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In an effort to keep costs down, United Airlines plans to layoff about 66 employees from Jacksonville International Airport. A spokeswoman, Luke Punzenberger, said that this was not an easy decision for the company – but it is a necessary one.

Punzenberger contested that, “this is to ensure our costs are competitive. A lot of our competitors have workforce agreements in these markets that allow them to operate at a more competitive rate than United. This change will enable us to be more cost competitive in markets like Jacksonville.”

The positions most affected include those below and above the wing; such as: baggage handlers, ramp workers, and customer service representatives. Most of the workers facing layoffs have already been made aware, and if eligible, have the option to relocate to another airport in another position.

While the reported layoffs are effective May 17-31, the airline has yet to even respond to the many questions concerning the airline layoffs. The most information they released was in January, when they announced that they were considering cutting up to 2,000 jobs at 28 airports – including Jacksonville International Airport – and planned to outsource the work to various contractors.

The move comes after United’s decision over a year ago, to outsource 600 plus jobs to 12 airports throughout the country. The incident last year mostly affected airports fulfilled by smaller United Express regional flights.

As of late, United was discussing the layoff situation with representatives of the affected workers, the International Association of Machinists, and Aerospace Workers.

If you are moving to Jacksonville and will be traveling by plane, the layoffs should not affect your flights and the prices should remain low as a result.

The continuous growth of Sea Breeze Food Service does not have plans to slow down any time soon; the company has plans to expand its Northwest Jacksonville facility by 16,000 square feet.

The company plans to invest roughly $3.8 million in the expansion, with the hopes of greatly increasing the need for extra space; including: dry and frozen storage, test kitchen, and meeting areas. Not only will the expansion add more physical room, it will also create an additional five jobs to the existing 74 workers the company has employed.

Before Sea Breeze can continue with their plan, the City council has to approve a request for $238,909 from the Northwest Jacksonville Economic Development Fund, for infrastructure and maintenance. The request would help for the expansion, as well as for projects like: connecting the building to the sewage system and repaving Keen Road.

According to Mayor Alvin Brown, “these grant funds will go toward helping them expand their operations and invest in Northwest Jacksonville, allowing them to bring more economic opportunity to this critical neighborhood.”

The company also has plans to request further federal funding in order to help pay for clean-up and remediation. So far, the development fund has allocated funds to two projects since its reactivation. Two of the projects they have already contributed to; include: $583, 587 to First Coast No More Homeless Pets to purchase and renovate property on Cassat Avenue, and $58,220 to the construction of a Church’s Fried Chicken.

Jacksonville moving companies want residents to know that for the third year in a row, Jacksonville Electric Authority may be able to give money back to customers.

JEA customers may have a reason to celebrate; the company is presently considering giving them a $56 credit. This one-time break on electric bills, follows the recommendation from the company’s finance and audit committee, to enact savings in its fuel reserves to its customers by issuing a credit for the average electric bill – about $56.

If approved, most customers can expect to see the credit sometime in April. As of late, the JEA board will consider issuing such a credit sometime next week.

The utility is able to provide such a service to their customers because of their reserve fund. The fund is created by charging each customer a fuel charge – just in case fuel prices spike. In the event that would happen, the company has enough money to cover about $95 million of the year’s total fuel costs – aka 15%.

Customers have lower than expected fuel costs to thank for the potential credit. The fund is currently $50 million over where it needs to be – the low costs pushed the reserve fund to about 19%.

Last year, the company gave their residential and commercial customer a $32 fuel credit, and the year before that customers received a $35 credit. This year’s credit will be the highest one that the company has had the chance to offer.

This past week, Jacksonville movers found out that the highest number of prepaid college plans sold this year, was already three times higher than that of 2014, and the highest ever since 2008; a number totaling roughly 50,000. According to the UNF student aid department, so many of the plans were sold because prices have dropped so much. This bodes well for student’s college costs – which include not just tuition, but also housing and books.

Many students admit that if their parents had not invested in a Florida prepaid college plan for them, they would not have been able to attend school.

According to student Anissa Agne, “it’s a building block – you start with that, go for Bright Futures, apply for other scholarships, private foundation institutional and all of that together can build up a package that can help fund basically the students entire education.”

The increased number of plans being purchased can be attributed to the extremely low price of the plans – currently only $43 a month.

Agne further attested that, “I think Florida wins in the end. We will have a more educated workforce at the end of the day because more children will know they can go to college. I think if you have a Florida prepaid plan at home, the idea is you’ll go to college.”

A new state law enacted with the purpose of controlling future school fee increases, also could be influencing the higher than normal amount of plans being purchased.

If you are planning on moving to Jacksonville, you will quickly realize how nice the people in the community are. Folks in Jacksonville are the kind of people who say “hello,” hold the door for the person behind them, and know their neighbors by name. So it was no surprise to your Jacksonville moving company when local resident, Caralene Parker, was a recipient of the 2014 Champion of Service Award at Jacksonville’s Clanzel T. Brown Senior Center.

