Florida school districts can impose student mask mandates; tragedy in Afghanistan
A Leon County judge has ruled that Florida school districts can require students to wear masks, and on this edition of “This Week in Jacksonville,” we hear from Duval County School Board Chair Elizabeth Andersen and local attorney and parent Chris Hand. We also have state Rep. Cord Byrd, who supports parental choice. And the rush to evacuate Afghanistan has turned violent. With American and Afghan casualties, it has become emotional for veterans. U.S. Rep. Michael Waltz, the first Green Beret elected to the U.S. House, gives his view.
Former ambassador, retired generals weigh in on Afghanistan
On this edition of “This Week in Jacksonville,” Nancy Soderberg, former U.S. ambassador to the United Nations and current director of the Public Service Leadership Program at the University of North Florida, and two retired military leaders with ties to Northeast Florida -- U.S. Army Lt. Gen. Joseph DiSalvo and Lt. Gen. Ben Hodges -- provide perspective on the chaos in Afghanistan.
Baptist Health CEO on COVID-19 surge; vaccinations & masks
Baptist Health is just one of the hospital systems in our region reeling from the sudden increase in COVID-19 cases. Baptist Health CEO Michael Mayo joins this edition of “This Week in Jacksonville” to explain some of his biggest concerns. Plus, the battle of vaccinations and masks, and what’s at stake if school districts or local governments decide to make them mandatory. News4Jax political analyst Rick Mullaney and political expert Pastor John Newman join us.
COVID-19 cases surge; leaders, friends remember Dr. Leon Haley
Just when it looked like we had the pandemic on its heels, the cases surge and the delta variant of the coronavirus takes root in our region. The leader of the Civic Council joins this edition of “This Week in Jacksonville,” along with the leader of Ascension St. Vincent’s. And the late Dr. Leon Haley’s impact and legacy here in Jacksonville -- other leaders and his friends remember him.
COVID-19 cases, hospitalizations rise; Breaking down spending plan for Jacksonville
Medical experts and faith leaders are pleading with the public to get vaccinated against the coronavirus as cases rise and hospitals fill. Pastor John Neman and Dr. Nancy Staats join this episode of “This Week in Jacksonville.” Plus, we’re talking about the city of Jacksonville’s budget with Dr. Ron Salem. The council member helps break down the billion-dollar spending plan.
Tropical Storm Elsa; Freedom to Fly Act & Essential Caregivers Act; Caregivers for Compromise founder
On this edition of “This Week in Jacksonville,” we discuss the response to and impact from Tropical Storm Elsa, with state Sen. Audrey Gibson and U.S. Rep. John Rutherford. We also look ahead to 2022, talking with Gibson about her endorsement of Democrat U.S. Rep. Charlie Crist in the race for Florida governor. Rutherford gives us an update from Washington, D.C., talking about the Freedom to Fly Act and the Essential Caregivers Act. And we talk with Mary Daniel, a local advocate for senior care and the founder of Caregivers for Compromise. Her husband, who has Alzheimer’s, resides at a memory care facility, and she couldn’t see him during the first months of the pandemic. Hear how her experiences during that time led her to take action and push for change.
Edward Waters College becomes Edward Waters University; Florida TaxWatch; Connecting veterans with mental health care
On this edition of “This Week in Jacksonville,” Edward Waters College is now officially Edward Waters University. President Zachary Faison joins us on the show to talk about what the historic change means for students, staff and the community. Also, Florida TaxWatch President and CEO Dominic Calabro discusses the nonpartisan group’s view of the state budget that just went into effect this week. And the coordinated effort to protect American heroes from the horrors of war on this Independence Day: Elizabeth Sherr, the clinic director at the Steven A. Cohen Military Family Clinic at Centerstone, joins us.
Jacksonville City Councilman Terrance Freeman; Historic spending in Washington, D.C.
