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Council approves funding request

Jacksonville City Council votes 16-1 in favor of appropriation bill to help Casket Factory building renovation

Shelves of City of Jacksonville directories and deed books await a proper home in the future archives at the Casket Factory building.
Shelves of City of Jacksonville directories and deed books await a proper home in the future archives at the Casket Factory building.

Thanks to 16 of 19 City of Jacksonville Councilmembers, wheels are in motion for help from City Council to fund the $300,000 renovation campaign to establish a state-of-the-art archival processing and storage facility at the Jacksonville Historical Society. On March 10, a majority of Councilmembers (16:1 of those present) voted to appropriate $35,000 for renovation of the Florida Casket Company building.

Bill 2020-0115 was introduced to City Council Feb. 11 by Co-Sponsors Council President Scott Wilson and Council Member-at-Large Matt Carlucci. Following the Feb. 25 Council meeting, which included a public hearing, six Council members signed on as co-sponsors of the bill.

The bill was amended March 2 by the Neighborhoods, Community Services, Public Health and Safety Committee to include an exception and a waiver of two ordinances, as well as a requirement. The appropriation of $35,000 from the City Council Operating Contingency invoked an exception to Sec. 126.107 (G) of the City’s Municipal Code, which would allow a direct contract with the Jacksonville Historical Society, rather than requiring a competitive bid process. The waiver of Sec. 118.201 (F)(7) would allow upfront payments instead of payment upon project completion, coupled with a requirement for oversight by the Office of Grants & Compliance.

On March 3, the Rules and Finance Committees put their stamps of approval on the bill, which was voted on by City Council on March 10. With the release of these funds, JHS will be in a position to begin the first phase of second floor renovations, eventually resulting in an up-to-date, 4,500 square-foot archival processing and storage facility.

JHS is very grateful for the 10 Council members who ultimately signed on as co-sponsors: Tommy Hazouri (At-Large), Randy DeFoor (District 14), Ju’Coby Pittman (District 8), Terrance Freeman (At-Large), Aaron Bowman (District 3), Sam Newby (At-Large), Randy White (District 12), Reggie Gaffney (District 7), Ron Salem (At-Large) and Garrett Dennis (District 9).

Kate A. Hallock
Director of Marketing and Communications

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