Long-time Destin Log readers may recall my monthly real estate columns from the late-1980s and early 1990s. After a long sabbatical, I resumed writing another regular column following Hurricanes Ivan and Dennis in 2004 and 2005. This time, it was mostly about private versus publicly-owned beaches along with the taxpayer-paid partial restoration. It was extremely controversial and my columns covered both sides of the controversy. Many readers expressed their opinions with letters to the editor and guest columns for The Log. As a result of this exposure, we came up with a solution that both sides eagerly approved. It was a very happy ending.

The reason for bringing this up now is that we have some new controversies where you can help bring us together again. I am now writing regular columns for the Saturday editions of The Log. Please tell me your pet peeves so that I can bring them to readers’ attention. Some suggested subjects include: proposed new laws targeting rental homes, the low-flying sightseeing helicopters, proposed property tax hikes, proposed sales tax hike, switching from free to paid parking in city lots and the city potentially creating/purchasing its own electric utility and doing away with Gulf Power. Better yet, you can introduce something entirely new and I will write about it.

Please email me if you would like to see your comments, both pro and con, mentioned in my regular Saturday column. Some people are hesitant to publish political comments using their own names. By writing to me, you can see your ideas expressed in my column while remaining anonymous. If you agree with me, that is good. If you don’t agree with me, that is even better. Both sides must have an equal opportunity.

You are also encouraged to write letters to The Destin Log editor or your own guest column. The email contacts for both appear at the end of this column. I will be glad to relinquish one of my Saturday column spaces for you to write your own.

It is through this kind of open dialog that we can learn from others and convey our wishes to our elected officials. It is much better for us to tell them what we want and need rather than the other way around.

Thank you for your input.

Jack Simpson has owned and managed rental properties in Destin since 1974 and has lived in the city since 1983. His column is designed to start conversations in the community. To respond to Jack's column in The Log, email your letter to the editor or guest column to dricketts@thedestinlog.com. To contact Jack directly, email jacksimpson@cox.net.