First Coast

News affecting Duval, Baker, Nassau, St. Johns or Clay counties.

Centennial Towers at 230 E. 1st Street in Jacksonville will be renovated.
Jacksonville Housing Authority

Residents of Jacksonville’s Centennial Towers senior living community in Springfield will be seeing improvements.

Bill Bortzfield / WJCT News

The city of Jacksonville will be removing its Confederate monuments and markers, the mayor announced last week.

So what should happen to them next?

Ennis Davis and Bill Delaney with the Jaxson weigh in on this edition of The Jaxson on WJCT.

Outside of JEA building. Part of the sky is shielded by the building.
Bill Bortzfield / WJCT News

The Jacksonville City Council is filing legislation to help JEA customers who are at risk of utility disconnections.

News4Jax

Amid renewed calls for the renaming of schools dedicated to Confederate civil war figures, the Duval County Public School Board voted Tuesday night to explore changing the names of six schools.

Students At Jax Elite High Schools Discuss Racism - Often Anonymously

Jun 17, 2020
This screenshot shows the Black at Bolles Instagram account, which is described as an anonymous space for current and former black students, parents, and faculty/staff to share their experiences.
Black at Bolles Instagram page

As conversations about anti-racism continue in the workplace, the discussion is now extending to the classrooms at some of Jacksonville’s most prestigious and elite schools. But the only way many students feel comfortable speaking up is anonymously, a new Instagram trend reveals.

Wheelchair moving ahead of the picture, shadow being cast on the ground next to it.
Luca Bruno / Associated Press

Jacksonville is launching a Senior and Disabled Financial Assistance Program later this week.

Lynne Sladky / Associated Press

As the U.S. Supreme Court this week affirms landmark legal protections for LGBTQ Americans, Florida employers will have to adjust to the new ban on discrimination.

UF Health Jacksonville hospital
UF Health

In the second similar ruling in recent months, a federal judge has rejected UF Health Jacksonville’s arguments in a case about whether it should be shielded from being required to turn over records to a patient in a medical-malpractice dispute.

Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis, holds up a graph concerning COVID-19 cases in Florida as he speaks about opening businesses.
John Raoux / Associated Press

A Jacksonville-based data scientist says the way Florida presents COVID-19 data to the public is misleading, and he worries it’s being done deliberately to help support efforts to reopen the state.

Jacksonville Skyline, featuring a large ship on the bank, and some tall buildings.
Bill Bortzfield / WJCT News

The Jacksonville City Council’s Finance Committee is looking at new sources of revenue for the city.

Melissa Ross / WJCT News

Mayor Lenny Curry said Tuesday the percentage of positive COVID-19 cases has dropped as compared to the city’s peak.

Girls on the floor of the dance studio, doing their stretches and preparing for the recital. trophies in the back of the room, couple of curtained windows in the back
Sky Lebron / WJCT News

Phoebe Nipper owns two businesses in the Baker County town of Glen St. Mary, which has a  population of around 600 people. 

Folio Weekly cover photo of John Phillips
FoloWeekly.com

Jacksonville’s alternative weekly newspaper is making a comeback.

Sheriff Mike Williams walking in the center, surrounded by some security, and people around him, with a sign to his right that says "a moment is not a movement"
Sky Lebron / WJCT News

State Attorney Melissa Nelson’s Office will be the focal point for the release of body camera footage involving police shootings at the local level, according to Jacksonville Sheriff Mike Williams.

"A tribute to the Women of the Southern Confederacy" greets visitors to Jacksonville's Confederate Park on Sunday, June 14, 2020.
Bill Bortzfield / WJCT News

One of Jacksonville’s oldest and most historic parks will likely soon look different as Mayor Lenny Curry has vowed the city will take down Confederate monuments around Jacksonville.

DDR Board Signs Off On Smaller Downtown Jacksonville JEA Headquarters

Jun 15, 2020
This drawing shows the west elevation of the smaller JEA headquarters design.
Via Jacksonville Daily Record

In a special meeting May 21, the JEA board unanimously approved plans for a six-story headquarters with 153,000 rentable square feet, and amended a lease agreement with Ryan to reduce the utility’s gross rent cost by $27 million over 15 years and lower construction costs by $10 million to $14 million.

