A column by my friend Neil Skene questioning the presence of BHAGs (Big, Hairy, Audacious Goals) in the Jeb Bush administration deserves rejoinder ["Vision-Impaired," July, FloridaTrend.com].
As a Florida historian (semi-pro), I submit that the standard is what will be remembered 100 years after any given administration. In other words, will our grandchildren know what happened here? Using that standard, I can think of at least three, though I am sure there are others, in the current administration.
The most remembered will be, I believe, the Everglades restoration. It will be the mirror image of the remembrance of Gov. Napoleon Bonaparte Broward for trying to drain it. The 40-year, multi-billion-dollar project will become a paradigm for environmental restoration worldwide (both good and bad lessons learned).
The Florida Forever program, $3 billion in environmental land acquisition and restoration, also meets this test. This program will protect hundreds of thousands of acres of natural Florida for generations.
Finally, the governor's injection of accountability into public education may meet that standard. I say "may" because, as Skene noted, it is a work in progress. Success will depend on future events, future resolve and future governors.
There may be others, but actually three is not too shabby. After all, how many people know today what Gov. Broward did, other than propose to drain the Everglades?
State coordinator, EarthBalance
I enjoyed the interesting article on blood banks in Florida ["Running Dry," August, FloridaTrend.com]. One reason the Florida blood banks have such a problem is they have forgotten the basic rules of supply and demand and marketing. The product is human blood, and it is procured from donors. Just opening a donor center does not mean they will come.
In Vero Beach, the donor center is very close to the hospital, which is handy for those needing blood, but with the severe congestion in the hospital area, it is a place I would not go by choice. Secondly, the blood bank's mobile unit moves about the county unadvertised. Consequently, many times it does not attract donors other than the few at the site.
For 14 years I have had a running battle with our newspaper editor and persons at the blood bank to get them to regularly publish a location for the donor mobile unit. The paper says it cannot donate space for that or it would have to do the same for all charities. The blood bank people say they have no budget for that.
The article made it very clear that the demographics are changing. Let's hope the blood banks realize they must become more proactive in obtaining donors.
Stephen (Scott) Peirce
Hats Off to Tolf
Kudos to Dining with Tolf ["Attention-Getters," July, FloridaTrend.com]. My in-laws live in Lake Placid, and we have driven by the Watering Hole many times chuckling to ourselves about the alligator.
Due to Mr. Tolf's recommendation, we stopped by and had the best steak dinner that we have experienced. (Having lived in N.Y.C. and having traveled to Tampa's Bern's, we have had many good steak dinners!) Many thanks to Mr. Tolf!
The name of Dee Thomas' New Port Richey company is Ewing and Thomas.