JAX Chamber endorses proposed stadium deal in full

Once opponents duking it out on the campaign trail, Mayor Donna Deegan and JAX Chamber CEO Daniel Davis are now joining forces.

They’re both rallying around the proposed $1.7 billion stadium renovation and community development deal unveiled last week.


“The chamber believes this is a top, top issue for us, for the city, for the Jags,” Davis said.

Davis said the chamber is backing the proposed deal in full.

While there have been some concerns raised by Republican council members about the $150 million city investment for community development projects, Davis argued that piece is an important part of the overall deal.

“We believe the infrastructure funding for parks, for the economic development, we’ve talked about workforce housing being incredibly important. We believe this is very important to be a part of this deal,” Davis said.

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UNF political science professor Dr. Michael Binder noted the chamber’s support for the community development piece could be quite influential.

“Particularly for Republican council members, who they have backed for their elections in the past and potentially might be looking to back again in the future,” Binder said.

Binder added the community development aspect will also likely be a critical piece of selling the deal to the public.

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A UNF survey found 45% of Jacksonville voters believed community investment to be the most important part of any stadium deal.

“For a good chunk of the city, that might be only thing that they care about, and they might be just willing to tolerate the handout to a billionaire in order to get that other stuff,” Binder said.

Binder told Action News Jax the University of North Florida is gearing up for another survey to gauge public opinion on the proposed stadium deal.

Those results should be out sometime next week.

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