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Three Big Things
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“Riverwalk Place” proposed for old Courthouse/Annex site in Downtown

“Riverwalk Place” proposed for old Courthouse/Annex site in Downtown

One of the development groups behind a plan to build a Convention Center at the Jacksonville Shipyards site, is now putting forward a proposal for “Riverwalk Place”, less than a mile down the street. GALLERY: “Riverwalk Place” in Downtown Jacksonville Jacksonville’s Downtown Investment Authority solicited bids to build a Convention Center, hotel, and parking garage at the site of the old Courthouse and City Hall Annex. Three proposals were returned, including one from Rimrock Devlin DeBartolo Jacksonville, LLC. That group is, in turn, a partnership between Rimrock Devlin Development and DeBartolo Development, LLC.  Despite offering that plan, RDD then partnered with Iguana Investments Florida- which is a development group backed by Jacksonville Jaguars owner Shad Khan- to propose a Convention Center and hotel for the Shipyards site instead. The DIA previously selected Iguana as the master developer for that site, and Iguana is pitching this Convention Center project as the first phase of the overall redevelopment.  GALLERY: Convention Center proposed for Jacksonville Shipyards “We believe the Shipyards is the optimal location for the Convention Center and hotel because of its riverfront location, ability to expand if needed, and synergies gained from its proximity to the existing sports venues and other development activities planned in the immediate aftermath, says DeBartolo Development President and Chief Operating Officer Edward Kobel.  Now, RDD is offering alternate plans for the old Courthouse/Annex site, where the DIA initially imagined the Convention Center potentially being constructed.  “Our alternative development proposal for the Old Courthouse property will serve as a perfect complement and will provide downtown with much needed uses and facilities that will help strengthen the connectivity between the downtown core and sports complex area,” Kobel says.  “Riverwalk Place” is a “mixed-use 24 x 7 lifestyle community”, according to RDD. It includes a 10,000 square foot multi-restaurant venue along the St. Johns River. Along Bay Street, there would be a five-story, 347-unit luxury multi-family apartment complex; nine-story, 150-room limited service hotel; and six-and-a-half story, 468-space parking garage.  “We believe our interwoven plans for the Old Courthouse and Shipyards will help accomplish this goal and we are thrilled to take this next step in pursuing this vision,” says Rimrock Devlin Development’s Wallace Devlin.  RDD believes these proposals together will be an impetus for riverfront development in Downtown, and could also serve to transform the Downtown core overall.  RDD delivered this proposal to the DIA today. It’s not yet clear how the DIA will receive this proposal, as it still has active bids for a Convention Center and hotel at the old Courthouse/Annex site.  These project proposals come as several projects are underway to try to revitalize the area. GALLERY: Shad Khan’s plan for the Jacksonville Shipyards WOKV has brought you an in-depth look at the City’s proposal to take down the Hart Bridge ramps, to further accommodate riverfront development. Khan’s group continues to negotiate the Shipyards redevelopment, and has a greater $2.5 billion redevelopment vision for the Shipyards and Sports Complex combined. The Laura Street Trio is also undergoing redevelopment, Berkman Plaza II was recently sold, and The District is underway on the Southbank.

