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    Rayshaun Hammonds had 26 points, Anthony Edwards scored 16 of his 18 points in the second half and Georgia beat state rival Georgia Tech 82-78 on Wednesday night to continue its recent hold on the series. Edwards helped fill the scoring void for Georgia (4-0) when Hammonds left the game with four fouls midway through the second half. Michael Devoe led Georgia Tech (2-1) with a career-high 34 points and 10 rebounds to continue his high-scoring start to the season. Devoe had 22 points in each of the Yellow Jackets’ first two games. Georgia kept its lead in double figures most of the second half before weathering Devoe’s late spree of three 3-pointers. Donnell Gresham, who had 13 points, sank four free throws for Georgia in the final 30 seconds. Georgia earned its fifth straight win over Georgia Tech. It is the Bulldogs’ longest winning streak in the state rivalry since a seven-game streak from 1980-83, when the teams played more than once each season. Georgia Tech coach Josh Pastner is 0-4 in the rivalry. Junior guard Jose Alvarado, Georgia Tech’s leader in scoring, assists and steals last season, had two points and two assists in his return after missing one game with an ankle injury. He sat out most of the second half. Alvarado appeared to favor the ankle at times and worked on an exercise cycle behind the Georgia Tech bench when he was taken out of the game. Hammonds had 19 points in the first half, including back-to-back baskets to start an 11-0 run to give the Bulldogs a 33-25 lead. With Hammonds taking the scoring lead, Edwards had only two points in the first half. Edwards, the prize of coach Tom Crean’s recruiting class, averaged 19.7 points in his first three games. The Yellow Jackets stayed close, trailing 35-27 at halftime, as Devoe had 14 points. Hammonds opened the second half with a three-point play, stretching Georgia’s lead to double figures for the first time at 38-27. Georgia expanded the advantage to 16 points, at 49-33, on Hammonds’ tip-in. Hammonds was called for his fourth foul with 10:15 remaining. Edwards, who made his first field goal early in the second half, sank a well-timed 3-pointer about 30 seconds after Hammonds went to the bench following his fourth foul. Georgia Tech’s comeback attempt was hurt by its poor free-throw shooting. The Yellow Jackets made only 12 of 23 free throws. BIG PICTURE Georgia Tech: Alvarado left the game about five minutes into the second half and did not return. Despite Devoe’s strong play, Alvarado’s all-around skills were missed. The Yellow Jackets struggled to generate offense to support Devoe’s lead role. Georgia: Hammonds showed again he can be a veteran leader who can take pressure off Edwards. More scoring balance came from Tyree Crump, who sank three 3-pointers and had 11 points. UP NEXT Georgia Tech: The Yellow Jackets face another Southeastern Conference team when Arkansas visits Atlanta on Monday night. The game opens a stretch of four home games in 13 days. Georgia: The Bulldogs will play Dayton on Monday in their opening game in the Maui Invitational. ___ For more AP college basketball: https://apnews.com/Collegebasketball and https://twitter.com/AP_Top25
  • A major construction project is days away from starting on busy Baymeadows road on the Southside. This vacant property is being transformed into a mixed-use development and a hotel.  Four mixed use buildings and a 120-room hotel are slated to fill the space. The city council approved the 30 plus million-dollar project in 2018.  T'Nesha Blue lives in the area and tells us the project will open a world of shopping opportunities for neighbors.  'It'd probably be within walking distance,' said Blue. 'For a lot of people, it will be pretty close.' We spoke to councilman Danny Becton, who spearheaded the project in local government.  'Long time coming. It's just super exciting!' said Jacksonville City Councilman Becton.  TRENDING STORIES: Passenger dies after falling four stories from Carnival Cruise ship  Jacksonville father dies after being shot at home on W. Beaver St., family says  13-year-old girl shot, killed by 16-year-old boyfriend, police say  Four dead, including St. Marys parents, 4-year-old son in head-on crash  We asked Becton about the impact the development could have on crime in the area.  JSO crime mapping shows 52 records of violent crime within half a mile in the last six months, and 100 records of violence in the same time frame.  'Certainly, as economic activity becomes very positive, crime has a tendency of not wanting to be in those areas,' Becton said.   In anticipation of more visitors to the area, he also tells us they're planning traffic enhancements with FDOT. Welcomed news to neighbors who anticipate a change in traffic patterns.  'We already have a decent flow, so it's going to make a change,' said Blue.   STAY UPDATED: Download the Action News Jax app for live updates on breaking stories
