The State of Florida awarded two grants to the City of Jacksonville’s Military Affairs and Veterans Department to further strengthen the city’s strong relationship with the United States Armed Forces.
“I am grateful to Governor Ron DeSantis and the State of Florida for their continued support of Jacksonville,” said Mayor Lenny Curry. “Our city has a strong relationship with the military, particularly the U.S. Navy. That relationship extends beyond jobs and economic impacts. These service members are a vital part of our community. These two state grants will further strengthen that bond and encourage increased growth in the years ahead.”
The $500,000 Defense Infrastructure Grant was awarded to support City efforts to provide compatible land development and protect the military missions of Jacksonville’s Navy Installations. The funding supports a multi-year agreement between the City and the U.S. Navy to jointly acquire restrictive use easements over properties that fall in the Military Influence Zones of Navy bases in Jacksonville. Over the past decade, the development rights to more than 1,200 acres have been acquired to protect the missions of Navy bases in Jacksonville. All purchases are completed with willing sellers. The City of Jacksonville Military Affairs and Veterans Department and Bay County Defense Alliance received the largest funding amounts from the state’s Defense Infrastructure Grant Program in 2019.
The City was also awarded a $100,000 Defense Reinvestment Grant from the Florida Department of Economic Opportunity and Enterprise Florida, Inc. to support federal advocacy efforts to bring increased military personnel, infrastructure, operations and economic impact to the Jacksonville area. Areas of focus for the federal advocacy teams include bringing more ships, aircraft, personnel and increased Department of Defense funding to support all of Jacksonville’s military bases and missions.
The City’s Military Affairs and Veterans Department advocates for the continued expansion of military infrastructure, personnel, and jobs in Jacksonville, and has a dedicated staff of Veterans Service Officers that help area veterans access critical services and earned benefits. Last year, the department served nearly 10,000 area Veterans and helped them received more than $25 million dollars in new benefits from the Veterans Administration. The department also hosts annual events that recognize the service and sacrifice of the U.S. Armed Forces, including the Memorial Day Observance, Homeless Veterans Stand Down, Veterans Career Fair and the Veterans Day Parade. To learn more about the Military Affairs and Veterans Department call (904) 255-5550 or visit www.coj.net/MilitaryAffairs.
About the City of Jacksonville
The City of Jacksonville is the largest city by land mass in the contiguous United States, serving approximately 900,000 residents. Located in Duval County, City of Jacksonville leadership includes the mayor and a 19-member City Council. To learn more about the City of Jacksonville, visit COJ.net