Mayor Lenny Curry and Council President Aaron Bowman Announce Federal Shutdown Relief Options

January 22, 2019  
City Council President Aaron Bowman and Mayor Lenny Curry at the 2018 Budget Address

While Washington remains deadlocked, federal employees, retirees and their families are caught in the middle. With jobs and paychecks in limbo for weeks, Mayor Lenny Curry and City Council President Aaron Bowman have been reviewing relief options that are available for Jacksonville’s federal workforce.

“Employees and retirees from multiple agencies as well as the U.S. Coast Guard have either been off the job or on the job without pay. Since Washington can’t come together in a sensible way, then we will,” said Mayor Curry.
Council President Bowman added, “These families deserve whatever we can do to help. Many in the private and non-profit sector are already helping; Mayor Curry and I want to make sure the City is doing its part.”
Below is a listing of information and assistance that Mayor Curry and Council President Bowman want Jacksonville families to know is available:

COJ Social Services Division - Federal Employees Assistance

Through the City’s Social Services Division, there is more than $500,000 available through small grants to Duval residents who can document their furlough or pay stoppage from the Federal Government. They also will need to demonstrate need based on either exhausted or insufficient resources.
These grant funds are available to assist with rent and mortgage, utilities and food (recipients cannot already receive Food Stamps). Since the start of the shutdown, 4 Duval families have already received assistance through this program.
To apply call COJ Social Services Division at 904-630-0545.

JEA Customer Service Options

Mayor Curry contacted JEA CEO Aaron Zahn who offered the following information for those who may be struggling with their utility bills.
JEA offers bill management programs such as Payment Plans and Payment Arrangements. To help customers identify which options are best for them, customer service representatives will review the account and discuss the programs that would be a good fit for their situation. 
Payment Plan – Customers who need just a few extra days to pay their bill may qualify for a Payment Plan.
Payment Arrangement – For those who need more time paying their past due balance, consider a Payment Arrangement. This allows customers to pay their past due amount over a series of months.
Resources for Additional Assistance
The number for JEA customers to call is 904-665-6000.

City of Jacksonville Military Affairs and Veterans Department - Jacksonville Veterans Resource and Reintegration Center

One-time, interest-free loans of up to $500 are available to Active Duty Coast Guard personnel affected by the shutdown. Repayment will be over a 6-month period once normal pay has resumed. USCG service members assigned to a base in Duval County or who reside in Duval County will have to present a Military ID Card.
Additional services for military, veterans and their families are available. Contact the office at 904-630-3680.

Other Assistance

The City of Jacksonville has a longstanding partnership with the United Way. They can assist with referrals to other agencies providing rent and mortgage payment assistance or food. 
To reach the United Way, call 2-1-1.
The USO is working with local media outlets and service providers like Feeding Northeast Florida and others. They are collaborating to receive either financial donations or supplies that families need. These groups are in direct contact with local Coast Guard commands to distribute the donations as needed.
More information can be found at