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Councilman Clark Wants Mobility Fee Moratorium

Improving national economic conditions have resulted in Home Depot recently issuing a press release that the company will be hiring 80,000 more workers. In addition, Jacksonville is one of the nation's leaders in market rate multifamily construction, infill continues in Riverside and more development pops up around St. Johns Town Center and River City Marketplace every day. However, these market rate economic positives aren't enough for some. Despite community opposition, Councilman Richard Clark has filed a bill in favor of the City of Jacksonville implementing a three year tax increase in the form of a mobility fee moratorium. Here is a brief look at the details of Clark's proposed subsidy to development at the expense of the average taxpayer and how it could negatively impact our city's future.

Published February 8, 2013 in Opinion      178 Comments    Open printer friendly version of this article Print Article


feature

What Is The Mobility Plan and Fee

When it comes to city planning, Jacksonville is sometimes known more for its missteps than what it does right. The 2030 Mobility Plan could change all that. This innovative plan provides a framework to integrate rail, pedestrian, bicycle and road transportation planning with land use strategies that combat unsustainable sprawl. Something we are all too familiar with. Many in Jacksonville have come to the conclusion that investing only in roadway construction to transport people about the city will not work forever. Other forms of mobility, or moving around the city, must be considered to create a city that will not collapse under the weight of ever expanding borders and strains on municipal resources.

First, it provides a framework to integrate land development, with mobility (pedestrians, bicycles, transit and roads) and gives developers incentives to embrace smart growth principles, like gridded streets, in their project’s design.

Second, it lays out a mobility fee that all developers must pay when starting new projects in the city. Developments further from the city core that put more wear and tear on the streets and infrastructure will result in higher project mobility fees.  However, development that embraces financially sustainable features such as infill and adaptive reuse projects results in the virtual elimination of the fee that Councilman Clark opposes.

For more information on the Mobility Plan & Fee, Click Here.



Jacksonville is a national leader in bicycle and pedestrian deaths. The image above captures a recently installed handicapped accessible bus stop on Philips Highway.  However, to utilize, the disabled must maneuver around trucks driving over 45 miles per hour. The mobility fee would fund sidewalks and multi-use trails on heavily traveled corridors like Philips Highway and Southside Boulevard. Councilman Clark's moratorium would maintain Jacksonville's public right-of-way's status as bonafide pedestrian death traps.


Mobility Plan and Fee Goals

The Mobility Plan is intended to resolve multiple problems in Jacksonville.  These include the need for safer streets, healthier neighborhoods, a fair "concurrency" system, and integrating transportation and land use development for fiscally sustainable growth patterns.  The mobility fee serves as the funding source to implement these concepts.  With Jacksonville's revenue sources shrinking every year, the mobility fee provides the city with a fair path to invest in itself, stimulating job creation, quality of life enhancements, and economic growth in the process.


Councilman Clark's Reasoning for Taxpayers to Subsidize Bad Development

During recent interviews with the Jax Daily Record and The Resident, Councilman Clark expressed his reasoning for filing a bill to implement a three year moratorium on the policy that would move Jacksonville forward into the 21st century and spur billions in quality economic and fiscally sustainable growth along the way.

"There’s one single, biggest reason that I'm sponsoring this bill: Getting people slinging hammers and pouring concrete again. For me, its literally about putting people back to work,"  Clark told The Resident's Steve DiMattia.

Unfortunately, for anyone who truly desires a better Jacksonville, Clark's position is based on pure fantasy and speculation.  That pure fantasy and speculation is also based off an assumption that all development by any means necessary is positive to the local economy. However, "Putting people back to work" is a little more complex than slinging hammers and pouring concrete.


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178 Comments

thelakelander

February 04, 2013, 02:33:58 PM
Unfortunately, this is the type of stuff that keeps us tripping over our own two feet.

Quote
Bill to be introduced Feb. 12 will place three-year moratorium on mobility fees

 By Steve DiMattia
Resident Community News

Just four months after a yearlong Mobility Plan fee moratorium ended, a bill for a new waiver is on its way to city council.

District 3 Councilman Richard Clark is sponsoring the new legislation, which General Council Dylan Reingold expects to file on Feb. 6 for introduction at the Feb. 12 council meeting. The proposed legislation would place a three-year moratorium on fees collected on new development required under the 2030 Mobility Plan, essentially extending the yearlong moratorium that ended Oct. 19.

In addition to the increased time period of three years, another significant piece of the new bill has to do with subdivision plats (a plat is a map, drawn to scale, showing the divisions of a piece of land that includes road right of ways, easements, utilities access, etc.).

full article: http://residentnews.net/2013/02/04/councilman-clark-sponsor-mobility-plan-fee-moratorium-legislation/

JeffreyS

February 04, 2013, 02:54:01 PM
Mount up guys we have to double our efforts from last time. Many who showed up last time will likely feel they have done their part. We need to prove it wasn't a one time spike in pressure but a relentless drive.  I will send out my first batch of emails tonight. Going forward we will need more substantial showing of force.  Doug hate to call on you gain buddy but your the man.

sheclown

February 04, 2013, 03:20:24 PM
Doug is the man on this.

thelakelander

February 04, 2013, 03:22:35 PM
Much focus has been placed on the amount of money being taken out of taxpayers mostly empty pockets to subsidize already feasible development.  However, one of the largest atrocities with this fiasco is the preservation of a land development pattern that makes places Jacksonville's cyclist and pedestrians at death's knocking door.  The mobility fee is designed to guide development, not penalize it.  There are several ways to significantly reduce or eliminate the fee by simply building development that makes Jacksonville a more human scaled community.  While it's certainly true that Clark's 3-year moratorium request would further lead us to the path of bankruptcy, it also promotes addition bad development policy, which will negatively impact us economically for years into the future.

L.P. Hovercraft

February 04, 2013, 03:53:51 PM
Jeez, who is Richard Clark really representing here? 
From the attached article it surely looks like Sleiman Enterprises and the Northeast Florida Builder’s Association more than anyone else.

Tacachale

February 04, 2013, 04:28:11 PM
It never can be easy, can it? Let's get to contacting our council members - the developers already have.

Bridges

February 04, 2013, 04:47:25 PM
This is very disheartening to hear.  Very.

I know doug and some other members do great work behind the scenes, but what can we do to help the process? I know we can get emails going.  I'm assuming this has to go through the whole bill process, so what meetings do we need to plan to be at, and encourage others to be at?

How about the Jax 2025 process? Talk about one of the most defining moments of what Jax will look like in 2025, here it is.

Jimmy

February 04, 2013, 05:10:12 PM
Someone needs to convince the Mayor on it.  That's another important angle. 

PeeJayEss

February 04, 2013, 05:26:27 PM
Nothing to add, just want to have this thread saved so I can stay updated on the meetings. Must show up in force. Stupid council.

spuwho

February 04, 2013, 05:43:37 PM
“The mobility fee contributes a very tiny percentage of our capital improvement dollars. The vast majority of dollars for capital improvement projects comes from our general fund, and the predominant source for that is our tax dollars,” Clark said.

If it contributes such a small percentage of dollars, then why is it such a big deal to stop it?

Why does a mobility plan usurp the ability of builders to enact construction?

Clark said the economy is driving his bill.

“There’s one single, biggest reason that I’m sponsoring this bill: Getting people slinging hammers and pouring concrete again. For me, its literally about putting people back to work,” said Clark, noting that, with the exception of Hart, who offered minor input, he had not conferred with any other developers in the creation of the bill.


I would like Mr. Clark to present actual facts on how a Mobility Plan keeps people from working.

Jumpinjack

February 04, 2013, 05:50:42 PM
At the Southside CPAC meeting, Mr. Sleiman proudly pointed out that he was able to build a development and provide sidewalks across the development from ONE SIDE to the OTHER as required by the City.  No connections to anything required.....

Debbie Thompson

February 04, 2013, 05:52:57 PM
Time to saddle up again!

JeffreyS

February 04, 2013, 08:47:56 PM
I have emailed my disappointment to Mr. Clark still working on the general message for the rest of our city government. I urge everyone to start your email campaigns and rallying more action groups to stand with us on this.

Ocklawaha

February 04, 2013, 10:24:35 PM
Time for a revolt, CLARK and REDMAN both get the boot.  Freaking Neanderthals!

Charles Hunter

February 04, 2013, 10:34:30 PM
Both are term-limited, so can't run in 2015 - or is there some grounds for a recall?  (I don't know if being an idiot and a developer's tool are grounds)

JeffreyS

February 05, 2013, 10:59:13 AM
It will always be hard to get a better brand of developer here if the cut the corners good ol boys continue to get councilmen kneel in servitude.

fsujax

February 05, 2013, 11:19:09 AM
I wish our council would stand up to developers for at least once! Sleiman doesn't need to be building any more strip malls until he fills the empty ones he has all over the city.

JeffreyS

February 05, 2013, 05:34:54 PM
I think they wiil stand up and deny the moratorium. We can not take any chances however. I want see updates from MJers moving on this.

Ocklawaha

February 05, 2013, 10:24:45 PM
Perhaps!  Putting the brakes on all transit infrastructure improvements so we can land one more Wendy's, or Mickey D's is simply reckless if not criminal.  Speaking of criminal... Where is the $100M that WE VOTED for mass transit improvements?  Stolen from the taxpayers?? Is there an attorney in the house? I want to bust these guys with a passion.

Spence

February 06, 2013, 05:56:28 AM
Simply stated, by the people, from the people, for the people, Mr. Clark, "NO means NO!"

I too would like Mr.Clark to try to prove just exactly how he thinks the mobility fee takes away or eliminates  the possibility of swinging hammers and or pouring any concrete!!?

edited due to my early morning bleary eyed typos_

Bridges

February 06, 2013, 06:59:18 PM
Alright so it was filed today.  Introduced next Tuesday the 12th. 

Thats just the introduction right, no public input yet, right?

Bill Hoff

February 06, 2013, 08:29:10 PM
I have emailed my disappointment to Mr. Clark still working on the general message for the rest of our city government. I urge everyone to start your email campaigns and rallying more action groups to stand with us on this.

Without the learning curve, and with some familiarity about the issues now, I'm sure we can do better than last time. The pump has been primed.

sheclown

February 07, 2013, 08:13:16 AM
Has Metrojacksonville filed a Public Records Request for all correspondence to and from Mr. Clark regarding the mobility fee?  If not, it needs to be done, quickly.

