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FSCJ picks Jax attorney to investigate Pell Grant blunder

FSCJ picks Jax attorney to investigate Pell Grant blunder

FSCJ picks Jax attorney to investigate Pell Grant blunder
Photo Credit: Gene Wexler
FSCJ board chair Jim McCollum speaks about Pell Grants at a Tuesday news conference at the schools Advanced Technology Center.

FSCJ picks Jax attorney to investigate Pell Grant blunder

The Florida State College at Jacksonville says they will conduct their own independent investigation as to what went wrong in their Pell Grant process which left the school around $2.8 million in debt to the U.S. Department of Education.

Jacksonville real estate attorney Bill Scheu will investigate and report on what exactly went wrong in the process that gave out Pell Grants for the 2010-11 year.

“Upon completion of his review, Mr. Scheu will present his findings to the public in the form of an independent, objective report,” said Jim McCollum, chairman of the FSCJ board.

He said the report is expected by the board’s meeting in early August.

“It will then be the College’s responsibility to inform the public regarding how the issues will be resolved and how the problems will be prevented in the future.”

McCollum referred to Mr. Scheu as one of “our most trusted and respected citizens.”

Bill Scheu was appointed by then-Governor Jeb Bush as Duval elections supervisor in 2004.  In the 1990s, he helped Planned Parenthood and the Christian Coalition reach an agreement on sex education in schools.  He also helped the NAACP and the School Board reach an agreement on desegregation.

The issue at hand is that FSCJ gave out about $2.8 million in Pell Grants in 2010-11 to students who did not submit the proper documentation.  At first the school rejected the applications, but the students later got the money by filing appeals.

The school says the number of students who may owe their grant money back is 700, down from more than 970 in April.  McCollum said they reviewed all of the approximately 6,000 appeals processed in that school year.

The Times Union reported today that Steve Bowers, vice president of administrative services, said that as of today, 223 students have contacted the school about providing better documentation.

The school also says it will be conducting an audit of the 2011-12 school year, meaning more letters may go out informing students they need further documentation to keep their loan money.  Otherwise, they'll have to pay it back.

McCollum says the errors in the process resulted from three sources:

                -“An extraordinary staff workload due to the unprecedented number of financial aid applications, services and appeals.
                -“The compassionate staff and their well-meaning but misguided efforts to help students stay in school and graduate.
                -“Poor judgment in the granting of appeals before all requirements were met.”

Steve R. Wallace, FSCJ’s President, said the staff was trying to do the right thing to help students. Still, the school says employees have been disciplined and more will be once the investigation results are in.

“Staff will be fully accountable for all errors found.”

The school is not in the repayment phase yet and they haven’t set a time limit on repaying the Department of Education.

McCollum says they are going “all out to work with students” to resolve the issue.

“We expect to have a final accounting of errors made in both 2010-11 and in the current year in the second half July.”

When asked how long the students have to provide proper documentation for their grants, FSCJ’s president Wallace said that the time period is 30 days, but they will probably be lenient about the deadline.

