Letters to the editor 6-22-2012

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Walking in Oak Run
Please let me offer a walker’s perspective to the Oak Run Boulevard controversy and a possible solution which would satisfy both walkers and motorists.
I have lived in Oak Run for seven happy years. We chose this community because all the recreational facilities are within waking distance – although you cannot access them without traversing the boulevard. Also, the close proximity to stores and medical facilities that are on S.R. 200 where there are sidewalks. We are a one-car family, electing not to degradate our environment with unnecessary use of polluting vehicles.
It is impossible to leave my neighborhood and get to Palm Grove for the exercise room or classes offered almost daily at the auditorium without navigating the boulevard. The Island Club and the swimming pools also require a trip on the beautiful road.
To deny me access to activities to maintain my health which I, like all others pay for in my amenities fee, is unfair. To deny me access to my doctors, dentists or lab facilities across 200 on days I do not have a car is unconscionable.
I walk where I need to go. Most drivers put on their signals and move over to the next lane. When drivers are not able or unwilling to “share the road,” I move quickly onto the grass. The newly posted signs are facing traffic. They say “walking here is prohibited.” Walking the correct way facing traffic you do not see the signs, so I am not in violation.
Motorists, please move over if you are able. No one wants to deliberately hurt another resident.
A solution that would please both camps and also add to Mr. Ghumann’s living legacy would be to construct an asphalt walking path parallel to the boulevard. It would be a gift to the residents reminiscent of OTOW’s Mr. Colen’s development of Shalom Park on Southwest 80th Avenue.
Until then, fellow walkers, pay attention, be alert to the traffic we face. Be prepared to move out of the way of anyone who may not see you on the back roads as well as on our lovely boulevard.
Peggy Gunter
Oak Run

Bills and taxes
Have you looked closely, at a copy of any of your bills, lately?
One of my bills had an increase, and I decided to check it out. What I discover during that perusal was astonishing. There are ten, yes 10 separate taxes on the bill.
They are the following amounts: .98,1.14, .66, .43, .11, .21, .22, .18, .50, 1.07. No big deal. The total is only $5.40 per bill, $5.50 per calculator.
This is how they are nickel and diming us to death. The talk is now of a government charge on every deposit, and withdrawal to your bank account. Where, or when does it end? Will they ever run out of ideas as to where to pile on another tax?
One other thought. How, much does it cost to process an .11 tax?      
Printing material, shipping, handling, manpower, fuel, equipment, etc.?
These things boggle the mind. When is an insatiable government satiated?
Next month there may be 12 taxes on the bill. Mean to keep an eye on that one. Other bills have taxes, they are fewer in number. TAX, TAX, TAX. We need a tax anthem, anyone have a ditty in their portfolio?
D.I. Larson

MRMC and its supporters
I’m constantly reading about what people want to do to Munroe Regional Medical Center (MRMC), and not one of them knows what they are talking about. The only person making any sense, other than the professionals who are managing the hospital, has been Kulbar Ghumman. He’s been on the board long enough, and has the experience, to discuss the hospital’s needs intelligently. I’ve said it before and I’ll say it here again, lawyers make very poor board members on any board. I’ve attended enough MRMC board meetings to hear them speak with little in a positive nature.
There’s no one on the board with a hospital management background, and that includes doctors. They would be the last to be selected, because in the back of their minds, their own interests come first. Plus, just because a person owns a business doesn’t make them an authority on hospitals. During the few times I’ve spoken at the hospital board meetings, I mentioned that in years past, I audited what’s now MRMC, so many time I’ve forgotten the number.
Many years ago when I was a member of the Florida Hospital Association as well as the Florida Osteopathic Hospital Association, and it was an understanding, that doctors and lawyers were not the best hospital board members. I don’t know about Indian chiefs, maybe we should check with the Seminoles.
In addition, I’ve been a Blue Cross and Medicare fraud, auditor, Executive Director of the Florida Nursing Home Association, member of the Florida Hospital Accountants Association, Secretary of the Eastern division of the Florida Hospital Association and finally Assistant Administrator of Ormond Beach Memorial Hospital for Finance and Development, when it first opened. I also lobbied the Florida Legislature, when then State Senator Lawton Chiles sponsored my three bills in the State Senate, and they all passed both houses. I’m not lobbying to get on the MRMC board, but at least I could help the professionals who know how a hospital should be run.
Now, for the problem, and I’ve addressed it before in the newspaper and at MRMC board meetings. If the hospital wants to raise funds it should be through a 1/2 cent sales tax. A one (1) mill tax on property will not pass. You must realize, that a great portion of the Marion County population are retirees, and they’re not going to hold still for a one (1) mill increase on their property taxes, I know I won’t. A sales tax of 1/2 of one percent is the most fair, as all the people of Marion County should pay their fair share. The one (1) mill issue is doomed to failure so forget it now before it’s too late and try the logical approach.
There are those who will say the sales tax will not provide enough money for MRMC, and it will have to be distributed to other areas as well. Now, that’s where lawyers come into play. The sales tax should be for MRMC only. As an afterthought, all totaled, I’ve lived in this north central Florida area for over 30 years and it seems the civic leaders still don’t get it.
Bill Ford

Off the message

The Republicans are experts at taking the president off message and changing the subject to their interests in what they believe and what they want to talk about. Why does the president allow the Republicans to frame and control the issues of the day in their talking points and not allow him to talk about job creation.
Please, Mr. President, don’t just talk about jobs for Americans but explain day after day how to put the unemployed back to work with programs that help our countries workforce. Have the Democrats in the House and Senate submit bills to work on the infrastructure, the highways, the bridges, the energy crisis, the water crisis, the reforestation of our national parks just to name a few. If you are forceful enough and talk about jobs on a daily basis, the voting public may just begin to believe you.
When you allow the Republicans to set the issues that they want you to talk about, you lose. The American people are not interested in your sidebar discussions with the Republicans unless they result in jobs for the people. This is the issue of the day. Don’t get distracted with the lies from the far right. Yes you must point these falsehoods out but let the voting public know to relate the fact that these lies about you are just a distraction to change the subject.
You made a mistake in your first year in office by trying to work with the hateful leadership of the Republican party but they have made their message clear.
Now it is time to make your message clear and let the Republicans know that their anti-American ideas have not worked in the past and you are not going to listen to their garbage now.
You are the only one who was elected president in the last election and if you want to keep your job to take care of the people, you must put America back to work.
Jerry Segovis


hockey statistical

hockey statistical analysis
The Republicans unless they result in jobs for the people. This is the issue of the day. Don’t get distracted with the lies from the far right. Yes you must point these falsehoods out but let the voting public know to relate the fact that these lies about you are just a distraction to change the subject.
You made a mistake in your first year in office by trying.

Sheriff Candidate Blair wants Double Salary from Taxpayers

Sheriff Candidate Chris Blair will receive nearly $100,000 per year in pension from the Sheriff's Department and over $140,000 per year in salary and benefit should he win the election on August 14. This $240,000 in payment is unfair to taxpayers and to the Sheriff's office

Certainly during the difficult economic times, paying a local government official $240,000 per year is immoral.

It is even more stunning you consider that Sheriff Candidate Blair received over the $500,000 from the Sheriff's Office when he retired in 2010.

Clearly, Chris Blair sees the taxpayers of Marion County as the source of his gravy train. I, for one, think we need to send a strong message to politicians during the Republican Primary on August 14.