  • The Latest on the Democratic presidential debate (all times local): 10:44 p.m. Democrats seeking the 2020 presidential nomination are weighing in on foreign policy while criticizing President Donald Trump — and getting in a few one-liners. California Sen. Kamala Harris says “Donald Trump got punked” by North Korean leader Kim Jong Un. Harris says Trump has compromised America’s ability to provide a check on North Korea’s nuclear program. Former Vice President Joe Biden and Minnesota Sen. Amy Klobuchar said they would work to rebuild relationships with allies. Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders says “it’s time to bring our troops home” from Afghanistan, and he would work with the international community to do so. Entrepreneur Andrew Yang was asked what he’d say in his first call to Russian President Vladimir Putin. Yang, referencing Trump, responded: “First, I’d say I’m sorry I beat your guy.” ___ 10:42 p.m. Joe Biden says during Wednesday night’s Democratic debate that he would make the Saudi Arabian government “pay the price” for any responsibility in the killing of journalist Jamal Khashoggi last year. Biden says he believes The Washington Post columnist was killed at the behest of Saudi Arabian Prince Mohammed bin Salman, and that, as president, he would end subsidies and sales of military material to the kingdom. Biden says, “They have to be held accountable.” More broadly, Biden says the U.S. needs to “vocally” call out these and other “violations of human rights” around the globe, which he argued that President Donald Trump has not addressed adequately. ___ 10:40 p.m. Sen. Kamala Harris says President Donald Trump got “punked” by North Korea. Harris said during the Democratic debate that Trump has conducted foreign policy based on his “fragile ego” and traded a photo opportunity with Kim Jong Un for “nothing.” The administration has been trying to conduct diplomacy with North Korea over its nuclear capabilities. Harris says she wouldn’t make concessions to North Korea and slammed Trump for suspending military training operations with South Korea. Harris also referred to the commander in chief as a “her,” one of her popular lines from the campaign trail about a woman winning the presidency. ___ 10:30 p.m. Joe Biden has answered a challenge from Tom Steyer on the threat of climate change, also calling it “the No. 1 issue” facing the country. Steyer has framed his candidacy around the issue. He said during Wednesday night’s debate that neither the former vice president nor Elizabeth Warren would characterize climate change as the most critical issue. Biden replied that he does see climate change as such, calling climate change “the existential threat to humanity,” eliciting a somewhat stunned look from the billionaire businessman. Referencing Steyer, the former vice president went on to say, “I don’t need a lecture from my friend,” noting his own work on Senate climate change legislation. Bernie Sanders repeated his suggestion that executives in the fossil fuel industry could be prosecuted for their actions. ___ 10:27 p.m. South Bend, Indiana, Mayor Pete Buttigieg says he would continue the payments to farmers started in the Trump administration as a result of the U.S. trade war with China. Buttigieg says they won’t be needed “because we will fix the trade war.” He claims the Trump administration measure “isn’t even making farmers whole,” and that “I don’t think this president cares one bit about farmers.” Buttigieg points to rural America as a place where farms can be part of the solution to climate change by pursuing the “carbon negative farm,” likening the concept to the electric car. He says that enlisting farmers is a way to get out the message on climate change that recruits everybody to be part of the solution, including politically conservative parts of the nation. ___ 10:25 p.m. Former Vice President Joe Biden says if he becomes president he would not direct his administration's Justice Department to investigate Donald Trump. At Wednesday night’s Democratic debate, Biden said he would 'not dictate who should be prosecuted or who should be exonerated.' Biden says, 'That's not the role of the President of the United States.” Biden says that's a judgment to be made by the attorney general. ___ 10:20 p.m. Elizabeth Warren and Cory Booker say they’d address racial and income disparities in housing, while Tom Steyer says he’d make it harder for local governments to halt building. These are some of the proposals from the Democratic White House hopefuls on how to tackle the nation’s housing crisis. Their remarks come during a debate in Atlanta, a city facing its own housing challenges. Steyer notes the problem is particularly bad in his home state of California. He