Aretha Franklin dies at 76

Aretha Franklin dies at 76

The 'Queen of Soul,' legendary singer and songwriter Aretha Franklin, died Thursday from advanced pancreatic cancer, her publicist said in a statement. She was 76. >> Read more trending news Franklin died at 9:50 a.m. at her home in Detroit from “advanced pancreatic cancer of the neuroendocrine type,” publicist Gwendolyn Quinn said in a statement. “In one of the darkest moments of our lives, we are not able to find the appropriate words to express the pain in our heart,” Franklin’s family said in a statement released by Quinn. “We have lost the matriarch and rock of our family. The love she had for her children, grandchildren, nieces, nephews, and cousins knew no bounds.” >> ‘Thank you, Aretha’: Fans, friends remember the ‘Queen of Soul’ Family members thanked Franklin’s fans and friends for their support. “Thank you for your compassion and prayers,” the statement said. “We have felt your love for Aretha and it brings us comfort to know that her legacy will live on.” Funeral arrangements are expected to be announced in the coming days. President Donald Trump mourned Franklin on Thursday, writing in a tweet that, “She was a great woman, with a wonderful gift from God, her voice.” “She will be missed!” he wrote. Detroit Mayor Mike Duggan called Franklin “a performer without peers” in a statement released after her passing. >> Queen of Soul Aretha Franklin dies: A look back at her legacy  “Throughout her extraordinary life and career, she earned the love -- and yes, the respect -- of millions of people, not just for herself and for women everywhere, but for the city she loved so dearly and called home,” Duggan said. “I was honored to present Aretha with the key to our city last year and her last concert in Detroit. While she may have passed, Aretha Franklin will always have the key to our hearts. Friends, fans and celebrities took to social media to mourn Franklin: Family members confirmed Monday to WDIV-TV that Franklin, 76, was gravely ill after a report from entertainment site Showbiz411 claimed she was being surrounded by friends and family in Detroit. Tom Joyner, a nationally syndicated radio host and friend of Franklin’s, said Monday that Franklin has been in hospice care for a week, according to The Detroit News. Franklin had announced plans to retire from touring in February 2017 to focus on her family and a few select projects, the News reported. >> Beyonce dedicates Detroit OTR II show to Aretha Franklin 'I feel very, very enriched and satisfied with respect to where my career came from, and where it is now,” Franklin told WDIV in 2017. “I'll be pretty much satisfied, but I'm not going to go anywhere and just sit down and do nothing. That wouldn't be good either.” Franklin canceled several concerts this year due to health issues, Fox13Memphis reported. According to The Associated Press, “she was ordered by her doctor to stay off the road and rest up.” She performed  in her hometown of Detroit in June 2017, the Detroit Free Press reported. She ended the concert with an appeal for those in the crown to, “Please keep me in your prayers,” according to the newspaper. >> Photos: Aretha Franklin through the years She last performed in November at Elton John’s AIDS Foundation gala in New York City, the News reported. Franklin was born March 25, 1942, in Memphis, Tennessee. Her family moved to Detroit when she was young, according to Fox13Memphis. Franklin started singing when she was young, with encouragement from her mother, Barbara, and her father, the Rev. C.L. Franklin. She started out singing gospel but launched a career in secular music after she turned 18. She rose to fame after signing in 1967 with Atlantic Records. >> The best Aretha Franklin songs: A timeline Franklin’s career, spanning six decades, spawned hits including “Respect,” “(You Make Me Feel Like) A Natural Woman” and “Chain of Fools.” She’s considered one of the best-selling artists of all time, selling more than 75 million albums worldwide. Franklin was inducted in 1987 to the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame. She earned 18 Grammy Awards and a Presidential Medal of Freedom for her work. In 2005, then-President George W. Bush described Franklin as “a woman of achievement, deep character and a loving heart.” Check back for updates to this developing story.

Jacksonville woman claims a gun was pointed at her during a road rage incident on the Southside

Jacksonville woman claims a gun was pointed at her during a road rage incident on the Southside

It's an incident she likely never forget.  A Jacksonville woman says a gun was pointed at her in a road rage incident on the southside as she was going to work Wednesday morning.  Victoria Furukawa tells our news partners at Action News Jax the incident started after a guy in an older white car cut her off near I-95 and University.  “He got right in front of me, I’m going 75 he’s going probably 60, gets right in front of me, I have to slam on my brakes so hard my car just locks and it just stops working, like the brakes lock up.” Furukawa says.  She says the man stayed close to her as they went south on the interstate. She says when they were at the Baymeadows Road exit she honked and tried to get around him and that’s when he pulled out a gun. “He’s just straight up pointing a gun at my face just holding it point blank at me like that.” she says. She says the guy kept following her for a while and eventually she was able to lose him at a nearby exit. “It was absolutely terrifying. I’m probably gonna have that image in my brain for the rest of forever, being scared about it.” Furukawa says.  She says she called 911 and filed a police report which we are working to get from the Jacksonville Sheriff’s Office to learn more information about the incident.