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This center is open from 8AM to 8PM every day beginning Monday, September 25th, offering you in person support and assistance for both individuals and businesses. That includes helping you register for federal disaster assistance, applying for Small Business Administration loans, giving you updates on your specific case, processing appeals, and connecting you with state program information. Workshops FEMA representatives will be available to assist Clay County residents from 10:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m. at the following dates/locations. You should bring information about your social security number, the name of your insurance company, description of damage, income and other financial information, and contact information. The Salvation Army will be providing meals on site.  -Saturday, Sept. 16, Orange Park Library, 2054 Plainfield Ave, Orange Park, FL 32073 -Sunday, Sept. 17, Keystone Heights City Hall, 555 S Lawrence Blvd, Keystone Heights, FL 32656 -Monday, Sept. 18, FEMA Team will be canvasing the area for additional impacted areas -Tuesday, Sept. 19, Fleming Island Library, 1895 Town Center Blvd, Orange Park, FL 32003 -Wednesday, Sept. 20 – FEMA Team will be canvasing the area for additional impacted areas -Thursday, Sept. 21, Supervisor of Elections Office, 500 N Orange Ave, Green Cove Springs, FL 32043 Hurricane Irma  Resource Recovery Event Friday, September 22, 4-7PM at Middleburg Civic Association at 2102 Palmetto St, Middleburg. 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This will serve as a one-stop-shop for anyone seeking one-on-one help, including access to the Florida Division of Emergency Management, DEMA, the US Small Business Administration, and other state agencies. You can get more information from the Emergency Operations Center hotline at 904-824-5550. Workshops Monday, September 18th:  St. Johns County and Senator Marco Rubio are hosting a Disaster Recovery Center event for residents affected by Hurricane Irma from 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. at the St. Johns County Administration Building, 500 San Sebastian View. Representatives from FEMA, insurance agencies, and other state, federal, and local entities will be available to answer questions and provide needed hurricane recovery assistance and information. For more information regarding Hurricane Irma recovery and response, please visit www.sjcfl.us/hurricane or call the St. Johns County Emergency Management hotline at 904.824.5550. 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The teams will be doing door-to-door canvassing of areas affected by Hurricane Irma, and Nassau County Emergency Management will post information on the specific areas as that is available. They will provide information directly to survivors on how to register for FEMA disaster aid and other things. These DSAT members will have identification. If you are not sure if the person who contacts you is a legitimate DSAT representative, you can call the Nassau County Sheriff’s Office non-emergency line at 904-225-5174.
  • WOKV will continue updating this list of cancellations, closures/openings, and resources for you in connection to Hurricane Irma as new information comes in. This list represents Baker, Clay, Duval, Nassau, and St. Johns counties. POST-STORM RESOURCES In Baker, Clay, Duval, Nassau, and St. Johns counties, if your home has suffered damage, you can apply for individual assistance. To register online, go to www.disasterassistance.gov. To register by phone, 1-800-621-3362 (FEMA) Several resource and recovery centers are opening across the First Coast if you need help registering with FEMA. Locations can be found here. The U.S. Small Business Administration has added more counties to the disaster declaration in Florida affected by Hurricane Irma that began on Sept. 4, 2017. Eligible for both Physical and Economic Injury Disaster Loans: Duval, Clay, and St. Johns. Eligible for Economic Injury Disaster Loans: Baker and Nassau counties. St. Johns County has opened four water distribution points: SJC Parks and Recreation Administration Office at 2175 Mizell Road (THIS ONE IS NOW CLOSED), the Solomon Calhoun Community Center at 1300 Duval Street, Flagler Estates Road and Water Office at 9850 Light Avenue, and Al Wilke Park at 6150 South Main Street (THIS ONE IS NOW CLOSED). They will be open daily 8am-7pm through Friday. Limit one case of water per car. The City of Jacksonville is distributing water from 10AM to 5PM while supplies last at Hobby Lobby, 14286 Beach Blvd; McDonalds, 5751 Beach Blvd; Edwaters College, 1853 Kings Road; and the Supervisor of Elections Office, 1 Imeson Park Blvd. The Prime Osborne Convention Center, 1000 Water Street, is opening its doors to help people seeking to cool off with some air conditioning and access to electricity and internet. You need to bring your own equipment. The Center will be open 3PM to 9PM Wednesday and 9AM to 9PM Thursday, September 14 through Sunday, September 17. St. Johns County has