Letters to the Editors
Reasons for ousting manager don't hold water
© St. Petersburg Times, published May 13, 2001
Editor: Re: Best candidate already has job, May 6 Times editorial:
On behalf of the Crystal River Citizens for Reform (CRCR), I wish to commend the editorial staff of the Citrus Times for the excellent and forthright editorial of May 6. The Citrus Times, as does CRCR, views David Sallee as a professional who has experience that far exceeds the 68 applicants for the city manager's position.
The reasons given by the City Council for terminating Sallee were absurd and often untruths. Councilman Mike Gudis claims he delegated authority by hiring a head-hunter to hire city staff, an action that was previously approved by the City Council. Councilman Ray Wallace's reason for terminating Sallee was that he lived in a motel when, in fact, he had rented a condominium. Councilman Joe Chrietzberg's best reason to date was his criticism of the verbs and adjectives in citizens' 659-signature petition to retain Sallee.
We need to rid our city of this instability in our city staff by voting the above-mentioned council members out of office at the next election. Your vote is important.
Our freedoms are slipping away and we need to tell someone
Editor: Why I was naive enough to even think changing counties would alter the flow of news of our legislators, I have no idea. While the media is slightly slanted in favor of state Rep. Nancy Argenziano, her gift to the lobbyist continues to generate unworthy statements about her act.
"Crude" and "sophomoric?" Perhaps. However, it does not excuse the fact the print media and politicians have ignored the direct insult by the lobbyist to the people of Florida. Fifty-seven years ago this June 6, Operation Overlord began with the assault on the shores of Normandy. Marines were already engaged for some time in the Pacific. Politicians and lobbyists, as well as so many others, seem not well-versed in the sacrifices on the part of my generation.
The right to be free and to engage in free speech is constantly assaulted. Our colleges, in many instances, have banned speakers. Students have demonstrated against scheduled speakers because they were not on the same wave length. The Citrus County School Board is attempting to legislate what members of the audience can say and how it can be said. Elected representatives attempt to chastise citizens for formulating an opinion and speaking out, referring to us as unqualified.
The Constitution does not require any person to prove qualifications to oppose any project. As a former member of the old Army, sanitation was an important aspect of our existence. When we close our ears and our minds, we are ripe for failure.
Back to the issue at hand, no one has addressed the "crime" committed by the lobbyist. Scant mention is made of the trespass into Rep. Argenziano's office. When did a politician's office cease to be an office of the people? She violated our space by entering the office uninvited and then putting her feet up on furniture. Where is our outrage at this woman's thumbing of the nose at an elected representative, consequently the people? The lobbyist should be declared persona non grata and banned from access to the legislature.
The Speaker of the House must realize our displeasure and, in the future, think twice before he tends to take sides with a lobbyist. As for the lobbyist's boss threatening to sue our representative, let him sue; then let the people sue the boss, the lobbyist and his association.
Of the people, by the people, and for the people has become a casualty of politics and lobbyists. It only costs 34-cents to set straight the people in Tallahassee (look in the telephone book for his/her address). Freedom is never free and, in fact, a very costly commodity (ask those who fought to preserve it). It's slipping through our hands because politicians amend the Constitution to suit their needs on a whim. Once freedom is lost, who will come to our aid?
Thank you for helping make State Route 44 safer
Editor: In October, after having to hit the ditch to save my life on State Route 44, which goes by East Cove where my wife and I reside, I decided to take action. Due to similar reckless, uncaring, speeding drivers, many residents in our area have similar horror stories.
On Nov. 3 I wrote to the Florida Department of Transportation, asking for a speed controlled, no-passing zone, to link the double yellow line just east of the junction of County Road 470 (near the Hess station), to the double yellow line just east of East Cove, Eastgate, which protects Eden Gardens. Their first reply was a refusal to do this.
I then wrote them a letter of appeal, and contacted the media Jan. 18. I went to the Inverness bureau of the St. Petersburg Times, and was referred to staff writer Jim Ross. He worked me into his busy schedule, after first copying my file on this case, which I called Project East Cove Safety. On Feb. 6, Ross and photographer Ron Thompson came to our home for an interview. We then went to the East Cove Westgate entrance off State Road 44, where he interviewed me further, and Ron, the very capable photographer, photographed me with busy State Route 44 in the background. On Feb. 11, the article appeared in the Citrus Times. It was a well-written, professional article, and others and I are deeply grateful. The article and picture epitomize the power of the press.
In my letter of appeal to the Florida DOT, I sent copies to U.S. Sen. Bob Graham, state Rep. Nancy Argenziano, U.S. Rep. Karen Thurman, and Gov. Jeb Bush. Five weeks later, after the DOT notified me it would do the work I requested, I heard from Rep. Thurman, somewhat late. The other three "public servants" did not bother to even acknowledge receipt of my letter. I guess I should have waited until election time.
At any rate, on Feb. 21 the Florida DOT connected the double yellow lines, which had bypassed our area by use of intermittent lines. I am extremely grateful to them, not only for doing the work, but also for how quickly they got to it.
Of course, I also am grateful to Ross, for the great article, to Thompson for the photograph, and the Times.
Glidewell column shows the positives of our young people
Editor: Re: Look around, our kids are basically pretty good, May 4 Jan Glidewell column:
A short time ago I wrote a letter to the editor requesting that your newspaper take some initiative and feature some articles pertaining to the good things done by our youth.
Lo and behold, this feature article by columnist Jan Glidewell fulfilled my request and eloquently expressed the true character of 99 percent of our youth.
Thank you, St. Petersburg Times, and thank you, Mr. Glidewell.
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