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  • National leader in employee engagement shares secrets in Jacksonville
    by Will Robinson on December 7, 2018 at 7:33 pm

    The only CEO to have a business ranked by Great Place to Work and Fortune for 13 consecutive years explains how he did it and why it matters. […]

  • More details on Wayfair's plans next year
    by Allison Colburn on December 7, 2018 at 7:26 pm

    A permit for the facility's shell construction, valued at $49 million, was under review Thursday. […]

  • Photos: Meet the baby animals born at the Jacksonville Zoo and Gardens in 2018
    by Dahlia Ghabour on December 7, 2018 at 1:58 pm

    Small fuzzy, feathered and scaled animals all came into the world at the Jacksonville Zoo and Gardens this year, many of which are part of important conservation and reintroduction programs. From the hatching of two Louisiana Pine Snakes to the birth of a baby Western lowland gorilla, the zoo's keepers have had their hands full this year. "Based on available data, the Louisiana pine snake is North America’s rarest snake species,” said Cayle Pearson, Jacksonville Zoo and Gardens’ Herpetology […]

  • Jacksonville lawmaker seeks to expand police force's use of drones
    by Will Robinson on December 7, 2018 at 1:56 pm

    A Jacksonville legislator wants law enforcement agencies to be able to use drones for crowd control and traffic management. Republican Rep. Clay Yarborough has introduced legislation (HB 75) for the 2019 legislative session, which begins March 5, that would expand the use of unmanned aircraft. In addition to crowd control and traffic management, Yarborough’s proposal would allow law enforcement agencies to use drones to collect evidence at crime scenes and traffic crashes. Other state agencies […]

  • Updated: DIA committee votes to scrap convention center plan
    by Allison Colburn on December 6, 2018 at 7:25 pm

    The Downtown Investment Authority's Strategic Implementation Committee unanimously voted Thursday to recommend that the board quash the plan to build a convention center at the site of the old courthouse and city hall annex on Bay Street. The motion, if approved by the DIA board, would reject all proposals to develop the convention center and terminate negotiations with Jacobs, the company whose proposal received the highest score by DIA. DIA is expected to take up the issue at its December meeting. […]

  • Millennial favorite Keke's Breakfast Cafe now open near St. Johns Town Center
    by Dahlia Ghabour on December 6, 2018 at 6:27 pm

    The Orlando-based Keke’s Breakfast Cafe opened a new Northeast Florida location at The Strand near the St. Johns Town Center, the up-and-coming restaurant group's first in Jacksonville. The nearest Keke’s is in St. Augustine, at 135 Jenkins St. Open daily from 7 a.m. to 2:30 p.m., Keke’s Breakfast Cafes serves breakfast, brunch and lunch “like your hometown diner,” according to the company’s website. Initial reviews praised the quality and fresh food. Keke’s has 31 locations in […]

  • Updated: Hart Bridge ramp removal, Innovation Corridor take a big step forward
    by Will Robinson on December 6, 2018 at 4:02 pm

    Projects to tear down the Hart Bridge ramps into downtown and to build a downtown innovation corridor featuring driverless shuttles will receive $25 million in federal grant funding, city officials learned Thursday. Each project will receive half of the grant funds. "This is big," North Florida Transportation Planning Organization Executive Director Jeff Sheffield told the Business Journal. "It's a reflection of the partnerships we've formed and the kinds of innovation we've proposed." The funds […]

  • One Call's ride service hits milestones, sees new opportunities
    by Will Robinson on December 6, 2018 at 1:35 pm

    One Call, a national provider of health care solutions for the workers’ compensation industry, has seen rapid growth in its RelayRIDE system and is now expanding it into new markets. Almost 170 medical care providers now use RelayRIDE to get patients to appointments at nearly 5,000 non-emergency medical facilities. RelayRIDE brings One Call's scheduling, monitoring and communication services together with Lyft's open API to get patients to appointments for surgeries, dialysis treatments, physica […]

  • Atlanta hotel rates expected to triple for Super Bowl
    by Amy Wenk on December 5, 2018 at 8:05 pm

    Atlanta’s hotel industry should get a big boost when the city hosts Super Bowl LIII next year. Atlanta hotel room rates are expected to triple during the weekend of the Big Game, according to new data from analyst STR. While average daily rate (ADR) would be around $90 on a typical early February weekend in Atlanta, during the Super Bowl, ADR is estimated to jump to around $270, said Blake Reiter, STR’s director of custom forecasts. Hotels in Atlanta are expected to reach more than 80 percent […]

  • Mayor's administration commits to relocating jail out of downtown during panel discussion
    by Allison Colburn on December 5, 2018 at 7:59 pm

    Moving the jail out of downtown Jacksonville, the future of Jacksonville Landing and the need for a convention center were key topics at the JBJ's Downtown Development Forum […]

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  • Judge clears Duval middle school teacher accused of inappropriate comments
    by Teresa Stepzinski on December 9, 2018 at 4:49 pm