opened a post-impact shelter at the Solomon Calhoun Community Center at 1300 Duval Street (THIS SHELTER IS NOW CLOSED). This is for anyone who can’t return to his or her home. All other shelters are now closed. THESE SHELTERS ARE NOW CLOSED---In Nassau County, there is a shelter at The Journey Church at 95707 Amelia Concourse, Fernandina Beach. The facility has special needs capabilities and is pet friendly. A second shelter has also opened at the First Baptist Church in Hilliard. In Duval County, The Legends Center, 5054 Soutel Drive, remains open as a general population shelter, but is now closed as a special needs shelter (THIS SHELTER IS NOW CLOSED). Southside Baptist Church, 1936 Hendricks Avenue, is open as a general population shelter. THIS SHELTER IS NOW CLOSED---The Baker County Family Service Center by Keller Intermediate School, 420 8th Street in Macclenny, remains open as a general population shelter. Clay County has opened a post-storm shelter at First Baptist Church Middleburg, 2645 Blanding Blvd. FEMA has issued an Individual Assistance Declaration for St. Johns County in response to damage incurred due to Hurricane Irma. To apply for individual assistance, please visit www.disasterassistance.gov or call 800.621.3362. The Nassau County Emergency Operations Center is providing free water for residents to pick up at the Callahan Fairgrounds. St. Johns County is offering a limited number of free tarps for residents with homes affected by Hurricane Irma. Tarp sizes include 20’ x 30’ or 30’ x 40’ and are available on a first-come, first-serve basis at the St. Johns County Health and Human Services Building, 200 San Sebastian View. Please call 904.209.1250 in advance to request a tarp that can be picked up at the Health and Human Services Building during standard business hours. At Governor Scott’s direction, the Florida Highway Patrol continues to escort fuel resupply trucks so fuel is quickly delivered to communities across Florida. In an effort to best support the communities it serves, Sam’s Club has reopened all club locations in Florida and is temporarily waiving its membership requirements for the communities affected by Hurricane Irma at select club locations. In Jacksonville, that includes 300 Busch Drive, 10690 Beach Blvd, and 6373 Youngerman Circle. Florida Commissioner of Agriculture Adam H. Putnam issued an emergency order to waive the fees to replace Florida concealed weapon licenses and security guard licenses that were lost or destroyed during the hurricane. The U.S. Department of Agriculture accepted a request to allow all students in 48 counties subject to a FEMA Major Disaster Declaration access to free school meals through the National School Lunch Program. These changes, in effect Sept. 18 – Oct. 20, will potentially impact over 3,000 schools and 2.5 million children. Baker, Clay, Duval, Nassau, and St. Johns counties are all covered. A Mobile Disaster Recovery Center is opening Sunday at 1:30PM, at the Clay County Fairgrounds, building 3- 2497 State Road 16, Green Cove Springs. This center is open from 8AM to 8PM every day beginning Monday, September 25th, offering you in person support and assistance for both individuals and businesses. That includes helping you register for federal disaster assistance, applying for Small Business Administration loans, giving you updates on your specific case, processing appeals, and connecting you with state program information. HOTLINES Individuals needing assistance with clean-up on their private property are encouraged to contact Crisis Cleanup at 1-800-451-1954. As they are able, reputable and vetted relief agencies may assist you and your neighbors cut fallen trees, remove drywall, insulation, flooring, furniture, appliances, tarp roofs, etc. All services are free, but service is not guaranteed due to the overwhelming need. Attorney General Pam Bondi has opened up a Price Gouging Hotline: (866) 9-NO-SCAM. Florida Emergency Information Hotline for all state residents: 1-800-342-3557. The Department of Financial Services (DFS) has launched a Hurricane Irma insurance information hotline: 1-877-MY-FL-CFO. St. Johns County Emergency Management has opened a hotline for residents to call about county services, storm response, and events: (904) 824-5550. St. Johns County has also launched a Building Services Structural Hotline at (904) 827-6836. Clay County Call Center 904-284-7703 JTA Customer Service 5:30AM through 8:30PM 904.630.3100 or TTY 904.630.3191. Hotline for storm-related questions and problems in Jacksonville is 904-630-CITY In Nassau County, iIf you have any questions or concerns not addressed, please contact our Citizens Information Center at 1-904-548-0900. JEA Customer Care Consultants: 904.655.6000 or 800.683.5542- Consultants are able to give customers an idea of when a crew will be assigned to their area or circuit, according to JEA’s CEO, but it doesn’t guarantee when it will happen or when power will be restored. Consultants are also able to answer questions about why their power outage map shows you have power when you do not.   