IRL pollution is causing seagrasses, manatees to die
More manatees die in Brevard County from starvation because of the polluted stormwater runoff and sewer spills. This pollution has killed the seagrasses.
Brevard County, SOIRL, and Titusville have failed to measure and calculate the major sources of pollution in order to determine the most effective actions to reduce the pollution and restore the IRL since 1996. That’s when the SJRWMD published a report stating that the critically poor conditions of the IRL and the loss of marine life comes from the polluted runoff from the land caused by development and the loss of undeveloped land.
The worst pollution and manatee deaths have been in Titusville. There is almost no mixing of water in the IRL north of the NASA Causeway with the water south of the NASA Causeway. The June rainy season creates large amounts of nutrient rich polluted runoff that is held in the north IRL feeding algae blooms that block out the sunlight and causes the seagrasses to die.
The 2020 Titusville sewer leak into the Sand Point Park ponds that flow directly into the IRL was the final pollution source that created the densest eight-month algae bloom that finally killed all of the seagrasses in the North IRL, causing the worst manatee deaths in history. The manatee death rate in 2022 was 140% of the five-year average death rate before the sewer spill.
Bill Klein, Titusville
State Road 528 doesn’t present pretty picture
With Port Canaveral being Brevard’s big star attraction, why is State Road 528, the “Beachline,” such a disgrace? Between I-95 and the port, there are potholes and horrible landscape for travelers to see. The bridges over the Indian and Banana Rivers have low railings, a death trap for so many seabirds. Fences on top of the railings would protect from road kills.
Brevard needs more tropical landscape along those islands. Florida is about palm trees and those areas would look great with palm trees and a small over-the-water boardwalk for fishermen would add greatly.
.Patrick Schroeder, Cocoa
Insurance changes might not come fast, but they’re on way
In response to Jay Post’s recent letter, “Bailing out Insurance companies yet again”: The solution proposed by the legislature will reduce your homeowner’s premiums over time, hopefully beginning in about a year.
We didn’t get into this problem overnight, but the solutions will definitely cure the problem if we don’t have a bunch of lawyers filing suit to prevent the changes. After a few years of frivolous lawsuits not being filed, premium reduction can take place and other carriers will return to Florida, so you will have a larger market/choice. With all the changes proposed, you will still have insurance and not be self-insured. The market was so close to cracking, there would be no more insurance carriers in Florida.
These two changes will finally mean insurance companies can spend money on claims vs. fighting claims.
1) Attorneys only get fees and cost if they win at trial. If a case settles before trial, no fees/ cost.2) No assignment of benefits allowed; totally eliminated.
The only thing they left out of the new bill was to eliminate all public adjusters. A homeowner does not need to pay a public adjuster 20% of their claim, when the insurance companies offer you a free adjuster. If the insured is not happy with the amount of money paid on a claim, go through the required appraisal process. If the insured is not happy with a coverage decision, request a binding arbitration. (If this benefit is in your policy.)
Two out of three ain’t bad. I would rather have these solutions than to be self-insured.
Jackie Buscemi, Viera
The companies are the real villains in insurance mess
It should be no surprise that DeSantis and his GOP cohorts are pushing more “reinsurance” money out to the true villains in the property insurance mess, the companies themselves.
Apparently these politicians know that their middle and working class supporters readily support GOP policies that are detrimental to their own financial interests. The only requisites that these deluded supporters ask from these craven politicians is that they “own the liberals” – whatever that means.
GOP claims that the “poor” insurance companies are being sued unfairly is hogwash and we found this out firsthand.
Beginning in 2018, we filed a claim for damages to our roof as a result of a severe hailstorm. The insurance company offered an insultingly low $7,000 amount, which forced us to seek legal aid. After arbitration, we received enough money to repair the roof, at a cost including legal fees that was 14 times the amount offered by our insurance company. If the insurance company had settled the original claim, we estimate that they would have paid half of the amount they eventually paid.
I’m a political independent whose views are not fully represented by either of the major parties, but the GOP leaders constantly display hostility to any policies that bring relief to the working and labor classes. Instead they advocate policies that give the rich and powerful even more money that they falsely claim will “trickle down” to the less fortunate. It never does.
Ernest Lee, Melbourne
We’re No. 1! We’re No. 1! But … in what?
The recent article “Fact check: Is Florida No. 1? Examining DeSantis’ speech” cited some discrepancies with some of DeSantis’ claims.
Here are some dubious categories in which Florida is unquestionably No. 1.
#1 – highest population growth in the country.
#1 – lowest effective tax rate for the top 1% of earners (2.1%), and #2 highest tax rate for the bottom 20% of earners (12.7%).
#1 – number of Jan. 6 Capitol rioters charged.
#1 – arrests for illegal voting in the 2020 election, and #1 in arresting voters approved by their local supervisors of election to vote in the 2020 elections.
When you take this all in it’s easy to see why we continually struggle with increasing population growth, don’t have funding for roads and infrastructure, and don’t have sufficient funding for our public schools and teachers (‘Florida is No. 1 in education freedom’ — charter schools, but ranks 46th in teacher pay).
This doesn’t explain why our insurance rates are out of control, or why the ability to sue these insurance companies has been stripped from us. Why power companies like FPL are granted rate increases whenever they ask. Why public record requests are routinely stalled or denied. Or why the largest corporations in the state pay little or no state income tax.
