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Task Force on Consolidated Government Presents Recommendations to City Council

October 14, 2014
Study represents first formal review of government structure since Consolidation 46 years ago

The Task Force on Consolidated Government presented its final report and recommendations to Council President Clay Yarborough today in City Council Chambers. The task force, formed by former City Council President Bill Gulliford and chaired by City Councilwoman Lori Boyer, undertook an in-depth review of the history, formation and operation of the consolidated government of Jacksonville including a full examination of all departments, divisions, boards, commissions and independent authorities. Additionally, the group studied the relationship between the Beaches and Baldwin and the Consolidated City of Jacksonville. Read More
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Jacksonville To Gain At Least 500 Jobs As GE Oil & Gas Opens New Advanced Manufacturing Facility

September 26, 2014
New Facility Will Open At AllianceFlorida at Cecil Commerce Center in November

Calling it the city’s largest job creation project in more than six years, Mayor Alvin Brown announced today that GE Oil & Gas has selected Jacksonville as the location for a new advanced manufacturing facility.
 
GE Oil & Gas will create at least 500 permanent full-time jobs over the next three years at the manufacturing center, with an average salary of $48,850 after receiving overwhelming support by City Council and Mayor Brown. 
 
The 500,000-square-foot new facility, slated to open this November, will be located at AllianceFlorida at Cecil Commerce Center on Jacksonville’s Westside.  It will include an estimated minimum of $50 million in investments for manufacturing and IT equipment, as well as additional real estate improvements. Development of the site has been a priority of the City, as well as Hillwood Property Investments, the master developer of City-owned property at Cecil Commerce Center.

City Council Approves New Public-Private Partnership to Enhance Hemming Plaza

August 29, 2014
Nonprofit Organization Will Manage Jacksonville’s Oldest Public Park

Saying it will help boost Downtown Jacksonville’s economic vitality and quality of life, Mayor Alvin Brown today expressed thanks to City Council for passing legislation that supports a new public-private partnership to transform and reinvigorate Hemming Plaza.

Friends of Hemming Park was given overwhelming approval to run the historic Hemming Plaza, located in the center of Downtown.  The group’s key priorities will include making the park safe and inviting, leading beautification projects, and organizing more community events.  Led by Dr. Wayne Wood, Friends of Hemming Park is composed of Jacksonville leaders with extensive experience in neighborhood revitalization, management and marketing. 

Mayor Welcomes New Ships, Announces Early Opening of Hanna Park

August 18, 2014
USS Iwo Jima and USS Fort McHenry Arrive at NS Mayport, Hanna Park to Open at 6 a.m.

Local leaders joined the United States Navy at Naval Station Mayport today to welcome the USS Iwo Jima and the USS Fort McHenry to their new homeport in Jacksonville. With the additional 1,300 sailors and marines arriving at the base, Mayor Alvin Brown announced that the gate to the adjacent Kathryn Abbey Hanna Park will now open an hour earlier to provide base access to military personnel and earlier entry for patrons to enjoy the park.

“We are honored to be the new homeport of the USS Iwo Jima and USS Fort McHenry,” said Mayor Brown. “We welcome the ship crew and their families as our new neighbors. Jacksonville plays a key role in supporting our nation’s security posture and the United States Navy is a vital part of our community. The arrival of these two impressive ships and mission capabilities highlights the renewed growth of the Navy’s presence in Jacksonville. As a convenience to military personnel and an added benefit to park lovers, we are taking this opportunity to expand access to Hanna Park.”

See more photos from the event at Mayport
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Mayor Brown Invests in Jacksonville to Expand Opportunity

July 14, 2014
With revenues growing, budget includes new investments and no tax increase
 
Calling Jacksonville “a city of opportunity,” Mayor Alvin Brown today presented a Fiscal Year 2014-2015 balanced budget proposal that includes no increase in the tax rate and invests in job creation, public safety, Downtown revitalization and quality of life.
 
“This is a dynamic time for our city,” said Mayor Brown.  “Our unemployment rate is falling and our high school graduation rate is rising. Foreclosures are down and home values are up.  Our businesses are investing, our port is expanding and our college-educated population is growing.  Our Downtown is coming alive, our neighborhoods are getting rid of blight and our parks are being enjoyed by millions of visitors.”

