JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – Jacksonville Mayor Lenny Curry told JEA employees in a letter sent Thursday that he has not taken any stance on the proposed sale of the utility.
The mayor wrote, "I have never stated opposition or support, in public or private, for privatizing JEA or any other asset of the people of this city."
The mayor says he will continue to seek the current valuation of JEA. He also added he never approved a letter sent out to JEA management that offered bonuses if they stayed during a potential sale. Those offers were later rescinded by the JEA board.
The idea of selling the city owned utility was introduced at the end of last year, when former board member Tom Petway resigned and suggested the city sell the utility. Since then, studies have showed the city could reap $2.5 billion in a sale after paying off debt. Critics said the city would lose millions of dollars -- like the $117 million that the JEA contributes each year to the city general fund. A sale would also mean that neither customers nor the city would have no say on a potential rate increase.
A special City Council committee will met at 3:30 p.m. Thursday to discuss the potential sale. News4Jax will update this story with development from that meeting.