says he would put federal money toward building affordable units. Warren similarly says she’d invest taxpayer money to build more than 3 million new homes. Booker, a former New Jersey mayor, says he’d give renters a tax credit if they pay more than a third of their income in rent. ___ 10:18 p.m. Kamala Harris says she has crafted her plans for paid family leave around what she characterizes as a campaign-wide position on policies to help elevate women. The California senator said during Wednesday night’s Democratic debate in Atlanta that much of the “burden” of raising children and caring for aging parents falls to women, whom she noted are “not paid equally for equal work in America.” Harris’ plan would provide leave for up to six months, a timeframe she said was selected in part due to women having children later in life than in previous generations. Minnesota Sen. Amy Klobuchar’s own plan would cover up to three months. She said she kept plan costs in mind when selecting that timeline, noting an obligation to being “fiscally responsible” while still helping people. ___ 10:15 p.m. South Bend, Indiana, Mayor Pete Buttigieg is defending his lack of national experience by punctuating his executive experience, albeit in a city of roughly 100,000 people. He says during Wednesday night’s debate that his isn’t traditional establishment, Washington experience but that “I would argue we need something very different right now.” But Minnesota Sen. Amy Klobuchar is repeating her argument that, were Buttigieg a woman, he would not be on the debate stage as a top-tier candidate for president. Klobuchar has been arguing that her trove of passed legislation is proof of pragmatism, and victory in conservative parts of Minnesota proof she can beat President Donald Trump. She says, “What I said is true,” adding, “Otherwise, we could play a game called name your favorite woman president.” ___ 10:10 p.m. Sen. Cory Booker took a moment during Wednesday night’s debate to remind voters that he too is a Rhodes scholar — a distinction more regularly pointed out in reference to 2020 Democratic rival Mayor Pete Buttigieg. The line drew applause from the debate audience in Atlanta. Booker also pointed out that both candidates are mayors. Some observers suggest the discrepancy is because Booker is African American and Buttigieg is favored by the news media. Booker was awarded a Rhodes Scholarship to study at Oxford University and earned an honors degree in U.S. history in 1994. He was later mayor of Newark, New Jersey. ___ 10 p.m. Democratic presidential candidate Tulsi Gabbard has criticized 2016 nominee Hillary Clinton and the Democratic Party, prompting a sharp back-and-forth with Sen. Kamala Harris. The congresswoman from Hawaii and California senator are among 10 Democratic candidates debating Wednesday night in Atlanta. Gabbard doubled down on earlier comments that Clinton represents the “personification of the rot in the Democratic Party.” She says the party is influenced by a “foreign policy establishment” that supports regime-change wars. She calls it the “Bush, Clinton, Trump foreign policy doctrine.” Harris responded by saying it’s unfortunate to have a candidate on stage who criticizes President Barack Obama on Fox News, “buddied up” to Trump adviser Steve Bannon to get a meeting with Trump and wouldn’t call out a war criminal. Gabbard accuses Harris of “smears and innuendo.” ___ 9:45 p.m. Former Vice President Joe Biden is continuing to push for modifications to Obama-era health care reforms over the holistic “Medicare for all” proposals from two of his Democratic presidential rivals. In Wednesday night’s Democratic debate, Biden argued that voters are hesitant to make the transformative, government-backed changes pushed by candidates including Bernie Sanders and Elizabeth Warren. Biden says he doesn’t want to force anyone to give up private health insurance. Warren says that she wants to “bring as many people in and get as much help to the American people as fast as we can.” When questioning came to Sanders, he responded: “Thank you, I wrote the damn bill.” ___ 9:35 p.m. New Jersey Sen. Cory Booker is disagreeing with the wealth tax proposed by Massachusetts Sen. Elizabeth Warren as they join other Democratic presidential candidates for a debate Wednesday night. Booker says Warren’s proposal “is cumbersome,” has failed in other countries and would stunt economic growth in blighted urban areas. Warren has proposed raising taxes by 2 cents on wealth over $50 million to finance a host of programs including universal preschool and higher teacher pay. Warren, who has come under attack recently for the proposal, called her policy “transformative.” Booker is fighting to break out in the debate, hosted by MSNBC and The Washington Post, in part because he has not yet qualified, by fundraising and polling criteria, for