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Longboat Key Wednesday, Jan. 13, 2016 6 years ago

Longboat Key Letters to the Editor 1.13.15

Underground utilities; Colony; Trump
Underground utility benefits aren’t equal

We came to Longboat Key on our honeymoon in 1968 bought a lot and had our house built on DeNarvaez Drive in 1975. In my opinion, your equivalent E.B.U. method of assessment is inequitable.

What was considered when computing the E.B.U. assessment? Does everyone get the same benefit? I doubt it!How does a $500,000 home receive the same benefit when sold as a $2 million dollar home, yet they pay the same?

Equivalent benefit units attribute to each tax parcel:

AESTHETICS: When I had our house built in 1975, the overhead wires never bothered me, nor do they now.

RELIABILITY: If the power goes out on Anna Maria we lose power on the north end of the Key, underground utilities or not.

SAFETY: In my 40 years on the Key, I have not heard of anyone getting hurt from falling wires. If Florida Power & Light Co. would cut the limbs overhanging the power lines, there would be no power outages.

Mel Schwartz
Longboat Key

Condemnation the only recourse for Colony

After reading the ephemeral plans launched year after year without ever any coming to pass, the town and county have to come to an inevitable realization: The conflicting interests of those claiming ownership to units or facilities and who have been unable to find a compromise of their issues have caused the Colony property to become a public nuisance, a health hazard, and a public eyesore, and such condition has no likely end. These parties have had long enough to settle. Its time for the town or county to step in to ameliorate damaging effects to the Key and to all property owners on the Key.

It’s time to declare the property an official public nuisance-hazard, and it should be condemned and taken in a condemnation proceeding.

By such means, the governmental body would strip all parties of ownership and monetary claims. Outstanding court judgments could likely be settled by the eventual auction bidder that ends up buying the property from the governmental unit. No bidder would be allowed without escrow and financing in place. Then, maybe this allegedly rodent-infested eyesore could again become another fine property enhancing the Key rather than the grotesque distraction it has become.

Stuart Sinai, Esq.
Longboat Key

Recent politics drive Trump’s popularity

Congratulations on a great editorial. References to Isaac Newton and Friedrich Hayek are illuminating because they explain the extremism in our current American political culture and the hatred of America emanating from the occupant of the White House. From inciting domestic racist turmoil, to denigrating America's pre-eminent role in the world, to denying the very real threat of radical Islamist jihad, to pretend in order to deflect away from real world issues that climate change (which, duh, always changes) with no real timeline is more important than what is here and now — terror. In the 1930s, Hitler showed what happens when aggression is left unchecked. 

After seven years in the White House, the occupant has succeeded in creating a defeatist American mindset. That what we've experienced is what is to be expected as the new normal — a perpetually slow growing economy, overburdening regulations and taxes, merciless attacks on businesses for generating profits for their shareholders and employees, lying about the true unemployment rate (due to not counting those who have withdrawn from the labor force), a Federal Reserve leaving interest rates at zero for so many years resulting in an impoverished retirement class seeking safe income but having to resort to risky high yield investments to supplement their lifestyle. 

There's more, but everyone gets the picture.

In other words, one buffoon begets another. 

Milan Adrian
Longboat Key

You’re wrong: U.S. is a secular nation

On Jan. 7, you published a reader’s objection to a statement in your Nov. 26 editorial relating to the Pilgrims, more particularly your assertion that we are “not a secular nation.”

The letter writer cited a number of statements from various Founding Fathers and others to the contrary, but did not cite the Constitution itself, which leaves no doubt as to the correctness of his position.  

Moreover, it is curious that neither the persons who continue to make the unsupportable assertion you make, nor those who correctly disagree, take the trouble to make note of the 1796-1797 treaty between the U.S. and Tripoli.

The period before and after those dates was one of constant Mediterranean Sea strife between the U.S. and the Muslim states along the Barbary Coast. During the last days of his administration, President Washington appointed negotiators to arrive at treaty agreements to deal with these problems. One result was the Treaty of Tripoli, which stated in Article 11 that: “As the Government of the United States of America is not, in any sense, founded on the Christian religion; as it has in itself no character of enmity against the laws, religion or tranquility of … any Mahometan nation, it is declared by the parties, that no pretext arising from religious opinions, shall ever produce an interruption of the harmony existing between the two countries.”

In May 1797, President John Adams sent the Treaty to the U.S. Senate for ratification with the advice that “the Senate accept, ratify and confirm the same, and every clause and article thereof.” On June 7, 1797, 23 of the 32 sitting senators present unanimously approved ratification of the treaty.  

Only 10 years after formal adoption of our Constitution, our president and our senators were obviously well versed in its provisions and intent. Mr. Trump might also give it a read!

Ed Zunz
Longboat Key

The Constitution and Treaty of Tripoli may state the United States government is secular, or “not founded on the Christian religion,” but God and religion have been and still are part of the American people’s metaphorical DNA. Be they Catholic, Jewish, Muslim, Protestant or whatever faith, they believe in God. — Editor    

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