2014-2015 Proposed Budget 2014-2015 Budget Fact Sheet | FY 2015-2019 Proposed Capital Improvement ProgramMayor's Full Remarks, July 14, 2014
 
The mayor said his budget will sustain and build Jacksonville’s momentum with strategic investments to expand opportunity and achieve a more prosperous future for the city.

Mayor Brown Announces Hemming Plaza Enhancement Agreement

June 18, 2014
Mayor Alvin Brown today joined representatives from the Downtown Investment Authority, City Council and Friends of Hemming Park to announce that an agreement has been reached to manage Hemming Plaza.

“This public-private partnership to reimagine and revitalize Hemming Plaza is great news not only for Downtown,” said Mayor Brown. “It’s also great news for our entire city and for everyone who visits Jacksonville.”

The City Council Hemming Plaza committee, chaired by Council Member Denise Lee, played a key role in assisting efforts to enhance programming at the park. Mayor Brown applauded the group’s leadership in making sure that Hemming Plaza becomes all that it can be.

Mayor Brown, Pajcic Unveil Youth Initiative for Urban Parks

June 02, 2014
Mayor Alvin Brown announced today an urban parks initiative that will provide supervised activities this summer for youth at 11 parks in Jacksonville neighborhoods affected by an increase in violent crime.

The Jacksonville law firm of Pajcic & Pajcic donated $50,000 to fund the urban parks initiative as a pilot project that will employ “old school” practices to keep kids engaged in healthy activities and out of trouble during their break from school this summer. Attorney Steve Pajcic grew up near Woodstock Park, the site of today’s announcement, and remembers spending his younger days there engaged in sports under the watchful eye of a park supervisor.

See photos from the June 2, 2014 news conference at Woodstock Park
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Waterproof Jacksonville Expands, Keeping 1,500 Kids Safe in the Water this Year

May 27, 2014
In a city famous for its river, beaches and parks system, safety around the water is essential to enjoying all that Jacksonville has to offer. This summer, as part of Mayor Alvin Brown’s People+Parks Connection, free water safety education and swim lessons will be available to more qualifying families than ever.

Mayor Brown announced plans to expand the citywide drowning prevention campaign, called Waterproof Jacksonville, May 3 at the Cecil Aquatic Center. The program will offer free lessons to an estimated 1,500 children this summer, including students attending summer school at Woodland Acres Elementary, as well as to 150 dependents of active military personnel.

“Waterproof Jacksonville is about nothing less than saving lives,” said Mayor Brown. “The ability to swim is absolutely essential in a state like Florida, especially here in Jacksonville. Our state has the nation’s highest drowning rate among children ages 14 and under. That needs to change, and that’s what we’re trying to do with Waterproof Jacksonville.”

Honoring Those Who Have Fallen

May 02, 2014
The Jacksonville Sheriff's Office held their annual Police Memorial Day Ceremony on the front steps of the Police Memorial Building on Bay Street. Mayor Alvin Brown joined Sheriff John Rutherford and many other city officials for the May 1 ceremony to honor the lives of Jacksonville's 60 fallen officers and their families.

See more photos from Police Memorial Day 

During the ceremony, Mayor Brown presented a proclamation declaring May 1, 2014 as "Jacksonville Police Memorial Day," and the week of May 11-17, 2014 as "National Police Appreciation Week." The ceremony also included remarks from Sheriff Rutherford, a Final Roll Call, a twenty-one gun salute, missing man formation flyover, and much more.

City's First Tire and Sign Buy-Back Event a Success

April 14, 2014
The City of Jacksonville and City Council hosted a Tire and Sign Buy-Back event at the EverBank Field parking lot on April 5 as part of efforts to curb neighborhood and urban blight. More than 23,000 tires and 6,000 illegal signs were collected, resulting in a payout of $41,255. At the first-time event, approximately 3,000 Duval County residents turned out to trade in up to 10 tires for $2 per tire, and up to 40 illegal snipe signs for 50 cents per sign.