Debbie Thompson

February 07, 2013, 08:43:34 AM
Agree, sheclown.  Let's out the special interests.

sheclown

February 07, 2013, 08:53:28 AM
Cut and paste:

Clay@coj.net
WBishop@coj.net
RClark@coj.net
Redman@coj.net
LBoyer@coj.net
MattS@coj.net
Gaffney@coj.net
EDLee@coj.net
WAJones@coj.net
RBrown@coj.net
Holt@coj.net
Doylec@coj.net
Gulliford@coj.net
JimLove@coj.net

The email can be a simple statement of support for the mobility fee as it is currently written. Or it can be a more detailed explanation of your thoughts on the newly introduced legislation.  Either way, the email sent is a powerful tool against big buck developers. 

sheclown

February 07, 2013, 09:14:15 AM
The affected urban core, beautifully illustrated, post moratorium:

<a href="http://www.youtube-nocookie.com/v/ClYnjNekcmY?version=3&amp;amp;hl=en_US" target="_blank" class="new_win">http://www.youtube-nocookie.com/v/ClYnjNekcmY?version=3&amp;amp;hl=en_US</a>

fsujax

February 07, 2013, 10:49:55 AM
Via the Daily Reocrd. He believes what little momentum we had is being eroded because of the fee. Really? give me a break. We have got to be prepared to answer all their reasons for extending this.

http://www.jaxdailyrecord.com/showstory.php?Story_id=538711

sheclown

February 07, 2013, 12:34:15 PM
suburban sprawl = urban blight

jcjohnpaint

February 07, 2013, 01:26:16 PM
If there is demand for housing then developments will be built.  If there is demand for commodities than stores will be built.  What is this guy talking about?   

L.P. Hovercraft

February 07, 2013, 01:26:46 PM
You can refer to Ordinance 2013-0094 when writing/calling/emailing the City Council and Mayor your disapproval and/or disgust at Clark's new moratorium bill.

http://cityclts.coj.net/coj/COJbillDetail.asp?F=2013-0094\Original%20Text

C'mon Metro-Jacksonvillians, let 'em have it!

Debbie Thompson

February 07, 2013, 02:00:03 PM
Council members, I don't understand.  The City Council wisely passes a mobility fee to encourage transportation development and then right away the developers and special interests start attacking it.  And instead of standing up to them, the Council proceeds to cave in and place a moratorium on it.  And now, Councilman Clark wants to extend the moratorium?  Like I said, I don't understand.

All you have to do is look at Atlanta and see how MARTA encouraged the development in the downtown and midtown areas, and Buckhead.  Look at Portland and their street cars.  Gosh, look even farther back at San Francisco.  Streetcars and light rail encourage urban core development, while Suburbal Sprawl = Urban Blight.

Jax 2025 was clear.  People want downtown to be a destination.  Mayor Brown committed to working on a vibrant downtown.  The first thing the fee should be used for is to build a streetcar line out to Springfield to begin to enourage development in that emerging neighborhood.  (If you build it, they will come.)  Next, it should go out to Brooklyn/Riverside.  And then it should go to San Marco.  All those lines should connect to light rail. 

I oppose Ordinance 2013-0094.  I encourage you to stand up to suburban sprawl and special interests and get this fee going as soon as possible.

Sincerely, Debbie Thompson

Jumpinjack

February 07, 2013, 02:07:03 PM
From my understanding of the bill, it appears to grandfather any development which gets its building permits or is in a subdivision or a portion of a subdivision that gets its permits during this period of temporary waiver.
If that reading is correct, then future construction will also be exempt from the mobility fee beyond the three years.

sheclown

February 07, 2013, 04:07:19 PM
Quote
Council members,

I am writing in opposition to CM Clark's Ordinance 2013-0094.

The mobility fee had a hard fight to get into legislation.  Then it had another fight against the first moratorium.  Now, it once again battles special interest groups who wish to enact a three-year moratorium on the fee which will only encourage suburban sprawl.

Give downtown a chance.

Give the mobility fee a chance.

The "little people" of Jacksonville deserve nothing less.

Non-RedNeck Westsider

February 07, 2013, 05:26:06 PM
You can refer to Ordinance 2013-0094 when writing/calling/emailing the City Council and Mayor your disapproval and/or disgust at Clark's new moratorium bill.

http://cityclts.coj.net/coj/COJbillDetail.asp?F=2013-0094\Original%20Text

C'mon Metro-Jacksonvillians, let 'em have it!

Am I reading this wrong or does this bill ONLY waive the fees for SFR?

strider

February 07, 2013, 05:36:08 PM
You can refer to Ordinance 2013-0094 when writing/calling/emailing the City Council and Mayor your disapproval and/or disgust at Clark's new moratorium bill.

http://cityclts.coj.net/coj/COJbillDetail.asp?F=2013-0094\Original%20Text

C'mon Metro-Jacksonvillians, let 'em have it!

Am I reading this wrong or does this bill ONLY waive the fees for SFR?

Ahh, that would be a no (or yes, you are reading it wrong!).  In fact, funny you should say that as a developer building in Springfield under the current mobility fee would have to pay little if any fee. The mobility fee has increased fees for the suburban development that cost us tax payers in road and utility improvements while rewarding the developer who builds in the Urban areas.

jcjohnpaint

February 07, 2013, 05:51:09 PM
Yeah as I see it- The bill isn't against developers, it is against developers building responsibly. 

Non-RedNeck Westsider

February 07, 2013, 05:52:34 PM




Bridges

February 07, 2013, 06:23:44 PM
Ok, so as I'm reading it:

1.  The mobility fee waiver last year was not long enough to allow it to have an effect (But I guess 3 months of the fee are enough to determine it's detrimental impact?)

2.  This only applies to single family residential developments? 

3.  Any Single family subdivision development that is granted a waiver under the moratorium, can have their fees waived for additional sfr built in subdivision after the moratorium has been lifted?

Am I off here?  It seems like they've found a niche they think they can work.

Non-RedNeck Westsider

February 07, 2013, 06:50:30 PM
This is the way I was reading it as well.

strider

February 07, 2013, 07:05:51 PM
The moratorium would be in effect for all new development, not just single family oriented development.  Strip malls, office complex, ETC would not have to pay the fee.

I think the single family thing is just a plus for the developers.  The way I understand it is that the entire development gets accessed a fee. That fee is payable per home built.  If a developer starts a 500 unit development and only 50 units get built during the three year moratorium, then they get the fee waived  forever on the remaining 450 units.

stephendare

February 07, 2013, 07:11:48 PM
I was told that

"Clark is just doing this to make that new 3000 single family home development in his district cheaper for the master developer.  The fact is, that project will get built with our without the fee... Meanwhile his constituents are going to lose out on money that will go to pay for needed infrastructure improvements. 

They already waived one road that was required to be built in the initial PUD, how much more of a supplement does this project need?  The inventory of available single family homes certainly isn't in dire straights of running low any time soon. "

not a very good reason.

thelakelander

February 07, 2013, 07:23:20 PM
I think the single family thing is just a plus for the developers.  The way I understand it is that the entire development gets accessed a fee. That fee is payable per home built.  If a developer starts a 500 unit development and only 50 units get built during the three year moratorium, then they get the fee waived forever on the remaining 450 units.

Wow, what a huge FU to the taxpayer.  Also, I thought the proposal was a short term thing because of the current market.  Read into the details and you find out this stuff isn't short term, it could go on for decades.  I'm speechless to the disregard for the average Joe Blow just trying to survive.

RiversideLoki

February 07, 2013, 07:30:07 PM
Wow, what a huge FU to the taxpayer.

Isn't this the entire purpose of the current city council? Emails away, boys!

jcjohnpaint

February 07, 2013, 07:58:03 PM
email sent

sheclown

February 07, 2013, 08:13:03 PM
I think the single family thing is just a plus for the developers.  The way I understand it is that the entire development gets accessed a fee. That fee is payable per home built.  If a developer starts a 500 unit development and only 50 units get built during the three year moratorium, then they get the fee waived forever on the remaining 450 units.

Wow, what a huge FU to the taxpayer.  Also, I thought the proposal was a short term thing because of the current market.  Read into the details and you find out this stuff isn't short term, it could go on for decades.  I'm speechless to the disregard for the average Joe Blow just trying to survive.

The average Joe Blow needs to MAKE HIS VOICE HEARD.

Email.  Email.  Email.

Clay@coj.net
WBishop@coj.net
RClark@coj.net
Redman@coj.net
LBoyer@coj.net
MattS@coj.net
Gaffney@coj.net
EDLee@coj.net
WAJones@coj.net
RBrown@coj.net
Holt@coj.net
Doylec@coj.net
Gulliford@coj.net
JimLove@coj.net

thelakelander

February 07, 2013, 08:21:26 PM
I'll be running an editorial I've written on this issue as the front page story tomorrow.

Ocklawaha

February 07, 2013, 08:51:17 PM
2/7/2013

Dear Councilman:

RE: ORDINANCE 2013-94 Introduced by Council Member Clark:



“WHEREAS, the time period for allowing a waiver on mobility fees expired without sufficient time for such waiver to assist in encouraging economic growth.” Considering it failed to assist in encouraging economic growth the first time we tried it, how logical is it to repeat the mistake and expect a different result?

Twenty-seven years ago downtown Portland, Oregon was fading into oblivion, their experiment with streetcars turned that around. Today with more then $3 billion dollars in new urban investment the hottest real estate in the Pacific Northwest is in downtown Portland.

In Dallas, the opening of the light rail and streetcars started a real estate renaissance. Locating near the rail system is now considered the measure of a projects success. Dallas has seen over $1.3 billion in new development along the rail lines.

A new streetcar system in Atlanta is expected to generate $4.4 billion in new     development. The City of Fort Lauderdale is already calling ‘The Wave,’ streetcar project a Financial Tsunami. Seattle experienced 2,000 new housing units and a 123% increase in land values along the new streetcar routes.

If you support Councilman Clark’s legislation either in whole or part, every hour that a new moratorium is in place will see Jacksonville fall that much further behind our peer cities. We will never enjoy the economic explosion that has followed these transit projects, though these are exactly the kind of projects found in, and funded by our mobility plan. Failure to allow the mobility plan to transform Jacksonville will long be remembered as a failure of governance. This Ordinance is a terrible idea, good only for another season of lingering mediocrity. I urge you to vote against this proposal.



Robert W. Mann
Transportation Consultant
Metrojacksonville.com

Ocklawaha

February 07, 2013, 09:00:03 PM
While JTA is forbidden by federal law from lobbying, the promising new director should be made aware of our feelings too. Please add: Mr. Nathan Ford, to your list:  nford@jtafla.com

jcjohnpaint

February 08, 2013, 06:03:34 AM
Personally I smell corruption.  I wonder if Clark is receiving some kind of kickbacks from developers.  Were any of the dev groups helping to fund his campaign? 

sheclown

February 08, 2013, 07:56:37 AM
We will either be a city with a vibrant core, or a cluster of suburbs tied together with miles asphalt draining our resources.

Let's use what already exists.

tufsu1

February 08, 2013, 08:05:41 AM
Personally I smell corruption.  I wonder if Clark is receiving some kind of kickbacks from developers.  Were any of the dev groups helping to fund his campaign? 

most elected officials get money from the development industry....which includes developers, realtors, contractors, engineers, architects, etc.

thelakelander

February 08, 2013, 08:13:03 AM
We will either be a city with a vibrant core, or a cluster of suburbs tied together with miles asphalt draining our resources.

Let's use what already exists.

