first coast connect

JAE C. HONG / ASSOCIATED PRESS

Today’s Media Roundtable was all about COVID-19 on the First Coast. We discussed masks in schools, business’ rights, hospitals' reaching capacity, and the politicization of the virus.

Vanessa Arroyo receives a COVID-19 vaccine shot.
News Service of Florida

Thursday the Biden Administration is expected to announce new vaccination requirements for federal employees and contractors.

Across the First Coast, ICUs are overwhelmed with patients admitting with COVID-19, a large number of them unvaccinated. This week, the Jacksonville Civic Council (JCC) launched a new campaign called Get the Facts Jax aimed at increasing the city’s vaccination rate.

File photo of an individual being tested for COVID in Florida.
AP Photo/Lynne Sladky

Across the First Coast there is a high demand for COVID tests, as people try to find out if they are positive with the rapidly spreading Delta variant of the virus.  

MARY ALTAFFER / ASSOCIATED PRESS FILE PHOTO

COVID-19 cases and hospitalizations are continuing to rise in our area, as students are preparing to return to school in a few weeks - without a mask mandate.

WILFREDO LEE / ASSOCIATED PRESS

We devoted today’s Media Roundtable to the surge in COVID cases in Northeast Florida and around the state and how local officials and Gov. Ron DeSantis are handling it.

The panelists were: 

In this Jan. 19, 2021, photo, Robert Owens, 90, stands in line with other residents to receive the Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine at John Knox Village in Pompano Beach.
LYNNE SLADKY / ASSOCIATED PRESS

On Wednesday, Mayor Lenny Curry and Jacksonville's top health officials urged the public to get vaccinated as COVID-19 cases continue to rise in our area again. 

Jacksonville Mayor Lenny Curry presented his proposed budget for the 2021-2022 Fiscal Year to the Jacksonville City Council on Tuesday.
SHANNON LEDUKE / WJCT

Jacksonville Mayor Lenny Curry has presented his proposed budget for the city, which has re-ignited a debate about how the city's money should be spent.

File photo of people waiting in line to receive the Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine.
LYNNE SLADKY / ASSOCIATED PRESS

COVID is on the rise yet again. The Jacksonville area has recently become a hotspot for the virus, according to the Mayo Clinic.

A new study says on average someone would have to earn $24.90 per hour to rent a modest two-bedroom home on no more than 30% of their pay. That's far more than the federal minimum wage.
RICH PEDRONCELLI / AP

The National Low Income Housing Coalition has released its annual outreach report, which found that affordable housing is out of reach for many Americans. 

ROGELIO V. SOLIS / ASSOCIATED PRESS FILE PHOTO

The Friday Media Roundtable covered these top stories from the First Coast: 

Ramon Espinosa / Associated Press

People across Florida have been demonstrating in solidarity with Cubans protesting their country's communist dictatorship over the past few days.

Prepped COVID-19 vaccine filled syringes are at ready for use at a COVID-19 vaccination site at Jackson State University in Jackson, Miss.
ROGELIO V. SOLIS / June 22, 2021 Associated Press file photo

Florida's COVID-19 numbers have been facing a sharp rise, and the surge in infections is linked to the arrival of the new Delta variant. 

Ismael Francisco / Associated Press

Thousands of Cubans have protesting food shortages and high prices amid the coronavirus crisis, in one of biggest anti-government moments in memory.  

Donna Deegan takes the stage to campaign for Andrew Gillum on Oct. 22, 2018, at a Jacksonville rally.
BOB SELF / THE FLORIDA TIMES-UNION

First Coast News anchor, and marathon founder Donna Deegan, one of Duval County's most prominent Democrats, is strongly considering running for Jacksonville mayor. 

BOB SELF / THE FLORIDA TIMES-UNION

This week’s Friday Media Roundtable covered these top stories on the First Coast:

Adam Pratt

The First Coast is recovering from Tropical Storm Elsa. Jacksonville Mayor Lenny Curry joined us to share an update on how the city is doing post-storm, and discuss his pick for the city’s first Chief Resiliency Officer.

Bill Oxford / Unsplash

A partnership between the Kids Hope Alliance and the State Attorney's Office for the Fourth Judicial Court has resulted in the transfer of Juvenile Diversion Programming to the Kids Hope Alliance, which is a child welfare agency. 

In this Feb. 8, 2021, file photo, Florida seniors have their temperatures taken before receiving the second dose of the Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine at Jackson Health System in Miami.
Marta Lavindier / Associated Press

Friends and family of Jacksonville City Councilwoman Ju’Coby Pittman are asking for prayers as she battles COVID-19.

Gov. DeSantis' bill challenging social media platforms was shot down
JENNY KANE / ASSOCIATED PRESS

The Friday media roundtable covered these stories affecting the First Coast:

A woman wearing a protective mask watches television in her home.
ALVARO BARRIENTOS / ASSOCIATED PRESS

As the pandemic enters its 16th month amid increased vaccination rates and the spread of the Delta variant, people are confused as to whether they need to continue to wear masks.

AP Photo/Wilfredo Lee

New state and federal legislation could be proposed to address construction or engineering issues after the deadly condominium-building collapse in Surfside, where crews are continuing their search for survivors.

The site of the former Jacksonville Landing.
JACKSONVILLE DAILY RECORD

After the demolition of The Jacksonville Landing, at least some public park space at Riverfront Plaza looks to be in Downtown Jacksonville's future.

Jacksonville Daily Record

On today’s Friday Media Roundtable we discussed these topics affecting the First Coast: 

A cargo ship carrying 12 thousand tons of residual coal ash ran aground near the mouth of the St. Johns River nearly three months ago.

This rendering illustrates a Four Seasons hotel and office building that is part of the 1st Downtown Jacksonville plan.
JACKSONVILLE JAGUARS

Earlier this week, Jaguars owner Shad Khan made a fresh pitch for his plan to redevelop the Shipyards.

FL House of Representatives

State Representative Angie Nixon joined us to discuss her thoughts about how the Orange Crush Festival was handled other issues related to recent policy changes in Florida from the 2021 Legislative Session.

JOHN MINCHILLO / AP PHOTO

The arrival of the Delta COVID-19 variant may pose a threat to the slow reintroduction to normal life that we have gotten used to, as it is expected to become the dominant strain of COVID-19 in the United States.

This screengrab from video shows a past Orange Crush festival event
Orange Crush / via Facebook

On today's Friday Media Roundtable we covered these stories from the First Coast:

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