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Vol. 16 No. 4 - November 25, 2015

letters to the editor

Fees are punishment

I fell in love with the Island 40 years ago. I could have bought a lot on the canal for less than $7,000 but I had a family to care for in another part of the country. Seven years ago my dream came true to live on the Island but my husband still has a few years before we can officially call AMI our home. I try to be here as much as possible and rent when I’m not here to help with finances during this in between time. I abide by the rules of renting. I try to make sure the renters are respectful and my neighbors keep an eye on things for me I treasure the Island and help with conservation programs as much as possible. I believe there are many more owners in similar circumstances. Can anyone help me understand why we are being punished with extra fees for what seems to be a few people who are not being respectful?

Cindy Richmond
Anna Maria

Thanks for your service

Congratulations to Peggy, the postmistress of Holmes Beach Post Office, on your retirement effective November 30, 2015. We will all miss you and Jack but you have earned a fruitful retirement. Thank you for your professionalism, your friendly smile and your excellent service. You have always gone the extra mile. We pray that you will have a long healthy, happy retirement filled with much peace, joy and rest. God bless you both. You are truly a friend and again you will be missed.

G. Edward Saxe
Bradenton Beach

A champion for children

Last week Florida’s infants, children and families lost a champion with the passing of former First Lady, Mrs. Rhea Chiles, wife of the late Governor Lawton Chiles. During the early 1990’s Governor and First Lady Chiles worked tirelessly to persuade the Florida Legislature to enact bipartisan legislation establishing a statewide system of care for all of Florida’s expectant mothers, their infants and their families. The Chiles’s work resulted in the adoption and establishment of ‘Healthy Start’ a unique system designed to screen expectant mothers, make initial contacts with these families, conduct assessment of their needs and risks and triage and stewarded into law by Governor and First Lady Chiles, Florida is the only state in the nation that has a universal screen for prenatal mothers and their infants. That screening tool reaches hundreds of thousands of Florida families each year and is available to all pregnant women and their infants. It is estimated that more than 90 percent of all pregnancies in Florida benefit from this initial screening tool. The Healthy Start screen and processing has made a significant difference in promoting healthy birth outcomes for Florida’s infants. Another hallmark feature of the legislation is that it empowers local public and private partnerships in each community to prioritize their needs and take action on behalf of families. All 67 of Florida’s counties work with Healthy Start to improve maternal and child health outcomes. While there is much work still to be done to reduce infant mortality, particularly among the minority populations, we would not have the success we have today were it not for the efforts of Governor and First Lady Chiles. Knowing that one has made a meaningful impact upon the healthy birth of hundreds of thousands of infants is in itself the highest tribute to the Governor and First Lady Chiles. All Floridians, past present and future owe them a debt of gratitude and on behalf of the Florida Association of Healthy Start Coalitions we express our sincere condolences to the Chiles Family on their personal and our collective loss.

James E. Michalik, Esq.
Executive Director Florida Association of Healthy Start Coalitions, Inc.
Tallahassee, Florida



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