    An administrative law judge has cleared a Duval County middle school teacher suspended for 10 days without pay for allegedly using the N-word in front of students last year.Judge James H. Peterson III ruled the Duval County School Board failed to prove the allegations in support of its suspension of David Swinyar, a Kernan Middle School teacher. The decision filed Friday at the Florida Division of Administrative Hearings in Tallahassee closes the case.Peterson said there was [... […]

  • Call Box: 'Mother Christmas' reigned over toy giveaway for 35 years
    by Sandy Strickland on December 8, 2018 at 11:48 pm

    Dear Call Box: I read about the Children’s Christmas Party of Jacksonville, the successor to the Dorcas Drake Christmas giveaway, and wondered what you could tell me about her.S.R., JacksonvilleDear S.R.: Known as “Mother Christmas,” Dorcas Drake reigned over the toy giveaway dressed in a fur-tipped Santa hat and red pants suit until 1992.Drake, granddaughter of former Florida Gov. Napoleon Bonaparte [... […]

  • Ex-fiance jailed without bail in slaying of Jacksonville sailor
    by Teresa Stepzinski on December 8, 2018 at 10:30 pm

    The former fiance of a Navy chief petty officer slain in her Jacksonville home nearly three months ago has been charged with killing her, records show.Danny Ray Beard II, 36, is charged with murder in the killing of Andrea Lea Washington, 37, who was found dead Sept. 17 inside her Northside home.A judge Saturday ordered Beard to remain without bail in the Duval County jail, records show.Beard smiled, looked back and winked in the direction of television news cameras as [... […]

  • Sunday Notebook: Wayfair picks Jacksonville for warehouse
    by The Times-Union on December 8, 2018 at 10:10 pm

    Online retail giant Wayfair Inc. has selected Jacksonville for a new 1 million-square-foot distribution center and warehouse.The project was dubbed “Project Empire” by Jacksonville city officials, who were negotiating for months to land the deal. The project was approved by the City Council in November and will be located at Alliance Florida within the Cecil Field Commerce Center, according to the city.Wayfair has become an online retailer that offers more than 10 [... […]

  • Bill Offill named Times-Union publisher
    by The Times-Union on December 8, 2018 at 10:07 pm

    Bill Offill has been named publisher of The Florida Times-Union. Offill was named group publisher of The Times-Union, St. Augustine Record and Daytona Beach News-Journal, all GateHouse Media properties, in September. He will continue to serve as group publisher.On Friday, Offill said he is relocating to Jacksonville in January to take over the day-to-day oversight of the Times-Union. Former Times-Union Media President Mark Nusbaum retired last week.“I look [... […]

  • 'Heart of ministry': Jacksonville nonprofit collaborates with churches to host job fairs
    by Beth Reese Cravey on December 8, 2018 at 10:06 pm

    Applying for a job can be a scary prospect.Surely having a chorus of earthly angels appear at your side — strangers who listen to your story, pray for you, occupy your 3-year-old and cheer for you when you succeed — would ease the stress. That's the idea behind the "Better Work" component of Better Together, a Florida nonprofit that, among other things, collaborates with churches to plan job fairs in underserved communities.Only 2 percent of U.S. [... […]

  • Courthouse construction trailers finally hit the road
    by David Bauerlein on December 8, 2018 at 10:06 pm

    Three years after construction concluded on the massive Duval County Courthouse complex, the temporary construction trailers used during that work are finally getting hauled away from a city-owned lot that looked more like a salvage yard than prime real estate.The sloppy condition of the lot, which the city purchased years ago for several million dollars, stands in contrast to the improvements that other property owners in the vicinity have financed so they would come into compliance [... […]

  • (No heading)
    by Julie Kanner on December 8, 2018 at 9:37 pm

    The Cultural County of Greater Jacksonville appointed Joy Young as its new executive director effective in February. Young is currently director of administration, human resources and operations for the South Carolina Arts Commission in Columbia.Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices Florida Network Realty welcomed Rich Seal to the St. Augustine office with locations in St. Augustine Beach and Murabella at World Golf Village and welcomed Alex [... […]

  • FBI: Man arrested in death of North Carolina teenager
    by Associated Press on December 8, 2018 at 6:43 pm

    LUMBERTON, N.C. — Police have arrested and charged a man with killing a 13-year-old girl who was kidnapped last month from a North Carolina mobile home park.The FBI said early Saturday that Michael Ray McLellan has been charged in connection with the kidnapping and murder of Hania Noelia Aguilar. The announcement comes the same day that a memorial service for Aguilar is set to take place at a local high school.The 34-year-old McLellan faces first degree murder, rape and [... […]

  • Trump says chief of staff John Kelly to leave at year's end
    by Associated Press on December 8, 2018 at 6:36 pm

    WASHINGTON — President Donald Trump says chief of staff John Kelly will leave his job at the end of the year.Trump isn't saying immediately who will replace Kelly, a retired Marine general who has served as chief of staff since July 2017. But the president says an announcement about a replacement will be coming in the next day or two.Trump spoke to reporters at the White House before departing for the Army-Navy football game in Philadelphia.He calls Kelly [... […]