No, this results from cronyism and favoritism embraced by DeSantis, the Florida Legislature, and their big business pals. I don’t have any data to support this, but I bet Florida is No.1 in this highly problematic undemocratic practice.
Jeff Dorman, Satellite Beach
‘Tragedy can hit you harder than any opponent’
The skill of an elite athlete is revealed in the determined efforts of mind and body.
The vulnerability of an elite athlete is revealed in the raw emotions of heart and soul.
To possess and express these attributes within the competitive arena is to play the game with courage and compassion while truly revealing the best that a person can give, inside and outside the field of play.
On a Cincinnati football field, during a Monday night football game, the Bengals and Bills looked at life from both sides and realized how tragedy can instantly hit you harder than any opponent can. As the seriousness of Damar Hamlin’s injury became more obvious so did the concerns and emotions of all who were present. No doubt, there would be no more recreation on this night. In their grief and sadness, players and coaches revealed the important attributes necessary to complete the competitive spirit. In doing so, they showed their love and respect for Damar Hamlin, the athlete and the person.
Wallace Wildenradt, Satellite Beach
‘Diminished values’ reap consequences
A recent Trinity Broadcasting Network survey, has caused an organization that advises the Democratic Party to reflect more patriotism. The TBN survey contained the following questions and responses concerning the political parties:
- Value hard work? Democrats trail Republicans by 15 percentage points.
- Patriotism? Democrats trail Republicans by 10 percentage points.
- Prioritize my issues? Democrats trail Republicans by 23 percentage points.
Although there’s a socialist movement within the Democratic Party, it’s unimaginable that party leaders would ask for the privilege of leading the nation without loving it and advocating for who we are and who we’ve been as a nation. We aren’t perfect, but no nation is. Yet, we have so much to celebrate, that we have benefited from as a people and contributed to the world.
We are a nation of immigrants, coming from all over the world, but historically, we’ve coalesced around a set of values and a vision that every person could improve their station in life if we treat each other with dignity and respect, working together around a Judeo-Christian world view. This common thread seems to be diminishing.
Question is, are people of faith and our churches going to have the courage to unapologetically reassert those ideas back into the public square? The aforementioned survey makes clear these values aren’t the ones expressed by many current political leaders.
Tolerate diminished values and we get what we deserve. But socialism’s repeated failures through history should encourage more dedication to our historic vision and Godly purpose.
Ed Taylor, Satellite Beach
Biden’s ‘misaligned priorities’ are a problem
There’s probably a better chance of winning the lottery than expecting the Biden administration to make sound ration foreign policy decisions.
Imagine if you will the southern border catastrophe (caused largely by Biden’s idiotic open border policies) and Biden’s continuing refusal to visit the southern border, claiming he has more important things to address. Yet taking a Caribbean vacation in the middle a national snow storm/transportation disaster clearly isn’t nearly as important as Joe’s need to take yet another vacation.
Misaligned priorities and errant incompetent policy decisions are hallmark traits of the Biden administration.
Gerhart Maas, Melbourne
Letters spark thought but show political bent
Two recent letters to the editor, though thought-provoking, were politically slanted.
The Russian prisoner exchange fiasco letter was racist and extremely derogatory, replete with Republican Party dogma. The exchange of Brittney Griner for notorious Russian arms dealer Victor Bout appears one-sided, especially in lieu of the BLM movement, but to believe the inclusion of former marine Paul Whelan wasn’t requested is ludicrous. Whether Brittney Griner mistakenly packed hashish oil in her luggage or not is questionable, she did. Paul Whelan is accused of spying on Russia, a much more significant offense, but few will ever know the truth.
Putin is a shrewd taskmaster cognizant of the political ramifications the exchange would invoke, realizing it would generate dissension.
Exchanging Paul Whelan for Victor Bout would have been a fairer exchange considering the alleged crimes; hopefully, another trade will occur in the near future.
As to the Florida Legislature “Bill of Rights” (the Don’t Say Gay bill) prohibits discussion about sexual orientation and gender identity in second-grade classrooms. The bill is indubitably discriminatory as it negates the lifestyles of a small, yet moderate, portion of society. To refer to “Don’t Say Gay” as a non sequitur fails to apply as it meets the criterion for that characterization.
However, I don’t believe the subject requires formal teaching in the lower grades, but it should not be ignored when questioned. Small-minded parents refuse to accept or understand different behavioral traits of others, negatively influencing their children’s thought process.
Gregory W. Hewitt, Melbourne
Seal southern border; ‘force them’ to go home
The massive influx of immigrants coming through our southern border without proper documentation is causing serious problems for the communities in which they settle. A few hundred would be one thing, but we’re talking about tens of thousands of immigrants. They probably have no or a very limited amount of money, but need clothes, shoes, shelter, food, medical support and other personal items. Their financial support is almost certainly going to cause severe problems for the communities in which they settle. According to the Immigration Reform Law Institute, illegal immigration costs the U.S. taxpayers approximately $116 billion annually.
At some point we need to seal the southern border. If we force them to return to whatever countries they originated, before long the message will reach all the countries around the world that illegal immigration is not permitted in the U.S. It’s not just a good idea, it is an essential national policy.
Donald L. Gilleland, Suntree