JEA and United Way- All counties: 2.1.1 or 904.632.0600- Customers without power are able to call this line seeking assistance, and JEA says they will work to try and transfer those to an agency that might be able to provide essential needs. Florida Blue, in partnership with New Directions Behavioral Health, is offering emotional support to individuals and loved ones affected by Hurricane Irma. The companies are providing community access to specially trained behavioral health counselors via a 24-hour, toll-free help line: 800-843-6514. K-12 SCHOOLS Duval County Schools: Duval County Public Schools will be closed on Friday, September 8 through Friday, September 15. School offices, after-school activities, and extended day care will also be closed those days. They aim to reopen on Monday. High School football games that had to be rescheduled because of Irma will now take place at the following days and times: Paxon v Yulee, 9/18 at 6PM at Paxon; Fletcher v Atlantic Coast, 9/18 at 6PM at Fletcher; Wolfson v Fernandina, 9/18 at 7PM at Wolfson; Westside v Ponte Vedra, 9/18 at 6PM at Westside; Lee v Columbia, 9/19 at 6PM at Lee; Mandarin v Deland, 9/19 at 6PM at Mandarin; Sandalwood v Spruce Creek, 9/19 at 6PM at Sandalwood; Terry Parker v Bishop Kenny, 9/22 at 7PM at Bishop Kenny; Ed White v Nease, 10/6 at 7PM at Ed White; Ribault v Suwanee, 10/10 at 7PM at Suwanee; Eglewood v Middleburg, 10/17 at 7PM at Endlewood; Baldwin v Stanton, 10/30 at 6PM at Baldwin. The Catholic Diocese of St. Augustine has announced all Diocesan schools will be closed Friday 9/8 through Wednesday 9/13. The only schools that will not open Sept. 14 are Blessed Trinity, Cathedral Parish School and Early Learning Center, Christ the King, Morning Star and Morning Star High School, San Jose and San Juan del Rio. The Salvation Army of Northeast Florida's Child Development Center at 318 N. Ocean St. will be closed on Friday, September 8, and Monday, September 11, and Tuesday, September 12. The center will remain closed for all dates that Duval County schools are closed. The Jericho School for Children with Autism will be closed on Friday, September 8 through Wednesday, September 13. School resumes Thursday, September 14. Beaches Episcopal School cancels all after school activities Thursday. School will be closed Friday, September 8 through Wednesday, September 13. Classes will resume Thursday.  The first hurricane make-up day will be Thursday, November 9th, which was initially a Teacher Planning Day.  Jacksonville Country Day School will be closed on Friday, September 8, through Wednesday, September 13.  Extended Care and all after school activities, including Sharks basketball games, are also canceled on those days. They are reopening Thursday, September 14th. The Bolles School is closed through Wednesday. It will reopen Thursday. Bishop Kenny High School resumes classes Thursday. Arlington Community Academy Elementary is closed through Wednesday, September 13th. They are opening Thursday. Clay County Schools: All Clay schools will be closed Friday, September 8, through Friday, September 15th. School administrators are asked to report to their schools to assess damage on Thursday, September 14th. Transportation mechanics will report to the Middleburg compound on Thursday. Maintenance Staff will report to Operations on Thursday. Cafeteria Managers will report to their schools on Friday, September 15th. School board meeting on September 7 was canceled. The board plans to hold two meetings to make up for the cancellation, one on the 18th and one on the 26th. High School football makeup games: Clay High v Orange Park High, Oct 6th at 7PM at Orange Park High; Fleming Island High v Bucholz High, Sept 18th at 7PM at Fleming Island High; Middleburg High v Englewood High, Oct 17 at 7PM at Englewood High; Oakleaf High v Bartram Trail High, Oct 6 at 7PM at Bartram Trail High School; Orange Park High v Clay High, Oct 6 at 7PM at Orange Park High; Ridgeview High v Palatka High, Sept 18 at 7PM at Palatka High. Keystone Heights High v Umatilla High has been canceled. Nassau County Schools: All public schools and district offices in the district will be closed Friday, September 8 through Thursday, September, 14th. 12-month employees should report to work Thursday, September 14th, if possible. Classes will resume Friday. St. Johns County Schools: All schools will be closed Friday, Stepember 8, through Friday, September,15th. Schools will reopen Monday. All extracurricular and interscholastic activities have been canceled starting Friday, September 8th.  All St. Johns County after-school programs held at the Ketterlinus Gym and the W. E. Harris Community Center will resume on Monday, September 18 to coincide with schools reopening Baker County Schools: Baker County Public Schools are closed Friday, September 8, through Monday, September 18. Classes will resume Tuesday. COLLEGES AND UNIVERSITIES Jacksonville University will be closed Friday, September 8, through Friday, September 15. Normal activities resume Monday, September 18th. FSCJ will be closed from Friday, September 8, and remain closed through Sunday the 17th. Classes are set to resume Monday, September, 18, at regularly scheduled times. The Florida School for the Deaf and Blind has canceled classes Thursday September 7 through the weekend. Classes will resume on Monday, September 18th.  