Jacksonville’s Sheriff and Mayor have increasingly been promoting “intelligence-led” police policies, and the proposed new Real-Time Crime Center is being offered as a platform to bring that strategy to the next level. We first told you when Jacksonville Mayor Lenny Curry put forward his $1.2 billion City budget proposal, that it included funding for a Real-Time Crime Center. Details were initially scarce on what exactly that program would look like, though.  A preliminary investigation by WOKV started to shed some light, but we’ve now obtained the full proposal for this pilot program, to paint a clearer picture.  Program goals  The proposal shows the heart of this project is bringing together existing public safety systems- like the gunshot detection system ShotSpotter and JSO’s Computer Aided Dispatch- and feeding them in to a single system, which can be efficiently viewed and filtered. That system is called CommandCentral Aware.  Motorola Solutions first proposed this program in April, and the letter they sent to the City shows the pilot is built around four key concepts- breaking down data silos by aggregating data in to a single platform, deriving intelligence in real time by providing first responders with situational information, maximizing technology investments by leveraging City investments, and streamlining workflows through an adaptable platform.  With data aggregation, the unified CommandCentral Aware platform- which is the cornerstone of the RTCC- is fed by any number of streams of information. That data can then be mapped around the event taking place, giving a comprehensive look at what is known about the history of crime at a scene, available resources near the area, information from emergency dispatches, and more.  This plays in to the second goal, of providing real time intelligence to first responders. The analysts using this system would be able to feed all of the unified data they get to the emergency responders heading to a scene, giving them a more comprehensive idea of what type of situation they are walking in to. This could increase their safety, and that of people in the area of a crime, according to the proposal.  Some of the data comes from sources the City has already invested in, which speaks to the third goal. The City of Jacksonville and Jacksonville Sheriff’s Office already have the ShotSpotter system, which alerts police when gunshots are detected. JSO has previously indicated this could also work in coordination with their use of the National Integrated Ballistic Information Network, although there is no direct mention of that in the pilot program proposal.  Finally, on streamlining workflow, the system has the ability to add more features and adapt to workflows already in effect, according to the proposal letter.  The pilot proposal pitches this as a “next generation public safety solution” for an intelligence-driven police approach. That approach is something that Curry and Sheriff Mike Williams have promoted, as they have brought more of these intelligence-driven systems online.  CommandCentral Aware is also envisioned as a force multiplier, by integrating systems and, therefore, more effectively using existing staff and resources. Additionally, it’s believed this would let police continue to shift from reactionary responses to a more proactive position, by tracking trends.  Features  To feed CommandCentral Aware, a specialized video surveillance system is being provided at 15 sites for the duration of this pilot. The program proposal says these sites were prioritized by the City. While WOKV has obtained a list of the sites, we are withholding naming the locations, at the request of JSO.  “The goal of this center is to provide a safe environment for our community by adding some technology in helping us reduce crime,” says a statement from JSO.  The video system specifically runs a program that lets analysts filter by time, object size, color, and similar criteria to find relevant video. Video is analyzed and sorted as it’s ingested, so that when the analyst searches for something, relevant objects and backgrounds are pulled up. The analyst can then select their object of interest, and the system will call back to the original video. The search function allows you to look for a specific object, or search by general traits or similar descriptions. This can be used to potentially isolate people or vehicles matching suspect descriptions, as an example.  The pilot program proposal says private, business surveillance can also be integrated in to the system, if police are given access. WOKV has previously reported that Curry is also aiming to revamp the City’s security camera network, and that could potentially feed in to this platform in the future, as well.  Additionally, the program details say this pilot serves as a framework for future growth, which could mean additional cameras, more video integration, enhanced data analytics, and community engagement tools.  