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Alvin Brown: JEA a ‘tremendous asset … should remain with the people’

Jacksonville’s City Hall has been roiled for weeks with claims and counterclaims about whether or not Mayor Lenny Curry wants to sell the local utility, JEA.

Tuesday evening saw a floor motion to successfully kneecap a five-person special committee that was evaluating whether or not JEA should be sold; the committee now includes everyone on the City Council, and has been divested of subpoena power.

Curry’s predecessor, Alvin Brown, was in Jacksonville for other events Wednesday; however, when Florida Politics caught up with Brown.

He was willing to discuss JEA — as a public asset that should not be for sale.

“I can honestly say that JEA is an asset — a tremendous asset for the city. It gives over $100 million a year to the general fund,” Brown said.

“Making sure that a utility that is owned by a people remains with the people,” said Brown, was reflected in his board appointments (most of which were removed from the board by Mayor Curry months after his election, moves which got intense media coverage at the time).

“At the end of the day, you have members of the City Council and the board and JEA officials and members of the community who are starting to have that conversation, and that’s their focus,” Brown said. “They have a process. I don’t know about the process. It’s their process.”

Written By

A.G. Gancarski has been a working journalist for over two decades, with bylines in national and local publications alike on subjects ranging from pop music to national and global politics. Gancarski has been a correspondent for FloridaPolitics.com since 2014, and has held a column in Jacksonville, Florida's Folio Weekly for two decades. In 2018, he was a finalist for an Association of Alternative Newsweeklies "best political column." Gancarski is a frequent presence on Jacksonville television and radio, including fill-in slots on WJCT-FM's award-winning talk show "First Coast Connect." He can be reached at a.g.gancarski@gmail.com.

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