Florida Coastal School of Law will resume classes Monday, Septemeber 18.  University of North Florida classes, including online classes, have been canceled from Friday, September 8, through Wednesday, September 13th. Class at the University of North Florida will resume on Thursday, Sept. 14. Offices will reopen , Wednesday, Sept. 13,  Edward Waters College will close Friday, September 8 and reopen Wednesday, September 13. Any classes, activities, or events that are scheduled to be held on campus between Sept. 8 and Sept. 12 have been cancelled.  The Edward Waters College Football Game Saturday, September 16th has been moved to University Christian School at 5520 University Blvd. It will take place at 4:30PM agaisnt Cumberland. St. Johns River State College campuses will be closed Friday, September 8. The College and classes will resume Monday, September 18. Flagler College closed Friday, September 8. Residence halls was opening Sunday, September 16th, and classes are resuming Monday, September 18th. TRANSPORTATION The County Road 218 Bridge east of Blanding in Clay County is closed for emergency repairs. The Roscoe Boulevard Bridge in St. Johns County is closed for emergency repairs. The Heckscher Drive Bridge at Browns Creek has reopened following emergency repairs. All of Duval County’s major bridges are now open, including Jacksonville’s Intracoastal bridges- Wonderwood, Beach, Atlantic, and JTB- the Acosta, Main Street, Dames Point, Hart, Mathews, and the Buckman Bridge have reopened, but you still need to drive with caution. The Black Creek Bridge on 218 in Clay County is back open. All St. Johns County bridges have reopened as of 11 am, Tuesday, September 12. Everyone is asked to be cautious of standing water hazards and debris obstructions. The Jacksonville International Airport ended operations Saturday 9/9 at 7pm. The airport reopened Tuesday. Flight ops are expected to gradually ramp up, and you should contact your airline for the most up-to-date flight information The Skyway will close at 9 p.m. on Friday, September 8 and reopen Wednesday, September 13th. The St. Johns River Ferry is scheduled to close after normal service on Thursday, September 7th, to relocate the boat inland. Service is resuming Thursday, September 14th. All JTA Bus Routes are back in service as of Wednesday, September 13. There may still be some detours. St. Johns County Council on Aging (COA) will resume normal paratransit tomorrow, September 14th. COA Sunshine Bus Service will resume today, Wednesday, September 13th beginning with the regularly scheduled afternoon runs on the following lines: Red, Blue, Purple, Orange, Green, Teal and Connector. Full hours of service on the above listed lines will resume Thursday, September 14th. The Hastings Circular will not run until the roads are deemed safe for travel. All construction work by the Florida Department of Transportation has been suspended temporarily because of the storm. Northeast Florida Regional Airport closed at 6PM Saturday. The airport opened to fixed wing aircraft Tuesday, September 12th. It’s also open and operational for helicopter traffic. Cargo operations at JAXPORT owned terminals ended at 11:59PM Friday. The Port of Jacksonville in its entirety- including private terminals- closed Saturday at 8PM. JAXPORT terminals and gates are now open, and the Coast Guard has cleared the entire Port of Jacksonville. GOVERNMENT All State of Florida offices will be closed on Friday, September 8. FDLE offices in Nassau and St. Johns are closed Wednesday, September 13. The Nassau County office remains closed Thursday, September 14th. All City of Jacksonville offices will be closed Friday, Monday, and Tuesday. Non-essential city services are also called off for those days.City services resume as normal Wednesday. All Jacksonville Public Library branches resume operations on Wednesday, Sept. 13. Overdue fines will be waived for items due when the library is closed. All St. Johns County library branches are open and available for residents and visitors to enjoy air conditioning, outlets to charge phones and devices, and other media services. The Clay County Animal Shelter evacuated because of Black Creek flooding. It will remain closed until further notice. If you need Animal Control assistance, call 904-269-6342 or email animalcontrol@claycountygov.com. The Florida Department of Corrections is canceling weekend visitation at all institutions for Saturday, September 9, and Sunday, September 10. All Duval County Tax Collector branch locations will close at noon on Thursday, September 7th. They reopened with limited staffing Wednesday, September 13th. All administrative offices in St. Johns County, the City of St. Augustine, and the City of St. Augustine Beach will be closed