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Florida House moves forward on vacation rental bill
by Dara Kam on February 21, 2020 at 7:21 pm
For the first time, online platforms such as Airbnb would have to collect and remit taxes on vacation rental properties, ensure that only properly licensed rentals are advertised and provide the state with specific information about the rentals, under a proposal headed to the House floor. In exchange, regulation would be “preempted” to the state, largely preventing local governments from regulating vacation rentals. Local governments could only regulate the rentals in the same way as other properties…
New safety program created for Jacksonville hotels
by Ellen Schneider on February 21, 2020 at 7:12 pm
Jacksonville now has a new crime fighting initiative aimed at the tourism industry. Council member Danny Becton, Visit Jacksonville, the Florida Restaurant & Lodging Association Northeast Chapter, along with the Jacksonville Sheriff's created the Tourism Industry & Public Safety Alliance, or TIPSA. The program was announced at press conference on Friday morning at the Four Points by Sheraton on Baymeadows. "Our goal is to improve, with the area stakeholders and industry partners, by working more…
DIA board laments low bid count for courthouse site, blames 1998 deal
by Will Robinson on February 21, 2020 at 7:08 pm
Board members are happy with the quality of the bid they chose, but wanted to see many more bids.
DIA approves $136M plan to develop Ford on Bay
by Will Robinson on February 21, 2020 at 4:19 pm
The Downtown Investment Authority voted unanimously on Friday to award New York-based Spandrel Development Partners the right to construct a mixed-use development at the site of the former courthouse and city hall annex, known as the Ford on Bay. "We believe in the market," said Spandrel co-founder Emanuel Neuman. "We believe that building out the downtown core is the right decision for the long-term." A scoring committee and a DIA property disposition committee both preferred Spandrel over a…
Downtown office tower sells for $67 million as Georgia company expands in Florida
by Will Robinson on February 21, 2020 at 1:58 pm
The 22-story One Call office tower on downtown's Southbank has sold for $67 million. Miami-based Easton & Associates represented the buyer, ShareMD, and CBRE represented the seller Chicago-based GEM Realty. The building at 841 Prudential Drive was 80 percent leased and had undergone a $6 million renovation in the last two years, according to Easton & Associates. “My client is strategically acquiring medical office buildings throughout Florida to meet increased demand for healthcare services as…
Party bike franchise launches, looks to expand routes
by Alex Wilson on February 21, 2020 at 1:31 pm
A franchise that offers patrons a chance to drink and ride is now up and running in Jacksonville, and the owners are already hoping to expand their operation. Pedal Pub Jacksonville, co-owned by Theresa and Rick Pontieri and Eric and Amanda Blocker, began operating on Feb. 1. Although they haven’t yet held their grand opening – an event slated for March 1 – Theresa Pontieri said they’re already hoping to add a third bike to their franchise due to the concept’s popularity. “It [the reception]…
Calling the good and the bad: ESPN’s approach to XFL coverage
by John Ourand on February 21, 2020 at 1:29 pm
'Rawness is cool. Rawness is real. If everybody is not perfect, that’s OK.'
