It Is All A Matter Of Time - Clearwater Beach has changed to keep-up with, what some Clearwater officials said, redevelopment. New rules were instituted for private developers and several developers jumped at the chance of building new hotel/condominiums where old beach-front buildings once stood.
Prices started at several hundred thousand dollars for a two bedroom high-rise condominium and people waited in line to buy some of the early models. Times were good for the early investors - - people bought into the real estate sizzle and developers made money.
Times changed and the economic slow-down has caught some of the same private developers feeling the pain of owning real estate with no current plans for re-development. Empty beach-front lots.
At the same time, the City of Clearwater continues to complete infrastructure to attract new private developers to Clearwater Beach. New roadways, new sidewalks, new water lines and an expensive taxpayer funded Beach Walk will soon adorn Clearwater Beach. A good thing, depending upon one's views.
What is missing?
Hmmm, more parking spaces for visitors (which have been avoiding Clearwater Beach the past year) and a few new hotels.
Let's hope (for Clearwater's sake) at least three of the proposed beach hotels make it to completion within the next two years.
Belleair Beach Police Services - Most folks in Belleair Beach voted to contract police services thinking that the Sheriff's Department would be the servicing entity. Two things drove the vote of the people: 1) cost saving offered by the Sheriff and, 2) most current police officers supported change to the Sheriff's Department (where current police officers would be working.)
However, it appears that politics has again raised its ugly head in Belleair Beach and a few people in leadership positions have tried to subvert the will of the people.
Why the delay?
The First Republican Presidential Debate - Having Chris Matthews, the opinionated verbose moderator of Hard Ball, moderate the first Republican presidential debate was a another reflection of how far the liberal media would go to have their own people control, what was alleged to be, a fair debate.
Lets see, here is an important hard-ball question, "Do all of you believe in evolution?"
Questions also tried to have the GOP candidates criticize President Bush and the war in Iraq. This form of questioning was merely another way to discredit the president and show that people like Nancy Pelosi and Ted Kennedy and other liberals are right.
Most candidates were respectful of even the most ridiculous questions and offered interesting answers as solutions. Not all candidates agreed on solutions, but most answers offered interesting solutions to national issues, such as taxes, the war and a host of other important issues.
Can you imagine the same media allowing Bill O'Reilly as moderator of a Democrat presidential debate?
Legislators Go Home Without Solving Tax Relief - In Tallahassee, legislators left for home without resolving how they would deal with property tax relief. The legislators stated they would meet in mid-June to continue talks regarding whether an increase in sales tax might replace property taxes in Florida.
Mayor Pam Iorio of Tampa and other government officials are hopeful that property taxes remain as a part of a city revenue in the annual budget process. However, taxpayers in Florida support property tax relief.
Governor Charlie Crist is also supportive of tax relief for Florida residents.
Perhaps this is a good time to call your state legislator and let him/her know about your feelings on property tax relief. There is pressure in Tallahassee by lobbyists (paid for by county tax dollars) to not change property taxes in Florida. Voters in Florida had better send a message to their legislators about this item or . . . nothing will happen except more discussion.
Recent Presidential Poll Information - According to a recent online msnbc poll, over 72,000 online voters rated Barack Obama as the Democrat favorite and Rudy Giuliani as the Republican favorite. The margin of voter support for these two candidates was about 10 percent higher than the next favorite candidate.
Obama beat Clinton by 42 percent to 33 percent, while Giuliani beat McCain by 41 percent to 31 percent. Other candidates were far distant in final results.
Of course, the voters who participated in the online poll voted across party lines for favorite candidates, that scenario would not occur at primary elections where voters would decide party candidates.
Giuliani vs. Obama?
Time will tell.
Me? Still thinking Newt Gingrich will enter the GOP race and Hillary will close the gap on Barack's lead.
Social Conservatives Being Left Out Of GOP - When you look at the line-up of GOP candidates for president, you might notice that not one is a social conservative. GOP candidates vying for the party nomination could best be described as fiscal conservatives and social liberals or moderates. Not one social conservative.
Will this fact hurt the chances of the GOP in the 2008 presidential election?
Most likely, yes.
The religious right of the GOP party had been strong GOP supporters due to past support of the GOP regarding conservative social issues (such as abortion rights, same sex marriage, etc.) When the GOP abandons conservative social issues in favor of more liberal views, the GOP might lose many voters commonly referred to as "the religious right." In an expected tight presidential race, this fact could cost the GOP the presidency . . . and a lot worse (such as judicial appointees who might be more liberal than conservative in their views towards social issues.) No, the Grand Old Party is in trouble. They have allowed weak politicians to rise to top of the party and compromise time-honored social values.
Rudy Giuliani as president? The way I see it, Guiliani's views on social issues are not much different than Obama's, Biden's or Clinton's.
No, the GOP will likely get slapped again by voters in November.
Ironically, it makes you wonder why Democrats can't win more races in Pinellas County and throughout Florida. Then again, maybe they will in 2008.
Countryside Lightning U-14 Girls Make Final Four - Can you imagine being one of the final four U-14 girls soccer teams in the entire State of Florida?
The young ladies on the Countryside U-14 soccer can.
Last weekend the U-14 girls team beat final 16 teams from West Palm and Cape Coral. The two wins propelled the Countryside soccer team to the Final Four games in a week at Ft. Myers.
Are these girls good?
You had better believe it-- final four and a chance to win it all.
Kudos to the U-14 Countryside Girls Soccer Team. Go get 'em.