News

Lindsey Kilbride / WJCT News

A state plan is in the works to make New Kings Road more safe. Five pedestrians have been hit and killed on the Northside roadway over the last couple of months News4Jax reported .

Friday on First Coast Connect, our media roundtable included Sebastian Kitchen from the Florida Times-Union, Timothy Gibbons from the Jacksonville Business Journal, A.G. Gancarski from Florida Politics and WJCT reporter Ryan Benk. Host Melissa Ross spoke by phone with former “A Prairie Home Companion” host Garrison Keillor and former Cummer Museum executive director Hope McMath spoke about Saturday’s commemoration of International Human Rights Day.

Lindsey Kilbride / WJCT News

Florida Governor Rick Scott and Florida Education Commissioner Pam Stewart sat in a circle with about 20 Reynolds Lane Elementary teachers Thursday afternoon. Scott’s question to the educators: How does Florida attract people to teach and keep them in the field?

Bonnie Zerr / WJCT

Welcome to Redux, a weekly newsmagazine from WJCT and the news podcast of the First Coast. On this episode of Redux, we look at surviving the holidays. Literally. From toy safety for the kids to keeping your identity clear of thieves and more. We also look at an internal investigation from JEA about racist emails circulating among staffers. as well an update of our continuing coverage of food on the First Coast.

exterior of plaza
Google Maps

The owners of the former Kmart shopping center in Neptune Beach are asking the Beaches community for input as they redevelop the site.

JCCI

Duval County mental health advocates are celebrating the state Legislature’s moderate progress this year toward reforming Florida’s mental-health system.

Thursday on First Coast Connect, WJCT reporter Ryan Benk discussed his investigative report on emails discovered on servers that violate JEA rules. Florida author Larry Baker joined us by phone to talk about his the challenge a white male faces in creating compelling minority characters. The 20th edition of “An Evening in December” is set for Friday on Amelia Island. We spoke with Director Pam Helton and Producer Sharon Lennon.

JEA

JEA is launching an internal investigation into inappropriate emails circulated by its employees. The emails surfaced at the same time the federal government is looking into Jacksonville’s public utility for alleged racial discrimination in its hiring practices.

wired_gr / Flickr

Duval County high-school students are reporting higher-than-average rates of suicide attempts and feelings of hopelessness. Superintendent Nikolai Vitti addressed the report at Tuesday’s board meeting in a presentation. He said the district will be advocating for more mental health funding, and plans to expand services.

Wednesday on First Coast Connect we spoke with Oliver Formato , sales director for Humana Marketpoint , on the deadline for seniors to file for any changes in their Medicare coverage. We also spoke with artist Kedgar Volta and Denise Reagan of Brunet-Garcia about Volta’s display being unveiled during Art Walk bringing awareness of hunger on the First Coast. The Girl Scouts of Gateway Council CEO Mary Anne Jacobs told us about Sunday’s cookie selling kickoff with the Jacksonville Jaguars, and iHeartMedia Regional Event Director Candace Price joined us by phone to talk about Saturday’s inaugural Wine on the River event to benefit Hands on Jacksonville.

Ryan Benk / WJCT News

U.S. Department of Agriculture Deputy Under Secretary Ann Bartuska was led through a maze of raised garden beds on a lot nestled in the middle of a Westside neighborhood Tuesday. Listen to this story on Redux

State of Florida

TALLAHASSEE — Florida Attorney General Pam Bondi offered little information Tuesday about her future or her discussions with President-elect Donald Trump, as she made one of her first appearances in Tallahassee since meeting with Trump last week in New York.

Tuesday on First Coast Connect we heard about the future of solar energy in Florida with A1A Solar founder Pete Wilking . Suzi Lemon, from the human resources firm Dynamic Corporate Solutions, spoke about the, now in limbo, overtime rule for salaried employees, and in our on-going series “First Coast Connect Rising Stars” we met Odd Rod,also known as Roderick Borisade , a local spoken word artist.

Single-Gender Charter Schools Closing This Month

Dec 5, 2016
News4Jax

Parents of children attending two single-gender middle/high school charter schools were told Thursday that they will close over the December break due to lack of enrollment and funding. Listen to this story on Redux Virtue Arts and Science Academy, serving sixth- through 12th-grade girls, and Valor Academy of Leadership, an all-boys middle/high school, will not reopen in January.

Jacksonville Transit Authority

Passengers trickling in and out of First Coast Flyer buses at the Park-n-Ride station on Philips Highway served as the backdrop for a city celebration, welcoming a new rapid bus line Monday.

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