Democrat Ju’Coby Pittman won this race in the March election, as the top vote-getter of the four candidates on the ballot.
News4Jax sent a questionnaire to each candidate asking about their background and their views on several issues. Scroll down to read the responses of those seeking your vote -- in their own words.
Note: Responses are sorted alphabetically and are presented exactly as submitted, with no editing by News4Jax staff.
Party affiliation: Democrat
Occupation: City Council/CEO Clara White Mission
Your family: Two Adult Children
Education: BS, Honorary Doctorate
Political experience: Governor Scott appointment to City Council District 8 and Elected in 2019 by the constituents Judicial Nominating Commission(twice), Florida State Agriculture Advisory Commission, Cultural Council of Jacksonville and State Council on Homelessness
Over the last few months, we surveyed News4JAX Insiders to find out what they saw as the top issues facing our city, ahead of the city elections. These issues below are the top three – how would you address each one if elected?
Voters’ No. 1 issue: Crime
I am committed to continuing supporting legislation for public safety and services, while thinking outside of the box to address the critical issues of crime affecting public safety across our City. Creating a “Risk Analysis” for high risk neighborhoods in our communities would be an asset to collect real-time data. Unfortunately, crime has been an issue for many years, especially in the core areas of 7, 8, 9, 10. Poverty has plagued these districts, due to the disparities of: lack of education, limited training/job opportunities, environmental injustices, social economics and affordable housing, equity is needed NOW! These areas of crime cannot be resolved and addressed without dedicated funding, a bandage approach is not enough. The causes of crime are deeply rooted, we just can’t arrest our way out. Many studies have been completed, in the Northwest quadrant and it’s time to implement community and stakeholders recommendations. My solution is to implement a Comprehensive Action Plan with dedicated multi-year funding to customizing neighborhoods intensive needed services and support with deliverables.
Voters’ No. 2 issue: Affordable Housing
I support the opportunity to expand development for nonprofits and for-profit developers to meet the demand for Affordable Housing in Jacksonville. Homeownership is the foundation for building wealth and economic security for families and it provides a vital anchor enabling neighborhoods to thrive. I encourage the renovation and construction of affordable housing closer to places of work and to mass transit so workers can get to their jobs. Every citizen should have access to a safe affordable place to live. Align housing priories and amenities, with the needs of neighborhoods and community stakeholders to include input from housing providers, government, developers, and residents who will become the end users.
Recently, I had the opportunity to Chair the Special Committee on Critical Quality of Life Issues, with a focus on Affordable Housing. It was a very engaging process with bankers, developers, landlords, city officials, and testimonies from tenants experiencing the housing crisis. The Affordable Housing Workshop participants developed ten recommendations for renting and purchasing affordable/workforce housing. The three-month workshop discussions and recommendations are outlined below. I will developing legislation to support.
- Commission the Florida Housing Coalition to complete a Comprehensive Study on Affordable Housing
- Work with Public/Non-Profits to create and expand affordable housing
- Incentivize Private Sector Developers to include a % of Affordable Housing in their development
- More Inclusionary Zoning
- Develop a Tenants Bill-of-Rights
- Monitor and Regulate Institutional Investors
- Provide Eviction Protection
- Dedicated Recurring Funding in the City’s Budget
- Develop a dedicated Department for Affordable Housing within the City
- Develop a Dedicated Funding Source from the City of Jacksonville
Voters’ No. 3 issue: Infrastructure
The City and my District have many neighborhoods that are experiencing aging infrastructure dating back before the time of consolidation to improve roads, drainage and failing septic tank issues. There have been many years of neglect and inconveniences for constituents. To improve these issues, funding has been allocated to address these issues through Capital Improvement Projects(CIP) throughout our City. It is important that the City Council continues to work together, while addressing and revitalizing aging infrastructure. This will best set Jacksonville to take advantage of master-planned construction opportunities and be better prepared for resiliency in case of disaster. In addition to ensuring that our tributaries, Trout River, Ribault River, and St. Johns are not being polluted, but to promote as a visual asset to our City and District.
Beyond those three issues, what do you see as the top issue you’ll likely face while holding this office?
- Confederate Monuments
- Expansion and renovation of the Jaguar Stadium
- The City of Jacksonville Annual Budget
How can you help voters in a way that others running for this office cannot?
As a current member of the City Council and the CEO/President of the Clara White Mission. I have worked alongside the district voters, the underserved, and homeless veterans to hear what matters to them in the upcoming election, while supporting legislation and implementing innovative programs that have a community impact. The other candidates in the race do not have experience of serving on the Jacksonville City Council for 4 years, I do or have 35 years of community institutional knowledge with visible and economic results.
My public service has been guided by a simple philosophy, “Go out of your comfort zone and make a difference”. I understand that to work on behalf of the constituents effectively, it is my responsibility to understand community needs, serve as a voice, and leverage my leadership skills and hands-on approach to promote progress. My commitment to you to help voters are:
- ENGAGING: By mobilizing constituents and government to work together on neighborhood concerns and achieve results.
- EXPANDING: By promoting intentional economic development with a focus on small businesses, job training/placement, and health initiatives.
- COLLABORATING: By working with JSO, community and neighborhoods to reduce crime
The highest honor I seek comes directly from the VOTERS. I am asking you to VOTE and invest in me for City Council, District 10.
The goal is to economize, revitalize, and develop through leadership and experience.
What would you hope to be remembered for accomplishing after serving in this office?
Remember me as a consensus builder and frontline change agent for social and economic justice by integrating legislative action for visible, scalable, and long-term sustainability in District 10.
Campaign website: www.votejucoby.com
Social media: None given