Budget and next steps  The “Proof of Concept” agreement for this program, obtained by WOKV, shows Motorola Solutions first proposed the use of this “Intelligence-Led Public Safety solution” to the City in early April. At the time, it was pitched as a six-month pilot program. Instead, the City has committed to a three-month pilot. JSO says they determined that would be enough time to decide whether they wanted to pursue this program full time.  “JSO has done an extensive search and explored many systems from different cities and the Motorola platform is the best fit for our city,” says a statement from JSO to WOKV.  Once the CommandCentral Aware program is up and running, the countdown on the pilot begins. The “Proof of Concept” agreement was signed on July 23rd, and the proposal estimates six to eight weeks to implement the pilot.  The pilot program is no cost to the City, specifically for the equipment. There are a range of IT costs to support the system, though, as well as some desk space and minor furniture needs. JSO says the initial year budget is $1.625 million, plus $283,523 in salaries for four safety analysts. The Mayor’s budget proposal shows those costs are spread across several IT subfunds, as well as in JSO’s budget.  If the City decides to continue past the pilot phase, they would have to buy the equipment from Motorola Solutions. JSO says their budget request for this upcoming fiscal year already includes the assumed purchase of that equipment.  JSO is already working on standing up the no-cost pilot, and- if Curry’s budget is approved- could move to what they consider “phase one”, which is adding workstations and cameras after the pilot. If that is successful, “phase two” would follow, which would be an additional cameras expansion and software support. Phase two would start next fiscal year and last two to five years, according to a statement from JSO to WOKV.  Jacksonville’s City Council Finance Committee is reviewing JSO’s portion of the Mayor’s budget proposal on Thursday, and it’s expected the RTCC will be a part of that discussion. This is part of several weeks of budget hearings, which leads to the full City Council approving a budget before the start of the next fiscal year, October 1st.  JSO declined an interview or further comment until the budget is approved.  WOKV will be monitoring this meeting, and will continue to work through the proposed City budget, to determine how your tax dollars are being spent.
Jacksonville’s Sheriff and Mayor have increasingly been promoting “intelligence-led” police policies, and the proposed new Real-Time Crime Center is being offered as a platform to bring that strategy to the next level. We first told you when Jacksonville Mayor Lenny Curry put forward his $1.2 billion City budget proposal, that it included funding for a Real-Time Crime Center. Details were initially scarce on what exactly that program would look like, though.  A preliminary investigation by WOKV started to shed some light, but we’ve now obtained the full proposal for this pilot program, to paint a clearer picture.  Program goals  The proposal shows the heart of this project is bringing together existing public safety systems- like the gunshot detection system ShotSpotter and JSO’s Computer Aided Dispatch- and feeding them in to a single system, which can be efficiently viewed and filtered. That system is called CommandCentral Aware.  Motorola Solutions first proposed this program in April, and the letter they sent to the City shows the pilot is built around four key concepts- breaking down data silos by aggregating data in to a single platform, deriving intelligence in real time by providing first responders with situational information, maximizing technology investments by leveraging City investments, and streamlining workflows through an adaptable platform.  With data aggregation, the unified CommandCentral Aware platform- which is the cornerstone of the RTCC- is fed by any number of streams of information. That data can then be mapped around the event taking place, giving a comprehensive look at what is known about the history of crime at a scene, available resources near the area, information from emergency dispatches, and more.  This plays in to the second goal, of providing real time intelligence to first responders. The analysts using this system would be able to feed all of the unified data they get to the emergency responders heading to a scene, giving them a more comprehensive idea of what type of situation they are walking in to. This could increase their safety, and that of people in the area of a crime, according to the proposal.  Some of the data comes from sources the City has already invested in, which speaks to the third goal. The City of Jacksonville and Jacksonville Sheriff’s Office already have the ShotSpotter system, which alerts police when gunshots are detected. JSO has previously indicated this could also work in coordination with their use of the National Integrated Ballistic Information Network, although there is no direct mention of that in the pilot program proposal.  