3 Jacksonville Beach Bars Close After Customers Test Positive For COVID-19

Jun 15, 2020
News4Jax

‘Welcome back’ signs were quickly taken down in place of ‘Sorry, we’re closed’ signs for three bars in Jacksonville Beach over the weekend. Each establishment reported having at least one customer test positive for coronavirus.

Dean Black seated and speaking in front of a big sheet that has DUVAL GOP written all over it, and a poster of Donald Trump giving two thumbs up to his left.
Sky Lebron / WJCT News

Duval County Republicans are heralding the Republican National Convention (RNC) in Jacksonville as a great opportunity to put the city in the national spotlight and economic growth, while the local Democratic Party is outlining major concerns. 

SKY LEBRON / WJCT NEWS

The State Attorney’s Office says it won’t be pursuing charges against 48 protesters arrested May 31 during demonstrations in Downtown Jacksonville.

Mayor Curry Touts August RNC Impact On 'Struggling' Small Businesses

Jun 12, 2020
Photo: Bill Bortzfield/WJCT News / Logo: Jacksonville 2020 Host Committee

Jacksonville Mayor Lenny Curry said bringing a portion of the Republican National Convention to Northeast Florida in August will be a boost for local small businesses.

Evan Vucci / Associated Press

Calling it a “big win,” Jacksonville Mayor Lenny Curry said Friday he envisions the Republican convention in August as an opportunity to showcase the city and get people back to work following massive shutdowns caused by the COVID-19 pandemic.

Facebook

At last check, 1,800 people had signed up to participate in a Downtown Jacksonville boat rally Sunday to celebrate President Donald Trump’s birthday, according to the organizer’s Facebook page.

BILL BORTZFIELD / WJCT NEWS

Jacksonville will host the biggest pieces of the 2020 National Republican Convention in August.

DIA Committee Approves Independent Life Building Redevelopment Grant

Jun 11, 2020
Jacksonville Daily Record

Augustine Development Group’s request for a $3 million Historic Preservation Trust Fund grant to redevelop the Independent Life Building will move to the full Downtown Investment Authority board for final approval.

DIA’s Strategic Implementation Committee voted unanimously June 11 to approve the term sheet for the grant, according to WJCT News partner the Jacksonville Daily Record.

People holding up a Northside Coalition sign, someone in the back holding up another sign, outside of the courthouse
Sky Lebron / WJCT News

Nine Jacksonville African American Civic and Social Organizations are urging the black members of the City Council to form a Black Caucus to represent underserved communities in the city. 

Gov. Ron DeSantis (left) is pictured in Jerusalem with Chief Financial Officer Jimmy Patronis and Commissioner of Agriculture Nikki Fried
Gov. Ron DeSantis' Twitter page / Gov. Ron DeSantis' Twitter page

Florida Agriculture Commissioner Nikki Fried is calling on Gov. Ron DeSantis to drop his appeal of a recent court ruling regarding Amendment 4, which restores the voting rights of millions of ex-felons in Florida, and to reform the state’s controversial Clemency Board, the statewide body that decides whether felons can have their rights restored.

Mayor Lenny Curry walking in a crowd of people down the street toward the Duval County Courthouse.
Sky Lebron / WJCT News

As Jacksonville officials look for answers and policy changes to address local racial inequality issues, the City Council is forming a new Social Justice and Community Investment Committee.

Jacksonville Daily Record

By the end of August, the corner of the Water Street Garage at the base of the Acosta Bridge might look anything but pedestrian.

Lowe's Posts Jobs For North Jacksonville Distribution Center

Jun 10, 2020
Freebird Commerce Center.
Jacksonville Daily Record

Lowe’s Companies Inc. appears to be working toward opening a distribution warehouse in Freebird Commerce Center in North Jacksonville.

BILL BORTZFIELD / WJCT NEWS

It’s looking more likely that the Republican National Convention will be moved to Jacksonville in August.

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