On this edition of “This Week in Jacksonville,” Terrance Freeman, the new vice president of the Jacksonville City Council, joins us as he prepares for his new role. We talk about development, crime and a literacy program he’s passionate about. And Democrats and Republicans are facing off in Washington, D.C., on important issues that impact you -- much of it centering around historic spending. U.S. Rep. Kat Cammack shares her views. We also hear from News4Jax political analyst Rick Mullaney for his perspective.
Pride Month lights on Acosta Bridge; State Sen. Travis Hutson; 100 Black Men of Jacksonville President Ronnie King
On this edition of “This Week in Jacksonville,” Equality Florida’s Jimmy Midyette discusses the impact of changing the lights on the Acosta Bridge from rainbow for Pride Month to blue and then back to rainbow again. State Sen. Travis Hutson weighs in on the governor signing the largest state budget in Florida’s history. Some of the vetoes included killing requests to fund the Hotel Ponce de Leon Preservation and Restoration ($250,000) and a program called St. John’s Schools Classroom to Careers/Flagships. And 100 Black Men of Jacksonville President Ronnie King reacts to a bill that would have given $1 million to a project called Coding in Color being vetoed.
Duval County School Board votes to change 6 school names; downtown development proposals; Baptist Health’s new CEO
On this edition of “This Week in Jacksonville,” Duval County School Board member Warren Jones details changing six school names associated with the Confederacy. Downtown Investment Authority CEO Lori Boyer talks about two downtown development proposals. And Baptist Health CEO Michael Mayo explains his new role.
Jacksonville City Council votes to double gas tax; State’s new gambling agreement; Florida House speaker
On this edition of “This Week in Jacksonville,” News4Jax political analyst and Jacksonville University Public Policy Institute Director Rick Mullaney gives perspective on the Jacksonville City Council voting to double Duval County’s gas tax. State Reps. Tracie Davis and Clay Yarborough discuss the pros and cons of the state’s new gambling agreement. And Florida Speaker of the House Chris Sprowls talks about the 2021 legislative session.
Changes to health care; plans for Emerald Trail; tribute to former JU President Fran Kinne
On this edition of “This Week in Jacksonville,” we are joined by Mayo Clinic Jacksonville CEO Dr. Kent Thielen to discuss the changes to health care becoming permanent following the pandemic. We’re also digging deeper into plans for Emerald Trail in Duval County with Groundwork Jacksonville CEO Kay Ehas and Jacksonville University Public Policy Institute Director Rick Mullaney. And we’re closing our show with a tribute to JU’s beloved former President Fran Kinne and a look back at her 62-year association with the university.
Gas tax proposal; Florida’s upcoming special legislative session
On this edition of “This Week in Jacksonville,” Jacksonville City Councilwoman LeAnna Cumber explains her view on the local option gas tax proposal. Author and local attorney Chris Hand also shares his view and provides insight on the proposal. And state Sen. Aaron Bean talks about Florida’s upcoming special legislative session.
Florida’s record budget; new bills signed into law; upcoming special legislative session
On this edition of “This Week in Jacksonville,” state Sen. Audrey Gibson and state Rep. Cord Byrd discuss the recent legislative session, the record-setting state budget, newly signed bills and the upcoming special session.
City Council president on gas tax legislation; OurJax chairman; Jumbo Shrimp owner
On this edition of “This Week in Jacksonville,” legislation to increase the local option gas tax is finally getting attention from the Jacksonville City Council. City Council President Tommy Hazouri explains the impact on transportation and infrastructure. OurJax Chairman David Miller weighs in on various city projects and developments. And it’s been a long time since the Jumbo Shrimp hit the diamond. That changes soon. Jumbo Shrimp Owner Ken Babby talks about what to expect for the upcoming season.
Impact of Derek Chauvin’s conviction; Jacksonville’s infrastructure needs & proposed gas tax increase
On this edition of “This Week in Jacksonville,” Northside Coalition President Ben Frazier and Jacksonville Fraternal Order of Police President Steve Zona each discuss the impact of the guilty verdict in the Derek Chauvin verdict. Then Jacksonville University Public Policy Institute Director Rick Mullaney joins the show as Jacksonville Transportation Authority CEO Nat Ford and Jacksonville Civil Council Chairman John Delaney each discuss the city’s infrastructure needs and the proposed gas tax increase.
US Rep. Kat Cammack; school choice, J&J vaccine
On this edition of “This Week in Jacksonville,” U.S. Rep. Kat Cammack weighs in on what’s happening on the southern border. We’re also digging into why some parents can’t say enough about school choice and where the issue stands on its way through the Florida Legislature. Plus, Dr. Sunil Joshi talks about the COVID-19 vaccine and what happened with Johnson & Johnson's.
US Rep. Al Lawson; former Duval County Supervisor of Elections Jerry Holland; vaccine passports
On this edition of “This Week in Jacksonville,” U.S. Rep. Al Lawson talks about a wide variety of issues, including the border crisis, the proposed infrastructure bill and the COVID-19 vaccine. Then former Duval County Supervisor of Elections Jerry Holland joins the show to talk about his experiences with voting systems and the new voting law in Georgia. Finally, tech expert Ian Kahn joins the show to talk about vaccine passports and his views on whether they will be required in the future.
Jacksonville City Council meetings; ‘anti-riot’ bill; Feeding Northeast Florida
JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – Jacksonville City Councilman Terrance Freeman joins this edition of “This Week in Jacksonville” to discuss the City Council meetings in March that included discussions of the NOPE bill and the replacement of septic systems in the Christobel neighborhood. Then, Hillsborough County State Attorney Andrew Warren and state Rep. Cord Byrd join the show to share their views on HB 1, the so-called “anti-riot” bill. Finally, Susan King, president and CEO of Feeding Northeast Florida, joins the show to talk about her meeting with Vice President Kamala Harris and the help her organization is receiving and providing for COVID-19 relief.
Health care in Florida; Sen. Rick Scott; State’s legislative session
JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – On this edition of “This Week in Jacksonville,” state Rep. Angie Nixon and Dr. Nancy Staats, both of whom have called for Florida to expand Medicaid, talk about how it could help people in need of health care and the money that would be involved in making it happen. U.S. Sen. Rick Scott, of Florida, calls for states to send back federal relief money if they aren’t spending it on COVID-19 expenses. And state Sen. Travis Hutson talks about his energy bills and how he feels about proposed changes to the Bright Futures scholarship program.
Gov. DeSantis pushes back after Rick Scott asks states to return some COVID relief money
Let’s make sure we help our businesses get going again,” Scott told host Kent Justice. “If Florida were to send the money back, [Treasury Secretary Janet] Yellen is going to send it to Illinois, California, New York or New Jersey. DeSantis said the package penalizes states such as Florida that have lower unemployment rates than other states. The package includes $350 billion for states and the District of Columbia and would divvy up the money based on unemployment rates. Scott was asked if it was realistic to expect state governments will send federal money back.
JTA CEO on gas tax increase proposal; JEA CEO on new direction of utility
JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – Jacksonville University Public Policy Institute Director Rick Mullaney guest hosts this edition of “This Week In Jacksonville.”Mullaney sits down with JTA CEO Nat Ford to discuss the gas tax increase proposal. Also, JEA CEO Jay Stowe talks about the new direction of the utility.
JTA CEO: Gas tax increase for new infrastructure ‘critical for our community’
JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – This week, the city unveiled a monumental and potentially transformative proposal for a gas tax increase to help address infrastructure needs in Duval County. The tax — which would double the local gas tax from 6 to 12 cents per gallon — would generate nearly a billion dollars over 25 years. Ford said a gas tax is the best way to fund the city’s infrastructure needs because it acts as a “user fee.” Clay County and Nassau County already have a 12-cent gas tax, Ford said. “It’s going directly to transportation projects, so I think there’s a direct line edge between the source and the actual use in terms of gas tax,” Ford said. AdCouncil members say doubling the gas tax is going to fuel a lot of debate, particularly at this time during the pandemic and with prices on the rise anyway.
