News moves fast and furious and when you are busy with taking care of clients, it can be tough to share our thoughts quickly. I have saved a few news worthy items and got around to them today.

Here are a few Winks that need to be given:

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Locally: Lori Boyer of the DIA presented a plan after months of working with others to see what makes the best sense for downtown development. Downtown is a mixed bag of city owned and privately owned properties. There are many organizations, developers, special interests, etc. vying for their pet project to be included. While not all were and there is still not a final plan in place, I give Lori a big WINK for spending time and listening to many voices. She can’t please everyone and hopefully at the end of the day, the decisions will be for the best of everyone – most especially the taxpayer. We anxiously await the final plan and the framework to make it happen.

Statewide: Our Governor – Ron DeSantis – has taken a lot of grief from local media outlets. From their writings you can tell they have it in for Governor DeSantis and anything he does or says — they bite him for it. We give him a WINK for how he handled COVID19 as well as another one for taking on the issue of Election Integrity. While others are hush hush and can’t even speak that there might be election fraud, Gov. DeSantis has come out swinging and plans to set in place protocols for Florida to adhere to in the voting booth. He tells it like it is and because of his policies and governance, Florida is filling up with new residents who want to taste freedom again.

Unfortunately we had a few Stinks to contend with too:

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Locally: Jacksonville’s Political Establishment. As Mayoral candidates are beginning to poke their heads up, we are hearing a phrase used too many times in our local Mayor’s race.

“The logical SUCCESSOR for Jacksonville’s next Mayor is Daniel Davis, the head of the Chamber.”

This is not a “No Vote” for Daniel. It is however a no vote for a SUCCESSOR because we are not England and we vote for our Mayors. Campaigns after campaigns for Mayor seem to always fall at the feet of the political donors in Jacksonville instead of the feet of those they will represent – the taxpayer. It would take the stench off the next Mayor’s race if the donor class would seriously consider others throwing their hat in the ring and support the best candidate for ALL of us in Jacksonville. They could make a decision to use their money wisely and invest in Jacksonville instead of just the Mayor’s office.

Locally: The Duval County School Board turned the schools over to the kids and also to radical organizations from outside of Jacksonville. Recently Eye’s Lloyd Brown wrote about the schools new program — You Matter — which was thrown out after a handful of students pitched a fit that it impacted their Black History Month. And speaking of Black History Month, some organizations are demanding Black Lives Matters demands are a part of their curriculum. If you haven’t taken a look at their demands go to their site and have a look see. https://blacklivesmatter.com/blm-demands/

It seems to be very hateful in spirit. Keep an eye on your children’s studies and make sure hate is not on the agenda.

Now for something to think about:

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Locally: City Council President Tommy Hazouri scolded a taxpayer on his “behaviors” — for using the hand signal “Ok.” At Tuesday’s City Council Meeting, Seber Newsome III was told by Tommy Hazouri that if he used the “OK” hand signal he would not be allowed to speak anymore. (Me Thinks this is a free speech issue.)

Mr. Hazouri said the sign was used by white supremacists — even though Lloyd Brown posted an article about the “OK” sign and it showed Obama, Mr. Hazouri’s President, using it too. You can read Lloyd’s article here. We hope Tommy Hazouri will take time to read it too.

Facts are this, “It’s OK to use the OK sign and you can’t assume it is white supremacy.”

I found this laughable that Tommy Hazouri would be the judge of another man’s character. He should be cautious in how he judges others primarily because of the way he handled Ms. Darlene Tye, a city employee, when he was Mayor. We wrote about the lawsuit she won against Mayor Hazouri and how he punished her for calling out his #metoo behaviors. He actually put her in a room — all alone — to finish out her service to the city so she could get her pension. She was put in isolation and humiliated in front of her peers. The whole story can be found here and here.

Me Thinks Tommy Hazouri needs to be cautious about taking away someone’s rights such as freedom of speech. This appears to be a pattern of his and not appropriate for someone who holds the gavel to the council chambers.

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All in all it appears Jacksonville has some exciting opportunities on the horizon and as always we have issues that need to be fixed. That’s life.

As always, Eye on Jacksonville will be keeping an Eye on what’s happening and we welcome your comments. Please send along any information that we might have missed or you think needs a write up. We also would love it if you shared EyeOnJacksonville.com with your friends and family members plus share articles on social media. We are growing and want to grow even more!!

That’s my opinion. I value yours.

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Billie Tucker Volpe Founder of Eye on Jacksonville and Leadership Consultant to CEOs/Executives

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