See where Jacksonville ranks among iBuyer growth markets
by Brendan Ward on February 21, 2020 at 1:28 pm
A recent report from Ownerly, a New York-based housing data company, identified Jacksonville as a top market for iBuyers, companies that purchase houses completely online, as well as a potential growth market for iBuying. Jacksonville ranked as the 11th most popular metro for ibuying based on the percentage of sales that were from iBuyers. Although the report did not give specific numbers, a Redfin report from last year found 1.1 percent of all homes sold on the platform were bought by an iBuyer.…
DIA to decide Ford on Bay's fate on Friday
by Will Robinson on February 20, 2020 at 8:23 pm
The Downtown Investment Authority will vote on Friday whether to grant New York-based Spandrel Development Partners the right to develop the former courthouse and city hall sites on downtown's riverfront, a property marketed as the Ford on Bay. Spandrel was the preference of a scoring committee and a DIA property disposition committee over a bid from Miami-based The Related Group, and the board will vote Wednesday whether or not to accept the recommendation of its committee. Spandrel is proposing…
'A life of legendary proportions': Community says farewell to former Mayor Jake Godbold
by Timothy Gibbons on February 20, 2020 at 8:04 pm
Fittingly for the man who brought what is now the Jacksonville Jazz Festival to the city, Thursday’s celebration of Mayor Jake Godbold’s life kicked off with a New Orleans-style brass band, setting a vibe that carried throughout the event. Hundreds gathered at the Prime Osborn Convention Center to say farewell to a man responsible for shaping much of modern Jacksonville, from putting into motion the awarding of an NFL team to attracting Mayo Clinic, championing the Landing and putting into motion…
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Versona women's store plans Jacksonville grand opening in The Avenues
by Scott Butler on February 23, 2020 at 3:21 am
The store will be opening nine locations on Feb. 27. It has eight Florida boutiques.
Starbucks plans Military Family Store dedication in Jacksonville
by Scott Butler on February 23, 2020 at 3:21 am
The store is close to Naval Air Station Jacksonville and is military-themed. It is part of Starbucks’ commitment to hiring and serving military families.
Kentucky teen gives gift of life to St. Augustine man
by Teresa Stepzinski on February 22, 2020 at 10:05 pm
The family of a 19-year-old Kentucky organ donor traveled to Jacksonville this weekend to meet the recipient of her heart for the first time in person.
JSO: Officer shoots knife-wielding man Saturday
by Teresa Stepzinski on February 22, 2020 at 2:31 pm
A man witnesses said was armed with a large butcher knife was shot and wounded Saturday morning by a Jacksonville police officer
Jacksonville man charged in King Street District killing
by Teresa Stepzinski on February 22, 2020 at 1:13 pm
Jacksonville police have charged a 28-year-old man witrh murder in the shooting death of a Nassau County man in the popular King Street District of Riverside.
DRIVE CALENDAR: Adamec hosts pre-Bike Week car show on Sunday
by Dan Scanlan on February 22, 2020 at 11:39 am
CAR SHOWSAdamec Harley-Davidson Pre-Bike Week Car and Bike Show, hosted by Callahan Cruisers of North Florida: 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Sunday at Adamec Harley-Davidson at 8909 Baymeadows Road. Spectators are free, and show vehicles are $20 per.Ninth annual Bradford Relay for Life Car Show: 9:30 a.m. to 2 p.m. Saturday, Feb. 29, at Florida Cracker Kitchen at 7754 SE County Road 21B in Keystone Heights. Free for spectators [...]
DRIVE NOTEBOOK: Amelia Concours weekend includes Penske race cars and charity race car auction
by Dan Scanlan on February 22, 2020 at 11:36 am
The 25th anniversary Amelia Island Concours d’Elegance is two weeks away, set for March 5 to 8 in and around the Ritz-Carlton, Amelia Island.Roger Penske, championship driver and multi-team owner who just purchased Indianapolis Motor Speedway, is this year’s honoree with many of the race cars he and his IndyCar, NASCAR and other teams have raced in. But that’s just part of what happening in and around the annual [...]
Jacksonville veteran's trial over right to fly flag begins Monday
by Andrew Pantazi on February 22, 2020 at 12:28 am
Larry Murphree is a Jacksonville Air Force veteran who wants to put a flag in a flower pot. His homeowners association wouldn’t let him. His fight over that dispute heads to trial Monday, nine years after it started.
Gene Frenette: Jaguars better make right moves with Ngakoue, others this offseason
by Gene Frenette on February 22, 2020 at 12:21 am
The Jaguars better be on top of their game this offseason. Between resolving the Yannick Ngakoue stalemate to so many other subplots, this franchise needs to push all the right buttons to get this franchise back on track.
City might use design competition for future vision of Landing site post-demolition
by David Bauerlein on February 21, 2020 at 11:37 pm
The city might use a design competition to invite visions for turning the site of the demolished Jacksonville Landing into an attractive public gathering space. Other vacant city-owned land where the now-demolished courthouse and city hall annex stood will be developed by Spandrel Development Partners.
Trump tries new approach for $1 trillion infrastructure plan
by David A. Lieb, The Associated Press on February 21, 2020 at 9:20 pm
JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. — As a presidential candidate in 2016, Donald Trump promised a $1 trillion infrastructure plan that would use tax incentives to spur private investment in public works projects.He has so far failed to persuade Congress to pass anything like that.In another election year, Trump has outlined a new $1 trillion plan for spending on roads, rails, water systems and other infrastructure. This time, the president is proposing to rely fully on federal [...]
Jacksonville hotels start anti-crime push using social media
by Steve Patterson on February 21, 2020 at 9:11 pm
Organizers hope emails to police and WhatsApp chats with other hotel operators will spread information that can disrupt crime in and around the businesses.
Ben Johnson of Martin Coffee is just the right blend for JAX Chamber award
by Scott Butler on February 21, 2020 at 8:49 pm
He is the 2020 JAX Chamber Overall Small Business Leader of the Year.
Mom of Idaho kids missing since September arrested in Hawaii
by Jennifer Sinco Kelleher and Rebecca Boone, The Associated Press on February 21, 2020 at 8:20 pm
HONOLULU — The disappearance of an Idaho boy and his teenage sister last year has led to the arrest of their mother in Hawaii, a major development in a bizarre case that spans multiple states, includes three mysterious deaths and touches on the mother's doomsday beliefs.Lori Vallow, 46, also known as Lori Daybell, was arrested Thursday on an Idaho warrant and was being held on $5 million bail, according to police on the island of Kauai. Vallow has been charged with two [...]
Footprints, fibers and fingerprints: Jacksonville students are given glimpse at forensic scene
by Sara Albertelli on February 21, 2020 at 8:17 pm
Students from Atlantic Coast High School and A. Philip Randolph Career Academies in Jacksonville are putting their skills to the test in a simulated crime scene after months of preparation.
Ethics loophole allowed mayor, city officials to take lobbyist-paid trip
by Christopher Hong on February 21, 2020 at 7:49 pm
A loophole in Florida’s ethics law allowed three of the city’s most powerful officials to receive a de facto benefit potentially worth more than $1,000 from a company actively lobbying the city on behalf of a dozen clients.
Jacksonville celebrates interfaith leaders
by Gabrielle Parzygnat on February 21, 2020 at 7:11 pm
The 2020 Interfaith Community Dinner will award Rabbi Jonathan Lubliner and church leader Derrick Scott and host keynote speaker Imam Khalid Latif.
Watchdog toughens global financial scrutiny of Iran
by Angela Charlton, The Associated Press on February 21, 2020 at 6:51 pm
PARIS — An international agency monitoring terrorism funding announced tough new financial scrutiny of Iran on Friday and added seven countries to a watch list.Pakistan, meanwhile, won a reprieve from the Financial Action Task Force at its meetings in Paris this week. The monitoring body gave Pakistan's government another four months to crack down on terrorism financing and did not put the country on a damaging "black list."Iran and North Korea are the only two [...]
Gene Frenette: Will NFL players seize chance to finally stand up to owners?
by Gene Frenette on February 21, 2020 at 6:40 pm
If the NFL players sign off on the owners’ proposal of playing a 17th regular-season game, then all that concern about the physical toll on their bodies and the effects of CTE will be just a message of hypocrisy.
State grant to help Green Cove Springs power industrial park
by Beth Reese Cravey on February 21, 2020 at 6:32 pm
Created in 2017, the Florida Job Growth Grant Fund is an economic development program designed to promote public infrastructure and workforce training.