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Today's Letters: Ask for parkland dedication

Published September 9, 2007


Re: Cities are wise to seek grants to buy parkland editorial, Sept. 7

Ask for parkland dedication

The Dunedin City Council needs to revisit the "old" appraisal of $18-million for the J.C. Weaver land. It is quite old and was prepared when the condo market was soaring. With all the new compatibility standards in place, the land is probably worth less than half the old appraised value.

The city should let Weaver sell the land for development and then exercise its power to require a parkland dedication in exchange for development approval of a proposed site plan. This is a power the city has often used in the past.

This approach could give Dunedin the waterfront portion of the two parcels for virtually no cash out of already tight pockets.

Why not look at buying the Bon Appetit/Best Western parcel, which most certainly is a great waterfront parcel?

Tim Kerwin,Clearwater

Re: Firefighters want 9/11 memorial Sept. 2

Money could be better spent

I was deeply disturbed about the firefighters in East Lake wanting to erect a memorial to honor the 343 firefighters that perished on 9/11.

While intentions may be good, I would have to argue that the $75,000 should really be going elsewhere.

What about donating to any of the many Katrina victims that are still homeless, or offering a helping hand to Hospice, a nonprofit organization that provides around the clock aid for those who are terminal, or the SPCA, Boys Club, the VFW foundation or any of the other organizations scraping to get by?

How about using the money to send needed items to our men and women overseas, or to help the severely wounded when they return home and have nothing?

It is time to start using resources wisely. Remember all the 9/11 victims and heroes by reaching out to others as they did.

Heather Worley, Oldsmar

Re: C'mon, join the fun photo caption, Sept. 5

Caption was a disservice

I received a telephone call from a friend of mine who saw the photo of the Hydrocephalus Walk in your newspaper. He knew that I had participated in the walk because my brother suffers from this condition.

My brother is 37 years old and had his shunt implanted when he was 2 days old due to a stroke. He finished high school, drives a car and has had the same job for 15 years. He manages a checkbook, credit cards and his health. He is not mentally retarded and does not have convulsions.

Imagine my dismay when my friend read me the photo caption that ended with, "Hydrocephalus, commonly known as 'water on the brain,' causes a range of symptoms including convulsions and retardation."

This does a huge disservice to those of us living with hydrocephalus or living with someone who suffers from this condition. It will only lead to fear and misunderstanding of the diagnosis.

While I appreciate the Times printing something other than Pinellas County/Jim Smith saga, it only helps if it is accurate. Shame on you for capitalizing on the negatives regarding this condition and leaving out the positives.

Kimberly Meyer, St. Petersburg

Re: C'mon, join the fun photo caption, Sept. 5

Many lead normal lives

While we were delighted to be featured in the paper with a photograph of our walk, I was dismayed by the caption. Our goal as a support organization includes educating the public about hydrocephalus. In fulfilling that mission, I would like to give the correct information regarding mental retardation and convulsions in hydrocephalus.

Approximately two-thirds of children with neonatal hydrocephalus have normal intelligence. Only 15 percent of children with hydrocephalus develop convulsions. I think the caption is misleading and I feel it is important to correct that since the majority of those afflicted with hydrocephalus can lead normal, healthy, active lives.

Sarah J. Gaskill, M.D.,associate professor, Pediatric Neurosurgery, University of South Florida, St. Petersburg

[Last modified September 8, 2007, 21:36:48]

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