Jacksonville, FL (October 1, 2021) – At their first meeting in October, Council Member Danny Becton was invited to speak to the Deerwood Rotary Club of Jacksonville. The Deerwood Rotary Club, founded in 1986, meets every Friday morning at 7:30am at the Deerwood Country Club. For his presentation, Council Member Becton spoke on issues ranging from the on-going Redistricting process, his recent legislative accomplishments, and the 2021-22, $1.4 Billion City Budget including the $494.7 Million Capital Improvement Plan.
Council Member Becton began his remarks by thanking the group for the opportunity to speak and how it has been a pleasure to serve as the Council Member for the area for the past six years. He then dived into the process of Redistricting, talking about how much District 11 has grown since the last census. District 11, he stated has increased dramatically, seeing the population increase 50.3% from 60,389 residents to 90,767 in just ten years. Council Member Becton explained to the group that Redistricting is an eight-month process, and the city-wide elections in the Spring of 2023 will be the first time that future elections will be affected by the newly drawn lines. Council Member Becton also discussed how Communities of Interest was a major principle that he found important for his area and the necessity to keep the Baymeadows area all under a single representative stated the following:
“Baymeadows is the heart of District 11”, Council Member Becton stated. “In protecting the progress that has been made in recent years and to reverse previous years of decline in the area, a single representative is necessary to focus completely to that end and to make sure we continue to bring this area back to its glory”, Council Member Becton added. “It was ideas in the beginning by others to split the Baymeadows area up, specifically the Deerwood Community, that I pushed back and drew a line in the sand to defend that principle”, Council Member Becton concluded.
In discussing accomplishments within the area that Council Member Becton was proud of, he spoke about several initiatives that were of recent success of his work:
- The second of two new fire stations within District 11 for which Council Member Becton made a priority to find, is about to break ground in the coming weeks, Fire Station #74 in the Etown Community. This accomplishment of Council Member Becton included the negotiation with the property owner, the Davis Family, to have the land donated, along with pre-engineering and design work. This public-private partnership provided a tremendous value in that it not only provided valuable property within a geographical strategic area, but it also helped expedite a process that would have taken years to complete otherwise. It was also noted that the first of the two new Fire Stations #63 was scheduled to open later in the month.
- Another major accomplishment was a recent bill that was passed by City Council which authorized the agreement Council Member Becton negotiated to secure a land donation for a new “Active Park” on the Southside along AC Skinner Parkway. Along with the donation of land valued over $4 Million, he also negotiated a cash donation of $1 Million by the property owner for its site development.
“The public-private partnership agreement was a huge win for the area”. Council Member Becton acknowledged. “As the Southside has seen tremendous growth, the need for fields and open spaces for team activities has not kept up with that growth”, Council Member Becton added. “Finding large acres of available land is almost impossible and certainly not cheap, if you do, therefore, this is a huge accomplishment that will benefit the City of Jacksonville and the Southside for many years to come”, Council Member Becton proudly exclaimed.
- Another major accomplishment, Council Member Becton included, was the initiative to bring city water to a low income, challenged community on the Southside. The Cordial Drive Water Project, funded by an appropriation for which Council Member Becton helped to secure through the introduction and passage of Ordinance 2021-141, invested $150,000 along with the help of JEA to install and provide safe, reliable, and clean water to residents within that community.
- Highlighting a major initiative within the recent budget, Council Member Becton also announced that a 1.5-mile segment of Race Track Road was going to be improved expanding a remaining section of the roadway from 2-lanes to 4. This initiative of another public-private partnership with the adjacent property owner for which Council Member Becton spent years developing, secured funding of $10.6 Million within the 2021-22 Capital Improvement Plan to make this project happen.
Finally, Council Member Becton covered the topic of the recently passed $1.413 Billion dollar budget. As Council Member Becton explained that while the Millage Rate will stay the same, property taxes may still go up for some. That is due in part to the booming economy in Jacksonville. In this previous fiscal year, the City of Jacksonville netted at 6.9% increase in Ad Valorem Taxes for a total of $796 Million, which makes up 59% of total revenue. Overall, revenue was up $72 Million this year. When discussing the Capital Improvement Projects portion of the budget, CM Becton also discussed the various projects that would be coming to District 11. These include a pool at Atlantic Coast High School, improvements to Fort Family Park for added Astro Turf to the upcoming new baseball facility, improvements to Genovar Park, and new traffic signals for Baymeadows Rd E at Stonebridge Village and Hampton Park.
For more information on these projects and Redistricting, visit: