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Jax Mayor Says New City Department Will Make Neighborhoods Safer

Lindsey Kilbride


The city is reorganizing to create the neighborhoods department, which will include services from animal and mosquito control to housing and code compliance.

Jacksonville Mayor Lenny Curry said the new department will give residents a more direct connection with city services.


He said the reorganization was prompted by residents who didn’t know who to call with neighborhood problems.

“There was no vision,” he said. “When you take these things and just kind of drop them in a department, it speaks to their lack of importance. What we’re saying today is all things in and around neighborhoods matter.”

He said he hopes neighborhood pride leads to safe streets.

“I want people to know that if they have an issue and they’re concerned about their safety, they can call the neighborhoods department in the city, and they have a direct connection to JSO,” he said. “So I’m really proud of that.”

Curry has hired three new people for the department, including Derek Igou, who will oversee the entire department. Igou is the city's former deputy chief administrative officer.

The City Council will have to approve those appointments next month.

Lindsey Kilbride was WJCT's special projects producer until Aug. 28, 2020. She reported, hosted and produced podcasts like Odd Ball, for which she was honored with a statewide award from the Associated Press, as well as What It's Like. She also produced VOIDCAST, hosted by Void magazine's Matt Shaw, and the ADAPT podcast, hosted by WJCT's Brendan Rivers.