According to the, as Leo Coughlin calls it, the Big Paper, "It's been a long road to vision of MLK plaza," editorial July 24.
I'm certainly glad that the Big Paper is not running the city of Largo, especially making the decisions as to what Largo folks think is important and needed. Their editorial writer "feels" it's more important to build, as the BP calls it, a long over due monument to MLK than supplying services to the taxpayers (customers) of Largo.
Repeatedly, the paper mentions the "importance" of building the $60,000 MLK Plaza in Central Park, yet never states why it's important. Perhaps because it's not! Monuments are NOT needs nor are they important lest we forget the city has more pressing financial issues that must be addressed.
At the July 17th commission meeting, I mentioned that for years Northwest Largo has been clamoring for sidewalks to enhance the safety of the residents. Therefore I asked, "How many lineal feet of sidewalk can be built for $60,000?" Fortunately Commissioner Guyette asked the same question, a week later, and City Manager Mac Craig responded, "2,400." Imagine that if we spend the $60,000 MLK monument money along with the already budgeted $50,000 sidewalk fund we can build almost one MILE of much needed walkways but it appears as though the BP thinks another memorial to King is more important than the safety of Largo's children.
It's worth mentioning that when Commissioner Rodney Woods was first elected, he proclaimed that his priority would be to increase Largo's funding to build sidewalks. Wonder what happened to this commitment? Apparently, he too thinks another memorial to King is more important than public safety.
The final irony of MLK Plaza: Just a few days ago, Commissioner Woods stated in the Times, "This is about the spirit of this community. I am so grateful we are at this point right now and I would not want to put this off any further because there is an attitude out in this community that we really don't want to do this."
Confidence is high that Commissioner Woods' thinking is clouded, because it's not a matter of "want to do this," it's a matter of priorities. Building another monument to Martin Luther King Jr. is not a priority, sidewalks are.
Largo commissioners need to answer just one question: What is truly more important - another monument that might be utilized by a very few once a year or sidewalks that will be used daily by many?
Curtis A. Holmes, Largo
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