Incoming committee chairs reflect new direction for Jacksonville City Council
Councilwoman Priestly Jackson will chair Rules and will be seated in Finance in 2020

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Some will play prominent roles. Some will be sidelined.

Incoming Jacksonville City Council President Tommy Hazouri finalized his committee selections, establishing hierarchies for a momentous year.

The supermajority GOP City Council chose Hazouri, a Democrat, for the role weeks ago, and the former Jacksonville Mayor has set up the major committees to be significant proving grounds for legislation.

The two most quotable Democrats on the Council, Brenda Priestly-Jackson and Garrett Dennis, serve as chair and vice-chair respectively.

Each will represent challenges to paradigms. Priestly-Jackson is the clearest voice in recent memory on issues related to long-standing structural inequities in the city, while Dennis has represented key resistance to Mayor Lenny Curry over the last few years.

Filling out the panel: Randy DeFoor, a Republican who broke with the Mayor’s political machine;  Matt Carlucci, who will also chair Finance; incoming President-designate Sam Newby; Democrat Ju’Coby Pittman; and Republican Michael Boylan.

As Finance Chair, Carlucci has vowed to work toward redressing resource inequities through the city. With DeFoor as Vice Chair, expect the budget hearings in August to crackle with quotable lines.

Priestly-Jackson also got a spot on the prize committee, with Democrat Joyce Morgan, Republican LeAnna Cumber, and outgoing President Scott Wilson empaneled.

With considerable overlap between the two marquee committees, it is worth noting that a number of Council members will be out of the limelight this year.

Republican Danny Becton, who ran a last-minute campaign to steal the Presidency from Hazouri, will have free time in committee weeks, relegated solely to the Neighborhoods committee, chaired by Randy White and co-chaired by Pittman.

Republican Al Ferraro, who gave a nominating speech for Becton, likewise is frozen out again from the big committees, though he will be on Transportation Energy Utilities as well as Land Use and Zoning.

Republican Rory Diamond, who also spoke against Hazouri, likewise got placed on Neighborhoods and LUZ.

Former Council President Aaron Bowman and his former assistant turned Councilman, Terrance Freeman, likewise will not be on the marquee committees this year. Each will be on Neighborhoods and LUZ.

A.G. Gancarski

A.G. Gancarski has written for FloridaPolitics.com since 2014. He is based in Northeast Florida. He can be reached at [email protected] or on Twitter: @AGGancarski


2 comments

  • Sonja Fitch

    June 11, 2020 at 6:13 pm

    Stop the RNC from coming into Jacksonville on August 27. That is the day of the worst racial unrest in 1960. Kkk came in and beat the hell out of black citizens!!!!!! No crowning a racist in the worst day of racial violence in Jax!

    • ItsTimeforTruth

      June 13, 2020 at 12:17 pm

      The KKK were an arm of the Democrats back in 1960. It’s a shame that the “new” Democrats ignore that truth.

      Instead the Democrats support fascist organizations like Antifa that use the same tactics as the Italian fascist of pre-WWII Europe.

      The truth and history, however, doesn’t matter to the “new” Democrats. Instead they use identity politics to label anyone who doesn’t agree with their “new” radical agenda a racist. That way they don’t have to actually discuss the truth.

      God help this country if the leftist media and these radicals gain control of our national government. It will be the end of the greatest movement for individual rights and prosperity in history.

      If only the real Democrats, the people, would actually try to seek the truth instead of censoring any position that doesn’t fall in line with the fascists. All of this happens while fascists have taken control of a portion of Seattle and instead of condemning the fascist action the Mayor embraces the takeover by calling those anarchists “patriots.”

      THIS is the “new” Democrat party. So, don’t talk about the loss of our freedom or even racism, talk about submission to the “new” fascist order where freedom, and discussion, and even private property are subject to the violent few. These are the “new” Democrats.

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