Finally, on streamlining workflow, the system has the ability to add more features and adapt to workflows already in effect, according to the proposal letter.  The pilot proposal pitches this as a “next generation public safety solution” for an intelligence-driven police approach. That approach is something that Curry and Sheriff Mike Williams have promoted, as they have brought more of these intelligence-driven systems online.  CommandCentral Aware is also envisioned as a force multiplier, by integrating systems and, therefore, more effectively using existing staff and resources. Additionally, it’s believed this would let police continue to shift from reactionary responses to a more proactive position, by tracking trends.  Features  To feed CommandCentral Aware, a specialized video surveillance system is being provided at 15 sites for the duration of this pilot. The program proposal says these sites were prioritized by the City. While WOKV has obtained a list of the sites, we are withholding naming the locations, at the request of JSO.  “The goal of this center is to provide a safe environment for our community by adding some technology in helping us reduce crime,” says a statement from JSO.  The video system specifically runs a program that lets analysts filter by time, object size, color, and similar criteria to find relevant video. Video is analyzed and sorted as it’s ingested, so that when the analyst searches for something, relevant objects and backgrounds are pulled up. The analyst can then select their object of interest, and the system will call back to the original video. The search function allows you to look for a specific object, or search by general traits or similar descriptions. This can be used to potentially isolate people or vehicles matching suspect descriptions, as an example.  The pilot program proposal says private, business surveillance can also be integrated in to the system, if police are given access. WOKV has previously reported that Curry is also aiming to revamp the City’s security camera network, and that could potentially feed in to this platform in the future, as well.  Additionally, the program details say this pilot serves as a framework for future growth, which could mean additional cameras, more video integration, enhanced data analytics, and community engagement tools.  Budget and next steps  The “Proof of Concept” agreement for this program, obtained by WOKV, shows Motorola Solutions first proposed the use of this “Intelligence-Led Public Safety solution” to the City in early April. At the time, it was pitched as a six-month pilot program. Instead, the City has committed to a three-month pilot. JSO says they determined that would be enough time to decide whether they wanted to pursue this program full time.  “JSO has done an extensive search and explored many systems from different cities and the Motorola platform is the best fit for our city,” says a statement from JSO to WOKV.  Once the CommandCentral Aware program is up and running, the countdown on the pilot begins. The “Proof of Concept” agreement was signed on July 23rd, and the proposal estimates six to eight weeks to implement the pilot.  The pilot program is no cost to the City, specifically for the equipment. There are a range of IT costs to support the system, though, as well as some desk space and minor furniture needs. JSO says the initial year budget is $1.625 million, plus $283,523 in salaries for four safety analysts. The Mayor’s budget proposal shows those costs are spread across several IT subfunds, as well as in JSO’s budget.  If the City decides to continue past the pilot phase, they would have to buy the equipment from Motorola Solutions. JSO says their budget request for this upcoming fiscal year already includes the assumed purchase of that equipment.  JSO is already working on standing up the no-cost pilot, and- if Curry’s budget is approved- could move to what they consider “phase one”, which is adding workstations and cameras after the pilot. If that is successful, “phase two” would follow, which would be an additional cameras expansion and software support. Phase two would start next fiscal year and last two to five years, according to a statement from JSO to WOKV.  Jacksonville’s City Council Finance Committee is reviewing JSO’s portion of the Mayor’s budget proposal on Thursday, and it’s expected the RTCC will be a part of that discussion. This is part of several weeks of budget hearings, which leads to the full City Council approving a budget before the start of the next fiscal year, October 1st.  JSO declined an interview or further comment until the budget is approved.  WOKV will be monitoring this meeting, and will continue to work through the proposed City budget, to determine how your tax dollars are being spent.
