County’s TV schedule is sporadic 02-18-2011

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Column by Jim Clark

Catching up on some county issues:

Televising the meetings

I settled down at 6 p.m. on Tuesday evening to watch that morning's County Commission meeting. Once again, it wasn't on Cox Cable 12, which puts its schedule on digital cable's guide and said that it was supposed to be on.

This isn't the first time.

Just the day before, I had mentioned the problem to a commissioner. Evidently there is a problem since the commission switched to one night meeting a month. But the meeting this week was a morning meeting, and it wasn't on as scheduled.

The county will tell you that it has its meetings online. But guess what, county folks. Not every one in the county has a computer, probably moreso out here on the Corridor.

It's a disservice by the county, or the school channel, or the company responsible for recording the meetings, not to provide these recordings to the public. Hopefully, the county will look into it and make sure that whoever isn't doing the job is corrected … or replaced.

Streetside signs

Buy Gold. Cheap cigars. Do your taxes. Cheap pizza. Get a cheap haircut.

Is anyone else getting sick of seeing these people on the sidewalk with oversized, usually ugly, signs, trying to lure customers into a neighboring business?

Does anyone else think it’s distracting to drivers to have the signs on the right of way (in most cases, the sidewalk is part of the right of way)? Don’t we have sign ordinances to stop this sort of thing?

If you ban them, would you also not be banning charitable groups such as cheerleaders and high school clubs from advertising a car wash? Not if your ban was only for commercial ventures.

We are constantly hearing from the powers that be about what beauty there is in Marion County. Yet, picture a first-time visitor who gets off the Interstate at any of the Ocala exits, where they soon encounter sign-holders waving pieces of cardboard at them. That person’s first thought is probably, “What an ugly community!”

There are better ways to advertise a business. In this case, the “streetwalkers” are hurting the community. Let’s put an end to this nonsense.

Stores come and go

Recently, two big-name stores were in the news in the Corridor. Save a Lot opened at Steeplechase Plaza, while just down the row in the same shopping center Blockbuster was closing. In Ocala proper, Kentucky Fried Chicken on Pine Avenue, just south of 17th Street, has closed.

Meanwhile, the graded lot down near TimberRidge sits idle, with a nice road and nothing else. Those who thought a big box store was coming there now realize that with the way the property is laid out, that’s virtually impossible. Other businesses have moved from one location to another.

If the economy makes a recovery, maybe we’ll get more businesses to move out this way.