I'm fine with suburban development, as long as it's responsible growth that covers its own cost.  This is the scary thing about Councilman Clark's bill.  It basically creates an avenue where the negatives of bad development will have to be funded by taxpayers.  On the surface, it sounds like he's pushing for three years (which is bad enough), but there are loopholes within the wording that could place taxpayers at risk for decades.

spuwho

February 08, 2013, 08:53:21 AM
I was told that

"Clark is just doing this to make that new 3000 single family home development in his district cheaper for the master developer.  The fact is, that project will get built with our without the fee... Meanwhile his constituents are going to lose out on money that will go to pay for needed infrastructure improvements. 

They already waived one road that was required to be built in the initial PUD, how much more of a supplement does this project need?  The inventory of available single family homes certainly isn't in dire straights of running low any time soon. "

not a very good reason.

Stephen,

Is this the PUD going in off Beach and Kernan? The road they eliminated was the extension from Patton Park?

If it is, that one has had issues for years. First they wanted the bank to take over as the master developer, that got blocked, then they took out the street connector requirement, essentially dumping the traffic onto Beach and later Kernan. They said it wasn't "affordable" to require the streets in the plan.

If in fact its the same PUD, then it sounds like it is on shaky legs to begin with as they have been shaving back the civic requirements for several months. The developer has been one step ahead of bankruptcy.

If a mobility fee has that much impact to the profitability of a 500 home development, then it sounds like it shouldn't be built at all.

Mr. Clark should tell the developer/bank to sell it off.

.

stephendare

February 08, 2013, 09:32:37 AM
Personally I smell corruption.  I wonder if Clark is receiving some kind of kickbacks from developers.  Were any of the dev groups helping to fund his campaign? 

most elected officials get money from the development industry....which includes developers, realtors, contractors, engineers, architects, etc.

the answer jcjohnpaint, is 'most likely'.

cline

February 08, 2013, 09:52:26 AM
Clark is a shill for the development industry- that's how he got elected.  This bill comes as no surprise. 

Debbie Thompson

February 08, 2013, 10:50:28 AM
But we have to all stand up and defeat it.  Don't just post here.  Email the council, and as Ock said, Mr. Ford.  Show up in Council Chambers and speak out against the ordinance.  Before you get there, put together your talking points so you can speak succinctly and effectively. 

MJ posters who have transportation and urban planning experience, please help us with some talking points.  Ock, Lake, Doug, Mike.... 

The only way to defeat this awful bill if if opponents swamp the council with so many emails and "on the record" speeches at council, that they will be ashamed to pass it.

Email or call the media (Ken Amaro's team?) about your concerns over the special interests involved in this, and how it will affect Jacksonville's outlook vs. our peer cities if this bill passes. 

We have to make a bunch of noise in every venue we can.

JeffreyS

February 08, 2013, 10:58:21 AM
Feel Free to correct or add to the list of local organizations and media who have opposed the moratorium.

The TU
Folio
MetroJacksonville.com
The Resident Community News
RAP
Spar
SMPS
Samba

I believe the list is longer.

Jumpinjack

February 08, 2013, 11:48:04 AM
Feel Free to correct or add to the list of local organizations and media who have opposed the moratorium.

Northeast Florida Sierra Club
Jacksonville Bicycle and Pedestrian Advisory Committee
Some of the CPACs

Ocklawaha

February 08, 2013, 12:35:44 PM
Someone needs to convince the Mayor on it.  That's another important angle.

He is aware of it, and has been supplied with a host of successful peer city examples where fixed mass transit has spurred development booms. He supports mass transit and wants a world class system his only reservation being 'what is the best way to get there?'

Overall I am quite happy with the nearly immediate and personal response from our mayor as he considers the pros and cons of this proposal.

Keep the letters pouring in and don't be afraid to toss in your own research on the economic benefits of Mass Transit. Here is a list of cities where a simple google search will reveal mountains of pro mobility plan evidence:

Seattle - Streetcar, Light Rail, Commuter Rail, Corridor Rail, Trolley, BRT
Portland OR - Light Rail, Streetcar, Aerial Trams
Sacramento - Light Rail, Corridor Rail
San Francisco - Heavy Rail, Streetcar, Cable Car, Commuter Rail
San Jose - Light Rail, Commuter Rail, Corridor Rail
Los Angeles/Long Beach/OC - Heavy Rail, Light Rail, Commuter Rail, Corridor Rail, BRT
San Diego - Light Rail, Corridor Rail, Commuter Rail, Streetcar
Salt Lake City - Light Rail, Streetcar, Commuter Rail
Las Vegas - Monorail, BRT
Phoenix - Light Rail
Tucson - Streetcar
Albuquerque - Streetcar, Commuter Rail
Denver - Light Rail, BRT
Minneapolis - Light Rail, Commuter Rail
Little Rock - Streetcar
Dallas - Light Rail, Streetcar, Commuter Rail
Austin - Light Rail, BRT
Houston - Light Rail, BRT
St. Louis - Light Rail
Memphis - Streetcar
New Orleans - Streetcar
Cincinnati - Streetcar Under Construction
Nashville - Commuter Rail
Atlanta - Heavy Rail, Streetcar Under Construction
Tampa - Streetcar
Ft. Lauderdale - Streetcar in engineering phase
Buffalo - Light Rail, Corridor Rail
Pittsburgh - Light Rail, BRT
Norfolk - Light Rail
Charlotte - Light Rail, Corridor Rail

This list does not include every city or town to install rail or BRT, but it does hit on the cities with new projects and where economic benefits can be conclusively shown.




tufsu1

February 08, 2013, 01:12:01 PM
Feel Free to correct or add to the list of local organizations and media who have opposed the moratorium.

The TU
Folio
MetroJacksonville.com
The Resident Community News
RAP
Spar
SMPS
Samba

I believe the list is longer.

TransForm Jax

thelakelander

February 08, 2013, 01:38:11 PM
Are there any community oriented groups in favor of a moratorium?

sheclown

February 08, 2013, 01:59:25 PM
Feel Free to correct or add to the list of local organizations and media who have opposed the moratorium.

The TU
Folio
MetroJacksonville.com
The Resident Community News
RAP
Spar
SMPS
Samba

I believe the list is longer.

Preservation SOS
Sustainable Springfield (I believe)
Urban Core CPAC

peestandingup

February 08, 2013, 02:29:30 PM
I have to ask again where Downtown Brown is on all of this? Hiding in his office again??

fsujax

February 08, 2013, 02:55:38 PM
I wonder where the Civic Council or DIA fall on this issue?

Dog Walker

February 08, 2013, 03:53:32 PM
Feel Free to correct or add to the list of local organizations and media who have opposed the moratorium.

The TU
Folio
MetroJacksonville.com
The Resident Community News
RAP
Spar
SMPS
Samba

I believe the list is longer.

Preservation SOS
Sustainable Springfield (I believe)
Urban Core CPAC
City Beautiful Jacksonville

stephendare

February 08, 2013, 04:14:38 PM
isnt Clark Term limited?

stephendare

February 08, 2013, 04:18:10 PM
Who is he running against?

Quote
Jacksonville City Councilman Richard Clark has missed, was late to, or had to leave early from 18 city meetings since Jan. 1, records show. That's about 35 percent of all meetings he was scheduled to attend.

Other council members have averaged four over the same time frame.

Clark is also running for Congress. He says his meeting record was "not news" and it has to do with running his personal business and work he does with the National Federation of Independent Businesses.

"It's not campaign-related. We are very careful about that," he said. "I work hard for my constituents, and do the best I can."

Clark was calling as he traveled back from Washington D.C. He missed two city meetings Monday, and another Tuesday — of the Finance Committee, which he chairs — to attend National Federation of Independent Businesses's national conference. He is chairman of the group's Florida leadership council.

"A lot of that has to do with helping businesses, which is good for Jacksonville," he said.

Clark returned in time to attend a St. Augustine fundraiser headlined by Jaguars executive Mark Lamping.

On April 18, the Times-Union reported at least four examples of Clark campaigning during city meetings he was supposed to attend, including a fundraising trip to South Florida. Clark posted the campaign events on his Twitter account.

At the time, Clark admitted he missed the meetings to campaign but said "it is not happening a lot. I'm making a forced effort not to do it." He has missed six meetings since that story.

City Council members have to file paperwork when they miss, are late for, or have to leave a city meeting early. The only other member in double digits was Kim Daniels, who missed 15 meetings.

Clark said the number can be misleading.

"I am very careful," he said. "If I even think I am going to be late, I file. On some of those I think I was there on time."

He has missed six Transportation, Energy and Utilities Committee meetings, the most of any committee. Some handled very little city business, including meetings that lasted just 18, 29, and 34 minutes. Clark also missed three Finance Committee and three City Council meetings.

Clark owns Supreme Janitorial, which he says contributes to his tight schedule.

"I still have a business to run," he said.

Clark is running for the newly drawn congressional seat that includes all of St. Johns and Flagler counties and parts of Putnam and Volusia counties.

Read more at Jacksonville.com: http://jacksonville.com/news/metro/2012-05-15/story/richard-clark-has-worst-jacksonville-city-council-meeting-attendance#ixzz2KLQeKFjP

thelakelander

February 08, 2013, 04:21:55 PM
He lost.

stephendare

February 08, 2013, 04:22:51 PM
did he?
Who won?

JeffreyS

February 08, 2013, 04:23:48 PM
Did he attend the last Council vote on the Moratorium? Perhaps he did not see the outpouring of disgust by the community.

stephendare

February 08, 2013, 04:24:28 PM
https://www.facebook.com/RepDeSantis

Ah,  Ron DeSantis.  An extremely well educated ultra conservative republican.

Ocklawaha

February 08, 2013, 05:57:28 PM
I have to ask again where Downtown Brown is on all of this? Hiding in his office again??

I have been in touch with him and his response was both immediate and thoughtful, he would like to hear from more of us with reasons why there should be no moratorium.  He is without a doubt hearing loudly from the developers.

What I don't get is why our developers are even more brain dead then our Council has been.  All across the nation every rail project that has happened has boosted land values, and created a development frenzy. Why would any developer think Jacksonville would be any different?  The mobility plan plays into the wise developers hand and greatly increases his chances for profit.

Ocklawaha

February 08, 2013, 06:00:08 PM
MEANWHILE / TALKING POINT:

The LA Streetcar released the findings from its economic impact report, and the results are excellent.  The study by AECOM projects the 4.75 mile streetcar loop will induce $1.1 billion in economic development to Downtown LA by 2035, including 2,100 permanent jobs, 2,600 new housing units, $24.5 million in annual spending, $1.9 million in annual city revenue, and 7,200 construction jobs (versus a baseline growth alternative). 