Tuesday, September 12. St. Johns County Administration Offices resume standard operations Thursday. The City of St. Augustine will open as power is restored. All administration offices, libraries, pet center, and recreational facilities will be open for standard business hours. The Duval County Clerk of Courts closed on Friday, September 8. The Chief Judge has ordered the Courthouse remain closed the rest of the week, as well as the Clerk’s Office. Regular hours should resume Monday, September 18th. The Fourth Circuit State Attorney’s Office is reopening Thursday, September 14th. Nassau County courts are closed through Thursday, September 14th. All perspective jurors who received summons to report to the Robert M. Foster Justice Center on Friday September 15, 2017 are excused and should not report. The summons will not be reissued.  Baker County courts closed through Tuesday, September 13th, and reopened Wednesday, September 13th. St. Johns County Courts closed Friday September 8th, and reopen Thursday, September 14th. The Clay County Courthouse and all Clerk of the Circuit Court branch offices in Clay County closed on Friday, September 8th. Court dates and services originally scheduled for these dates are impacted and have been rescheduled. Courts plan to reopen Thursday, September 14th. The United States Bankruptcy Court Jacksonville Division will be closed on Friday, September 8 and Monday, September 11, 2017. Naval Station Mayport is open to unrestricted traffic as of noon Wednesday, through the main gate. The Emergency Assistance Center is open at the base Fleet and Family Support Center (Bldg 1). You can also contact the Fleet and Family Support Center at 270-6600. The off base commissary and Navy Exchange are open at their normal hours. NAS Jax is opening for normal working hours Wednesday, September 13th. Members of the Naval Facilities Engineering Command (NAVFAC) Southeast Regional Call Center (RCC) are headed to Naval Air Station (NAS) Pensacola Sept. 8, to relocate operations before Hurricane Irma reaches the Jacksonville, Florida area. NAS Jacksonville is telling personnel to shelter in place from 7PM Sunday through noon Monday. PARKS AND BEACHES Clay County is closing all boat ramps until Monday, September 18. The Jacksonville Zoo will open Thursday, September 14th. The St. Augustine Alligator Farm is opening Thursday, September 14th. The Castillo de San Marcos in St. Augustine is closed from Thursday, September 7, until further notice. Fort Matanzas in St. Augustine is closed from Thursday, September 7, until further notice. The Jacksonville Beach Golf Course will reopen Thursday, September 14th. The driving range remains closed. The large dog park at Paws Dog Park in Jax Beach has reopened. The small dog park previously reopened. Due to significant damage, erosion, and debris, as a result of Hurricane Irma, St. Johns County is urging all residents and visitors to avoid the beach, beach access points, and walkovers until further notice. Swimming in the ocean is also discouraged due to high surf, rip currents, and debris The following St. Johns County Parks and Recreation Facilities are closed pending inspections due to Hurricane Irma: Alpine Groves Park, Shands Pier, Riverdale Picnic Area, Bird Island Park, Canopy Park, Vail Park, Palmo Dock, Collier-Blocker-Puryear Park, Solomon Calhoun Center, Ketterlinus Gym, St. John's County Ocean and Fishing Pier, Nease Beachfront Park Jacksonville’s beaches are open, but you’re urged to use extreme caution and not go in the water at this time because of rough conditions and debris. The St. Johns Golf Club will reopen Friday, September 15th. The Slammer & Squire at World Golf Village is closed until further notice. The Solomon Calhoun Community Center and pool will remain closed through Wednesday, September 20 as it remains a post-impact shelter for residents affected by Hurricane Irma. The main parking garage in St. Augustine open Thursday, September 14th. $12/day fees will apply. The following Florida Park Service state parks remain closed- St. Johns County: Faver-Dykes State Park EVENTS The Ponte Vedra Auto Show has been rescheduled for Sunday, September 24 and will take place at the Nocatee Town Center. It was originally planned for September 10. The Riverside Arts Market on September 9th has been canceled. The market is anticipated to return to normal operations on September 16.  