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For their own good
Fifty years ago, they were screwed-up kids sent to the Florida School for Boys to be straightened out. But now they are screwed-up men, scarred by the whippings they endured. Read the story and see a video and portrait gallery.
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Today's Letters: Aripeka's best features in danger
By LETTERS TO THE LETTERS
Published October 10, 2007
Honorable mention to Pasco's best locales Oct. 7 C.T. Bowen column
It was with mixed emotions I read this column. Of course, I agree that Aripeka should be No. 1 on the list for great places to live. From the first moment I saw this town, I knew this was the place to call home. The qualities you mentioned are all the ones the residents of Aripeka value also: natural beauty, great fishing, wildlife sightings, and a close-knit community of neighbors. Aripeka also has the "inconvenience" you mentioned for San Antonio. Most of the town has no street delivery of mail, so we go to the post office to collect our mail and we always bump into someone for a chat. You really get to know your neighbors.
But I want you - and everyone who reads your paper - to know that all the reasons that you chose Aripeka are in danger of being lost.
Last week an application for a Development of Regional Impact, DRI, was filed for the land on the south side of Aripeka. This DRI, submitted by Sunwest Harbourtowne Resort Development, is asking for 2,500 residential units, a hotel, golf course and marina. As it is proposed, it will irrevocably alter Aripeka and the qualities you value enough to write about.
This is not just another case of NIMBY - not in my backyard. This is not just a case of preserving a cherished lifestyle for residents of Aripeka. This is also a case of a private developer threatening to shrink Florida's few remaining environmentally sensitive areas.
This development, as proposed, will displace core black bear habitat and jeopardize other imperiled wildlife populations. It will also, through proposed dredging, displace protected sea grass beds, creating problems for the region's fisheries and water quality. The majority of the site is within the "high velocity zone" and coastal high hazard zone, subject to risk from hurricanes and coastal flooding, and is dotted with sinkholes.
We are outraged that the beauty of Aripeka with its unique, natural environment and lifestyle will be pitted against the potential destruction that this development will cause.
Leslie Neumann, Aripeka
New Port Inn is nice place to live
Recently there have been several negative reports on employees and staff of the New Port Inn, in New Port Richey. I have been a resident here for 11/2 years. I've had the luck to meet many friends, staff and residents. We truly care about each other, and what's been happening is so sad. Some of the nicest people employed here have been pushed to the wall and finally said enough.
So as I watch all that's happening, I can't help but wonder. This is my home now, along with my adopted family. It is a very pleasant place to live and right now our future is in question. I have lived in about five assisted living facilities since I had a stroke, and would rate this as the best. Residents and staff are friendly, it's quiet here, and all of this makes for a very pleasant place to live.
I am writing this to give a resident's opinion because I see the real New Port Inn. I am sure there are others with different feelings. I have told people here that it's impossible to satisfy 126 very different people.
LuAnn Simmons, New Port Richey
Just trying to sell a now-safe home
I am the victim of the Florida limestone foundation/water movement and damage to my home. I am not complaining as our home was fixed at great cost to Safeco Insurance Co., but I need help in clarifying what actually occurs when the sinkhole collapse provision of your homeowner's policy is used. It is not necessarily a large hole with water and your house falling into the hole, but movement of the earth.
The following is the exact description of the provision in our policy:
"We insure for direct physical loss to property described in Section 1 - Property coverages caused by:
"Sinkhole collapse, meaning actual physical damages arising out of, or caused by, sudden settlement or collapse of the earth supporting such property and only when such settlement or collapse resulted from subterranean voids created by the action of water on limestone or similar rock formations."
We discovered our settlement in June 2006. Our home was built in 1974 and we thought of settlement, but called our insurance company, Safeco. The company sent an adjuster to inspect, photograph and make estimates on repair of the visual damages. We also called a company to do home repairs and obtained an estimate.
The insurance company determined further investigation was needed and had ground penetration and x-rays done. Voids were suspected and found. The soil samples were taken and the final determination was, yes, we are covered under this special provision.
The repairs/pumping of the grout under direction of the engineer began in November 2006 and took about two weeks to complete. We then had to let it dry and settle, and in February 2007 had physical damage to the home inside and out repaired.
We previously made the decision to sell our home in late 2005, but being retired and traveling in our RV, it wasn't done in a timely manner. So here are after living and working for 33 years, wanting to sell our home. We have had many calls and probably three or four serious buyers. However, after we disclose the settlement/sinkhole repairs, we never hear from them again. It actually feels like they ran away. I am willing to sell at reasonable price, but this home is our life's savings and it is not right that we should have to give it away.
Many people here in Florida may have the same problems. We have been assured by Safeco and the engineer that our home is safe and that the structure has been reinforced and no further movement will occur.
However, I believe some homeowners have been paid by insurance companies, done some cosmetic repairs and then sold their houses.
Peggy A. Madison, Hudson
Insurance getting too hard to obtain
After 18 years with Nationwide and not living on the coast nor in a flood zone and never filing a claim, my policy is not being renewed.
As an American company you must be proud to tell fellow Americans we won't provide services to you. That Nationwide is more concerned with a few thousand shareholders than millions of fellow Americans is corporate greed personified.
Using Nationwide's own rationale, I would like the CEO to dial 911 asking for help because there is an intruder in his house. The police would say it's too risky to send an officer, you're on your own.
Before 2005 with little or no hurricane damage to Florida and years of profits, everything was fine. As soon as Nationwide had to pay from premiums received over the years, that is not acceptable. Nationwide wants us to pay for a risk that they won't risk having to pay.
American companies competing against foreign companies love to tell us to buy American and support the United States. In this era of terrorists wanting to destroy us and our way of life, with jobs moving abroad and Americans worrying about losing their homes in a recession, it's sad to see American companies deserting us.
I guess Nationwide is not on my side.
Cal Johnson,New Port Richey
Grief's grip still holds tight Oct. 7 story
Have respect for other grave sites
I read the article on Terran Robinstein and his family. I want to say I know what they are going through. In 1993 I lost my daughter and you never get over the pain. In time the pain is easier to cope with.
When I saw the picture of the family at the grave site the first thing that came to my mind was how disrespectful. They have a pizza box and sodas sitting on tombstones of other people who have passed on. These graves may be of other people from their family that have passed on already, but then again these people may be no relation to them at all.
If the Robinsteins want to eat at Terran's grave that's fine. Please keep your food and drink on his grave. I know if that was my daughter's grave next to his and I saw pizza and drinks on her tombstone, I would be very upset. I know they meant no harm, but out of respect for other families and the dead, you just don't do that.
Kelli Cash, New Port Richey
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