the December debate. ___ 9:15 p.m. Massachusetts Sen. Elizabeth Warren is challenging her Democratic presidential rivals to promise they won't give ambassador posts to campaign donors. Warren's comments kicked off the Democratic presidential debate in response to a question about the ongoing impeachment proceedings. She says Gordon Sondland, the president's ambassador to the European Union and a central figure in the proceedings, is not qualified for the job and his appointment is evidence of corruption in Washington. Sondland gave more than $1 million to President Donald Trump's inaugural committee. Sondland testified before Congress on Wednesday. Warren says none of her Democratic rivals has agreed with her pledge to block donors from getting ambassador posts. ___ 9 p.m. Pete Buttigieg’s dramatic rise in the Democratic race for president makes him a prime target at Wednesday night’s debate. The candidates bunched at the front of the pack are seeking to distinguish themselves on the debate stage in Atlanta with just three months until 2020 presidential voting begins. The 37-year-old mayor of South Bend, Indiana, has gained significant ground in recent months in Iowa, which holds the nation’s first caucuses on Feb. 3. But with top-tier status comes added scrutiny, as the other front-runners discovered in four previous debates throughout the summer and fall. ___ 1: 15 p.m. Four Democrats jumbled at the top of the party’s presidential primary are looking to begin separating themselves in the final debate before Thanksgiving begins sapping voters’ attention. And that may mean sharpest criticism for the one with the most-recent rise, Pete Buttigieg. The 37-year old mayor of South Bend, Indiana, has gained significant ground recently. But with top-tier status comes added scrutiny, as the other front-runners discovered in four previous debates throughout the summer and fall. Former Vice President Joe Biden and Sens. Elizabeth Warren of Massachusetts and Bernie Sanders of Vermont all faced attacks previously. The pressure will be on Wednesday night in Atlanta for Buttigieg to demonstrate he can woo black voters and that running a city of only about 100,000 residents qualifies him to be president. ___ Catch up on the 2020 election campaign with AP experts on our weekly politics podcast, “ Ground Game.”
  • A local restaurant is giving back to a community that is often overlooked. A quick glance at Jimmy Giancola and you'd never guess he suffered a brain injury that almost killed him. 'I have major memory loss, I have right side weakness from my injury,' Giancola said.  He was 24 years old and only weeks from graduating from culinary school when a snowboarding accident changed his life. 'I hit a fence going real fast. Fast enough to be able to crack my skull,' Giancola said. He said it's a miracle he's even standing today and a blessing that he has a job. He got a chance to get back in the kitchen thanks to a partnership between Employ U and Si Se or Fresh Mex on St. Johns Bluff Road. TRENDING STORIES: Passenger dies after falling four stories from Carnival Cruise ship  Jacksonville father dies after being shot at home on W. Beaver St., family says  13-year-old girl shot, killed by 16-year-old boyfriend, police say  Four dead, including St. Marys parents, 4-year-old son in head-on crash  Owner Johnny Mendez is currently training eight special needs employees. 'They're people who are very loyal, they're on time, they're there before time and are willing to stay after time,' he said. Their training also goes beyond learning how to cook or serve -- they also learn independence. For trainee Austin Hoffman, independence is everything. 'I like feedback from people. I want to make them happy,' Hoffman said. Austin and Jimmy were honored Wednesday night for successfully completing their eight-week training. But Mendez said it doesn't end there. He wants people with special needs to know they're always welcome at his restaurant, which is why he's working on starting a nonprofit that will help him hire more special needs employees in the future. 'I want to make a difference in our community by starting with a little steppingstone,' said Mendez. Jimmy and Austin are excited for their next chapter. They want people to know they're not different. 'There's still a chance, there is still a life that you were handed for a reason,' Giancola said. STAY UPDATED: Download the Action News Jax app for live updates on breaking stories  