The Bryan Adams show at Daily's Place on Saturday, Sept. 9 has been postponed. Sing Out Loud Festival dates have been canceled on September 8th, September 9th, and September 10th. The Sing Out Loud festival scheduled for September 15 through 17 will continue as planned this weekend with minimal stage relocations or show cancellations. Please see the updated schedule below for concert venue details. For more information regarding the Sing Out Loud festival, please visit www.singoutloudfestival.com. The Adam Ant: Anthems Tour at the Florida Theatre on Sunday, September 10 has been postponed. Florida Theatre shows scheduled for Saturday September 23rd and beyond will continue as planned. Events scheduled in Jacksonville Beach this weekend of 9/9 have been canceled, including BRUVAL, Chemo Noir 1K Run, and the Travis Manion 9/11 Heroes Run. The Jax Armada is canceling the match on Saturday, September 9th. It's being rescheduled for September 27. St.Augustine Amphitheatre is canceling the Modest Mouse concert set for Thursday, September 7. The Blackberry Smoke concert on Friday, September 8, has been postponed. This Friday-Sunday,  9/15-17, Widespread Panic concerts at the St. Augustine Amphitheatre will proceed as originally scheduled. The Jacksonville Jumbo Shrimp will not host any playoff games. Playoff tickets already purchased can be refunded. The FSCJ Artist Series kickoff event for Wednesday, September 13, has been canceled. Thursday September 7 night concerts at The Landing has been postponed. The Jacksonville Humane Society’s Toast to the Animals has been canceled. The International Coastal Cleanup scheduled for Saturday, Sept. 16, is cancelled. The Clay County Sheriff’s Office Zone 4 (Middleburg/Clay Hill) SheriffsNET Meeting for 9/14 has been canceled. In the aftermath of Hurricane Irma and to help affected Creators, One Spark and Bold Events are postponing the One Spark 2017 Innovation Festival until the spring of 2018. This year’s event has been rescheduled to take place on Friday, April 6 and Saturday, April 7, at EverBank Field, with a kickoff concert to be hosted by Bold Events at the new Daily’s Place amphitheater on Thursday, April 5. The St. Augustine Amphitheater has canceled the September 8 Blackberry Smoke and Chris Robinson Brotherhood concert event. Refunds will be granted at point of purchase. BUSINESSES All First Coast YMCA’s are now open, YMCA Afterschool prorams will resume when schools reopen, but some locations are offering camp: Duval County 9/14-15, duPont YMCA Youth Development Campus; in Clay County 9/13-15, Barco-Newton Family YMCA and Dye Clay Family YMCA; in Nassau County 9/14, Callahan Center and Yulee Kids Campus; in St. Johns County 9/14-15, Ponte Vedra YMCA. All SMG Jacksonville Box Offices & Administrative Offices are closed. They will resume normal business hours on Tuesday, September 13. All Florida Blue Centers in Jacksonville- Town Center, River City Marketplace, and Winston YMCA will be closed on Saturday, September 9. MOCA Jacksonville and NOLA MOCA will close at 9pm Thursday, September 7 and will remain closed until further notice. Jacksonville Symphony administrative and ticket office in the Times-Union Center for the Performing Arts closed 2pm today, Thursday, Sept. 7th. The office opened Wednesday, September 13.  All VyStar Credit Union branch locations, call center, and operations will be closed Saturday, Monday, and Tuesday. The Jacksonville Humane Society is closing 1PM Saturday through Monday. They are reopening Thursday, September 14. JIA USO closed 11:00 AM Thursday, September 7.  NAS USO close at 5:00 PM Thursday, September 7, and Mayport USO closed at 9:00 PM Thursday, September 7. They opened Tuesday, September 12 and Wednesday, September 13. SAPA Extrusions is closing their plant in St. Augustine Friday at 3pm. Jax Federal Credit Union branches will be closed Saturday, September 9 through Tuesday, September 12. All Clay Electric district offices will be closed to the public Monday, Sept. 11 and Tuesday, Sept. 12 so personnel can focus on restoration efforts after Hurricane Irma. Northrop Grumman employees impacted by Hurricane Irma who need assistance or information can call 1-800-995-4318, or continue to visit www.northropgrumman.com/emergency for updates. The Northrop Grumman site in St. Augustine is closed on Tuesday, Sept. 12, 2017.  HOSPITALS AND MEDICAL OFFICES Both Baptist Beaches and Nassau Medical Center ERs and hospitals have reopened after they were evacuated because of the storm. Both will resume full operations by Wednesday, September 13th, at 8AM. St. Vincent's Riverside facility transferred their most clinically appropriate patients to St. Vincent's Southside and St. Vincent's Clay County on September 11, due to flooding in the area. Alignment Healthcare at 3520 St. Johns Bluff, which serves Florida Blue Preferred HMO Medicare members, will reopen tomorrow, Sept. 14. The location at 5500 Blanding Road will be closed the remainder of this week due to flooding and anticipates reopening next week. All patient appointments are being rescheduled or relocated to the St. Johns Bluff location. UF Health Jacksonville remains open. They have sent medical staff to shelters to help as needed. PRE-STORM EVACUATIONS ALL CURFEWS IN NORTHEAST FLORIDA HAVE NOW BEEN LIFTED Jacksonville’s Mayor has issued a mandatory evacuation for anyone living in Zone A or Zone B evacuate. The mandatory evacuation has also been extended for people living in mobile homes, or in low-lying areas. Nassau County has issued mandatory evacuations for anyone in Zones A,C, or F, with the order going into effect Friday, September 8, at 6 PM. St. Johns County has mandatory evacuations for anyone in Zones A and B, which includes St. Augustine and