Jacksonville’s Sheriff and Mayor have increasingly been promoting “intelligence-led” police policies, and the proposed new Real-Time Crime Center is being offered as a platform to bring that strategy to the next level. We first told you when Jacksonville Mayor Lenny Curry put forward his $1.2 billion City budget proposal, that it included funding for a Real-Time Crime Center. Details were initially scarce on what exactly that program would look like, though.  A preliminary investigation by WOKV started to shed some light, but we’ve now obtained the full proposal for this pilot program, to paint a clearer picture.  Program goals  The proposal shows the heart of this project is bringing together existing public safety systems- like the gunshot detection system ShotSpotter and JSO’s Computer Aided Dispatch- and feeding them in to a single system, which can be efficiently viewed and filtered. That system is called CommandCentral Aware.  Motorola Solutions first proposed this program in April, and the letter they sent to the City shows the pilot is built around four key concepts- breaking down data silos by aggregating data in to a single platform, deriving intelligence in real time by providing first responders with situational information, maximizing technology investments by leveraging City investments, and streamlining workflows through an adaptable platform.  With data aggregation, the unified CommandCentral Aware platform- which is the cornerstone of the RTCC- is fed by any number of streams of information. That data can then be mapped around the event taking place, giving a comprehensive look at what is known about the history of crime at a scene, available resources near the area, information from emergency dispatches, and more.  This plays in to the second goal, of providing real time intelligence to first responders. The analysts using this system would be able to feed all of the unified data they get to the emergency responders heading to a scene, giving them a more comprehensive idea of what type of situation they are walking in to. This could increase their safety, and that of people in the area of a crime, according to the proposal.  Some of the data comes from sources the City has already invested in, which speaks to the third goal. The City of Jacksonville and Jacksonville Sheriff’s Office already have the ShotSpotter system, which alerts police when gunshots are detected. JSO has previously indicated this could also work in coordination with their use of the National Integrated Ballistic Information Network, although there is no direct mention of that in the pilot program proposal.  Finally, on streamlining workflow, the system has the ability to add more features and adapt to workflows already in effect, according to the proposal letter.  The pilot proposal pitches this as a “next generation public safety solution” for an intelligence-driven police approach. That approach is something that Curry and Sheriff Mike Williams have promoted, as they have brought more of these intelligence-driven systems online.  CommandCentral Aware is also envisioned as a force multiplier, by integrating systems and, therefore, more effectively using existing staff and resources. Additionally, it’s believed this would let police continue to shift from reactionary responses to a more proactive position, by tracking trends.  Features  To feed CommandCentral Aware, a specialized video surveillance system is being provided at 15 sites for the duration of this pilot. The program proposal says these sites were prioritized by the City. While WOKV has obtained a list of the sites, we are withholding naming the locations, at the request of JSO.  “The goal of this center is to provide a safe environment for our community by adding some technology in helping us reduce crime,” says a statement from JSO.  The video system specifically runs a program that lets analysts filter by time, object size, color, and similar criteria to find relevant video. Video is analyzed and sorted as it’s ingested, so that when the analyst searches for something, relevant objects and backgrounds are pulled up. The analyst can then select their object of interest, and the system will call back to the original video. The search function allows you to look for a specific object, or search by general traits or similar descriptions. This can be used to potentially isolate people or vehicles matching suspect descriptions, as an example.  The pilot program proposal says private, business surveillance can also be integrated in to the system, if police are given access. WOKV has previously reported that Curry is also aiming to revamp the City’s security camera network, and that could potentially feed in to this platform in the future, as well.  Additionally, the program details say this pilot serves as a framework for future growth, which could mean additional cameras, more video integration, enhanced data analytics, and community engagement tools.  