  • The Miami Marlins have designated left-hander Wei-Yin Chen for assignment, parting with a pitcher they owe $22 million. Miami gave Chen an $80 million, five-year contract before the 2016 season, but he went 13-19 with a 5.10 ERA in four injury-plagued seasons. Last year Chen was demoted to the bullpen and had a 6.59 ERA in 45 games. President of baseball operations Michael Hill said the Marlins parted with Chen to create more room for young talent on their roster. “This decision was not about money,” Hill said Wednesday. “It was about building the best and deepest 40-man roster to allow us to compete in 2020 and beyond.” Chen will receive $5 million during the 2020 season and $5 million on Nov. 30, 2020. The $12 million remaining is part of deferred money payable through June 30, 2021. ___ More AP MLB: https://apnews.com/MLB and https://twitter.com/AP_Sports
  • Leonard Hamilton was worried about how Florida State would play without two starters. As Wednesday night’s game developed, the coach had no reason to be concerned. Devin Vassell scored 17 points and pulled down a career-high eight rebounds while Patrick Williams added 16 points as Florida State cruised to an 89-53 rout of Chattanooga, the Seminoles' largest margin of victory in more than two years. Ole Miss graduate transfer Dominik Olejniczak scored his first points at Florida State (3-1), going 5 for 6 from the floor with 10 points and three rebounds. The Seminoles shot 34 of 65 (52%) from the floor without forward RaiQuan Gray and guard M.J. Walker. “I went into this game anxious because we were without two of our more experienced players,” Hamilton said. “I thought our guys really responded well. We had high-percentage shots, which gave some of our big guys a little bit more room to go to the offensive boards. It was tremendously challenging for Chattanooga to defend us because the ball moved so well.” Hamilton frequently says that his team is about the “sum of its parts,” and Wednesday was a good example. Five Seminoles scored in double figures and 15 players saw time on the court. Freshman center Balsa Koprivica added 10 points and seven rebounds, while Rice transfer forward Malik Osborne scored 10 points and pulled down three rebounds. The Seminoles’ height and length translated into a 41-30 rebound edge. “Balsa has gone from extremely anxious and nervous in the beginning of the year to playing with a lot more confidence,” Hamilton said. “He’s becoming more of an instinctive player as he’s learning.” Florida State’s 36-point margin of victory was the biggest for the program since the Seminoles routed Clemson 109-61 on Feb. 5, 2017. David Jean-Baptiste had 15 points for Chattanooga (3-2). Rod Johnson had 11 points and six rebounds for the Mocs, who shot 23 of 59 (39%). Florida State also took away a Chattanooga strength – the 3-pointer. The Mocs made just 5 of 24 (21%) of their shots from beyond the arc. “In the scouting report, there was a lot of talk about their 3s,” Vassell said. “That was probably the key to the game, not let them get as many 3s and contain the dribble. We were able to get some stops and get transition points.” Even without Gray and Walker, Florida State was overwhelming. Olejniczak’s layup with 9:19 to halftime put Florida State ahead 28-17 and the Seminoles led by double figures the rest of the way. “They are physically strong and athletic and long,” Chattanooga coach Lamont Paris coach. “It’s length that we haven’t gone against as much this year. But I thought really had a lot to do with things that we didn’t do, core values that we have as a defensive team that we were not able to do.” TAKEAWAYS Chattanooga: The Mocs trailed by double figures most of the game and couldn’t shoot their way back into it despite Jean-Baptiste’s 7 of 13 performance. Florida State: The Seminoles still posted a season-high point total, played their walk-ons late and had more than enough to overwhelm the Mocs. IMPRESSIVE FRESHMAN Williams shot 6 of 10 from the floor and the freshman forward was able to play 20 high-energy minutes off the bench. “He’s giving tremendous effort,” Hamilton said. “I very well could have started him. But I see something special in him. And I don’t want to put him in a situation where he feels a lot of pressure. I want him to have a natural maturation. His minutes are going to increase. He didn’t have any wasted minutes.” FIGHTING THROUGH INJURIES Hamilton said Gray and Walker are still unable to play due to injuries. He said they were doubtful for the next game. UP NEXT Chattanooga plays at Tennessee on Monday. Florida State plays host to Saint Francis, Pa., on Saturday. _____ For more AP college basketball: https://apnews.com/Collegebasketball and https://twitter.com/AP_Top25
