Emails between senior staff in the Jacksonville mayor’s and sheriff’s offices offer a unique look at how legislation is nurtured through the process.
The subject of the emails: the ShotSpotter technology that Jacksonville leaders have touted as a possible corrective to the hail of gunshots in high-crime areas.
Ordinance 2016-795 will, among other things, “appropriate $435,001 already allocated in a ShotSpotter reserve account to an equipment purchase account for installation of the test site … acoustic gunshot detection and surveillance technology in a 5 square mile area of Health Zone 1.”
Health Zone 1 encompasses five Jacksonville Journey zip codes, including 32209, which was described by the Florida Times-Union as “Jacksonville’s killing fields.”
Mayor Lenny Curry‘s chief of staff, Kerri Stewart, emailed stakeholders with her expectations as to how the bill might proceed through its three committees of reference: the Neighborhoods, Community Investments, and Services committee on Tues. Jan. 17; the Public Health and Safety committee on the 18th; and Finance on the 19th.
Stewart’s advice: expect questions relative to the Jacksonville Journey anti-crime initiative, rebooted by Mayor Curry early in his term.
“We are not anticipating any/many specific questions related to ShotSpotter; but the committees are chaired by CM Scott Wilson (NCIS) CM Sam Newby (PHS) and CW Anna Brosche (Finance). All 3 councilmembers/chairs have specific interest in the Jacksonville Journey and so some questions may inevitably come up,” Stewart noted.
Those questions won’t waylay the legislation, however: “Upon successful passage of the bill in the 3 committees, the entire Council will take up the legislation for final passage on Tuesday, January 24, 2017.”
JSO, meanwhile, feels confident enough to begin the procurement process.