By Ron Wolfe

Let’s take another look at the mailbag to see what two readers had to say about recent columns.

E-mailer Ron Allen – Sun City Center: "The following is in response to "The Voice of SouthShore" article in the SCC Observer of July 31, 2003. (a) I use the Internet almost daily for various reasons. I do online banking (bill paying, fund transfers, etc.); order prescription drugs; obtain government forms; do Internet searches for information that doesn’t seem to be available elsewhere. (b) I have made online purchases quite a few times including books, medical aid devices, glass products, and gifts of various sorts often shipped directly to the gift recipients. My online purchase experiences, thus far, have been excellent and I intend to continue doing so."

"Incidentally, I am 83 years of age and obtained my computer for my 80th birthday."

Answer to Mr. Allen: "Thanks for your response to the survey and congratulations on your impressive use of the Internet. You are an outstanding example of a SouthShore senior citizen who has mastered and put to use some of the wonders of the Internet."

How about you joining Mr. Allen by responding to the survey questions as follows:

• How often and for what purposes do you use the Internet?

• Have you made purchases over the Internet?

• If so, what were your experiences?

• Would you make a purchase again?

If there is a sufficient response to this survey, I would like to tabulate the results and publish it in a future column. Remember, your individual response will not be published unless you give me your permission to do so.

E-mailer Carol Nyberg – Sun City Center: "I enjoy your columns and find them informative, today’s (July 17, 2003) column in particular. What a jumbled mass of confusion just to voice an opposition to a rezoning! I guess that’s why it was set-up that way. Two points I’d like clarified – you mention a "Zoning Hearing Master" and a "Land Use Hearing Officer." Are they one and the same and who appoints or elects them? I would appreciate you answering either by e-mail or in your column."

Answer to Ms Nyberg: "The "Land Hearing Officer" and the "Zoning Hearing Master" are one in the same as far as qualifications are concerned. The only difference in their work is the nature of the application assigned to them. Both are recruited using the same outline of qualifications (included in the land development code) and are spelled out in the newspaper ads soliciting resumes, etc. Hillsborough County Planning & Growth Management reviews the qualifications of each applicant and makes recommendations to the Board of County Commissioners. The BOCC almost always accepts their recommendations."

"Your e-mail has sparked my curiosity and I’m going to dig into this matter further. For example, what is the tenure of service? Is there any turnover? What are the compensation levels? Who supervises them and what is the reporting structure? Once my review is complete, I may visit this topic again and thank you for your input."

Readers, please remember that this column is distributed throughout all of the SouthShore communities and provides you with an opportunity to "sound off" about any issues affecting your community. Your name is not revealed unless you grant me permission to do so. So, let me hear from you.

Send letters to: THE VOICE of SouthShore, P.O. Box 476, Ruskin, FL 33575-0476. Phone: 813-273-8976.


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