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Council has new plan for downtown dollars

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Updated: 8/09/2013 8:21 pm
JACKSONVILLE, Fla. -- Action News has learned Jacksonville City Council's finance committee voted to change the plan for millions of dollars meant to improve downtown.

Mayor Alvin Brown wants to see people taking advantage of the busy streets of downtown. Improving the area was always a big part of the mayor's plan. Earlier this year, the city refinanced bonds and found $11 million; $9 million was slated for downtown and two $2 million for other county projects.

But Action News has learned the council finance committee now has a new plan for the money. Its members voted to put it in a special fund to be used on anything in the city.

"They have no plan, and you can't do anything without a plan approved by council," said Councilman Matt Schellenberg. 

It was a bold move, and one a Downtown Investment Authority board member said doesn't help the cause.

"We will see how much of a buzzkill there is from this," said Mike Saylor.

He said the phone has been ringing off the hook with proposals for months, but council members said without a plan for downtown, the money can be used for other things.

"People thought Jacksonville was serious about downtown," said Saylor.

"Right now, the stronger interest is in libraries and whether we have enough police and fire out there," said Schellenberg.

The money can still be used for downtown, but only if a plan is approved by City Council.
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osprey1 - 8/10/2013 11:00 AM
0 Votes
I see no reason to worry about the libraries just because you have got your hands on some new money, they've been replaced by the internet. If your going to spend this new money put it where it will do the most good and that's not in a special fund for any one who sticks their hand in it.

wishmistress - 8/10/2013 12:03 AM
1 Vote
'found $11 million'.......Excuse me, I KNOW who lost it. The taxpayers. Now, GIVE IT BACK!
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