This afternoon (April 27, 2020) at 1:00 p.m. the Jacksonville City Council will hear and vote on emergency legislation (Ordinance 2020-235) that provides direction on the distribution of the $159 million that the City of Jacksonville has received in funding from the CARES Act.  The legislation appropriates the CARES Act funding as follows:

  1. Provides $1,000 COVID-19 Mortgage, Rent and Utility Relief Program grants ("MRU Grants") to eligible citizens of Duval County, in the maximum, cumulative amount of $40,025,000, including the costs of administering the program;
  2. Provides up to $35,525,942.50 to establish and operate COVID-19 test sites within the City;
  3. Reimburses the City $12,500,000 for anticipated costs not reimbursed by the Federal Emergency Management Agency and/or the State of Florida;
  4. Provides the remaining $17,000,000 to fully fund the COVID-19 Relief Program previously authorized by Ordinance 2020-201-E;
  5. Reimburses the City $9,000,000 for the costs of the COVID-19 Relief Program previously authorized by Ordinance 2020-201-E;
  6. Funds up to $25,000,000 of COVID-19 economic stimulus response measures due to the economic impact of COVID-19 emergency response measures, with $4,000,000 thereof to be applied to fund the mobility fee moratorium, and $5,000,000 to fund application fee waivers.; and
  7. Providing up to an additional $20,000,000 of grant funding, subject to future appropriation, to business entities located in Duval County that have suffered economic harm as a result of COVID-19 and the response measures thereto.
  8. With respect to the mobility fee moratorium, the legislation provides for a moratorium on mobility fees for a period of six months or such shorter time as frame if sooner repealed by the City Council.  Applications for a mobility fee calculation certificate (MFCC) and mobility fee calculation are still required, and applicants must demonstrate the number of jobs created or retained in connection with the project.  The waiver of mobility fees will only be applicable to those mobility fees set forth in a MFCC issued within the six-month waiver period.

An additional three month period, providing a waiver of 50% of mobility fees, is allowed for projects whose final construction and/or engineering plans, or building permits for single family residential construction, are not ready for approval within the six-month waiver period, but are eligible for approval within an additional three months after the termination of six-month waiver period.
Since the mobility fee moratorium is intended to spur development that would have been completed but for the COVID 19 emergency, the waiver of mobility fees is tied to completion of construction within specific timeframes.  If a certificate of occupancy or final inspection is not obtained within the timed frames set forth below, then the entire mobility fee shall become due and payable.

  1. Single family residential homes and non-single family residential projects that have a value of less than $1,000,000.00 - no later than twenty-four (24) months from the effective date of the legislation.
  2. Non-single family residential projects that exceed a value $1,000,000.00 - no later than thirty-six (36) months after the effective date of the legislation.

In addition to the temporary moratorium on mobility fees, the legislation provides for a temporary moratorium, for a period of six months, on fees associated with many applications and permits, including (i) building permit fees for various construction activities (e.g. new building, foundation only, moving building, demolition, etc.), (ii) application and recording fees for plat review and civil site plan review, (iii) application fees for construction in the public right-of-way, (iv) application fees for administrative deviations, rezonings, zoning exceptions, variances and land use amendments, and (v) application fees for certificates of use.  The complete ordinance, found here, contains the full list of fees that are waived.

The information for City Council’s meeting at 1:00 p.m. today can be found here.


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