Budget and next steps  The “Proof of Concept” agreement for this program, obtained by WOKV, shows Motorola Solutions first proposed the use of this “Intelligence-Led Public Safety solution” to the City in early April. At the time, it was pitched as a six-month pilot program. Instead, the City has committed to a three-month pilot. JSO says they determined that would be enough time to decide whether they wanted to pursue this program full time.  “JSO has done an extensive search and explored many systems from different cities and the Motorola platform is the best fit for our city,” says a statement from JSO to WOKV.  Once the CommandCentral Aware program is up and running, the countdown on the pilot begins. The “Proof of Concept” agreement was signed on July 23rd, and the proposal estimates six to eight weeks to implement the pilot.  The pilot program is no cost to the City, specifically for the equipment. There are a range of IT costs to support the system, though, as well as some desk space and minor furniture needs. JSO says the initial year budget is $1.625 million, plus $283,523 in salaries for four safety analysts. The Mayor’s budget proposal shows those costs are spread across several IT subfunds, as well as in JSO’s budget.  If the City decides to continue past the pilot phase, they would have to buy the equipment from Motorola Solutions. JSO says their budget request for this upcoming fiscal year already includes the assumed purchase of that equipment.  JSO is already working on standing up the no-cost pilot, and- if Curry’s budget is approved- could move to what they consider “phase one”, which is adding workstations and cameras after the pilot. If that is successful, “phase two” would follow, which would be an additional cameras expansion and software support. Phase two would start next fiscal year and last two to five years, according to a statement from JSO to WOKV.  Jacksonville’s City Council Finance Committee is reviewing JSO’s portion of the Mayor’s budget proposal on Thursday, and it’s expected the RTCC will be a part of that discussion. This is part of several weeks of budget hearings, which leads to the full City Council approving a budget before the start of the next fiscal year, October 1st.  JSO declined an interview or further comment until the budget is approved.  WOKV will be monitoring this meeting, and will continue to work through the proposed City budget, to determine how your tax dollars are being spent.
Jacksonville’s Sheriff and Mayor have increasingly been promoting “intelligence-led” police policies, and the proposed new Real-Time Crime Center is being offered as a platform to bring that strategy to the next level. We first told you when Jacksonville Mayor Lenny Curry put forward his $1.2 billion City budget proposal, that it included funding for a Real-Time Crime Center. Details were initially scarce on what exactly that program would look like, though.  A preliminary investigation by WOKV started to shed some light, but we’ve now obtained the full proposal for this pilot program, to paint a clearer picture.  Program goals  The proposal shows the heart of this project is bringing together existing public safety systems- like the gunshot detection system ShotSpotter and JSO’s Computer Aided Dispatch- and feeding them in to a single system, which can be efficiently viewed and filtered. That system is called CommandCentral Aware.  Motorola Solutions first proposed this program in April, and the letter they sent to the City shows the pilot is built around four key concepts- breaking down data silos by aggregating data in to a single platform, deriving intelligence in real time by providing first responders with situational information, maximizing technology investments by leveraging City investments, and streamlining workflows through an adaptable platform.  With data aggregation, the unified CommandCentral Aware platform- which is the cornerstone of the RTCC- is fed by any number of streams of information. That data can then be mapped around the event taking place, giving a comprehensive look at what is known about the history of crime at a scene, available resources near the area, information from emergency dispatches, and more.  This plays in to the second goal, of providing real time intelligence to first responders. The analysts using this system would be able to feed all of the unified data they get to the emergency responders heading to a scene, giving them a more comprehensive idea of what type of situation they are walking in to. This could increase their safety, and that of people in the area of a crime, according to the proposal.  Some of the data comes from sources the City has already invested in, which speaks to the third goal. The City of Jacksonville and Jacksonville Sheriff’s Office already have the ShotSpotter system, which alerts police when gunshots are detected. JSO has previously indicated this could also work in coordination with their use of the National Integrated Ballistic Information Network, although there is no direct mention of that in the pilot program proposal.  Finally, on streamlining workflow, the system has the ability to add more features and adapt to workflows already in effect, according to the proposal letter.  The pilot proposal pitches this as a “next generation public safety solution” for an intelligence-driven police approach. That approach is something that Curry and Sheriff Mike Williams have promoted, as they have brought more of these intelligence-driven systems online.  