Florida’s 2021 legislative session; governor’s State of the State address; UNF research polls
JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – On this edition of “This Week in Jacksonville,” Florida Chief Financial Officer Jimmy Patronis weighs in on what can be accomplished during Florida’s 2021 legislative session. Florida Agriculture Commissioner Nikki Fried shares her thoughts on Gov. Ron DeSantis’ State of the State address. And University of North Florida Public Opinion Research Lab Director Dr. Michael Binder explains recent poll results.
Anti-riot bill debate; Mental Health Offender Program; Republican Party of Florida chair
JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – On this edition of “This Week in Jacksonville,” Pastor John Allen Newman offers his view of the anti-riot bill in Florida. Chief Judge Mark Mahon explains the Jacksonville Mental Health Offender Program. And Republican Party of Florida Chairman Joe Gruters on the recent election success in Florida.
Mending partisan divide in national politics; focusing on Florida Legislature; Florida Democratic Party chair
JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – On this edition of “This Week in Jacksonville,” former U.S. Rep. Jason Altmire weighs in on the national political scene now that President Joe Biden has taken office. State Rep. Paul Renner comments on the upcoming legislative session. And Florida Democratic Party Chairman Manny Diaz talks about his new role and the election results.
Rep. Renner weighs in on controversial ‘anti-mob’ bill
The controversial ‘anti-mob’ bill has faced strong opposition, including in Duval County, from those who say it would limit First Amendment rights and allow bystanders to shoot and kill looters. Republican Rep. Paul Renner, represents Florida’s 24th District — which includes all of Flagler County, southern St. Johns County and northern Volusia County — and a powerful voice in the Florida House of Representatives. He told Kent Justice during a taping of This Week in Jacksonville that he supports any legislation that would deter political violence. In a House committee session in Tallahassee last month, 69 people spoke out about the bill. You can watch the full interview Sunday at 9 a.m. on Channel 4 and at noon on CW17.
After disappointing 2020, Florida Democratic chair looks to Duval County for inspiration
Former Miami Mayor Manny Diaz is the new chair of the Florida Democratic Party. “It is a business, and its business is electing Democrats statewide,” Diaz said. The last time a Democratic candidate took Duval in a presidential election was President Jimmy Carter in 1976. Diaz credited state Rep. Angie Nixon, Rep. Tracie Davis, state Sen. Audrey Gibson and chair of the Duval County Democratic Party Daniel Henry for the success in Jacksonville. “What they do is they’re on the ground, and that’s the kind of operation that I’m gonna build statewide,” Diaz said.
Former President Trump acquitted in 2nd impeachment trial
JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – On this edition of “This Week in Jacksonville,” state Sen. Audrey Gibson, University of North Florida Public Opinion Research Laboratory Director Dr. Michael Binder and Jacksonville University College of Arts and Sciences Dean Dr. Matthew Corrigan hold a roundtable discussion on the acquittal of former President Donald Trump in his second impeachment trial. U.S. Rep. Michael Waltz also explains his vote against impeaching Trump.
Violent crime in Jacksonville area; medical marijuana; Hank Aaron Field?
JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – On this edition of “This Week in Jacksonville,” State Attorney Melissa Nelson explains what her office is doing to try to turn around the violent crime numbers in the Jacksonville area. State Rep. Angie Nixon speaks about her bill that would address medical marijuana accessibility. And Jacksonville City Councilman Dr. Ron Salem talks about his proposal to name the field at J.P. Small Park after Baseball Hall of Famer Hank Aaron.
Jacksonville lawmaker introduces bill to address medical marijuana accessibility
Angela "Angie" Nixon, a member of the Florida House of Representatives who represents District 14 covering North and Northwest Jacksonville. JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – After years as a community organizer in Jacksonville, state Rep. Angie Nixon now represents residents in north and northwest Duval County as a member of the Florida House of Representatives. She has since attached her name to HB 593, a bill that was filed in January and involves medical marijuana retail facilities. She said her bill would allow more people to own dispensaries and create more accessibility for those who are prescribed medical marijuana. “We know Florida is all about job creation and, hopefully, this bill does pass that we can address those concerns,” Nixon said.
