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County subsidy to Hernando Beach business

As a resident and taxpayer of Hernando County, I want to let the rest of the residents know that the county intends to build a Nature Coast Education Plaza adjacent to the Blue Pelican Marina in Hernando Beach. This will allow the marina to expand with housing units, a lodge and additional boat storage.

In order for all this to happen, ecologically fragile lands are being rezoned from agriculture to various types of commercial. After this is accomplished, the county intends to purchase rezoned acreage to build its Nature Coast Education Plaza. This proposal, which is in the works between Blue Pelican Marina (aka 5000 Calienta LLC) and the county, will use taxpayer funds and proceeds from the BP oil spill ($3 million out of $12 million being allocated to Hernando County) to ultimately benefit a private commercial establishment.

This project has proceeded quietly and has been approved by the Planning and Zoning Board. It goes to the county commissioners for a final decision at a hearing scheduled for May 13. I for one do not want to see taxpayer dollars spent for the enrichment of a private business at the expense of other priorities in the county. It is not just the initial cost to the county; there will be additional costs to maintain the facility, roads, and necessary infrastructure.

The proposal includes buying land from the developer when the county owns other properties in the immediate area that could be used if there was considered to be a need.

James D. Murphy

Hernando Beach, FL

Guns or roses

As a martial arts and self-defense instructor, I am appalled by the amount of guns and weapons in the hands of individuals who are more than willing to use them at a moment’s notice and then cry stand your ground afterwards. Most of the victims who are attacked are unarmed and provoked by the assailant.

How many times have we heard about someone in this county or across the nation who has been assaulted with guns, knives, clubs, etc? I keep hearing people say that Hernando County needs to bring in gun manufacturing. Really? Just what we need, more guns on the street. I am sure the sheriff’s department can hardly wait for that to happen.

I am also disgusted by martial arts schools who teach students how to use weapons, namely swords and butterfly knives. See how fast your students get arrested or shot if they are seen walking around with a sword. They should be ashamed. They bring dishonor to what martial arts are all about. These are not teachers, but merely proponents of violence.

I teach jeet kune do, jujitsu and judo, which I have been doing since the age of 4. I learned these disciplines from my father who was an eighth-degree black belt who taught self-defense in the military and to mercenaries/commandos and from Master Chen Wu, my father’s friend and teacher, who I will always cherish. Neither taught me how to use a gun, knife or sword on anyone. I became the weapon, the ultimate weapon.

I teach my students how to disarm a person or multiple attackers who have weapons. What I am trying to say is I do not escalate the situation with more guns and weapons. That is never the answer. I provide a free service to the community because I am concerned and worried about what I see. When you carry a weapon you are more likely to use it. Real men don’t need to carry weapons.

Here’s a good piece of Chinese philosophy: Every man has two hearts, one to show and one to give. Translation: Treat everyone the way you want to be treated. Then we won’t have the need for guns, weapons or war. Life would be a bed of roses.

Craig Bolton


Kudos to your editorial page of April 25.

How refreshing it was to read the letters from David Parker “New school board needed” and Melinda Barrett “FCAT apologies.” David Parker’s stance on some common sense approaches needed by the school board is spot on and the gumption it took for Melinda Barrett to go public on why she teaches deserves a serious look by Florida’s education administrators. Good job Melinda.

I hope your newspaper will have an opportunity to print more writings of this caliber.

Joe Green


Re: How can a plane go missing? By Craig Bolton, Brooksville

Sumter County Mounted Reserve horse unit responded to the search for the missing pilot Theodore Weiss, along with Citrus County, Hernando County, Sarasota County, and City of Webster Police Department. We searched where the last radar ping located the plane over the Tillis Hills forest for days.

There were several problems with the search: The pilot did not install the emergency locator device which was still at his residence, his cell phone was left in his car, small experimental planes fly under radar and the plane could actually be anywhere, in a forest, lake, pond, ocean anywhere 16 gallons of fuel can take him.

If you watch TV shows it seems anyone can be located at anytime. We have not in reality achieved that yet. It is sad that the plane cannot be located, due to the fact it was homemade and lacking tracking devices. It also raises a scary question that if we cannot locate this plane then we cannot detect others that could have other reasons to be in the air. I feel there has to be more ways to detect this plane’s flight path through federal agencies and maybe even Google Earth giving up satellite feeds of the area of his flight range.

Becky Card Swerdloff