CommandCentral Aware is also envisioned as a force multiplier, by integrating systems and, therefore, more effectively using existing staff and resources. Additionally, it’s believed this would let police continue to shift from reactionary responses to a more proactive position, by tracking trends.  Features  To feed CommandCentral Aware, a specialized video surveillance system is being provided at 15 sites for the duration of this pilot. The program proposal says these sites were prioritized by the City. While WOKV has obtained a list of the sites, we are withholding naming the locations, at the request of JSO.  “The goal of this center is to provide a safe environment for our community by adding some technology in helping us reduce crime,” says a statement from JSO.  The video system specifically runs a program that lets analysts filter by time, object size, color, and similar criteria to find relevant video. Video is analyzed and sorted as it’s ingested, so that when the analyst searches for something, relevant objects and backgrounds are pulled up. The analyst can then select their object of interest, and the system will call back to the original video. The search function allows you to look for a specific object, or search by general traits or similar descriptions. This can be used to potentially isolate people or vehicles matching suspect descriptions, as an example.  The pilot program proposal says private, business surveillance can also be integrated in to the system, if police are given access. WOKV has previously reported that Curry is also aiming to revamp the City’s security camera network, and that could potentially feed in to this platform in the future, as well.  Additionally, the program details say this pilot serves as a framework for future growth, which could mean additional cameras, more video integration, enhanced data analytics, and community engagement tools.  Budget and next steps  The “Proof of Concept” agreement for this program, obtained by WOKV, shows Motorola Solutions first proposed the use of this “Intelligence-Led Public Safety solution” to the City in early April. At the time, it was pitched as a six-month pilot program. Instead, the City has committed to a three-month pilot. JSO says they determined that would be enough time to decide whether they wanted to pursue this program full time.  “JSO has done an extensive search and explored many systems from different cities and the Motorola platform is the best fit for our city,” says a statement from JSO to WOKV.  Once the CommandCentral Aware program is up and running, the countdown on the pilot begins. The “Proof of Concept” agreement was signed on July 23rd, and the proposal estimates six to eight weeks to implement the pilot.  The pilot program is no cost to the City, specifically for the equipment. There are a range of IT costs to support the system, though, as well as some desk space and minor furniture needs. JSO says the initial year budget is $1.625 million, plus $283,523 in salaries for four safety analysts. The Mayor’s budget proposal shows those costs are spread across several IT subfunds, as well as in JSO’s budget.  If the City decides to continue past the pilot phase, they would have to buy the equipment from Motorola Solutions. JSO says their budget request for this upcoming fiscal year already includes the assumed purchase of that equipment.  JSO is already working on standing up the no-cost pilot, and- if Curry’s budget is approved- could move to what they consider “phase one”, which is adding workstations and cameras after the pilot. If that is successful, “phase two” would follow, which would be an additional cameras expansion and software support. Phase two would start next fiscal year and last two to five years, according to a statement from JSO to WOKV.  Jacksonville’s City Council Finance Committee is reviewing JSO’s portion of the Mayor’s budget proposal on Thursday, and it’s expected the RTCC will be a part of that discussion. This is part of several weeks of budget hearings, which leads to the full City Council approving a budget before the start of the next fiscal year, October 1st.  JSO declined an interview or further comment until the budget is approved.  WOKV will be monitoring this meeting, and will continue to work through the proposed City budget, to determine how your tax dollars are being spent.
12 weeks to Election Day as four more states hold primaries for Congress

With less than three months until the mid-term elections for the U.S. House and Senate, four more states hold primaries today for the Congress, but the roster of races is unlikely to produce the news associated with last week’s tight race in a special U.S. House election in Ohio, which amplified questions about whether the GOP can maintain control of Capitol Hill after November.

Primaries take place on Tuesday in four states: Connecticut, Minnesota, Vermont and Wisconsin.

No sitting incumbents in the Congress are on upset alert at this point – though there could always be some out-of-the-blue defeat that no one [More]