New report on JEA investigation; Sen. Rick Scott on upcoming impeachment trial; toxic political conversations
JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – On this edition of “This Week in Jacksonville,” Jacksonville City Councilman Rory Diamond discusses the recent report on the JEA investigation. U.S. Sen. Rick Scott, R-Florida, talks about the upcoming impeachment trial and holding people accountable for the Capitol siege. And Writer CEO May Habib explains how the ugliness in political conversations online has gotten toxic.
Discussion on article of impeachment against Trump; Look at Biden administration
JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – Rick Mullaney of the Jacksonville University Public Policy Insitute joins this edition of “This Week in Jacksonville” to talk about the article of impeachment against former President Donald Trump that will be sent to the Senate, as well as the ramifications and possible repercussions for continuing the impeachment process. Then, U.S. Rep. Michael Waltz joins the show to talk about his views on the impeachment process and the impacts of the riot at the Capitol. Finally, Jacksonville City Councilwoman Brenda Priestly Jackson joins the show to talk about her views and optimism for President Joe Biden’s administration and the historic moment of Vice President Kamala Harris being sworn in.
Capitol riot aftermath; impeachment of President Trump; Inauguration Day safety
JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – Rick Mullaney of Jacksonville University’s Public Policy Institute, U.S. Rep. Al Lawson, U.S. Rep. Buddy Carter, U.S. Rep. Kat Cammack and former U.S. Rep. David Jolly join this edition of “This Week in Jacksonville” to talk about their experiences during the riot at the Capitol. They also discuss their views on the impeachment of President Donald Trump, including how they voted and why, and look ahead to the upcoming inauguration of President-elect Joe Biden.
Invasion of halls of Congress; impeachment talks; former adviser to President Trump on Capitol breach
JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – News4Jax political analyst Rick Mullaney of Jacksonville University’s Public Policy Institute, Florida Sen. Audrey Gibson, U.S. Rep. John Rutherford and News4Jax anchor Tom Wills join this edition of “This Week in Jacksonville” as they discuss the invasion of the halls of Congress, objections to Electoral College votes and whether impeachment should be attempted. In addition, former advisor to President Donald Trump, Omarosa Manigault Newman, provides her perspective on the breach of the U.S. Capitol.
Discussions continue on Lot J plan; US Senate runoffs in Georgia
JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – On this edition of “This Week in Jacksonville,” OurJax representatives Michael Ward and Audrey Moran talk about their objections to the Lot J development deal with the city. After that, Pastor John Allen Newman and News4Jax political analyst Rick Mullaney discuss the upcoming U.S. Senate runoff elections in Georgia and the use of attack ads during the campaigns. They also talk about memorable moments of 2020 and what they are looking forward to in 2021.
Duval County Public Schools superintendent; president & CEO of Pace Center for Girls
JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – On this week’s edition of “This Week in Jacksonville,” Dr. Diana Greene talks about her accomplishments with Duval County Public Schools and what she hopes to accomplish in 2021 and beyond with Duval County’s new half-cent sales tax. Then, Mary Marx, president and CEO of Pace Center for Girls, discusses a federal grant they have received and what programs they plan to use the money on looking ahead to 2021.
State Sen. Aaron Bean; City Councilwoman Brenda Priestly Jackson; Safe schools challenge
JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – News4Jax anchor Tom Wills is the guest host of this edition of “This Week In Jacksonville.”State Sen. Aaron Bean discusses his new role as Florida Senate president pro tempore. Jacksonville City Councilwoman Brenda Priestly Jackson provides insight on Lot J, the Jaguars and the JEA investigation. And the American Civility Association’s Amy Barnett explains how the organization is making schools safer.
Decriminalizing marijuana; Duval County Republican Party chairman; Sen. Jennifer Bradley
JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – This edition of “This Week in Jacksonville” features City Councilman Garrett Dennis on decriminalizing marijuana and the Lot J proposal, Duval County Republican Party Chairman Dean Black on the election results and 2022, and state Sen. Jennifer Bradley on her new role.