  • 'Dirty' DEA agent facilitated drug influx to Jacksonville, complaint says
    by By Anne Schindler First Coast News on December 8, 2018 at 1:52 am

    A criminal complaint obtained by Times-Union news partner First Coast News paints a portrait of a dirty U.S. Drug Enforcement Agency agent who traded inside information for bribes and helped facilitate massive drug shipments to the streets of Jacksonville.According to the complaint, former Jacksonville-based Special Agent Nathan Koen used his position to assist large-scale drug transactions, warn dealers of pending investigations and otherwise enable shipments of heroin, cocaine and [... […]

  • Five named finalists for Duval teacher of year
    by Denise Amos on December 7, 2018 at 11:53 pm

    Five teachers were pleasantly surprised to learn that they are finalists for Duval County's Teacher of the Year during surprise announcements at their school.The finalists are Sarah Pasion at Sadie Tillis Elementary, Nakeisha Tinsley at Matthew Gilbert Middle, Danisha Love at Raines High, Rachel Duff at DuPont Middle, and Joshua Diaz at Hogan-Spring Glen Elementary.One of the finalists will be named the Florida Blue Duval County Teacher of the Year at the 28th Annual EDDY [... […]

  • Duval elementary assistant principal charged with grand theft
    by Beth Reese Cravey on December 7, 2018 at 11:34 pm

    A Duval County Public Schools assistant principal is facing termination and a criminal record after being charged with two counts of grand theft.Jamall Collins, 34, was arrested without incident at School Police headquarters, not in the presence of students, according to the school district.The charges stemmed from fraudulent bank account activity reported by an Ortega orthodontist who regularly makes donations to Stockton Elementary School, where Collins works. The business [... […]

  • Kelly expected to depart White House amid Trump shake-up
    by Associated Press on December 7, 2018 at 11:19 pm

    WASHINGTON — President Donald Trump inched closer to his long-teased major White House shake-up Friday, gearing up for the twin challenges of battling for re-election and dealing with the Democrats' investigations once they take control of the House. The biggest piece of the shifting picture: Chief of Staff John Kelly's departure now appears certain.Trump announced he was picking a new U.S. attorney genera l and a new ambassador to the U.N. , and at the same time two senior [... […]

  • Police: Sonic employees arrested after ecstasy pill found in boy’s meal
    by By Claire Osborn cosborn@statesman.com on December 7, 2018 at 10:22 pm

    Police arrested three employees at a Sonic Drive-In in Taylor, Texas, after an 11-year-old girl found an ecstasy pill Thursday in a meal for her 4-year-old brother, said Taylor Police Chief Henry Fluck.The girl was unwrapping the child’s meal ordered for her younger brother at the restaurant at 1700 N. Main St. when she found the pill in a hamburger wrapper, Fluck said Friday. “She thought it was candy,” he said.Her parents were suspicious and brought [... […]

  • Cheeky football team's 'Oreo run' is butt of late night host's jokes
    by By Jay Taft jtaft@rrstar.com on December 7, 2018 at 9:52 pm

    A Rockford Register Star story about 10 Byron football players who were suspended for their part in an “Oreo run” has not only been republished by news outlets across the country, it’s become late night talk show fodder.On Tuesday, the story wound up on "Late Night with Seth Meyers." Meyers makes a joke at timestamp 1:18 about what [... […]

  • Trump, Tillerson lob insults on former secretary of state's tenure
    by Tribune News Service on December 7, 2018 at 9:32 pm

    Trump calls Rex Tillerson 'dumb as a rock' after fired secretary of state says he kept having to say 'You can't do that' […]

  • Makin' bacon: Vending machine serves up everyone's favorite breakfast food
    by BY JD Malone jmalone@dispatch.com on December 7, 2018 at 9:20 pm

    The power of bacon is on display at the Animal Science building at Ohio State University.A table inside the lobby is covered with free snacks: a tub of pretzels, a dozen or so granola bars, some gummy fruit snacks. It’s finals week at the school, but all of it was untouched. Beside the free snacks was a line of people taking photos and videos as they plunked quarters and fed dollar bills into a vending machine that sold nothing but bacon.There are bags of bacon bits and [... […]

  • Grand jury indicts suspect in McDonald's drive-thru shooting in Jacksonville
    by Beth Reese Cravey on December 7, 2018 at 9:15 pm

    A Jacksonville man has been indicted in the August death of his girlfriend who was shot in the drive-thru of a Southside McDonald's.Rasheed A. Karreem, 35, was charged with first-degree premeditated murder in the slaying of 32-year-old Jamie Marie Roqu, [... […]

  • Good News: Light Up the House for Ronald McDonald Charities
    by Julie Kanner on December 7, 2018 at 8:40 pm

    Last Saturday about 260 runners and walkers participated in the Ronald McDonald House Charities of Jacksonville’s Light Up the House 5K.The race started at 8 a.m. in front of the Ronald McDonald House on Children’s Way in San Marco with the participants wearing Santa hats and holiday colors. The race course went through along the St. Johns River and through historic San Marco. Santa and Mrs. Clause led a children’s 1-mile Fun Run in a red-and- [... […]

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