Play Live Radio
Next Up:
0:00 0:00
Available On Air Stations
First Coast Connect

3/22/2017: Eureka Garden; Benk And Proctor; Credit Education Month; STYL Tour

 Wednesday on “First Coast Connect” we discussed the Eureka Garden housing complex failing a federal Housing and Urban Development inspection with Florida Times-Union reporter Andrew Pantazi. We also aired an interview recorded by WJCT reporter Ryan Benk with Florida’s Department of Economic Opportunity Director Cissy Proctor. We discussed some upcoming changes to people’s credit rating with Jax Federal Credit Union CEO Gerri Sexsion and we learned about the Sustainable Textile Youth Lectures with Naz&Court partner and designer Courtney Barriger.  


Eureka Garden

The federally subsidized Westside housing complex has been criticized for years over deplorable housing conditions. It was revealed Tuesday that Eureka Garden has failed its most recent federal inspection. The apartment complex’s owner is now in default on its federal contract and if the apartments fail a reinspection, the federal government could take over ownership. The long-running saga of Eureka Garden has generated outrage from its tenants and also public officials like Mayor Lenny Curry and U.S. Senators Marco Rubio and Bill Nelson, who have demanded improvements.


Governor Rick Scott stopped by Jacksonville’s Harbinger Signs factory Monday with his economic entourage in tow. The governor is touring the state, lambasting lawmakers for voting to dissolve the state’s economic development agency Enterprise Florida. The sponsor of that measure is the First Coast  Rep. Paul Renner, R-Palm Coast, and many of his area colleagues are supporting him. Department of Economic Opportunity Director Cissy Proctor was with with the governor at his “Fighting for Florida Jobs” roundtable. Benk sat down with her to talk about whether research shows business subsidies offer a good return on investment for taxpayers.

Credit Education Month

The Wall Street Journal recently reported that all three major U.S. personal credit monitoring firms are going to remove tax liens and civil judgments from credit reports, a move that could improve credit scores for as many as 12 million consumers. Firms will only remove data that doesn’t include a person’s name, address, social security number or date of birth.  


Through storytelling, art and purchasing power, the STYL tour is spreading the ideas of preventing pollution, strengthening the economy, and stopping fashion’s dark side, the cycle of poverty and unethical treatment of garment workers overseas. STYL is on its first regional college tour this spring. It’s first appearance was at the University of Georgia last month. It will be at Flagler College during St. Augustine Fashion Week, March 23. Visits to Pepperdine University and UCLA are also on the schedule.       

Producer Kevin Meerschaert can be reached at, 904-358-6334 or on Twitter at @KMeerschaertJax.

Kevin Meerschaert has left WJCT for new pursuits. He was the producer of First Coast Connect until October of 2018.