Officer will get the help he needs

I want to respond to the gross mischaracterization of the Daytona Beach Police Department’s Officer Kevin Hird’s wages and benefits as stated in a letter to the editor in Wednesday’s News-Journal, “Helping hand for Hird, other officers.” I can only hope that the writer’s comments about the matter were not intended to embarrass the city. Whether it was his intent or not, it is absolutely unacceptable, and I would like to set the record straight.

To be clear, Officer Hird will receive 100 percent of his wages while convalescing from his injuries sustained in the line of duty. Benefits due to a police officer for injuries sustained in the line-of-duty do not have to be negotiated by the bargaining unit. Such benefits are clearly established under Florida workers’ compensation laws. Additionally, wages paid through workers’ compensation are not subject to normal withholdings such as federal income tax or FICA (Social Security and Medicare).

The writer also stated that other officers may donate some of their work time to Officer Hird. This assertion is absolutely false. Under the law, if an officer is injured by malicious intent, the city is required to cover the portion of the officer’s wages, up to 100 percent of his base wage, not paid through workers’ compensation. Officer Hird will not be required to use one hour of his own personal leave, nor will other officers need to donate time to him. Moreover, Officer Hird will continue to accrue personal leave time while out of work recovering from his injuries.

The GoFundMe page was set up to offset extra wages that Officer Hird will not be able to earn by working. Such wages include built-in and voluntary overtime and outside details.

Regarding his medical treatment, Officer Hird will receive the best care that is available, including treatment for his physical as well as any emotional injuries. Officer Hird is a hero and the city of Daytona Beach will ensure that he receives all medical treatment and wages in accordance with applicable laws.

Craig Capri, Daytona Beach

Capri is Daytona Beach’s police chief. A correction to the letter appears on page A2 of the print edition and with the digital letters file.

 

Numbers don’t add up

Sixty years ago the United States was young, births were high. The future was bright and viewed with confidence and eagerness.

But by 2017 the trends had changed dramatically. Births have fallen sharply in the past 10 years while deaths have risen due to the aging of the population, the opioid crisis and an unexplained spike in suicides.

My research found that in 1957 there were 4.28 million births and just 2.65 million deaths, a 2.62 ratio, while in 2017 there were just 3.86 million births compared to 2.81 million deaths, a 1.37 ratio.

As a result, in the future at least 40 of the states will have too few children to maintain their social structures and economies. Be warned: These trends constitute very serious and fundamental long-range problems for our nation. 

Harlow A. Hyde, DeLand

Hyde authored “The Slow Suicide of Western Civilization” published in the St. Croix Review

 

Wall is a joke

I`m sick of the crying about the fake wall that never will be built Dec.. 4, “Shut Congress down”). Conservatives forget that Mexico was going to pay for the wall; this joke is on them.

Now conservative’s claim that Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer is going to shut down the government; another joke. Lest they forget that the Republican Party is in charge of the present Senate, House and presidency.

The impression that a wall will make us a safer nation is a bogus boogieman that only blind President Donald Trump followers fall for. The recent Blue Wave is testament that Trump’s agenda is a failure, and the convictions and jail terms for some of his top aides is proof that this nightmare will soon be over.

William Markert, Palm Coast