Last June, City Council President Aaron Bowman worked with City Council to create a first-of-its-kind City Council Strategic Plan with one-, three-, and five-year goals. This strategic plan was approved by City Council in January and is being followed with legislation requesting funds to support areas of the strategic plan.
Upon becoming president in July, the Council President began routinely meeting with the Mayor on many of the issues in the strategic plan. An example of an issue that has already been accomplished is the establishment of a Homeless Urban Rest Stop that will open February 14, 2019 at the Sulzbacher Center.
Another item on the strategic plan focuses on developing a resiliency plan to address and improve our City’s resiliency for natural disasters, environmental damage, and economic threats.
Hurricanes Matthew and Irma had a severe impact to the City of Jacksonville. These two initiatives will identify ways our City can minimize and prevent future devastation.
The first of which is the Adaptation Action Area Working Group which will focus on improving resiliency to coastal flooding and sea rise. The AAA Working Group consists of eleven members including representation from these areas: environmental economics, City Council, Jacksonville Chamber of Commerce, the beaches, insurance, climatology, legal, development, and coastal engineering. The Working Group will meet for six months and identify feasible responses.
The second initiative is the creation of the Storm Resiliency & Infrastructure Development Review Committee which will evaluate infrastructure hardening, drainage and flood control, tidal impacts, St. Johns River water levels, wetlands, and development in flood plains. This committee is a result of a resolution from the Jacksonville Waterways Commission to City Council President Bowman. President Bowman held a discussion with Mayor Curry concerning the most effective way to address the Commission’s resolution to review and evaluate storm resiliency. The resulting conclusion was to establish a review committee. In June 2019, this committee will provide recommendations to the Mayor and City Council President. The committee, led by the Chief Administrative Officer Sam Mousa, will include representatives from City Council, St. Johns River Management District, US Army Corps of Engineers, Florida Department of Environmental Protection, and FEMA.