• Evans Rowing Club in Mandarin ordered to shut down by city


    Evans Rowing Club was up and running Thursday night, despite an order from the city of Jacksonville to shut down.

    “The law is the law and it has to be followed,” neighbor Michael Bleacher said. 

    Back in September Action News Jax reported when the city admitted to mistakenly issuing a permit for the business to operate on Hillwood Road in Mandarin, which is a residential area. 

    On Wednesday night at an appeal meeting, Councilman Matt Schellenberg said the city decided to cancel the permit, effective immediately.

    “I was elated because of all of the things we dealt with,” neighbor Theresa Merchant said. 

    Parents of the children who attend the club see it as an attack.

    “These are good kids, and I think the city should support them,” parent Stacy Pfeil said. 

    The lawyer for the business said he plans to file another appeal to fight the city.

    “I think that’s great, I mean, we will stand behind him 100%,” Pfeil said. 

    In the meantime, as long as this business is operating, the city can cite the business, and after 30 days, the city has the option to fine the business $250 for every day it is in violation. 

    “I’m sad it’s come down to a political situation in this day in age, and I wish it was what these kids were doing,” parent Craig Reed said. 

    Action News Jax law and safety expert Dale Carson said if the business continues to operate, neighbors do have rights and can call police for disturbing the peace.

    “They can be charged with that crime of disorderly conduct, and it’s a second-degree misdemeanor,” Carson said. 

    Neighbors said they are looking forward to getting their quiet neighborhood back.

    “I’m wishing them well, and hopefully we can have some peace,” Merchant said. 

    Councilman Schellenberg said that since the permit was canceled, the city will not be held liable for anything that happens on the property.

    Next Up: