Jacksonville City Council to vote on modified stadium deal involving community benefits agreement

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. — City Council will be voting on a modified stadium deal when it comes to the Community Benefits Agreement section this week. The money for the Eastside, affordable housing, homelessness, and workforce development will no longer be a part of the city’s portion of the deal.


Jacksonville City Council President Ron Salem says they are severing the CBA to ensure a vote happens next week.

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Monday night, dozens of people showed up to make their voices heard about the Jaguars Stadium Deal of The Future.

Salem says they are carving out $94 million that would have gone towards homelessness, affordable housing, and workforce development. Instead, the new amendment that will be taken up on Thursday will be to have the remaining $56 million go toward downtown parks.

“The parks portion of it doesn’t conflict as many people; it’s homelessness, the park particularly, affordable housing, workforce - it conflicts more council members,” Salem said.

He says the reason is to get the deal passed.

“I want as many people to vote on the 904 as we can,” Salem said. “It’s very significant legislation. I just have to see the mayor’s budge and see what we can afford – not that I’m against the Out East, but what the city can afford.”

RELATED: Amendment coming to pull out $94M for community benefits agreement from Jags stadium deal

The mayor’s office is on the same page. Mayor Donna Deegan’s Chief of Staff Darnell Smith said they are compromising to ensure all the council members vote on the overall deal.

“This is really signaling that we are working together,” Smith said.

In the CBA, the Jags re agreeing to provide $75 million to Out East, and $75 million to the other portions in the county.

When Action News Jax Annette Gutierrez asked Salem, “Do you still expect the Jags to be providing that portion since you guys are kind of altering your portion?,” Salem responded, “They’re committed to a hundred, I think we can get the other 50 by investing in the Eastside. And I think we can do that, but it will take a little bit more time with the mayor’s budget and everything else.”

Some folks say they are concerned the Eastside won’t get the support it needs.

RELATED: Local trades workers rally for ability to participate in Jaguars stadium renovation

“As a part of this deal, there should be dollars set aside to help mitigate on the risks and also capitalize on the opportunities that come from proximate development,” Lift Jax COO Travis Williams said.

While others say they understand, they just want to make sure local labor is prioritized.

“If this is going to be taxpayer money, it needs to be locals building this project,” North Florida Building Construction Trades Council President Lance Fout said.

On Thursday, the council will vote on the $56 million section. And then next week, they will vote on the entire deal.

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