The Public Insight Network asked readers what issues Gov. Rick Scott and Charlie Crist should address in their debate. Here are some of their answers:
Florida’s anti-texting law is a joke. Allowing drivers to text when the vehicle they are operating is at a stop is a bad compromise to a serious problem. It is beyond naive to believe that drivers will not continue to text after they start driving again. In addition, not making it a primary offense for which they can be cited and fined is a sham.
Distracted driving creates too great a risk of harm. Texting — indeed talking — on a hand-held telephone while driving puts more than the distracted one at greater risk for serious injury. I see people dawdling along as they converse on the phone or are clearly looking down as they text. This watered-down law is being ignored and has no teeth. Would the candidates propose corrective legislation?
Maida Kahn, Boca Raton
The next governor needs to address climate change and sea-level rise. Climate change is the defining environmental issue of our time. The cost of inaction significantly outweighs the cost of action now, and it is important that the younger generation stand up and let it be known that we won’t sit idly while our human’s actions — and their dependence on dirty fossil fuels — negatively afftect the world around us.
This is of particular importance to Miami because of sea-level rise, a result of climate change, and Florida’s vulnerability. It is imperative that our next governor have an action plan that will seriously begin to mitigate carbon pollution and adapt to climate change.
Marissa Prieto, Brickell
The next governor must address the issue of college affordability and the ability of our state to retain talented Floridians. The next generation must see Florida in their future.
Marlon Hill, Miami
The Department of Children & Families urgently needs reform. The administration, personnel and structure of this agency must be fixed to prevent the continuing reports of human tragedy. If the state of Florida can not manage this public service, perhaps a new model involving county and municipal workers should be considered. A dedicated source of revenue needs to be secured to properly fund these operations.
Terry Murphy, Miami Lakes
Under Gov. Scott’s tenure, insurance deregulation has resulted in unprecedented increases in homeowners’ insurance. This has had a negative effect on their spending power, which has contributed to our sluggish economic recovery. What can our next governor do to get homeowners insurance relief?
Ken Guarino, Palmetto Bay