A group of Jacksonville business leaders offered support Tuesday for the City Council passing a gay-rights bill for the second time in three years.
The Human Rights Ordinance expansion was originally passed in 2017, but a recent appeals court decision sided with plaintiffs challenging how the law was passed. The now canceled ordinance requires cure legislation.
The Jacksonville Civic Council, which pushed hard for the legislation for close to a decade, reminded local lawmakers not to get wobbly when it comes to passing the bill again.
The City Council will hold a public hearing, via Zoom, on the legislation later Tuesday, setting up committee votes next week and a full City Council vote a fortnight hence.
“We are writing today to assure you that our position remains unchanged in the wake of the 1st District Court of Appeals’ recent decision on process technicalities in the recent passage of an HRO, and to request your support for the legislative remedy currently before the Jacksonville City Council,” asserted a letter signed by JCC Chairman John Delaney and CEO Jeanne Miller.
“In the past, the absence of a Human Rights Ordinance was a detriment to the economic and cultural development of our community, as Jacksonville was one of the few remaining major cities in Florida without such an ordinance. The passage of an HRO in 2017 strengthened our economy, made Jacksonville more attractive to people and businesses, and advanced a culture of fairness and respect for all,” the letter added.
The JCC position comes after the Jacksonville Chamber of Commerce offered its own affirmation.
“Passing the HRO in 2017 told everyone outside the community what we already know – that we are an inclusive, welcoming community where everyone has the opportunity to succeed. We support the effort to correct this technical issue and pass the legislation as intended three years ago.”