Transit is:
A single powerful investment in the community that:
Reinforces healthy patterns
Revitalizes by-passed properties
Redirects new development patterns

TOD is not a fad
Increasing national acceptance
Improving access to capital
Changing development patterns
Enhancing mobility and quality of life
FLORIDA is one of the top 10 locations for new TOD
Transit offers a 'new' form of access to development
It is not limited to development around the stations
Development is sustainable, compact, mixed use, walkable
All transit modes do NOT create the same land use results
SOURCE: NCPPP Partnership in Transportation

Public Sector:
Invests in fixed route mass transit
Land assemblage
Mobility Plan, codes, incentives, streamlined permitting

Private Sector Positive Response:
Development follows the tracks
Development surrounds the stations
SOURCE: NCPPP Partnership in Transportation

"At least 1/4 of all households in the next 20 years, 14.6 million households will be looking for housing within one quarter mile of a mass transit station. There will be the potential to more then double the amount of housing in transit zones."
SOURCE: Hidden in Plain Sight/Reconnecting America

Modal Land Use and Development Characteristics:

Bus Rapid Transit:
Generally low land use effects
Station spacing 1/2 to 2 miles
Speed not to exceed 1.35x automobile trip time
Modest customer base for retail support
Nominal residential and office uses
Longer term development period

Commuter Rail:
Generally low land use effects
Station spacing 2 to 5 miles
Modest customer base for retail support
Nominal residential and office uses
Longer term development period

Light Rail Transit:
High land use effects
Frequency, type and scale of service is land use supportive
LRT serves as 'new' access to development
Principal impact 1/4 mile (125 acres) to 1/2 mile (500 acres) radius
Compact, mixed use, walkable results

Streetcar:
High to very high land use effects
Frequency, type and scale of service is highly land use supportive
Development follows streetcar lines
Redevelopment catalyst
Principal impact 3 blocks on either side of streetcar line
Compact, walkable, mixed use pedestrian results
SOURCE: NCPPP Partnership in Transportation

MORATORIUM:
Poor land use practices
3 more years of mediocrity
Low transit usage
Unsustainable development patterns
Autocentric development designs
Large surface parking lots and parking garages
Dangerous pedestrian and bicycle environment





Charles Hunter

February 08, 2013, 06:25:23 PM
isnt Clark Term limited?
Yes, from the Council webpage:
Quote
In 2005 Richard was elected to the City Council representing District 3.  He was re-elected in 2007, and was voted Council Vice-President for the 2008/2009 term. In June 2009 Richard's council responsibilities increased as he proudly served the City of Jacksonville as Council President for the 2009/2010 term.

thelakelander

February 08, 2013, 07:03:08 PM
Doug Skiles' presentation from last fall if full of basic talking points about the value in not having a mobility plan and fee moratorium:

slide show here: http://www.metrojacksonville.com/article/2012-oct-the-mobility-plan-a-vision-for-jacksonville

Some basic talking points:

1. An avenue to create and fund safer streets and healthier neighborhoods.

2. The mobility fee fixes the broken concurrency system that had been in place since the 1980s.

3. It integrates land use policy with transportation infrastructure in a fiscally sustainable manner.

4. It encourages quality growth and redevelopment.

5. Provides viable funding for future transportation, key for jobs and downtown.

6. The Mobility Plan is not a fee increase.  It is actually a fee reduction in comparison with the decades old concurrency system it replaced.

7. Statistical data indicates there was no correlation between fees, building permits or jobs.

8. The mobility fee isn't intended to kill development.  Instead, when properly applied, it guides development in a pattern to where it is fiscally sustainable for the City of Jacksonville.

9.  The intention and purpose of the mobility fee aligns with the recent JAX 2025 survey results.

spuwho

February 08, 2013, 08:23:26 PM
Who is calling WLA?  They have a lot of energy and moxie! ;)

tufsu1

February 08, 2013, 08:57:12 PM
note of caution - while the mobility plan/fee funds streetcar in the urban core, this is not an issue that most Council members care about....in fact, I would argue that using it as a talking point could do more harm than good

sheclown

February 08, 2013, 09:14:55 PM
note of caution - while the mobility plan/fee funds streetcar in the urban core, this is not an issue that most Council members care about....in fact, I would argue that using it as a talking point could do more harm than good

Sad, but true. 

Ocklawaha

February 08, 2013, 09:39:37 PM
note of caution - while the mobility plan/fee funds streetcar in the urban core, this is not an issue that most Council members care about....in fact, I would argue that using it as a talking point could do more harm than good

There is a twilight zone between culpable ignorance and blatant pandering to special interests.

I would argue that it's not just streetcar, it's all mobility, all urban growth, all TOD, all bus transit, all bicyclists, all pedestrians... take your pick and say something!

JeffreyS

February 08, 2013, 09:57:29 PM
Smart growth as a function of cost of infrastructure will resonate.

stephendare

February 09, 2013, 11:40:22 AM
note of caution - while the mobility plan/fee funds streetcar in the urban core, this is not an issue that most Council members care about....in fact, I would argue that using it as a talking point could do more harm than good

Not to nitpick, but this type of concern trolling is what previous 'smart' planners did for 25 years.  All it did was mute the public desire and will and provided no pushback or for that matter, push forward.

We can't always pretend that it is rude or untoward to ask for or demand what in all reality needs to be done.

thelakelander

February 09, 2013, 01:26:47 PM
My advice would be if you're looking for talking points, stick with the basics (see quote below) but don't hesitate to also elaborate on parts of the plan you personally deem as most important to you and your community.  For Ock, that's obviously the fact that the mobility fee generates funds for mass transit.  For someone else, it could be that it generates funds for other forms of mobility or limits the proliferation of fiscally unsustainable and bad development.

Doug Skiles' presentation from last fall if full of basic talking points about the value in not having a mobility plan and fee moratorium:

slide show here: http://www.metrojacksonville.com/article/2012-oct-the-mobility-plan-a-vision-for-jacksonville

Some basic talking points:

1. An avenue to create and fund safer streets and healthier neighborhoods.

2. The mobility fee fixes the broken concurrency system that had been in place since the 1980s.

3. It integrates land use policy with transportation infrastructure in a fiscally sustainable manner.

4. It encourages quality growth and redevelopment.

5. Provides viable funding for future transportation, key for jobs and downtown.

6. The Mobility Plan is not a fee increase.  It is actually a fee reduction in comparison with the decades old concurrency system it replaced.

7. Statistical data indicates there was no correlation between fees, building permits or jobs.

8. The mobility fee isn't intended to kill development.  Instead, when properly applied, it guides development in a pattern to where it is fiscally sustainable for the City of Jacksonville.

9.  The intention and purpose of the mobility fee aligns with the recent JAX 2025 survey results.

tufsu1

February 10, 2013, 05:30:56 PM
note of caution - while the mobility plan/fee funds streetcar in the urban core, this is not an issue that most Council members care about....in fact, I would argue that using it as a talking point could do more harm than good

Not to nitpick, but this type of concern trolling is what previous 'smart' planners did for 25 years.  All it did was mute the public desire and will and provided no pushback or for that matter, push forward.

are you sure that a majority (or even a large %) of the public wants streetcars? 

If we're expressing the public desire, stick to making growth pay for itself...and maybe encouraging growth in the areas where the City can best accomodate growth

stephendare

February 10, 2013, 08:17:08 PM
note of caution - while the mobility plan/fee funds streetcar in the urban core, this is not an issue that most Council members care about....in fact, I would argue that using it as a talking point could do more harm than good

Not to nitpick, but this type of concern trolling is what previous 'smart' planners did for 25 years.  All it did was mute the public desire and will and provided no pushback or for that matter, push forward.

are you sure that a majority (or even a large %) of the public wants streetcars? 

If we're expressing the public desire, stick to making growth pay for itself...and maybe encouraging growth in the areas where the City can best accomodate growth

Well you are free to choose your own way and advocate the manner in which you see fit.  But fortune favors the bold, and good planning hasnt had a bold voice.

The end result is what we have today.

strider

February 11, 2013, 08:38:29 AM
I have to tell you, I don't really care that much if there is a street car or not.  What I do care about is that rubber wheeled transit is too easily changed to ever promot any kind of real development.  I care that there are many people in the Urban Core that need public transportation and need it to be well done.  I mostly care about the fact that fixed rail spurs development and lots of it. 

Basically, it makes no difference if the public wants the actual street car, but I can tell you that just about everyone wants the development it brings.  Except perhaps some of city council and their suburban developer buddies.

jcjohnpaint

February 11, 2013, 08:41:32 AM
Not to mention there is absolute proof that fixed transit spurs economic development.  There is absolute no proof that adapting the mobility fee hurts development.  Actually the proof seems to be just the opposite. 

Debbie Thompson

February 11, 2013, 11:12:04 AM
After its Feb. 12 introduction, the bill will be open to public hearing at the Feb. 26 council meeting. Reingold said that it could possibly go to committee on March 4 and 5 and then go up for vote as early as March 12.

Stand up and be heard at all these meetings.  Attend 2/12 and see if we can't defeat it before it gets off the ground.  If not, attend the others and speak out strongly to defeat this moratorium bill.

Email the council members.  You can bet the developers and special interests are doing it.  And they will be at the council meetings too.  We need to be there, and we need to outnumber them big time. Only by standing together can we defeat this.

JeffreyS

February 11, 2013, 12:39:48 PM
Agree Debbie

An additional political point to consider is that with Bill Killingsworth becoming the top community planner for the state he will likely be very motivated to see his award winning Mobility fee plan succeed in Jacksonville.  This might provide a nice bit of leverage when competing for state resources with Miami, Tampa and Orlando.  Rejecting the plan could have the opposite political effect particularly when or Mayor is the one who sent Bill packing.

tufsu1

February 11, 2013, 01:26:58 PM
^ unfortunately, the top community planner in the state has very little say in how resources are doled out in Florida.

stephendare

February 11, 2013, 01:31:05 PM
^ unfortunately, the top community planner in the state has very little say in how resources are doled out in Florida.

But he does have final approval of any plans submitted to the state by the cities, so still a powerful man.

jaxlore

February 11, 2013, 01:38:11 PM
Just sent my e-mail now. What a waste, I swear every day is another dissapointment in this city council.

Jumpinjack

February 11, 2013, 01:58:41 PM
We sent our emails and to mayor too. Look for us at the meeting. Do we have to wait until the end or when bill is introduced.

sheclown

February 11, 2013, 08:36:09 PM
Some of us are going early tomorrow.  Try to sit with a group of pro-Mobility folks.  Also, fill out a card stating your position.  If you choose not to speak when called on, you can pass.

See you tomorrow at 5:00 at city hall!  (And if you can't make it, EMAIL).

tufsu1

February 11, 2013, 10:46:35 PM
^ folks can speak on mobility fees during general comment period....official public comment on the specific bill won't be allowed until a future council meeting.

Debbie Thompson

February 12, 2013, 08:42:13 AM
Remember, it has been established this could be an "emergency" vote where later public comment never happens.  An emergency vote can be taken tonight.  Don't wait, thinking you will have another chance at comment.  You may not.  This is important.  Make the city council meeting tonight if at all possible.  If you can't make it, send your emails as soon as you can this morning so there will be time for it to be read.

fsujax

February 12, 2013, 08:49:37 AM
We need as many there as possible. Please come if you can. Call or email your Councilmembers especially if you are represented by Gaffney, Daniels or Guilliford.

sheclown

February 12, 2013, 08:56:18 AM
http://jacksonville.com/business/2011-05-04/story/increase-vacant-homes-first-coast

Increase in vacant homes on the First Coast
Census finds a 77 percent gain in vacant housing over its 2000 survey.
Posted: May 4, 2011 - 8:45pm

Read more at Jacksonville.com: http://jacksonville.com/business/2011-05-04/story/increase-vacant-homes-first-coast#ixzz2Kh1v5AvB

Ocklawaha

February 12, 2013, 10:25:32 AM
Where's Noone? Hey John, do you think its possible to keelhaul a councilman from a kayak?