Hastings. Clay County has a mandatory evacuation for Zones A, B, and C as well as low lying, modular, or vulnerable homes for Saturday at 6AM. Baker County has issued a mandatory evacuation of all residents of Steel Bridge Road- east of the collection site, all residents of Webb Haven Road, Persimmon and Ash Road in the Turkey Creek II neighborhood, Myrtle, Camphor, Chestnut, and Gum Roads, all residents on the west side of Aspen Road, all residents on Lil Dixie Trail, all residents on River Oak Circle, all residents on River Oak Drive, all residents on Confederate Drive East, all residents of Cedar Creek Farms Road. You’re also encourages to seek shelter if you’re in a mobile home or compromised shelter. The Florida Department of Corrections has evacuated Bridges of Jacksonville. Tolls have been lifted across the state to aid in evacuations. PRE-STORM RESOURCES The City of Jacksonville has opened 12 shelters. Find locations HERE. Baker County opened two shelters, one for the general population and one for special needs. More details HERE. Clay County has announced the opening of four shelters. Find locations HERE. St. Johns County is opening five shelters on Saturday morning at 6 AM. Info posted HERE. Nassau County is open five shelters, starting 6 PM Friday. More info HERE. City Rescue Mission currently provides shelter for 250 people. They are providing accommodations for 100 additional people at City Rescue Mission's New Life Inn, 234 W. State Street, Jacksonville, FL 32202, Friday at noon. The Salvation Army’s Towers Center of Hope at 900 W. Adams Street in downtown Jacksonville will open its shelter to the homeless. The shelter will open as weather dictates and will remain open as long as needed. JTA has three designated locations for anyone evacuating from the beaches who doesn’t have transportation: Fletcher High School, Mayport Middle School, and Jacksonville Beach Elementary School.  Florida Governor Rick Scott has ordered all K-12 public schools, state colleges, state universities, and state offices to be closed Friday through Monday so the facilities can be used for sheltering and emergency management operations. Nassau County Emergency Management says the Town of Callahan is out of fuel and all gas station will be closed until Tuesday. Airbnb activated its Disaster Response Program to aid Floridians forced to evacuate from their homes in connection to Hurricane Irma as well as relief workers arriving to provide assistance.   Beginning at 12:01 a.m. Eastern on September 9 and running through midnight on September 11, Verizon is giving postpaid customers talk, text and data relief while prepaid customers receive an extra 3 GB for talk, text and data. Through the storm period for our area, St. Vincent's HealthCare is offering FREE 24-hour non-emergency virtual care via video chat through our new service called St. Vincent's On Demand.  Because of how the St. Vincent's On Demand system is set up, patients will need to pay the $49.99 fee up front, but their credit cards will be refunded 2 - 3 days after the visit if it's within the storm period. As Hurricane Irma continues to make its way north we’re automatically issuing credits and waiving additional fees to give unlimited data, talk and texts to AT&T wireless customers and unlimited talk and texts to AT&T PREPAID customers across all of Florida, through at least Sept. 17.
  • Another Disaster Recovery Center is standing up on the First Coast.  Soon after Irma moved through our area, a DRC opened in St. Johns County. Since there, there have been several disaster recovery and relief events taking place, but now seven-day-a-week help has been established in Clay County. FULL LIST: Disaster relief and recovery events and centers in Northeast Florida  A Mobile Disaster Recovery Center opened Sunday around 1:30PM and will operate through 8PM. Normal operating hours begin Monday, September 25th of 8AM through 8PM seven days a week. The DRC is at the Clay County Fairgrounds, building 3- 2497 State Road 16, Green Cove Springs. This center offers you in person support and assistance for both individuals and businesses. That includes helping you register for federal disaster assistance, applying for Small Business Administration loans, giving you updates on your specific case, processing appeals, and connecting you with state program information.  The DRC was initially going to open Monday, but Clay County Emergency Management tells WOKV the DRC arrived early, so they decided to get started sooner than expected. There are four other DRC’s open in Florida- the on at the Wind Mitigation Building in St. Augustine, as well as locations in Boynton Beach, Riverview, and Ft. Myers. The Small Business Administration also opened a Business Recovery Center in Jacksonville, at the Beaver Street Enterprise Center, 728 Blanche Street, building 2.  You can also register directly for federal assistance on your own. All First Coast counties are eligible for individual assistance, under the federal disaster declaration.

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