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2002: The Year in Review

They said it

The following statements made the pages of the Hernando Times during 2002:

2002: year in review
By Times staff writer

© St. Petersburg Times
published December 29, 2002

The following statements made the pages of the Hernando Times during 2002:

"There were some things in the newspaper that could have cost her more and did not. That speaks to the resiliency of her reputation and the hard work she has put in for the people of Hernando County." -- State Rep. David Russell on Ginny Brown-Waite, who won the U.S. House District 5 seat while losing in her home county.

"My dog is going to be very angry, because my husband is going to be in the doghouse with him." -- Ginny Brown-Waite, after learning that husband Harvey had been caught stealing Karen Thurman campaign signs.

"All is not well among us." -- Joe Bernardini, referring to the Brooksville City Council, which censured him for discussing fire service plans with the county.

"I don't think Webster's has come up with a word to describe what people were feeling that day. There was so much. The combination of fear and loneliness and abandonment and anger. It was a culmination of so many feelings." -- Sonia Vidal, who survived the World Trade Center attacks of Sept. 11, 2001, before moving to Spring Hill.

"They just missed that munchkin." -- Christy Beckham, referring to Head Start staffers and a school bus driver forgetting about her 3-year-old daughter, Ashley, leaving her on the bus in the district compound for a few hours before she was found.

"If people want to dress down, dress nude, let them go to Pasco County." -- Phillip Johnson, local real estate agent, on Hernando's anti-nudity ordinance.

"This has generated a mound of ugliness here. I've never seen people up in arms like this. If this were the Middle Ages, we'd all be lighting torches and marching on the castle." -- Bob Mackey, president of the Silverthorn homeowners association, on proposed affordable housing near the development.

"Well, good people, we've been led through the hoops by two of our four- to six-page newspapers. I am grievously disappointed. Paul is a good man. He got a little cocky. . . . I guess that done him in." -- County Commissioner Mary Aiken on the departure of County Administrator Paul McIntosh.

"It's not something I can answer now. I'll have to talk to my attorney to determine what my answer might be." -- County Administrator Paul McIntosh, when asked by commissioners whether he had accepted other gifts the board should know about.

"To say it's a surprise -- I would say that it's a stretch. It was there. We just didn't realize we could use it for other purposes. 'Surprise' kind of has a shock thing to it. I would call that a pleasant surprise." -- School Board member Robert Wiggins on the discovery of a $3.3-million surplus in district coffers.

"There is insufficient evidence to prosecute." -- Stewart Stone, prosecutor with the Seminole County State Attorney's Office, on his decision not to press charges against three Spring Hill firefighters involved in a sex scandal.

"I think this was a groupie firefighter girl who went over there to have a good time. You know, the lonely hearts club band type stuff." -- Spring Hill Fire Commissioner Tommy Marasciullo, referring to the accuser in the Spring Hill firefighters sex scandal.

"Did they have poor judgment? Yes. But should I discipline men for what they do off duty? . . . They were not representing this department." -- Spring Hill Fire Chief J.J. Morrison, regarding the actions of the three firefighters accused of rape.

"We have a very poor sense of humor when it comes to tax theft." -- Dave Bruns, state Department of Revenue, on jeweler Stephen Clemente, who was accused of stealing $45,000 in sales tax due to the state.

"The road must be of benefit to the people of the entire state of Florida, and it must either originate, terminate or go through the city of Brooksville." -- Lawson Johnson, a Dade City banker, eulogizing about Alfred McKethan on the two requirements McKethan had for road projects.

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