This is it boys and girls, tonight we simply MUST stand up and protest. BE THERE!

Spence

February 12, 2013, 11:03:48 AM
Could NOT locate the START NEW TOPIC,
truly this link to the list of ALL Council Persons' contact info NEEDS to be a permanent "sticky" on EVERY mj page.
very flustered.
the reskinning/remapping/coding/design cannot happen soon enough.

http://www.coj.net/city-council/city-council-members.aspx

Craft your email in opposition to the Moratorium and Clark's sponsorship of previously sunsetted Moratorium on the Mobility Fee.

Ennis, Ock, and so many others here have given plenty of highly efficient language to simply copy [CONTROL key + C simultaneously]  and paste into your email newly composed: [CONTROL + V simultaneously]

C'mon folks let's use our hot little fast keys and get our Council Members emails tipping in the correct direction, ours!

fsujax

February 12, 2013, 11:13:22 AM
I sent my email. I will be there tonight.

tufsu1

February 12, 2013, 11:16:26 AM
Remember, it has been established this could be an "emergency" vote where later public comment never happens.  An emergency vote can be taken tonight.  Don't wait, thinking you will have another chance at comment.  You may not.  This is important.  Make the city council meeting tonight if at all possible.  If you can't make it, send your emails as soon as you can this morning so there will be time for it to be read.

Clark has not filed this as an "emergency" bill....that is the HRC bill filed by Schellenberg

of course, I guess Clark could change his mind...but my understanding is that Council President Bishop will not entertain that motion.

Debbie Thompson

February 12, 2013, 12:40:02 PM
Still need to be there and make ourselves heard, agreed?

stephendare

February 12, 2013, 12:44:00 PM
Still need to be there and make ourselves heard, agreed?

definitely!

Bridges

February 12, 2013, 11:03:15 PM
Glad councilman Clark could take the time out of his busy schedule to miss another meeting.

Great turn out tonight.  The bikers really rallied for that one.  Too bad Clark didn't see it.   I had to be one of the last to talk, my eyes were about to roll out of my head with the Ahmad talk. 

Keep fighting.

Ocklawaha

February 12, 2013, 11:22:46 PM
The star of the show was a little 6 +/- year old boy who took the mike and told us how he likes to ride his bike. He rides 13 miles every Saturday (like my grandson in OK) and he says we need better paths and safer streets! Did anyone catch his name? I'd like to credit him with the statement. BRAVO!

Bill Gulliford wins the 'Flying Fickle Finger of Fate Award' for tonights performance when after a bicyclist pled the case for better infrastructure he said, "The year we didn't collect the fees amounted to only $3 million dollars, you can't do anything with that, it would take 30 years! You'd have to fund a project like that from many sources not just the mobility plan money." Actually made Don Redman sound like a physics professor.

This totally threw me off my game as I had to change everything to address yet another case of culpable ignorance. "Memphis built some streetcar lines for $3 million dollars a mile, and most new streetcar projects have been in the 2-3 mile range. Those investments have returned BILLIONS in new development." I went down the list of cities and gave them the dollar amounts spurred by fixed mass transit in each, then realized the whole council with the exception of one or two was asleep.

"WE HAVE MET THE ENEMY AND THEY ARE US!"

Tacachale

February 12, 2013, 11:34:15 PM
If it's the same kid I'm thinking of his name is Hollis. I'm told his dad had wanted to bow out to grab a bite, but Hollis wouldn't go until he'd had his chance to speak to the council.

Future Mayor of Jacksonville, should we be so fortunate.

thelakelander

February 12, 2013, 11:39:46 PM
You can do a lot with $3 mill a year, especially if used for leverage for matching grants. Nevertheless, you can't assume what took place last year will be consistent in the future. The market is already improving, so it will most likely be more this year than it was last. Also, it still appears that most are missing the main purpose of the plan and fee. It guides the design and pattern of development in a way to where it actually begins to pay for itself. It creates a situation where there becomes nodes within the city where people could actually walk to get to a mix of uses within various sections of town. That doesn't cost millions to achieve but it saves taxpayers millions through creating an avenue where we don't subsidize development that doesn't pay for itself.

tufsu1

February 12, 2013, 11:54:07 PM
Glad councilman Clark could take the time out of his busy schedule to miss another meeting.

agreed...the penalty for not showing up for his bill's first reading is that the bill should be thrown out

JeffreyS

February 13, 2013, 12:09:00 AM
You can do a lot with $3 mill a year, especially if used for leverage for matching grants. Nevertheless, you can't assume what took place last year will be consistent in the future. The market is already improving, so it will most likely be more this year than it was last. Also, it still appears that most are missing the main purpose of the plan and fee. It guides the design and pattern of development in a way to where it actually begins to pay for itself. It creates a situation where there becomes nodes within the city where people could actually walk to get to a mix of uses within various sections of town. That doesn't cost millions to achieve but it saves taxpayers millions through creating an avenue where we don't subsidize development that doesn't pay for itself.

Lake you have likely just crafted the basic text of my next round of emails to the council.

Glad councilman Clark could take the time out of his busy schedule to miss another meeting.

agreed...the penalty for not showing up for his bill's first reading is that the bill should be thrown out

Agreed and a snarky remark about this will also be in my emails.

Ocklawaha

February 13, 2013, 12:15:54 AM
Yes that was it.

THE HONOR GOES TO HOLLIS!

I don't know why I forgot it, Hollis is also the name of a tiny town in SW Oklahoma that came up and kicked our A***s every year when my girls we're in high school in OK.

Ocklawaha

February 13, 2013, 12:19:00 AM
You can do a lot with $3 mill a year, especially if used for leverage for matching grants. Nevertheless, you can't assume what took place last year will be consistent in the future. The market is already improving, so it will most likely be more this year than it was last. Also, it still appears that most are missing the main purpose of the plan and fee. It guides the design and pattern of development in a way to where it actually begins to pay for itself. It creates a situation where there becomes nodes within the city where people could actually walk to get to a mix of uses within various sections of town. That doesn't cost millions to achieve but it saves taxpayers millions through creating an avenue where we don't subsidize development that doesn't pay for itself.

Lake, this makes sense to those of us on MJ, but after tonight, with a couple of exceptions the whole idea shoots right over and past their heads. I think we can identify who rode the short bus in Jacksonville, they might understand if you used finger paints.

ricker

February 13, 2013, 05:47:58 AM
You can do a lot with $3 mill a year, especially if used for leverage for matching grants. Nevertheless, you can't assume what took place last year will be consistent in the future. The market is already improving, so it will most likely be more this year than it was last. Also, it still appears that most are missing the main purpose of the plan and fee. It guides the design and pattern of development in a way to where it actually begins to pay for itself. It creates a situation where there becomes nodes within the city where people could actually walk to get to a mix of uses within various sections of town. That doesn't cost millions to achieve but it saves taxpayers millions through creating an avenue where we don't subsidize development that doesn't pay for itself.

so efficiently stated!
Thank you, Mr.Davis!
I'm surprised that I received any good positive responses from any recipients of my tangenty clipped rant!

I will be more direct!

sheclown

February 13, 2013, 07:43:51 AM
Last night was surreal. 

It began with a resolution to honor Bill Killingsworth where we watch all councilmen lavish kudos on him before rolling up their sleeves in an attempt to dismantle his work.

Of course, the hypocrisy around Bill Killingsworth's mobility plan pales in comparison to the Human Rights debacle.   In that regard, the only honest one (many are still claiming this is about the number of people on the commission) is Kimberly Daniels who cries FOUL BALL because no one came to her defense when she was running for council.  She believes her civil rights were violated because she had been a prostitute and that was held against her. 

Oof-da.. 

Hypocrisy lead by ignorance and broadcast live.

The only bright spot last night was CM Brown who introduced a bill which says the city ought to check out the existing buildings before building something new.  Brown had to firmly stand his ground, but the ordinance passed.

Debbie Thompson

February 13, 2013, 08:17:24 AM
Since the council tuned out at some point, try making your points with emails.  Short, concise, with quick bullet points so they'll be read.  Also, the bill will come up again at the next council meeting on the 26th, right? and we can speak to the specific ordinance.  Keep doing your research and making your points.

We stayed last night until about 8:00, and I was struck that of everyone who stood up to speak on the mobility fee moratorium NOT ONE was in favor of it.  Even those who knew it wouldn't solve everything, knew it was a start.  While the suburban developers weren't there last night, they are lobbying the council, you can be sure, so keep up the public pressure.

tufsu1

February 13, 2013, 08:21:32 AM
The only bright spot last night was CM Brown who introduced a bill which says the city ought to check out the existing buildings before building something new.  Brown had to firmly stand his ground, but the ordinance passed.

I had left already...but my understanding is that bill did not pass

Debbie Thompson

February 13, 2013, 08:32:17 AM
I think it passed with the finance amendment, but not the floor amendment.  CM Brown said he would withdraw the floor amendment and go with the finance amendment if that would help.

Dog Walker

February 13, 2013, 04:51:25 PM
Councilman Jim Love will vote against the moratorium.

If_I_Loved_you

February 13, 2013, 05:15:19 PM
Councilman Jim Love will vote against the moratorium.
Good  :D

sheclown

February 14, 2013, 08:24:09 AM
http://www.news4jax.com/news/Bicyclists-upset-about-plan-to-stop-mobility-fee/-/475880/18534722/-/format/rss_2.0/-/n2c0d3/-/index.html

The moratorium would spur development downtown?


Quote
JACKSONVILLE, Fla. -

A plan to stop collecting a fee has some local bicyclists crying foul.

At Tuesday night's City Council meeting, a bill was introduced that would allow developers to stop paying a special fee for bike lanes and other projects.

Bicyclists parked their bikes in front of City Hall during the meeting in an effort to show council members how important they say funding alternative transportation is.

To spur more development, the city is not requiring builders to pay the special fee, and the plan is to extend that for three more years.

Debbie Thompson

February 14, 2013, 08:34:55 AM
Well, technically, he didn't say downtown.  LOL  And a moratorium certainly helps the kind of development we don't need...more gas guzzling, strip mall wasteland, suburban sprawl on every empty plot of land in the county.  Instead of common sense infill and public transit projects in central Jacksonville, where they are needed.  If you build it, they will come.  :-)

"He has said in the past the reason for this is to spur development."

tufsu1

February 14, 2013, 09:51:10 AM
http://www.news4jax.com/news/Bicyclists-upset-about-plan-to-stop-mobility-fee/-/475880/18534722/-/format/rss_2.0/-/n2c0d3/-/index.html

The moratorium would spur development downtown?


