Sunday, February 11, 2007


Beginning our weekly journey here at home, the Lakeland Ledger editorial writers use the space today for another edition of it's occasional "Gigs and Garlands" series. It contains several brief comments on a variety of issues and events while also taking note of actions good and bad.

Is the honeymoon beginning to fade away? It sounds like the first real criticism of Governor Charlie Crist in today's St. Petersburg Times editorial, which slams his "antimurder" legislation which was rejected by the Legislature when he was Attorney General and is proposing again now that he's in the chief executive's office. The paper says the plan costs too much, would further overcrowd county jails, and further limit judicial discretion.

One concern mentioned in the wake of last weekend's deadly tornadoes across Central Florida was that many communities do not have early warning sirens as is the case in parts of the Midwest where such events are more common. The Orlando Sentinel opinion page addresses that issue today, asking lawmakers to support legislation which would require local governments to install and maintain warning sirens as well as providing state assistance for those areas who can't afford the cost.

Global warming and the need to reduce carbon emissions is the issue of the Tampa Tribune editorial. Noting that carbon dixoide levels are higher now that they have for more than 650,000 years, and that it's no surprise that as a result the atmosphere is trapping more heat, Mother Trib is offering suggestions on how to bring down carbon emissions at all levels.

The Daytona Beach News-Journal suggests that the while testing our children is good, the whole premise of the Florida Comprehensive Assessment Test (FCAT) needs to be changed. It says that while Governor Crist hinted last month that changes were on the way, the results so far are disappointing. The editorial also notes that the test shortchanges students by not including the humanities, and that teaching of social studies and related subjects has declined, in some cases dramatically.

Over on the Space Coast, the Melbourne-based Florida Today calls on Florida Power & Light to begin putting power lines underground...and do so at it's own cost, not putting much of the expense on the shoulders of consumers who are becoming increasingly burdered with rising electric bills.

And today's editorial in the Sarasota Herald Tribune criticizes the fact that Governor Crist's proposed budget cuts $752 million (about eight percent) from the state transportation system when it feels that an increase is necessary. It asks legislators to press the governor hard on details about the Department of Transportation budget and work with the chief executive to develop a plan which would expidite projects, eliminate backlogs and projected shortfalls.

Make it a great Sunday! Miss football already???


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