Observations and musings on Jacksonville Politics

Daniel Davis must want to be Mayor

It is becoming apparent that Daniel Davis must really want to get his name out there for his race for Mayor.  He’s evidently using the Nelson Cuba “style”, though – forcing legislation down people’s throats – to do so.   Davis has proposed legislation that would put  “local companies first” in the City’s competitive bidding process.  Numerous companies have raised objections to his proposed legislation, and even the regional Chamber of Commerce has questioned the wisdom of Davis’ bill. 

The Times Union is reporting that in response to Davis’ proposed legislation,

a group of engineers representing companies based in Jacksonville and those with headquarters elsewhere have worked on a compromise to a controversial bill intended to funnel city contracts to locally based firms. The compromise, if accepted by the City Council, would avoid a rewrite of the city’s procurement code as outlined in the original bill, filed by Councilman Daniel Davis. Instead, the current formula for scoring proposals would not change. If there are tie scores, the contracts would be awarded to companies with offices in Duval County.

However, Daniel Davis isn’t too happy wih the proposed compromise and apparently may force “local companies first” legislation down everyone’s throats.

Davis said Monday he was still reviewing the engineers’ compromise and was open to their suggestions. However, he said his intent remains to steer city dollars to companies headquartered in Jacksonville.  “If there is a more simple way to do it, I’m willing to look at it,” he said. “I think this is a good idea, but definitely there is going to be some changes that have to be made to it.”

The legislation and the compromise will be considered at Seaport and Airport Special Committee meeting at 4pm today.  With the two of the three members of that committee sponsoring “local companies first” legislation (and running for higher office), it will be no secret how that vote will turn out, will it?

But one not-so-strange twist – Davis has cancelled the public hearing on his bill.  I guess the only folks to be heard that matter to Daniel Davis are the folks who worked on the compromise (who are also the ones most likely to line his campaign coffers) – and he didn’t really listen to them either. So much for the rest of the public, too – he doesn’t even want to hear from them. 

And so it’s business as usual for Jacksonville’s City Council.


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