This piece makes it sound like the fee is to pay for bike lanes and other alternative transportation….that won’t garner overwhelming public support….explaining it as a fee to mitigate impacts caused by new development, on the other hand, would.

Debbie Thompson

February 14, 2013, 10:15:30 AM
There was huge turnout by the bike clubs, which was GREAT, but which of course focused on bike and pedestrian issues.  In my comments, I mentioned public transit, light rail and bus lines.  But if we want to get a more diverse message across, then we have to have a more diverse turnout of people, with more diverse comments.

I will also add that by the time the first general public comments session came up, it was almost 7:30, and 2-1/2 hours into the city council meeting.  So some of the people who intended to speak about other aspects perhaps had to leave. 

I believe it will be in committee, so try to attend committee meetings if you can.  If you can't, email the city council with diverse comments.  At the meeting on 2/26, I believe it will be a reading of the bill, and if I'm not mistaken, public comments will be permitted specifically on the bill.  What you say at council meetings gets read into the record. 

I love that the bike clubs turned out in full force, but I do agree we need others who can speak on different various aspects of the 2030 Mobility Plan and fee to come out next time too.  That said, had the bike clubs not turned out and hung in there until public comments, there would not have been as many speaking against the moratorium as there was.  So let's not knock it.  Just show up with more diverse comments going forward.  :-)

dougskiles

February 14, 2013, 10:45:41 AM
DIA is going to have a special meeting to discuss the moratorium and decide whether or not to express an opinion.  It will likely be mid-next week.

You can read about some of the discussion in Ashley Kritzer's business journal blog:

http://www.bizjournals.com/jacksonville/news/2013/02/13/mobility-fee-moratorium-could-hurt.html

Jumpinjack

February 14, 2013, 10:49:14 AM
Right you are. Also, our mobility plan is not just for the urban core folks. It is for each part of Jacksonville with goals proposed  by the community residents themselves. If we only make it about one part of town, we risk losing Council members who could care less about our urban centers.
It's also about long-term money savings for a city which has been forced to provide more and more services, infrastructure, schools, police etc, further and further away from existing services and infrastructure. 

stephendare

February 14, 2013, 11:33:56 AM
http://www.news4jax.com/news/Bicyclists-upset-about-plan-to-stop-mobility-fee/-/475880/18534722/-/format/rss_2.0/-/n2c0d3/-/index.html

The moratorium would spur development downtown?


This piece makes it sound like the fee is to pay for bike lanes and other alternative transportation….that won’t garner overwhelming public support….explaining it as a fee to mitigate impacts caused by new development, on the other hand, would.

The cyclists are some of the biggest advocates of good planning everywhere around the country, and even though hes a jerk, there is an avid bicyclist on the council who is likely to see the sense in funding improvements from their point of view.

There are a million great reasons to support the mobility plan, the concerns of the bikers are among them,  Im with Debbie.  The more, the merrier.

Ocklawaha

February 14, 2013, 12:48:27 PM
Just posted to the Jacksonville Business Journal, the following excerpted story.

Quote
The South Florida Experience:

Research doesn’t support the claim waiving impact fees spurs construction and the economy, Cape Coral Mayor John Sullivan and Councilman Chris Chulakes-Leetz said.

As for the city’s 2011 attempt to attract businesses by temporarily suspending road impact fees for businesses moving into existing buildings, Sullivan said it was a bust.

“We got one business in,” Sullivan said. “Everybody didn’t break their back to get in here because of that.”.

Smelling blood:

Should Lee County, suspend fees Tuesday, Commissioner Frank Mann said he suspects construction industry lobbyists will turn to city officials for the same.

“I would say, almost certainly, the building industry would believe they’re smelling blood and they would push it as hard as they could,” Mann said.

Mann said impact fees place burden for building new roads, parks and schools where it belongs: new residents and new businesses.

County officials estimate losing $10.4 million for new roads, schools, parks and emergency services, if a suspension lasts two years. That's $10.5 million which will have to come from the taxpayers pocket while giving big business a free ride.

In Tallahassee, lawmakers are considering a statewide moratorium on impact fees that would last for three years. The bill also would stop a majority from instituting a mobility fee. Lee County's Local Planning Agency and Sustainability Committee recommended examining mobility fees as a means to replace road impact fess.

Mobility fees would let commissioners expedite project approvals in urban areas that have public amenities by putting a lower price tag on them, while builders who want to erect structures in rural areas with few amenities would pay higher rates.

The mobility charges also give officials spending leeway, allowing them to build bicycle lanes and sidewalks, fixed-route mass transit or buy buses. Road impact fees must be spent on adding or expanding roads.

Without impact fees, the quality of life for Lee County residents enjoy will decline, Mann said. “Schools are going to suffer, roads will suffer. You can’t do this without really hurting our infrastructure needs.”.

Pendergrass, however, said the argument a two-year moratorium would put the county at disadvantage is false. Road projects, he noted, are largely funded with gas taxes. Some of the planned projects also call for property taxes, according to county documents.

“Next year you’re going to take enough impact fees to build one mile of road,” he said. “They’re using that to scare people and the bad thing is they’re putting it out there and people are believing it.”.

Leonardo, however, predicts impact fees will remain in place. “My guess is the county will not discontinue them.”.

SOURCE: http://www.news-press.com/article/20130210/NEWS01/302100045

thelakelander

February 14, 2013, 01:30:04 PM
^Great talking points and quotes in the Lee County story.  Thanks for posting.  Btw, it's amazing reading political leader's quotes about what impact fees and mobility fees won't fund.  I guess, when it's not your personal $10.4 million being spent, it's okay to give it to the developer to put in his pocket. $10.4 million may buy you one mile of a highway, but it can get you a lot when you start looking at different mobility needs. Here's what $10.4 million will get you:

- 41 miles of new 12' wide multi-use paths. Ever wonder what that would do in terms of improving bike/ped death rates, Sherlock?

- 86 miles of new 5' wide sidewalks. That's more than enough to connect pedestrians with those isolated handicapped bus pads being built on Philips that every transportation related agency around here couldn't find the dollars to do.

- 13 miles of milling and resurfacing 4-lane undivided urban core arterials into 3-lane context sensitive streets with new bicycle lanes added.

As for Councilman Gulliford's comments the other night about what $3 million can't do for Jax, this is what it can deliver:

- 12 miles of new 12' wide multi-use paths where sufficient ROW already exists. Southside Boulevard anyone?

- 25 miles of new 5' wide sidewalks on streets that currently lack this type of infrastructure. I heard Philips and Baymeadows could use a few.

- 3.61 miles of milling and resurfacing streets to make them context sensitive. Edgewood Avenue (Murray Hill), Kings Road (New Town/Durkeeville), Park Street (Brooklyn), perhaps?

IMO, that alone can significantly improve mobility in our city and that's funds lost in one year of a recession.  Imagine the type of money we'll be burning with Clark's 3-year moratorium and what it could have been used for.  I still can't believe we have a council willing to possibly approve a money losing subsidy like this without basing their decisions on the easily accessible hard statistical data out there. When you start looking at real numbers and statistics, it's amazing what you could possibly accomplish with the "insignificant" amount of money Clark desires taxpayers to give way.  Btw, I haven't even gotten into the real world of what $3 million could leverage the city in terms of various matching grants, health and livability programs available out there.

Feel free to question my numbers and do a few general estimates yourself.  Here's a link to FDOT's January 2013 general transportation cost estimates/mile: ftp://ftp.dot.state.fl.us/LTS/CO/Estimates/CPM/summary.pdf

tufsu1

February 14, 2013, 02:12:28 PM
great data Lake!

Ocklawaha

February 14, 2013, 03:55:57 PM
The stellar moment of the Council meeting was made in response to a Bike Jax(?) gentleman who pointed out our terrible bike and pedestrian infrastructure and the fact that we missed out on $3,000,000 worth of improvements that could have been collected in Mobility Fees.

Jacksonville City Councilman Bill Gulliford, with Bill Bishop apparently nodding in approval questioned if we could really do anything with just $3 Million. "$3 Million isn't enough to do any of the infrastructure improvements your talking about, so it really isn't going to make much difference. You'll have to add many times that amount and you are going to have to find it someplace else, in property taxes, license fees, sales tax... Somewhere."

So using that as a baseline here is what could be done with $3 Million:

12.5 miles of new 12' wide, grade separated, bike trail, more then enough to build a new trail system from:
San Marco to St. Johns Town Center
or from:
Riverside to Orange Park Mall
or from:
Downtown (Rosa Parks)  to the Jacksonville-Baldwin Rail Trail head at Imeson Road, via - Hogan/Water/Park/Post/Normandy/Lane/Commonwealth/Imeson
or from:
Maxwell House through Springfield to Gateway Mall via "The Electric 7 Streetcar Route" and on to JIA via Lem Turner Road   (For details about 'The Electric 7 Streetcar' see:  http://www.metrojacksonville.com/article/2012-aug-the-electric-7-a-streetcar-proposal-on-a-shoestring )

OR
 
That $3 Million could also buy us enough 5' wide x 4" deep sidewalk to stretch from Downtown Jacksonville to St. Augustine.
or from:
The Jacksonville-Baldwin Rail Trail head on Imeson Road to Ponte Vedra Beach via downtown, with enough left over to add the sidewalk on one side of Philips all the way to the St. Johns County Line.

OR

Build a streetcar line using the Kenosha model from Jacksonville Terminal (Prime Osborn) to Bay and Newnan.
or:
Build 'The Electric 7 Streetcar' from Beaver Street through Springfield and East Jacksonville to 8Th Street.

OR

Buy 5 new hybrid-electric buses for downtown transit shuttles
Or even:
Buy 12 standard rear engine, small diesel buses for lighter suburban routes

Mr. Councilman, you were right, you couldn't do hardly anything - in fact you could do a fantastic amount of things. Infrastructure improvements would make a huge contribution toward our growth into the big leagues of world cities.  And everyone should remember that based on national averages, if we spent that $3 Million on streetcar we would see a corresponding $15 Million dollar private investment (new residential, offices, retail, etc) from the private sector.

$3 MILLION INDEED! Just do the right thing and kill this horrible proposal.

sheclown

February 14, 2013, 05:43:26 PM
Lake & Ock

Love the concrete examples -- this is what we need.

Ralph W

February 14, 2013, 11:38:00 PM
If these examples of what a certain amount of money could buy are readily apparent to various experienced planners and freely published without unnecessary public money expenditures for outside consultant studies why do our representatives spout clearly uninformed conclusions. Is there a political agenda that should be nipped in the bud?

Debbie Thompson

February 15, 2013, 08:35:00 AM
They haven't done the research Ock and Lake have.  Ock and Lake, will you be at the council meeting on 2/26 to present these talking points?  These are great examples, and as you said, are projects that could have been done with actual dollars lost during the current moratorium, not even including any grants that may be available.  Think of what could have been done by adding grant money!

L.P. Hovercraft

February 15, 2013, 10:32:20 AM
The stellar moment of the Council meeting was made in response to a Bike Jax(?) gentleman who pointed out our terrible bike and pedestrian infrastructure and the fact that we missed out on $3,000,000 worth of improvements that could have been collected in Mobility Fees.

