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Monday, Apr 23, 2018
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Letters To The Editor

Letters to the editor: Candidate response

Candidate response

Thank you for taking your time and showing interest in my candidacy for the Hillsborough County School Board, District 6 (countywide) seat. Over the past 15 months of campaigning, I have listened to what the people want, and the answer has been the same across the county. Every person wants the students to be well educated so that they will be good citizens.

My mission is to focus on preparing the kids for the future. My years of volunteer experience in the public schools have been focused on improving student achievement. My professional experience as a business and finance attorney rounds out my qualifications to serve the educational community. My 19 years of legal practice and leadership training equip me with a unique set of skills as a board member.

Finally, as the mom of kids in the public schools, I understand the daily challenges faced by those we serve.

My mission is to give back to my community by giving the gift of education to the kids — the future of our community. Based on my years of volunteer work and partnering with schools in the district, I see great potential and have a vision of taking the Hillsborough County school district to new heights.

Dipa Shah


The writer is a candidate for Hillsborough County School Board, District 6.

Candidate response

In a county with numerous transportation challenges, it is time that we elect someone to the County Commission with the practical experience to face these challenges head on. I am that candidate. Despite a total proposed FY15 budget of $3.9 billion, the county expenditure for transportation is less than $10 million. I am running against a candidate who, despite promising in 2006, if elected, he would not raise taxes, now supports a sales tax hike for the same infrastructure that the voters of Hillsborough County rejected in 2010. It is for this reason that I call on all Republicans who do not believe that higher taxes are the answer, those Republicans who are seeking an alternative, to vote for Tim Schock for Hillsborough County Commission, District 7.

Tim Schock


The writer is a candidate for the Hillsborough County Commission , District 7.

Candidate response

The day Mark Sharpe steps down from the Board of County Commissioners, our county will unfortunately lose its vision, a vision of smart growth without sprawl, a vision of smart transportation without gridlock, and a vision of attracting high-tech businesses. I do not see anyone else on the board with the same determination and drive of Sharpe, and because I share the same vision for our future that Sharpe does, I feel compelled by a sense of duty to run for the BOCC. Should I have the opportunity and honor to serve the community that I was born in, my priorities are to see through to fruition a smart transportation system in place that encourages smart growth to our metro areas away from creating gridlock producing sprawl and to create economic development by attracting businesses such as those in nanotechnology that will create opportunities for a skilled labor force that will produce higher income jobs.

Don Kruse


The writer is a candidate for the Hillsborough County Commission, District 7.

Fix the problems

There are undoubtedly problems in public education, but most have been created by starving schools of resources, attacking and marginalizing our teachers, and ignoring poverty. The solution should not be to outsource our children’s education to institutions that care more about the bottom line, such as charter schools, or that resist accountability, such as private schools that take vouchers. The solution should be to address and fix our problems, many of which were created by individuals and politicians who now seek to privatize our schools and profit off our children.

Chris Guerrieri


Join the fight

The modern-day slavery of human trafficking of all forms is certainly a global epidemic. In the United States, Florida is ranked third in the nation on this issue because of the number of calls that are made to the national hot line. The Tampa Bay area is one of the top destination spots for this horrific crime. Our beaches, weather, seaports, airports and robust adult entertainment industry, along with the ease of transport along the Interstate 4 corridor, make the Tampa Bay area very attractive for this activity. Much awareness and attention are important to shining a light on this insidious crime. Our officials, such as Attorney General Pam Bondi and state Rep. Ross Spano, are taking notice with a passion. In his letter to the Tribune (“More help needed for human trafficking victims,” Letter of the Day, July 27), Professor Stevie Swanson mentioned several laws that were recently passed. Our next legislative session will continue to strengthen and implement laws to further protect and give precious survivors the assistance needed and further address the root of demand. Tampa Bay is home to an organization that is the umbrella organization of well over 100 organizations and partnerships working on all areas to eradicate modern-day slavery. The FREE Collaborative of the Community Campaign-West Florida is a survivor-led collaborative confronting all forms of modern-day slavery. We invite the community to plug in to the FREE Collaborative and help victims become survivors and thrivers. The collaborative also has a drop-in center site where the community can drop off much-needed supplies for victims/survivors.

Contact us at: FREEComm [email protected]

Dotti Groover-Skipper


The writer is the chair of the FREE Collaborative of the Community Campaign Against Human Trafficking-West Florida and a member of the statewide Council on Human Trafficking.

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