  • The population in St. Johns County is growing and now first responders are having to learn how to keep up with it. St. Johns County fire rescue is working on a plan for future fire stations, staffing and funding needs -- and they need the public's help. They'll host two meetings for feedback. The first will be on Dec. 10 at the Nocatee community clubhouse, the second on Dec.11 at the fire rescue station 5 in St. Augustine. Additional address information and times: Dec. 10 meeting 6 p.m. - Nocatee Community Clubhouse, 245 Nocatee Center Way, Ponte Vedra, Florida. Dec. 11 meeting 6 p.m. - SJC Fire Rescue Station 5, 3360 U.S.1 South, St. Augustine, Florida. According to St. Johns County Fire Rescue the meetings should not last more than two hours and light refreshments will be provided.  St. Johns County Fire Rescue is asking attendees to complete a brief questionnaire in addition to the open discussion. For additional information, please call 904-209-1714 or email rfrey@sjcfl.us. STORY: New fire station in St. Johns County hopes to speed up response times
  • A whistle-blowing flight controller says changes in air traffic control procedures at a major center in Florida raise the risk of a midair collision, but the Federal Aviation Administration disputes the claim. The U.S. Office of Special Counsel said Wednesday that it notified the White House and Congress of the controller’s allegations. The whistleblower’s complaint focuses on changes made early last year by managers at a center near Jacksonville, Florida, that controls flights over parts of five states — Alabama, Georgia, Florida, North and South Carolina — and the Gulf of Mexico. The whistleblower said new procedures for moving planes from one controller’s airspace to another’s could put planes going opposite directions at the same altitude dangerously close together. Controllers might have only one or two minutes to sort things out if planes were headed get too close, according to the special counsel. “Despite being alerted to these troubling findings, FAA management has failed to take appropriate corrective action,” Special Counsel Henry Kerner said. Kerner said FAA officials interviewed several controllers and supervisors and all of them considered the change hazardous or to have introduced risk. He said an FAA investigation found that controllers in Jacksonville sometimes broke rules regarding working together when handing off planes — a “culture of noncompliance” — that management failed to correct. Sen. Roger Wicker, chairman of the Senate Commerce, Science and Transportation Committee, said in a statement, “It is critical that the FAA takes immediate action and makes the necessary procedural modifications to ensure America’s airspace is safe.” The FAA said the procedures adopted at the Florida facility are consistent with those used in FAA facilities throughout the country and comply with its standards for maintaining altitude separation among planes. An FAA safety panel that reviewed the new procedures said in August that it did not identify any new hazards
  • St. Johns County is working to find a permanent replacement for its now-fired, longtime county administrator. Michael Wanchick is out of a job today after county commissioners voted unanimously to fire him Tuesday.  It comes just weeks after neighbors became furious over the closure of Mickler's Landing for a private dune project. That's a problem Commissioner Jeremiah Blocker, who represents the Mickler's area, said was caused by Wanchick. 'That was part of it. There were several other instances that had happened, as well, that were very concerning,' Blocker said. TRENDING STORIES: Passenger dies after falling four stories from Carnival Cruise ship  Jacksonville father dies after being shot at home on W. Beaver St., family says  13-year-old girl shot, killed by 16-year-old boyfriend, police say  Four dead, including St. Marys parents, 4-year-old son in head-on crash  He wouldn't elaborate on other examples, but he said he had spoken to Wanchick about his concerns but nothing seemed to improve. He ultimately lost faith in Wanchick. 'It was apparent that in the last year or so, he's lost his ability to manage staff,' said Blocker. As county administrator for 13 years, Wanchick's job was to execute the wishes of the elected board of county commissioners. It's a leadership position that Blocker said pays more than $200,000 a year.  Right now, the position has been offered to the clerk of courts, Hunter Conrad, on an interim basis. But going forward, Blocker said he'd like to better define the position of county administrator and maybe explore other options. 'Jacksonville obviously has a mayor; Volusia County has a strong chairman position. That's certainly something I think we should look at, and I hope that we will,' Blocker said. Conrad would have to resign from his current position before he can serve as county administrator.  Wanchick will get a payout per the term of his contract. Action News Jax tried reaching him for comment, but the number listed for him did not work, and his information has also been taken down from the county website.  STAY UPDATED: Download the Action News Jax app for live updates on breaking stories
  • The winning numbers in Wednesday evening's drawing of the Georgia Lottery's 'Georgia FIVE Evening' game were: 5-6-8-9-4 (five, six, eight, nine, four)