The Way I See It
By cj pollick
Florida Legislators Go Home - Most Florida legislators are smiling about a revised property tax bill that is expected to lower property taxes. However, the final bill is not indexed to inflation and will result in future tax increases.
Good news for the legislators? They did index their paycheck to keep abreast with inflation.
City of Largo and Pinellas Suncoast Fire & Rescue District Elections - Check Page B-5 for sample ballot.
Fires In California - As people observe wild fires in California, recent reports state that financial losses could exceed several billion dollars.
When you consider that major reinsurance companies (the insurers that insure insurance companies) felt that 2007 was going to be a good insurance (risk) year, the current fires in California might just dampen that "good news" report.
How would wild fires in California raise premium rates in other U.S. states?
Insurance companies tend to spread losses by line of insurance over large areas. What is happening in California would likely result in insurance company losses for the entire insurer book of business. Bottom line is rate modification.
What about Florida?
Makes you wonder how the same big insurers that refuse to underwrite homeowner insurance coverages in Florida are handling the California loss.
Federal government involvement in the insurance business?
Yes, but don't expect too much to happen in Washington. They are busy fighting each other over who should get the best offices and pay raises.
High School Dropout Rate - There is a recent honor that Florida can't be happy to have earned. It has one of the worst high school dropout rates in the nation. Yes, worse than New York, Mississippi, Alabama, Georgia, North Carolina, etc., etc.
In Florida over 51 percent of the state's high schools have graduation rates under 60 percent.
Of the entire group of youngsters that enter ninth grade in Florida, less than 60 percent graduate!
What about other states across the nation?
Alabama-15 percent, Georgia-39 percent, Virginia-8 percent, Ohio-10 percent, Vermont-2 percent, Maine-1 percent, New York-15 percent, California-15 percent, Texas-18 percent and Utah at 0 percent.
According to an Associated Press article, "One in ten schools is a dropout factory."
Florida and South Carolina are the two worst states.
What is the plan to improve this high dropout rate?
Perhaps Florida officials should talk to education officials in Utah and Maine (where high school dropout rates are non-issues.)
What happens when young students drop out of school and hang around the streets?
No, they don't want dropouts. They want high school graduates who are not trouble-makers.
It might be interesting to notice the comparison between rates of certain teenage crimes, such as drug usage among teenagers, and various states high school dropout rates.
Underage Sexual Activity - In Portland, Maine, young students can receive condoms, patches, etc., beginning at age 11, from the school health administrator. The Portland School Board further asserts that about 2-3 percent of middle school students are having sex.
In Georgia, a young 17-year old student was caught having consensual oral sex with a 15-year old student. The 17-year-old was sentenced to 10 years. Recently, the Georgia Supreme Court ruled that punishment was excessive and let the 19-year-old out of prison.
Makes me wonder why the folks in Portland, Maine, have not tried to enforce punishment for underage sexual activity (like they did in Georgia.) Should a 16-year old student be punished for having activity with an 11-year old? If not, then what are the legal parameters of helping to protect younger students from predator older students (all of which are under-aged?)
If the student activity is consensual, are they both at fault? When a 17-year-old has sex with a 12-year-old, does this cross the line of reasonable tolerance?
This is just one issue that confronts our school officials across America. What is the right thing to do in helping these young people understand the seriousness of this activity at age 12?
Parents, what are the rules regarding this topic at your child's school? Is anything being given to your child at school that you do know about in advance?
USF And The Gators - It was a bad weekend for fans of the USF BULLS and the FLORIDA GATORS.
The BULLS were outplayed at Connecticut and the GATORS were outplayed by Georgia.
The good news?
There is not any good news; both Florida teams must now try to finish the season with an opportunity to play in a bowl game.
What about FSU?
They have a chance to upset the number two ranked football team in America ... Boston College this weekend. Imagine, FSU is the big underdog in this important NCAA game. This just goes to show how badly things have gone in Florida this football season.
There is an upcoming NFL game between the undefeated New England and the undefeated Indianapolis Colts. Manning vs. Brady. Should be a very exciting game to say the least!
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