First Coast

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

Mayor Curry alongside a sign language interpreter, speaking into a mic on a glass podium, trees and glass in the background.
Sky Lebron / WJCT News

In his first in-person news conference in two months, Jacksonville Mayor Lenny Curry announced the dates for the reopening of Duval County libraries and city buildings. 

Regency Centers Corp. / Via Jacksonville Daily Record

San Marco East appears to be back on track.

gym equipment all over the place, with a bin filled with towels and a spray bottle to disinfect
John Raoux / Associated Press

Although Gov. Ron DeSantis has allowed gyms and fitness centers throughout Florida to reopen, some in Jacksonville are struggling to stay afloat.

Heather Hailstones

Jacksonville artist Heather Hailstones' work is about to appear on close to 50,000 cans of beer.

Former University of North Florida President John Delaney
University of North Florida

There are at least three potential class-action lawsuits facing Florida’s public university system as some students contend they should receive refunds for what they see as “inferior” products as universities were forced to shift to online learning during the COVID-19 outbreak.

Colorful mural with several faces
Lindsey Kilbride / WJCT News

The coronavirus pandemic has slowed down efforts to revive Jacksonville’s once-vibrant, historically African American Eastside neighborhood, but advocates and business owners are optimistic that progress will resume. 

Democrats Vie For Northeast Florida House Seats

May 17, 2020
The Florida state capitol.
Michael Rivera / Wikimedia Commons

Three Democrats have filed paperwork to try to unseat Republican House members this year in Northeast Florida districts. 

Outside of the Ponte Vedra library branch in St. Johns County, large building with two pillars holding up the roof to the entrance, tree on the side
Via St. Johns County Public Library System

Public libraries in St. Johns County will begin a phased reopening next Tuesday, May 19, according to a Facebook post from the county government.

Documents Show Curry’s Former Chief Administrator, Political Strategist Worked For JEA Bidder

May 16, 2020
Sam Mousa, Tim Baker, Mayor Lenny Curry, City Council President Lenny Curry, former JEA CEO Aaron Zahn, Chief Administrative Officer Brian Hughes all sitting next to each other at a baseball game, showed on the fan cam.
Fan cam of Cardinals vs Braves playoff games on Oct. 4, 2019/ Via the Florida Times-Union

NextEra Energy, the parent company of Florida Power and Light, hired Sam Mousa and Tim Baker, two local lobbyists with close ties to Mayor Lenny Curry, in connection to their attempt to purchase JEA, according to a response to a subpoena it received last month from a Jacksonville City Council investigative committee.


Camden County has announced a series of dates and locations for mobile COVID-19 testing sites:

Monday, May 18, Noon – 3 p.m.

Woodbine Elementary School, 495 Broadwood Drive, Woodbine

Saturday, May 23, 8:30 a.m. – noon

McKinnon St. Simons Island Airport, 291 Skylane Road on St. Simons

Child completing a puzzle on a table, with a mask off to the side of the table
Daniel Cole / Associated Press

In Duval County, 45 kids have tested positive for coronavirus as of May 15. Twelve cases among children were confirmed within the past two weeks alone, six of them in the past week. 

Riverside Arts Market

Saturday, May 16, will mark the return of the Riverside Arts Market (RAM), although it will be virtual-only for now.

FSCJ's Deerwood Center
Jessica Palombo / WJCT News

Florida State College at Jacksonville and Edward Waters College are both expecting to receive more federal CARES Act funding, on top of the millions of dollars they’ve already been given in response to the coronavirus pandemic.

Brynn Anderson / Associated Press

Gov. Ron DeSantis said he will announce Friday additional “phase one” measures to reopen the state’s economy, with the moves expected to include allowing more people to be seated in restaurants and allowing gyms to operate.

Jacksonville Mayor Lenny Curry held a virtual news conference at the main library in Downtown Jacksonville Thursday.
City of Jacksonville / Via News4Jax

Jacksonville Mayor Lenny Curry says he’s spoken to Gov. Ron DeSantis and is prepared to gradually move into a Phase 2 Covid-19 response. 

Picture of men in Facemasks walking by closed sign
NAM Y. HUH / Associated Press

Another 221,905 Floridians filed unemployment claims last week.

Outside of the healthmobile, a bus that is supposed to serve the health needs of the homeless community.
Sky Lebron / WJCT News

After conducting 679 tests at all of Jacksonville’s homeless service providers, Quest Diagnostics confirmed that no one tested positive for COVID-19. 

Jacksonville University President Tim Cost announces plans for the fall semester.
Jacksonville University

Jacksonville University President Tim Cost is planning for a fall semester return to the traditional on-campus experience.

The Jacksonville Armada FC U-23 squad prepares for a game.
Jacksonville Armada FC

The Jacksonville Armada FC pro soccer team is ending its partnership with the Armada FC Youth Academy, which will now revert to its former name, Jacksonville FC.

Aerial file photo of the Okefenokee Swamp.
Ric Feld / Associated Press

The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers held a virtual public hearing Wednesday afternoon on a proposal to mine for heavy minerals next to the Okefenokee National Wildlife Refuge in Southeast Georgia near the Florida border.

Memorial Hospital's main entrance on University Blvd.

Memorial Hospital and Orange Park Medical Center are participating in a national COVID-19 plasma study.

Person getting tested for COVID-19, a health professional injecting into the person's arm
John Raoux / Associated Press

After more than a week of COVID-19 testing at different parks and centers throughout Clay County, the Department of Health will open a fixed testing operation. 

Bill Bortzfield / WJCT NEWS

City spokesman James Croft said May 11 that the sodded Jacksonvlle Landing site Downtown will be available for events before it is redeveloped.

TIAA Offers Voluntary Separation To 75% of US Employees

May 12, 2020
exterior of the building
Sky Lebron / WJCT News

TIAA, which acquired Jacksonville-based EverBank Financial Corp. three years ago, is offering voluntary separation packages to 75% of its U.S. employees.

A snook lies dead due to red tide in Bradenton Beach, Florida.
Chris O'Meara / Associated Press

A team led by University of Florida researchers is receiving nearly $280,000 to study the social and economic costs of harmful algal blooms.

Three people holding signs that read "Kalil Resign Now", "Florida Bar Investigate" and "Justice For All" out in front of the courthouse, next to the street.
Sky Lebron / WJCT News

Protestors from Jacksonville’s NAACP and the Northside Coalition circled the Duval County Courthouse in their cars with horns blaring on Tuesday, calling for recently elected Circuit Judge Michael Kalil to resign.

hands holding a box of Narcan spray
Matt Rourke / Associated Press

Duval County saw a 25% increase in overdose 911 calls from mid-March until now, year over year.

Jacksonville Skyline, with a palm tree in the center among a cloudy sky, buildings in the distance
Bill Bortzfield / WJCT News

Jacksonville Mayor Lenny Curry announced that beginning May 18th, his local work-from-home executive order will end. 

Odd Ball logo
Bonnie Zerr / WJCT

WJCT’s Odd Ball podcast and its website took home the first-place honor in the category of digital programming at this year’s Florida News Awards, given out by the Florida Association of Broadcast Journalists. The award ceremony took place Saturday evening via Facebook Live.

Bogey Creek Preserve
North Florida Land Trust

The Bogey Creek Preserve park in Jacksonville will reopen on Tuesday for the first time since mid-March, when it was closed due to the coronavirus.