Exploring pros and cons of Lot J development with city leaders
JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – News4Jax political analyst Rick Mullaney of Jacksonville University’s Public Policy Institute joins this edition of “This Week in Jacksonville,” which explores the Lot J proposal from multiple angles with Downtown Investment Authority CEO Lori Boyer, Jacksonville Civic Council CEO and President Jeanne Miller, Urban Land Institute Chair Tarik Bateh, Jaguars Senior Vice President and Chief Legal Officer Megha Parekh and Mayor Lenny Curry’s Chief of Staff Jordan Elsbury.
Barriers on Capitol Hill; Duval County Supervisor of Elections Office preps ahead of Election Day
JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – On this edition of “This Week In Jacksonville,” News4Jax political analyst Rick Mullaney of Jacksonville University’s Public Policy Institute co-hosts alongside News4Jax anchor and reporter Kent Justice. Former U.S. Reps. David Jolly and Patrick Murphy discuss a new book, which they co-authored, designed to talk about barriers on Capitol Hill. Duval County Supervisor of Elections Mike Hogan talks about high voter turnout and concerns just before Election Day. And Mullaney describes the five things that could be affected if the Democrats earn a majority in the Senate.
Duval County school tax referendum; JEA referendum on ballot; Former Rep. Jason Altmire
JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – News4Jax political analyst Rick Mullaney of Jacksonville University’s Public Policy Institute hosts this edition of “This Week In Jacksonville." Former Sheriff Nat Glover of Duval Citizens for Better Schools discusses the sales tax referendum on Duval County ballots. City Councilman Michael Boylan breaks down the JEA referendum for Duval County voters. Former U.S. Rep. Jason Altmire talks about his new book, “Dead Center: How Political Polarization Divided America.”
TWIJ: GOP view of ‘court packing;’ history of voting in Florida; state House candidates
JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – The U.S. Supreme Court may have a new associate justice very soon. A future Florida House speaker who is also a local attorney discusses the process and the potential of “packing the court” after the election with host Kent Justice. Rick Mullaney also breaks down the way Florida votes historically and what we’re looking for on election night. Plus, the Democrat running hoping to unseat that future House speaker in District 24.
Breaking down recent UNF polls & six Florida amendments on November ballot
JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – With just more than three weeks until Election Day, Dr. Michael Binder from the University of North Florida Public Opinion Research Lab joins this edition of “This Week in Jacksonville” to discuss two different polls that were recently released. Florida State College at Jacksonville sociology Professor Dr. J.R. Woodward and political science professor Dr. Daniel Cronrath then dig into the six proposed constitutional amendments on the November ballot in Florida. Each needs 60% of the vote to pass.
President diagnosed with coronavirus; Second Lady Karen Pence visits Jacksonville
Duval County Medical Society Foundation President Dr. Sunil Joshi breaks down the treatments President Trump is receiving after being diagnosed with COVID-19. News4Jax political analyst Rick Mullaney of JU’s Public Policy Institute describes how the president’s diagnosis could impact the campaign. Also, City Councilman Rory Diamond on launching a new program brought forward by Second Lady Karen Pence for military spouses.
President Donald Trump nominates Judge Amy Coney Barrett to Supreme Court
JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – On this edition of “This Week in Jacksonville,” News4Jax political analyst Rick Mullaney, of Jacksonville University’s Public Policy Institute, discusses President Donald Trump nominating Judge Amy Coney Barrett to the Supreme Court. U.S. Rep. Jim Clyburn, of South Carolina, gives his thoughts on the nomination process. And local attorney Pat Kilbane, who knows Barrett on a professional level, shares his impressions and insight.
#FluVaxJax; Proposal would change the way city facilities are renamed; Rep. Buddy Carter
JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – On this edition of “This Week in Jacksonville,” Duval County Medical Foundation President Dr. Sunil Joshi details the #FluVaxJax effort. Plus, Jacksonville City Councilman Ron Salem talks about a bill that he’s proposing. It would change the way that city facilities are renamed. And U.S. Rep. Buddy Carter explains what the sticking points might be to keep COVID-19 relief money coming from Washington, D.C.