City of Pensacola

City of Pensacola

When it begins airing this summer, Pensacola Mayor Ashton Hayward’s upcoming television show will be missing – Mayor Ashton Hayward.

The Mayor announced Wednesday that the program on BLAB-TV, would be produced. But he’s backing away from the project amid blowback from the community. 

Robert De Varona

Businessman Robert de Varona is taking the City of Pensacola to court, over a deadline for him to remove vestiges of his restaurant from its long-time space at Pensacola International Airport. A hearing on the suit is scheduled for later this week.

A letter from outside counsel for the city told de Varona that if the equipment wasn’t removed by midnight last night, an eviction lawsuit would be filed and the gear impounded at his expense. De Varona contends that violates his lease, which gives him 60 days – until May 30th -- to vacate.

Gov. Rick Scott’s trip to Pensacola last week involved more than just a closed political fundraiser. He also heard about the controversial plan to relocate a state probation and parole office to the city’s North Hill neighborhood.

The Governor  Friday directed Department of Corrections Secretary Michael Crews to renew the office’s existing lease at the current facility on North Davis Highway. Plans were to move the offices to the old Coca-Cola plant on Palafox. That drew fire from a number of North Hill residents at the last City Council meeting.

Robert Marbut, who has spent three decades working on homeless issues, visited Pensacola Wednesday and conducted a Community Forum on Homelessness sponsored by the City.

Speaking in the City Council Chambers, Marbut outlined his work with dozens of cities, and his involvement in establishing Haven for Hope in his hometown of San Antonio -- where homelessness has dropped by around 85 percent.

Robert Marbut, a 30-year veteran of working on homeless issues, is the featured speaker this afternoon at a Community Forum on Homelessness sponsored by the City of Pensacola.

Marbut has worked with dozens of cities to reduce homelessness. He also led the Haven for Hope in San Antonio from concept to opening. After conducting a nationwide “best practices” study of homeless services, he developed the Seven Guiding Principles of Homeless Transformation, which have been adopted by a dozen communities.

Jamille Ellingson

Beginning Tuesday cohabitating unmarried adults, gay and straight, will be able to register as domestic partners with the City of Pensacola.

Ordinance number 41-13 was approved in December, setting up a Domestic Partnership Registry, or DPR, and providing registered domestic partners with various rights and benefits. Sponsored by Councilman Larry B. Johnson, the DPR will also be open to those who live outside the Pensacola city limits.

ST Aerospace

Governor Rick Scott’s proposed budget for next fiscal year includes $325 million for aviation improvements, as part of a $9 billion investment in strategic transportation improvements throughout the state.

The announcement was made at Tuesday’s Florida Airports Council Meeting in Tallahassee, as part of Gov. Scott’s “It’s Your Money Tax Cut Budget.” Pensacola International Airport is in line for $14 million. Director Greg Donovan says the money is earmarked for expansion projects – including attempts to lure ST Aerospace.

University of West Florida

On this week's Economic Report, Dr. Rick Harper discusses two economic development projects being pursued by the City of Pensacola. One plan calls for the expansion of ST Aerospace to Pensacola International Airport. Pensacola Mayor Ashton Hayward and the city have a memorandum of understanding with the aviation maintenance company, which currently operates in Mobile.

Crime Drops in Pensacola

Jan 22, 2014
Pensacola Police Department

Crime in Pensacola was down 14% across the board in 2013, compared to the previous year. That’s according to the Pensacola Police Department’s Uniform Crime Report.

The numbers are based on the 2012 population for the City of Pensacola, which was given at 52,340. Inside the overall numbers for violent and non-violent crime, there were 319 residential burglaries reported within city limits in 2013 compared with 525 the previous year. Police Chief Chip Simmons says that’s a 39% reduction.

City Sued Over Restaurant Leases

Jan 15, 2014
Great Southern Restaurant Group

Unable to reach a settlement over leases for the city-owned Pitt’s Slip property, two businessmen are taking the City of Pensacola to court.

Seville Harbour Incorporated – owned by Ray Russenberger – holds the master lease for the property on which Collier Merrill’s Fish House Restaurant and Atlas Oyster Bar are located as Great Southern Restaurant Group. The city claimed that the eateries owed more than five million dollars in payments dating back to the year 2000 when the lease was first signed.