Letters to the Editor for March 5, 2013
Published: Tuesday, March 5, 2013 at 6:01 a.m.
Last Modified: Monday, March 4, 2013 at 4:59 p.m.
The Gainesville Sun once reported the votes of Congressional members representing North Central Florida, but for some reason no longer does so. I suggest reconsidering that practice.
In that regard, U.S Rep. Ted Yoho's vote against the reauthorization of the Violence Against Women Act is a disgrace and an embarrassment to his district. He should be ashamed. I hope he has the courage to speak at a future meeting of the Florida Coalition Against Domestic Violence, but I will not hold my breath.
The County Commission is planning a transportation summit this April. If it follows past efforts, road-repair projects will be severely encumbered with other transportation elements that are beyond reason and fiscal responsibility. Think back to the $30 million Tower Road project. About $890,000 taxpayer design dollars were wasted on its extravagant project scope. It is now being redesigned.
Commissioner Mike Byerly championed this project and moved to fund its design. He recently led the effort to overrule the majority of Haile Plantation residents concerning the routing of the Archer Braid bike trail. His leadership is now backed by the support of commissioners Robert Hutchinson and Charles Chestnut.
Will this voting bloc rule the commission? Will we soon see a watered down road-tax initiative heavily ladened with transit and overly enhanced, expensive road projects? Will basic road repairs receive little consideration? Will our transportation tax dollar be further eroded? You bet!
Attempting to divide
Unless I am mistaken, I believe that Walt Boyer's Feb. 24 letter is a case of the pot calling the kettle black. The Gainesville Tea Party was the first to start in the Gainesville area and has consistently promoted conservative principles, fiscal responsibility, limited government and adherence to the Constitution.
The Gainesville Tea Party welcomes all to join. There are no dues or dogmas, but education about the conservative principles that made our country great. The Gainesville Tea Party invites all candidates to come and state their views and platforms. The Tea Party endorses no one but allows all candidates to present their own views.
Boyer has apparently started another tea party in Gainesville, so it seems that he is the one attempting to divide the party. I do think that is a shame to try to divide conservatives, as together, we would be a force to be reckoned with.
Pedestrian safety is an important issue. I recently saw a series of bus riders exiting the bus, walking around the back and crossing the street with no regard for traffic. Cars coming in the opposite direction had no idea that someone was about to step out in front of them, especially since there weren't any crosswalk markings.
When getting off a bus, wait on the sidewalk until it leaves to cross the road. We need a hand signal from pedestrians to indicate to drivers they are about to step into a crosswalk. Too many times I have seen a group standing on the side of the road when suddenly and without warning one of them will step out into the crosswalk.
We all should be able to share the road safely. Respecting other travelers and being courteous will go a long way toward making Gainesville a safe and friendly city.
We are better off
Eileen Maren asks if we are better off as a result of Barack Obama's election (Sun. Feb. 19). A fair reading of the facts shows that we are much better off.
While nobody is pleased with the pace of the recovery, the economy is slowly improving. While a fraction of 1 percent of stimulus money did go companies like Solyndra, one third went to tax cuts; one third went to states to keep police, firefighters and teachers employed; and one third went to infrastructure and other projects, including some in Alachua County.
Fiscal year 2011 appropriations cut spending by $700 million, the Budget Control Act of 2011 reduced spending by another $1 billion and the fiscal cliff deal cut another $700 million.
The Congressional Budget office estimated that Obamacare will save money over time because of its cost-saving measures. When fully implemented, the health of American citizens will be significantly improved.
Richard H. Powell,