JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – Despite the fact that the Republican National Convention moved to Jacksonville earlier this summer never took place here, the city still spent thousands of dollars on planning.
Auditors determined that more than $153,602.68 was spent on planning the event -- with 45% that on overtime pay to Jacksonville Sheriff’s Office employees and another 45% to an outside firm hired to help secure federal grants. The remaining 10% of the money went to overtime to Jacksonville Fire-Rescue and other city employees.
The convention was scheduled the week of Aug. 24 after the previous host inside the VyStar Veterans Memorial Arena and other sites around the Sports Complex. In late July, President Donal Trump canceled the Jacksonville events due to coronavirus cases surging locally and across Florida.
Mayor Lenny Curry stated numerous times that Jacksonville would not be on the hook for any costs. Asking his office to see if any of this money will be reimbursed by the Republican Party, the RNC Host Committee or the federal government, the mayor’s, chief of staff, Jordan Elsbury, released this statement Thursday morning: