (Pasco County Commission candidate) and Beverly Ledbetter (state House District 38 candidate) rode the buses of Pasco County to talk to those among us who just can't afford a car. When politicians seek to mirror the lives of their constituents, to seek out what they need to improve their lives, they demonstrate that self-interest is not the reason they are running for office. We have been represented by far too many politicians who represent the smaller, more affluent groups in our society.

Florence Laureira, Hudson

Taken for a ride by parking pass

I have an annual parking pass for Pasco County parks. I frequent Anclote Gulf Park. On Sunday, Oct. 5, I noticed that about 30 vehicles present and only four had passes. I never see a deputy there writing tickets in the lot.

Now I have this dilemma: Should I be honest and renew next time, or should I continue to be played for a sucker? This regressive fee, foisted upon us by the County Commission unfairly, has a more detrimental effect on the poorer among us than a slight raise in real estate taxes would have benefited the county. A real estate tax increase would affect the wealthy more. These politicos are well aware of this fact. Disgusting!

Don Jacobs, New Port Richey

Walmart proves to be bad neighbor

Walmart promised to be a good neighbor when we allowed it into our community. Now, several years later, all we see are more homeless camps, criminal activity and less care of the property abutting and entering our neighborhood.

We on Dipaola Drive were not afforded the luxury of a concrete wall. What we did receive was a chain-link fence, a drainage ditch due to the elevation of Walmart's property and a supposed wall of hedgelike plants. What we really got was a bunch of dead plants and a weedy, unmowed ditch, which is now blocked by a fence and a dirt drive-through with an overgrown, unkept, dangerous entrance onto Dipaola Drive.

Despite repeated attempts to bring attention to these matters, we have been completely ignored. Now Walmart wants clearance to build a liquor store on this property. We are definitely not in good hands with Walmart as our neighbor!!

Linda Hurley-Matzke, Hudson