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Opinion

  • I arrived home late Friday afternoon and started my usual routine of making sure everyone on my small farm had plenty of food and water. And by small and farm, I mean one acre in the middle of farm country – one wild acre I share with a few cats, a dog and a coop full of hens.

  • It was just a short time ago that an appeals court in Florida ruled that the Sunshine clause in the state Constitution did not require councils and commissions of counties and municipalities to take public comment during meetings that were required to be open to the public.

    The Legislature stepped in and in 2013 told local governing bodies they had to take public comment and to formulate a policy to address the issue.

  • I admit it. I can stir up trouble. The particular variety I have been engaging in is “Man Fear.”

    It begins when I say things like:

    “We need a weed trimmer.”

    “We need a riding lawn mower and I want one with a Z-turn.”

    “I need a hedge trimmer so the azalea bushes can be cut by July.”

    “I would like to have one of those small handheld cordless drill/screwdrivers to hang things around the house.”

  • Readers rejoice: you’ll no longer to have read about the ongoing controversy over which newspaper in this county should be running the county’s legal notices and Delinquent Tax Notices.

    Go ahead, take your time, rejoice. I’ll be here when you’re finished.

    Done? Good. Now you can read on to find out why.

  • By Bruce Ritchie

    ContextFlorida

    Florida won’t follow California on bag ban because of a 2008 law requiring a study.

    California became the first state in the nation recently to ban disposable single-use plastic shopping bags.

    The ban is needed, supporters said, to reduce litter and protect birds and sea life from becoming entangled in bags. The ban also prevents bags from clogging storm drains or winding up in landfills.

  • Dr. J. Robert McClure

    ContextFlorida

    Floridians aren’t surprised when they see seasonal spikes on their utility bills. A lengthy cold snap in January or lingering summer heat can send their energy bills soaring like fireworks on the Fourth of July.

    Fortunately, in a state blessed by ocean breezes and a climate ranging from temperate to subtropical, there’s welcome relief in the months when temperatures — and utility bills — remain in the moderate range.

  • Martin Dyckman

    ContexTFlorida

    Voters across Florida cast ballots in November 2000 to say whether they wanted to continue electing most of their circuit and county court judges or would let the governor appoint them.

    Election was the overwhelming favorite everywhere. In Duval, Nassau and Clay counties, which comprise the Fourth Circuit, it was the choice of 69.3 percent of the voters.

    This week, Florida’s First District Court of Appeal had a message for them:

    Drop dead.

  • Barney Bishop

    ContexTFlorida

    As time goes by, it appears that Amendment 2 is facing serious opposition from likely voters.

    Though the press has loved quoting a flawed Quinnipiac Poll that showed 88 percent of voters were in support, once pollsters began asking the question as it would appear on the ballot, support has dropped significantly to somewhere between 56 percent and 61 percent.

  • By Stephen L. Goldstein

    ContexTFlorida

    Post-primary punditry about low voter turnout in Florida (especially in Democrat-rich Miami-Dade, Broward, and Palm Beach counties) is as predictable and prolific as it is paltry.

    Adding up the numbers, analysts–I use the term loosely–have come to the unremarkable conclusion that Charlie Crist’s chances of defeating Rick Scott are in doubt.

    Henny Penny’s sky is alleged to be falling down.

  • By Andrew Skerritt

    ContexTFlorida

    The state’s Department of Children and Families Northeast Region, which was responsible for the safety of the six children massacred by their grandfather in the rural town of Bell, drastically needs new leadership.

  • I am guessing it was almost a year ago when the city was in the throes of its strapped financial situation and two new commission members were warming their seats that Fire Chief James Harris gave a speech on the history of Chiefland Fire Rescue, a story of small town volunteerism.

    Then he wrapped it up with a few selected bits of data and said moving forward the city would have to decide whether it wanted a volunteer organization or a paid, professional city department.

  • By Marc Yacht

    ContexTFlorida

    Lee County must be commended for the courage to “just say no” to high-stakes testing.  Last week, the Lee County School Board voted to end all state-required testing in the county’s public schools.

    They have had enough with the Common Core agenda pushed by computer corporations and the Gates Foundation.

  • Adam Weinstein: NRA and its “Docs vs. Glocks” law treat gun owners like children

     I’ve been trying to catch up with Marion Hammer, the former president of the NRA and top lobbyist for the pro-gun group here in Florida, for years.

  • The Journal asked for a copy of my statement today, felt it was only fair to share with the Citizen. It is below in its entirety.

  • True journalists — those who go into the profession with no agendas or selfish motives — hold one thing dear to their hearts–the sanctity of news.

    That means 1) reporting accurately on events that transpired; and 2) presenting both sides of an issue in an effort to better inform the readership.

    The most important aspect of these two points is keeping personal feelings and opinions out of the news. Opinions only belong in one place – the editorial page, under a header that reads, “Opinion.”

  • By Kevin Concannon, 

  • The rites of spring include:

  •  2013 demonstrated the successes of House Republicans’ continued focus on supporting policies that promote and encourage economic growth and opportunity for every Floridian. Our diligent work to promote good public policy, guided by our conservative principles, has had a positive impact on Floridians and our state is now setting the standard for the nation in many major policy areas.

  • By Julie Delegal

  • By Mark O'Brien