The event was a collaboration between the City of Jacksonville and the City Council’s Ad Hoc Committee on Jacksonville’s Neighborhood Blight, which is chaired by Council Member E. Denise Lee, and includes Council Member John Crescimbeni, Council Member Bill Bishop, Council Member Jim Love and Council Member Dr. Johnny Gaffney. The Neighborhood Blight Committee was formed by City Council President Bill Gulliford to examine the status of blight in neighborhoods throughout the city.
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Additional Road Closures, Parking Announced for Weekend Events Downtown

April 11, 2014
Visitors to One Spark and other Downtown events this weekend should note that roads will be closed along the following route, starting at 9:00 a.m. on Saturday, April 12, as the Jacksonville Sheriff’s Office assists with traffic for the JDRF Walk to Cure Diabetes.

  • Duval Street from Jacksonville Fairgrounds to A. Philip Randolph Blvd.
  • A. Philip Randolph Blvd. from Duval Street to Bay Street
  • Bay Street from A. Philip Randolph Blvd. to Hogan Street
  • Hogan Street from Bay Street to Independent Drive
  • Independent Drive from Hogan Street to Newnan Street
  • Newnan Street, making a right on Coastline Drive to the Riverwalk behind Berkman Plaza
  • Riverwalk to Bay Street
  • Bay Street to A. Philip Randolph Blvd.
  • A. Philip Randolph Blvd. from Bay Street to Duval Street
  • Duval Street from A. Philip Randolph Blvd. to Jacksonville Fairgrounds
 Roads will be reopened as walkers complete the route.

City of Jacksonville Offers Free Parking Options for One Spark

April 08, 2014
One Spark Runs From April 9-13

Mayor Alvin Brown joined One Spark Executive Director Joe Sampson, City Council President Bill Gulliford, Jacksonville Sheriff’s Office Assistant Chief Leonard Propper and Jacksonville Transportation Authority’s CEO Nat Ford to outline road closures and parking options for this year’s five-day One Spark event.

During the event’s duration, from Wednesday, April 9 through Sunday, April 13, free parking will be available in Lot E at EverBank Field. Free shuttles will take visitors to and from One Spark. There is also a free parking option at the Prime Osborn Houston Lot. JTA is offering free Skyway rides to and from that location.

City Website Scores Highest in State for Government Transparency

March 20, 2014
Mayor Launches New Transparency Effort to Provide Even More Access for Citizens

Earlier in this Sunshine Week, the First Amendment Foundation rated the City of Jacksonville’s website as the most transparent city website in Florida. Building on that success, Mayor Alvin Brown today announced the launch of a new transparency web page to make it easier for people to connect with their government.

“Open government is good government,” said Mayor Brown. “It’s essential that our city government is transparent and citizens have convenient access to information. We appreciate the positive recognition from the First Amendment Foundation. Our new transparency web page is the next step forward in our continuing efforts at openness and accountability.”

JaxScore to Drive Efficiency, Accountability in City Operations

March 05, 2014
New Website Offers the Public a Tool to Learn about City’s Progress on Key Priorities

Mayor Alvin Brown today announced the launch of a new City of Jacksonville web page with “performance scorecards” aimed at enhancing efficiency and accountability in city operations. JaxScore 1.0, developed by the city’s Information Technology Division, offers the public a new tool to find out how well various city departments, divisions and offices are performing on key priorities.

“JaxScore is about making our city government more efficient, effective and responsive to community needs,” said Mayor Brown. “It’s about being focused on clear goals and measurable results. It’s also about being transparent and accountable, so citizens can see how their city is performing. Some people call it data-driven government. I just call it smart government.”
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Education, Business and Community Leaders in Jacksonville to Gather for GradNation Community Summit

March 03, 2014
Jacksonville Summit One of 100 Nationwide to Examine Challenges and Solutions for Raising High School Graduation Rates and Preparing All Young People for Success

Mayor Alvin Brown announced today he will convene the Jacksonville GradNation Community Summit with America’s Promise Alliance, the nation’s largest partnership dedicated to improving the lives of children and youth.

The all-day summit will be held Friday, April 4 at the Jacksonville Public Library’s Main Branch. The agenda will focus on how to improve high school graduation rates and better prepare young people for college and the workforce.
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