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Ju'Coby Pittman [Photo: Dennis Ho/Folio Weekly]

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Momentum builds to return Rick Scott pick to Jacksonville City Council

Last year, Democrat Ju’Coby Pittman was the less controversial of the two appointees selected to fill in for Jacksonville City Council members suspended pending fraud charges.

Pittman, appointed by Gov. Rick Scott to fill in for Katrina Brown in District 8, launched a campaign for the office late last year, amid what was and is a crowded field.

December receipts showed that the donor class likes what they see.

Though over $8,000 of her $17,000+ total haul was self-financed, checks from Gary Chartrand, the Fiorentino Group, Toney Sleiman‘s American General Properties, Joan Haskell, and Jacksonville Jaguars’ lobbyist Paul Harden suggest a comfort level with Pittman that could pay dividends in the campaign ahead.

Pittman, who retains most of that $17,000 as cash-on-hand, is now the second leading fundraiser in the race. Worth noting: she lost a citywide race in 2015 despite having a 10-1 cash advantage over Republican Sam Newby.

Democrat Tameka Gaines Holly, with nearly $42,000 raised and $35,000 on hand, is still the money leader.

With more than $14,000 raised in December, she’s not going away. The biggest donor: Dane Grey and his Elite Parking Services, which gave the candidate four $1,000 checks.

Holly and Pittman have qualified, along with a third candidate. Diallo-Sekou Seabrooks has nearly $4,500 on hand and promises a grassroots campaign.

Incumbent Katrina Brown has yet to qualify at this writing, though last week she told us that running for re-election is still an option, despite being a defendant in a federal fraud case.

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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