Jacksonville Jaguars

City leaders promise to put personal disagreements aside to pass Jags stadium deal

JACKSONVILLE, Fla — Mayor Donna Deegan said she hopes to have the framework for a stadium deal completed within the next two to three months on Thursday and added negotiations are moving apace to achieve that goal.

The City of Jacksonville would put up more than a billion dollars under the plan initially pitched by the Jags.

That would include the stadium renovation and an entertainment district.

Deegan noted there’s been no final agreement on whether those two projects will be wrapped up in a package deal or pushed through separately.

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“I have made it very clear that for me, obviously, I want to do whatever is the best deal for the taxpayers and that may be doing something larger, but I don’t know yet,” said Deegan.

To get to a deal done, the mayor will need to work with city council.

Their relationship has been strained due to disagreements on appointments and issues like the removal of the Confederate monument in recent months, but Deegan said she doesn’t see those issues preventing the stadium deal from getting across the finish line.

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“I think obviously it’s going to come down to what that deal looks like. And we’ll be working through that and then presenting that to council, but I absolutely think everybody wants to get this deal done,” said Deegan.

City Council President Ron Salem (R-Group 2 At-Large) agreed, personal disagreements won’t get in the way of a deal.

“I will do my job and I don’t let anything personally interfere with that,” said Salem.

And Deegan noted, bringing the deal in for a landing as soon as possible will be critical.

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The mayor said she hopes to have the deal finalized before the fall.

Salem seems to be on the same page.

He said he’ll need 60 days to get a deal through council, and hopes to have that done before his term as President ends on July 1st.

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