Jacksonville City Councilman Bill Gulliford, with Bill Bishop apparently nodding in approval questioned if we could really do anything with just $3 Million. "$3 Million isn't enough to do any of the infrastructure improvements your talking about, so it really isn't going to make much difference. You'll have to add many times that amount and you are going to have to find it someplace else, in property taxes, license fees, sales tax... Somewhere."

So using that as a baseline here is what could be done with $3 million:
(Several good examples of what $3 mil. can buy snipped...)

Ock, you should really send this post verbatim to the Times-Union, Folio Weekly, Ken Amaro, First Coast News I-Team, etc. 
These yahoos on city council deserve a good old fashioned public shaming (I WAS going to say tar and feathering) for pooh-poohing a "measly" $3 million in potential mobility fees that could be used to really improve the city.

urbaknight

February 15, 2013, 04:41:16 PM
I think the suburban developers, car dealerships, gas station owners, (such as Payton) auto insurance companies and road builders all have an intrest in the moratorium passing.

They want more people driving because it's good for "their bottom line." They don't care about bicyclists and pedestrians, hell they'd rather not have any public transit or sidewalks at all!

I believe it's because they aren't paying out the hundreds that it costs to have a car. And since drivers pay these auto oriented expenses, they're allowed to hit and kill bicyclists and pedestrians without real fear of any kind on penalty. You hardly ever hear about a driver being charged, coupled with the fact that the state wants to not only do away with red light cameras, but they want to go further and make them illegal! our leaders ought to be charged with reckless endangerment, tossed out of office and even jailed if either measure passes!

Ocklawaha

February 15, 2013, 06:40:55 PM
Urbanknight, there is a lot of truth in what you've posted. This is EXACTLY WHY JTA needs to be out of the highway business because in spite of it being the logical thing to do, having highways and mass transit in the same agency is like trying to store vinegar and baking soda in the same bottle. Obviously one side will dominate much to the detriment of the other.

I would however take issue with your statement about the State making the camera's illegal. It can't happen soon enough as far as I'm concerned. The evidence is swiftly mounting that red light cameras have INCREASED accidents everywhere they have been tried, in some locations by astronomical amounts, check this out:


Quote
Reports From The Media

Los Angeles | KCAL TV
A local TV station fact-checked the city's claims that their ticket cameras reduced accidents and found that the opposite was true. At 20 of the 32 intersections studied, accidents increased and several intersections tripled their accident rate.

Washington, D.C. | Washington Post
This report showed an overall increase in accidents at red-light camera intersections of 107 percent.

Portland, Oregon | KATU News
KATU News reviewed city statistics and found a 140 percent increase in rear-end crashes at the intersections where red light cameras were installed.

Fort Collins, Colorado | The Coloradoan
Ft. Collins, Colorado has experienced an 83 percent increase in the number of accidents since red light cameras were installed.

Oceanside, California | North County Times
This report showed a 800 percent increase in rear-end accidents.

Philadelphia, Pennsylvania | Philadelphia Weekly
This article showed an increase of 10 to 21 percent in accidents in intersections with red-light cameras.

Corpus Christi, Texas | TheNewspaper.com
Data released by the city showed that the total number of accidents in Corpus Christi increased 14 percent, from 310 incidents to 353, at nine locations where automated ticketing machines were stationed. Contrary to the claim that red light cameras reduce the severity of collisions, the number of accidents involving injuries increased 28 percent from 140 to 179. Rear end collisions also increased by nearly a third from 160 to 208.

Winnipeg, Ontario | Winnipeg Sun
The average number of collisions at Winnipeg’s 12 original red-light camera intersections has jumped 18% since the devices were installed in 2003, according to Manitoba Public Insurance data obtained by the Winnipeg Sun. Despite claims by politicians and police brass that intersection cameras are making our streets safer by reducing collisions, the MPI data shows after six years of use, crashes at the intersections are actually going up, not down.

SOURCE: National Motorists Association http://www.motorists.org/red-light-cameras/



 

 

Ocklawaha

February 15, 2013, 08:49:42 PM
The stellar moment of the Council meeting was made in response to a Bike Jax(?) gentleman who pointed out our terrible bike and pedestrian infrastructure and the fact that we missed out on $3,000,000 worth of improvements that could have been collected in Mobility Fees.

Jacksonville City Councilman Bill Gulliford, with Bill Bishop apparently nodding in approval questioned if we could really do anything with just $3 Million. "$3 Million isn't enough to do any of the infrastructure improvements your talking about, so it really isn't going to make much difference. You'll have to add many times that amount and you are going to have to find it someplace else, in property taxes, license fees, sales tax... Somewhere."

So using that as a baseline here is what could be done with $3 million:
(Several good examples of what $3 mil. can buy snipped...)

Ock, you should really send this post verbatim to the Times-Union, Folio Weekly, Ken Amaro, First Coast News I-Team, etc. 
These yahoos on city council deserve a good old fashioned public shaming (I WAS going to say tar and feathering) for pooh-poohing a "measly" $3 million in potential mobility fees that could be used to really improve the city.

Good idea! Consider it done.

Debbie Thompson

February 18, 2013, 09:28:55 AM
Additional talking point:  Heard on GMA this morning that gasoline prices are up $.42 in the last month alone.  And that's before the summer driving season.  I haven't been tracking exact prices locally, but I have noticed gas jumping several cents a gallon about once or twice a week in the last month or so.

Ralph W

February 18, 2013, 07:34:37 PM
Track This!

Eight weeks ago, the Saturday before Christmas, I paid $2.98 per gallon, now, it's $3.65 and up.

sheclown

February 19, 2013, 07:58:03 AM
hearings today and tomorrow  in committee.

Bridges

February 19, 2013, 08:04:16 AM
Anyone planning on going to the meetings today and tomorrow?  I don't think I can make today.  Hopefully I will be able to be at Finance tomorrow.

Koula

February 19, 2013, 10:22:22 AM
Myself and many area cyclists are planning to attend the Feb 26th meeting. A bunch of us came away from the City Council meeting last week, realizing we totally left out public transit issues, as a few folks have pointed out here-- so yes, some of us will speak and include bus/rail issues as well next week!

Debbie Thompson

February 19, 2013, 12:12:17 PM
Committee agendas for this week:
 
Here's the times of the meetings.  Rules over, maybe a few could still make today's TEU at 2:00 or tomorrow's finance at 10:00.  That should be a good place to point out what projects we haven't been able to do due to NOT having the mobility fee.

Finance 2/20 at 10:00
 Rules 2/19 at 10
 TEU 2/19 at 2 pm
 
It is tough for most of us to attend meetings during the day -- especially given that today is the 19th! However, if you are able to attend, please go and let us know how Clark's moratorium is moving through committee.

Bill Hoff

February 19, 2013, 01:36:07 PM
It wasn't discussed this morning.

thelakelander

February 19, 2013, 01:48:20 PM
I've been working on some stuff to send to council and the DIA members.  I plan to run a few articles on the mobility fee moratorium this week (possibly tomorrow and Friday) as well.  Here are at least two that I'm nearing completion on:

Quote
What lost mobility fee funds could have paid for

So far the City of Jacksonville has lost $4,683,555 in the form of waived mobility fees since October 2011.  Assuming additional projects already approved for mobility fee waivers move forward, that number balloons to $27.45 million. When compared to +$300 million being invested on the construction of a 15-mile Outer Beltway segment by FDOT, this may seem like peanuts and an insufficient amount of funds to do something grand. 

While this amount of cash may not immediately fund the construction of a streetcar or highway widening, it was more than enough to significantly impact the city's poor bicycle and pedestrian network. Here is a brief look, by mobility zone, at sample projects that could have been funded by dollars already lost from last year's moratorium.

Quote
What the Mobility Fee can do for Downtown Jacksonville
According to the recently released JAX 2025 survey, a better downtown is at the top of the wish list of its 14,016 respondents. However, Councilman Richard Clark's proposed three year moratorium of the mobility fee could stunt the redevelopment of downtown Jacksonville and leave the average taxpayer carrying the financial burden it leaves behind.

Bridges

February 19, 2013, 02:11:16 PM
Quote
What the Mobility Fee can do for Downtown Jacksonville
According to the recently released JAX 2025 survey, a better downtown is at the top of the wish list of its 14,016 respondents. However, Councilman Richard Clark's proposed three year moratorium of the mobility fee could stunt the redevelopment of downtown Jacksonville and leave the average taxpayer carrying the financial burden it leaves behind.

I pointed this out at the last council meeting.  I went to the bathroom and there, right outside the bathroom in city hall is a JAX 2025 poster.  Imagine It!  Build It! Reach It!

I told the council that the mobility plan is the "Imagine It", and in that, it told us how to build it.  This is why the mayor needs to be on board.  We did a decade of vision studies and built this plan with some of the brightest people, and now the plan is about to be rendered useless (again).  If we can't win this battle, what hope is there for Jax 2025?

tufsu1

February 19, 2013, 02:26:30 PM
Myself and many area cyclists are planning to attend the Feb 26th meeting. A bunch of us came away from the City Council meeting last week, realizing we totally left out public transit issues, as a few folks have pointed out here-- so yes, some of us will speak and include bus/rail issues as well next week!

great to hear Koula!

thelakelander

February 19, 2013, 02:26:56 PM
Here's the amount of money lost by last year's one year mobility fee moratorium, as of 2/13/13.  The $3 million mentioned by Councilman Gulliford is now approaching $5 million already lost.  By this fall, it could be as much as $27 million.



Here is the amount of money lost by mobility zone so far.  It appears Riverside/Avondale's zone (zone 7) and the area east of Southside Boulevard (zone 2) have lost the most money so far.  Looking on the bright side, it's not like Riverside and the surrounding neighborhoods could not have benefited from nearly $1 million that would have went directly to transit, bike and ped projects in their community.

Bridges

February 19, 2013, 02:45:53 PM
I think you might have Arlington and NW Springfield swapped.  I don't know if just their names and zones or the money are swapped.  Isn't Arlington Zone 9 and NW Springfield Zone 8?

thelakelander

February 19, 2013, 02:55:30 PM
^No, they appear to be correct.

Bridges

February 20, 2013, 10:27:05 AM
Was downtown and thought I'd pop in to finance committee.  Don't think i can stay the whole time, but it says "2nd" next to the moratorium bill.  Rules and TEU also say 2nd. I assume this means that its read again and then talked about next meeting?

Dog Walker

February 20, 2013, 11:57:04 AM
The 5 Points Merchants Association at their monthly meeting this morning voted to send a letter to the all City Council members expressing their opposition to the Mobility Fee Moratorium.  The vote was unanimous by all twenty-five of the members present.

