Duval County, Florida

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Duval County is one of 67 counties in Florida. Jacksonville is the county seat.

On October 1, 1968, the government of Duval County was consolidated with the government of the City of Jacksonville, although the Duval County cities of Atlantic Beach, Baldwin, Jacksonville Beach, and Neptune Beach are not included in the corporate limits of Jacksonville, and maintain their own municipal governments. For this reason, Duval County government information is found on the City of Jacksonville website.

Duval County's estimated population as of 2009 was 857,040.[1] It is one of 20 charter countes in the state. It became a charter county in 1968.[2]

Evaluation of website

In 2011 Duval County earned a Sunny Awards for having a perfect website transparency score.

Main article: Evaluation of Florida county websites
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Budget
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Permits, zoning
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Transparency grading process


This website was most recently reviewed on an unknown date.

The good

  • Budget
    • The most current budget is listed.[3]
    • Budgets are archived for 14 years.[4]
  • Administrative Officials
    • Department heads are listed for each department.[5]
    • Contact information for administrative officials is provided including a mailing address, phone number, and personalized email.
  • Elected Officials
    • Elected officials are listed with a mailing address, phone number and personalized email.[6]
  • Meetings
    • Meeting minutes are archived for 9 years.
    • Meeting agendas are archived for 9 years.[7].
    • A meeting calendar is available and names the times and locations of public meetings.
    • Meeting video are available.[8]
  • Audits
    • The most recent audit is posted.
    • Audits dating back to 1999-2000 are available.[9]
  • Contracts
    • Bids and RFPs are posted online.[10]
    • Approved contract statements are provided for vendors.[11]
  • Public Records
    • The public information officer is identified by requester status. These employees provide a mailing address, phone number and personalized email.[12]
    • A public records form is provided..
    • A fee schedule for documents is provided.
  • Taxes
    • Tax revenues are broken down by federal, state, and local funding in the budget.
    • Local taxes, like property taxes, are available online.[13]
    • Residents are able to pay taxes online.[14]
  • Permits and zoning
    • Zoning ordinances are posted online.
    • Permit applications can be downloaded on the site, along with information on how to apply for the permits.[15]

The bad

  • Lobbying
    • If the county engaged in lobbying actives or if it's a member of government lobbying associations are not disclosed. Nor is the total cost lobbying activities or membership dues for associations available.

Elected Officials

City Council

The City Council is the legislative body of the City of Jacksonville's consolidated government and is responsible for making the laws that govern our way of life. These 19 Council Members, who are elected to four-year terms and serve as part-time legislators, have almost unlimited power to enact legislation in order to provide for the needs of our community.[16]

For fair representation throughout the community, the city is divided into 14 districts of nearly equal population and each of these districts elects a single council member. The other five council members represent the entire community 'at large.' In May of each year the Council elects a President and Vice President to serve one-year terms beginning the first of July. The President then assigns members to Standing and Special Committees.[16]

Legislation flows through Standing Committees made up of council members before going to the full Council for a vote. All bills are assigned to one or more of the six Standing Committees for recommendations to be made to the full Council. These committees meet during the first and third weeks of each month in the Council Chamber in City Hall. For additional information, click Legislative Process.[16]

The full Council meets on the second and fourth Tuesday of each month at 5 p.m. in the Council Chambers. Citizens are encouraged to play an active role in their city government. You may obtain a Council Agenda in the Legislative Services Division in City Hall (Suite 430) on the Friday before a meeting. You may speak before the full City Council on any bill up for public hearing or during the public comment section at each Council meeting. If you have questions or concerns regarding local issues, call your district council member or the Council office at (904) 630-1377. Staff there will be glad to assist you.[16]

City Council Operating Budget:[17]

Actual
FY 07-08
Actual
FY 08-09
Approved
FY 09-10
Positions/Hours 18 / 3,000
Personnel Expense $1,500,538 $1,494,345 $1,779,323
Operating Expense $68,337 $108,370 $162,283
Capital Outlay $0 $500 $500
TOTAL $1,568,875 $1,603,215 $1,942,106

Salaries

Though no figures are posted, simple math helps us determine Council Member salaries. According to the table above, there are 18 positions listed in the operating budget (there are 18 current members of the Council). The projected personnel expense is $1,779,323. Simple division shows that the average Councilor will make $98,851 this fiscal year (which does not include costs for transportation and other reimbursable activities).

Budget

Revenue

The City of Jacksonville derives its operating funds from a variety of sources. These sources include: Property taxes, contributions from other local units, half cent sales tax, utility service tax, franchise fees, local option sales tax, state revenue sharing, stormwater charges, communication services taxes, solid waste charges, local option gas tax, and other revenues. For fiscal year 2010-2011, it is estimated that the City of Jacksonville will receive $1.7 billion in total revenue. Here is how those revenue sources break down:[18]

Cityrevenuedollar.jpg

Total General Fund – General Services District (GSD) Revenues In the current fiscal year, the city expects to generate $990 million in general fund – general services district revenue to support government operations. These dollars are allocated by the mayor and the City Council. General Fund revenue breaks down as follows:[18]

Cityrevenuegfdollar.jpg

General Fund Sources of Revenue -- $485,533,272

  • Revenue generated by placing a tax on the value of property that is subject to taxation, as defined by Florida Statutes.

Other Taxes -- $178,234,512

  • Sales and Use Taxes, Franchise Fees and Utility Service Taxes.

Licenses and Permits -- $7,775,760

  • Occupational licenses, business taxes, street vending registration fees and refueling permits. The largest portion of this revenue is in occupational licenses for the city.

Intergovernmental Revenue -- $225,975,620

  • Encompasses all forms of state shared revenues and transfers from component units.

Other Sources -- $6,102,689

  • Include transfers from other subfunds as well as Banking Fund Loan proceeds.

Charges for Services -- $59,241,942

  • Represents the various fees that are charged for services provided by General Fund departments. The major departmental revenues in this area include ambulance services revenue and various Office of the Sheriff revenues, including inmate services, off-duty reimbursement, alarm & incident fees and reimbursements from other agencies for police services.

Fines and Forfeitures -- $3,329,800

  • Includes traffic fines, civil fines and penalties, code violations, Animal Care & Protective Services civil penalties and parking fines.

Miscellaneous Revenue -- $24,172,243

  • Encompasses a wide variety of revenues including but not limited to concession sales, earnings on investments, nuisance abatement, rental of city facilities, public building charges and reimbursement for Florida Department of Transportation streetlight maintenance.

Non discretionary funding: Non-discretionary dollars come from other fees and funds including the Capital Project Fund, Special Revenue Funds, Enterprise Funds, Internal Service Funds, General Trust and Agency Funds and the Component Unit. These dollars, by law, may only be used for designated projects and programs.

Millage Rate
2011 MillageRates.jpg

Expenditures

When reviewing the city’s $1.7 billion total budget, following the funding sources for individual department and divisions can sometimes be confusing. This is often due to transfers that occur within divisions when services overlap. “Transfers” are dollars in the budget that are moved from one fund to another fund. These transfers do not reflect any additional spending, but can contribute to confusion about the overall budget of a department and/or division.

The graphs on this page attempt to present a truer picture of the actual size of the city’s budget and the expenses. The total $1.7 billion budget expenses break down as follows:[19]

Cityexpensedollar.jpg

General Fund $914,481,127 53.46%
Capital Project Funds $147,321,636 8.61%
Special Revenue Funds $353,449,763 20.66%
Enterprise Funds $192,698,922 11.27%
Internal Service Funds $90,979,055 5.32%
General Trust and Agency Funds $950,816 0.06%
Component Units $10,623,470 0.62%
Total $1,710,504,789 100.00%

Total General Fund – General Services District (GSD) Expenditures Of the city’s $1.7 billion total operating budget, $720 million are non-discretionary funds that can only be used for specifically designated projects and programs. The remaining $990 million are general fund dollars that fund operations in eight various areas of local government. Here’s the breakdown of general fund spending:[19]

Cityexpensegfdollar.jpg

General Government -- $86,743,882

  • Includes money spent by City Council, Mayor’s Office, Central Operations and Supervisor of Elections.

Public Safety -- $521,669,306

  • Includes money spent by Fire & Rescue, the Office of the Sheriff, Medical Examiner and lifeguard services provided at the county’s three beach communities.

Physical Environment -- $12,163,843

  • Includes Environmental Quality, Solid Waste, Public Works, Cooperative Extension Service and Water and Sewer Expansion Authority.

Transportation -- $39,686,555

  • Includes Public Works, Engineering, Right-of-Way and Grounds Maintenance.

Human Services -- $64,225,103

  • Includes Public Health, Adult Services, Animal Care and Protective Services, Mosquito Control, Code Compliance, Indigent Care and Community Relations.

Culture and Recreation -- $61,161,368

  • Includes libraries, Recreation and Community programming, Waterfront Management, The Ritz Theatre and Special Events.

Economic Environment -- $10,610,230

  • Includes Veteran and Disabled Services, the Metropolitian Planning Organization, Northeast Florida Regional Council and the Jacksonville Economic Development Commission.

Other Disbursements -- $194,105,551

  • Includes Clerk of the Courts, Courts, Public Defender and State Attorney.

Employee Pay

In early 2012, Jacksonville's The Florida Times-Union requested public salary data from more than 90 North Florida government agencies for 2010-11.[20] Below are the 20 highest paid County employees in 2010:[21]

Name Year Employer Base Pay Total Pay
Anderson, Alan Paul 2010 JaxPort $320,000.10 $320,000.10
Dickenson, James 2010 JEA $317,636.80 $317,636.80
PRATT-DANNALS, WILLIAM ED 2010 Duval County Public Schools $275,000.00 $275,000.00
Blaylock, Michael 2010 JTA $273,485.86 $273,485.86
Grossman, Steven 2010 Jacksonville Aviation Authority $245,000.08 $245,000.08
Chansler, James 2010 JEA $230,193.60 $230,193.60
McElroy, Paul 2010 JEA $215,009.60 $215,009.60
Schleicher, Roy A 2010 JaxPort $204,402.02 $212,689.21
Eckenbach, Jon 2010 JEA $198,390.40 $198,390.40
Moody, Ernestine 2010 Jacksonville Aviation Authority $191,654.06 $194,049.74
Rao, Valerie 2010 Jacksonville, City of $190,172.64 $190,172.64
FISHBURN, J.BLAIR 2010 JTA $190,000.00 $190,000.00
Brost, Michael 2010 JEA $187,304.00 $187,304.00
GIBBS, JACQUELYN 2010 JTA $180,000.00 $180,000.00
Giles, Jesse 2010 Jacksonville, City of $179,556.39 $179,556.39
Rohan, Steven 2010 Jacksonville, City of $177,429.00 $177,429.00
Sherman, Kirk 2010 Jacksonville, City of $176,400.00 $176,400.00
DAVIS, JOHN 2010 JTA $174,621.33 $174,621.33
Kauffmann, Christopher Charles 2010 JaxPort $164,587.49 $173,795.47
Kendrick, Wanyonyi 2010 JEA $173,472.00 $173,472.00

Pensions

Main article: Florida public pensions

The City of Jacksonville’s current pension contribution rates are growing at an unsustainable rate and, if not addressed, will affect the city’s ability to fund government services properly.[22]

In 2003, pension costs were about $40 million. Last year they were more than $100 million and 10 years from now, pension costs could absorb more than $260 million from the general fund. To view historical pension costs and the cost projections please see the charts below. The driving forces behind increasing pension costs have been growth in benefits, actuarial charts that masked the actual cost of benefits and the market’s failure to meet investment targets in a declining economy.[22]

The city is currently negotiating with the Police and Fire Pension Fund to modify the city’s pension system and create a plan that is fair, competitive and sustainable. The General Employee Pension Fund has already settled negotiations with the city which have been implemented for new employees.[22]

PensionProjected.jpg PensionHistorical.jpg

Audits

For Duval County, members of the Board of County Commissioners serve as the Audit Committee.[23]

See also

External links

References