They were dismayed by the amount of funds missed that could have been spent for sidewalk and pedestrian safety improvements that are needed in the area.

fsujax

February 20, 2013, 12:45:27 PM
thats good to hear. Imagine how many other groups would be dismayed if they knew what their neighborhoods were missing out on.

thelakelander

February 20, 2013, 01:25:38 PM
Hmm, fsujax's mobility zone 9 (Springfield/Durkeeville/Moncrief/Panama Park, etc.) has lost $347,505 so far from last year's one year moratorium.  By this fall, that number could potentially grow to $1,913,084.  To break your loss down to a project level, the amount of cash you sacrificed could have funded the extension of the S-Line to McDuff Avenue through the resurfacing/restriping Myrtle Avenue and a new shared use path on McCoys Creek Boulevard.  Combined with some money already lost in an adjacent mobility zone, you've already paid for most of the bike/ped project that would connect the Baldwin Trail with the urban core.

Looking at some of the private sector expansions in your zone (ex. Tremron Manufacturing Plant addition - $460, Beauchamp Office/Warehouse - $1,380, White Wave Foods plant addition - $4,717, etc.), something tells me they would have happened even if they had to pay their mobility fees.  So you basically gave up the job creation, quality-of-life enhancements, and potential economic development opportunities (I've basically described your version of an Atlanta Beltline) that would have come through investing mobility fee money in your area of town for projects that would have happened anyway.


more info on Altanta's Beltline project: http://beltline.org/

With Clark's proposed THREE year moratorium and an improving economy, you really could be losing a chunk of money that would have funded either a streetcar or commuter rail project through your zone. But look on the bright side.  It's not like you really want the type of job creation, economic development opportunities, and TOD that such a project could bring to your neighborhood before the end of this decade.  That type of stuff and a vibrant Main Street can only happen in Charlotte, Denver, and Salt Lake City.....right?

fsujax

February 20, 2013, 01:44:05 PM
Thanks Lake.

Dog Walker

February 21, 2013, 10:07:55 AM
This news video is from last nights Channel 30 news re: the money lost:

http://www.actionnewsjax.com/content/topstories/story/City-losing-out-on-5-million/nrUXwShdn02MNFx6zmtFYg.cspx


thelakelander

February 21, 2013, 10:29:14 AM
Great video.  It definitely plays into our story scheduled for tomorrow, which will illustrate how much money has been lost in every area of town.  To spice things up, I just may create a council district/mobility zone map to go along with it.

Bridges

February 21, 2013, 11:58:15 AM
To spice things up, I just may create a council district/mobility zone map to go along with it.

Great idea.

Dog Walker

February 21, 2013, 12:19:25 PM
Did you notice that in the background of the video, Sleman's LA Fitness development was shown?  Sly dig on the part of Channel 30?

L.P. Hovercraft

February 26, 2013, 12:34:36 PM
Is the moratorium being discussed or voted on at the council meeting tonight?

thelakelander

February 26, 2013, 12:38:55 PM
There is a public hearing on it tonight.

John P

February 26, 2013, 01:22:18 PM
http://jacksonville.com/opinion/blog/423471/gary-mills/2013-02-25/waffle-house-plans-new-restaurants-orange-park-arlington

Two new Waffles Houses. That pesky mobility fee nearly prevented them from being built (that is sarcasm)
Is the city council voting tonight or are they just hearing public comments?

dougskiles

February 26, 2013, 01:36:00 PM
Public comments tonight - no vote.  However, this is the only time they will be taking public comments directly for this bill.  Next week, the bill will go through committees and then back to city council for final vote.

Tonight is important.

fsujax

February 26, 2013, 01:47:52 PM
I hope people show up. I got one response from the email I sent. Thanks Yarborough.

thelakelander

February 26, 2013, 01:53:09 PM
http://jacksonville.com/opinion/blog/423471/gary-mills/2013-02-25/waffle-house-plans-new-restaurants-orange-park-arlington

Two new Waffles Houses. That pesky mobility fee nearly prevented them from being built (that is sarcasm)
Is the city council voting tonight or are they just hearing public comments?

During the moratorium, we waived $84,220 in mobility fees for three Waffle Houses.  I'm trying to see if the proposed Arlington Waffle House is another project that's eligible to have its mobility fee waived because of last year's experiment. If it is, the $4.77 million lost we've been mentioning goes up.  If not, it strongly suggests that we gave Waffle House $84,220 in public subsidies for restaurants they would have opened anyway.

I hope people show up. I got one response from the email I sent. Thanks Yarborough.

I've received replies from Bishop and Love. However, honestly, I wasn't expecting much in replies.  I'm sure council member's emails are pretty busy these days. My hope is that they at least consider the information and resources sent.

thelakelander

February 26, 2013, 02:13:25 PM
Another black eye for Jacksonville's future on the way? Via an email to me:

Quote
Ennis, I talked with a councilmember.
He thinks they have the votes to pass this moratorium.
He said that the opposition had been strong until today and that today the proponents had been hitting everyone hard.
I plan to be there tonight.

Bridges

February 26, 2013, 02:34:50 PM
Another black eye for Jacksonville's future on the way? Via an email to me:

Quote
Ennis, I talked with a councilmember.
He thinks they have the votes to pass this moratorium.
He said that the opposition had been strong until today and that today the proponents had been hitting everyone hard.
I plan to be there tonight.

I just hit them with another round of emails as a collective.  I will now hit individual members. 

Be there tonight too.  Also at committee meetings next week.

thelakelander

February 26, 2013, 02:37:36 PM
What time are committee meetings tomorrow?

Bridges

February 26, 2013, 02:39:10 PM
Whoops, meant next week. 

Rules, TEU, and Finance.

Debbie Thompson

February 26, 2013, 02:54:11 PM
Dear Council Members, as I stated at the last City Council meeting, I  am writing to express my opposition to bill 2013-94, which would  reintroduce a new three year mobility fee moratorium.
 
The mobility plan and fee should be allowed to work as intended...to  invest in and improve existing communities. Our city cannot afford to  forgo millions of dollars in mobility improvements, and the cost  should be borne largely by developers and builders so intent on  further suburban sprawl, not we tax payers.
 
I'm sure you have lobbyists and supporters of developers knocking on  your doors and emailing you 24/7.  However, I beg you to stand up to  them, once again, and re-affirm your support for the 2030 Mobiity Plan  you so wisely passed earlier.  Please vote NO on bill 2013-94.
 

Ocklawaha

February 26, 2013, 05:24:52 PM
Interesting math solution: 

Imagine the moratorium passes for 3 more years, and imagine during that amount of time we get no more or no less waivers of the mobility fee then the total amount of waivers during the first year 'trial moratorium.'  This is how it cooks down:

Value of waivers issued for the past one-year moratorium - $27,000,000 one year.

Total value of waivers to be issued for 3 more years (assuming no changes +/- in our rate of growth) - $27,000,000 x 3 years =
$81,000,000 million dollars.

Add all four moratorium years together and you get - $108,000,000 million dollars.

Take $108,000,000 and divide by the current city population - 822,000

ANSWER - $131.38.  This represents an infrastructure tax to every man, woman and child in the city of $131.38, or $2,102.08 for a family of 4, for four years, which means we get a four year tax increase of $525.52 per year for our average family just to provide needed infrastructure.

Thank you dear leaders for bowing to special interests and screwing the population. Pass this or any further moratoriums and you will have demonstrated once again, that any city with proper leadership can be dumbed down to Neanderthal level. 

Debbie Thompson

February 26, 2013, 05:57:50 PM
Lots of pro moratorium stickers in council chambers all of a sudden. Opponents of the moratorium, if you are not here, better get here.

thelakelander

February 26, 2013, 06:02:08 PM
It's amazing what you can accomplish with paid lobbying and support.

Bill Hoff

February 26, 2013, 06:02:43 PM
I'm sorry to say, but I'd be shocked if this bill doesn't pass.

As a side note - those here to speak about the mobility fee will be treated to an hour or so of anti-muslim rhetoric before hand. Oh boy.

stephendare

February 26, 2013, 06:04:23 PM
money cant be too tight for the developers if they are paying for printing.

Unless of course, Robin Lumb donated the print job from his graphic and design company.  http://www.zoominfo.com/#!search/profile/person?personId=1670962956&targetid=profile

stephendare

February 26, 2013, 06:08:44 PM
Did you notice in the TU article that the head of the "Florida Security Council" made a barely veiled threat against the TU reporter?  "You are now on the radar of some very serious counter-terrorism people".

So to write an article about Randy McDaniels makes you an ally of Hamas?

These are some seriously crazy people.  Are Muslims the new Jews for the neo-Nazi types?

Who the hell does this thuglicker think he is anyways?

Quote
By the way (if you check my web site) I have an investigative video team and I'd like to find out a bit more about
you.

My purpose is to expose to the public any relationship between you and Parvez Ahmed or his associates that is
unprofessional or questionable for an objective reporter.

It's always been of interest to me when a journalist goes after the messenger instead of the message, in this case, an
individual that has significant terrorist ties, the writer is often in support of the subject.

So Matt, up to now, you were an obscure kid cultivating well-placed sources, for a small time newspaper.but you are
now on the radar of some very serious counter-terrorism experts.

Don't worry, and don't get too excited about our interest in you. Our concern, from a national security perspective, is
NOT you, but Parvez Ahmed and his associates. You simply inserted yourself as part of our overall investigation.

Bridges

February 26, 2013, 06:11:02 PM
I'm sorry to say, but I'd be shocked if this bill doesn't pass.

  Its going to be tight though. North Florida Builders rallied the crowd. 

thelakelander

February 26, 2013, 06:14:16 PM
I'm sorry to say, but I'd be shocked if this bill doesn't pass.

As a side note - those here to speak about the mobility fee will be treated to an hour or so of anti-muslim rhetoric before hand. Oh boy.

If you really care about Jacksonville and have seriously looked into the details of this issue, what you really don't want is this to be included, even if it does pass:

Quote
“With the new bill, if you get plat approval and build [under the waiver], you are grandfathered in for any home permit you would need to receive here on out. You would not have to pay the mobility fee [for each home after the waiver period ended]. With the previous law, you would have had to build your single family home during the waiver period,” said General Council Dylan Reingold, who drafted the new legislation.
http://residentnews.net/2013/02/04/councilman-clark-sponsor-mobility-plan-fee-moratorium-legislation/

This would pretty much kill the concept behind the mobility plan and stymie any major multi-modal improvement becoming a reality in Jacksonville within the next decade.  Then when the chicken comes home to roost, an older you, your kids, or your grand kids, if they're still here, will been on the financial hook to pick up the pieces.

If it dies, with our dwindling resources, we don't have a chance in the new economy without a major tax increase of some sort.  Given the politics, I don't see that happening anytime soon without an abrupt change in leadership.

thelakelander

February 26, 2013, 08:02:50 PM
http://jacksonville.com/opinion/blog/423471/gary-mills/2013-02-25/waffle-house-plans-new-restaurants-orange-park-arlington

Two new Waffles Houses. That pesky mobility fee nearly prevented them from being built (that is sarcasm)
Is the city council voting tonight or are they just hearing public comments?

The Merrill Road Waffle House will receive a $53,124 subsidy in the form of a mobility fee waiver from last year's moratorium.  The $4.8 million given so far, is nearing the $5 million mark.
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