Parker is known in Jacksonville for her work with the Brown Center, where she is the treasurer and song leader. As the Brown Center’s song leader, she sings at events and funerals to bring comfort to those around her. She is very active in her church, the Retired Senior Volunteer Program, local hospitals, and nursing homes. Parker has been working with the Brown Center for 11 years, and she has held leadership positions for several projects there. Her peers and other community organizers could not say enough nice things about her during the award ceremony.

Six Floridians were honored with the award by Governor Rick Scott and Volunteer Florida CEO Chester Spellman. The Champion of Service Award is Florida’s only statewide volunteer award. The awards were given for volunteer work with children, students, and the elderly.

The Jacksonville community is very strong. If you are new in town and interested in becoming a Jacksonville volunteer, there is plenty that you can get involved with. Maybe you can join the Brown Center in their efforts and meet Caralene Parker yourself!

If you have recently moved to Jacksonville and have a love of craft beer, your Jacksonville moving company has some good news! A World of Beer recently opened in Jacksonville Beach, and it was ready just in time for the Super Bowl crowd!

With craft beer gaining in popularity, World of Beer has expanded drastically since its first location opened. The chain is now in more than 15 states, and this new World of Beer will be the second Jacksonville location and the 29th in Florida.

There will be plenty of special reasons to visit this particular World of Beer. First off, they will serve beer from local Jacksonville favorite: Zeta Brewing Company; which is the newest addition to Jax Ale Trail. The tavern will also feature its first infusion tower, which will allow them to infuse their beer with fruit or herbs for a unique taste.

The demand for craft beer has been growing in town, and brewing companies have been more than happy to meet the demand. Jax Ale Trail was created by the city to attract interest in Jacksonville’s craft breweries. The Trail includes several breweries; including: Engine 15 Brewing Co., Intuition Ale Works, Aardwolf Brewing Co., Pinglehead Brewing Com., Bold City Brewery, Green Room Brewing, Veterans United Craft Brewery, and Zeta Brewing Company. Jacksonville is also home to one of just five Budweiser Breweries.

If you are new to Jacksonville, the Jacksonville Beach World of Beer location is the perfect place to meet new people and get a feel for your new hometown.

Those who have recently moved to Jacksonville are often impressed with the city’s beaches and waterways. The city boasts miles of sand and has plenty of canals and lakes, and the Jacksonville Water Taxi offers a unique way to get around town. While the water taxi is a great way for new residents to enjoy the riverside, it may not be operational for much longer.

Lakeshore Marine, which began managing the water taxi last year, has a contract with the city of Jacksonville that is soon to expire. The management company is currently in negotiations with the city to continue service, but the Jacksonville Water Taxi has had trouble getting enough passengers to keep it going. Ridership has been steadily decreasing, and the service averages about 30 people per week. Ridership spikes dramatically when there is a Jaguars game at EverBank Field, but the Jacksonville Water Taxi cannot continue to rely on game days.

The Jacksonville water taxi is a 15 to 20 minute ride around St. John’s River that stops at five points of interest; including: Jacksonville Landing, the Friendship Fountain, the Crowne Plaza, the Wyndham, and the Jacksonville Municipal Marina. The water taxi can accommodate about 100 people.

If you have recently moved to the area, your Jacksonville moving company recommends that you try to catch a ride on the water taxi while you still can. Kids under three ride free, and the Jacksonville Water Taxi is a great way for them to get excited about their new home!

Jacksonville has made a name for itself over the years, and 10 years ago, the city hosted Super Bowl XXXIX at Alltel Stadium. The New England Patriots were victorious over the Philadelphia Eagles, winning by just three points. Your Jacksonville moving company was hoping for another Super Bowl to come to town soon, but it’s not looking like that will happen for a while.

Jacksonville was one of many Florida cities that hosted the Super Bowl in recent years, but it seems the NFL is putting the Sunshine State on the back burner for now. The next three Super Bowls will be played in Santa Clara, California, Houston, Texas and Minneapolis, Minnesota. There are also rumors that Super Bowl 2019 will be awarded to Atlanta, who has a new stadium set to open in 2017. New stadium construction seems to be a big deciding factor for Super Bowl decisions, and Florida hasn’t built a new pro football stadium in over 10 years. Other recent Super Bowl host-cities in Florida include Miami and Tampa, but Florida has not hosted a Big Game since 2010.

The 2005 Super Bowl in Jacksonville brought plenty of business to town. It elevated Jacksonville’s city profile by proving that we could handle such a large event. It also initiated investments in Alltel Stadium and the downtown area.

If you are moving to the Jacksonville area, don’t be sad! There may not be an eminent Super Bowl in Jacksonville, but the city has plenty of events and things to do for residents.

Elephants, acrobats, clowns and jugglers can only mean one thing: the circus! This month, Jacksonville featured Circus Xtreme, the newest show from Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey Circus. The show was held at the Jacksonville Veterans Memorial Arena, January 15th through the 18th, and children and parents alike were in awe of all the performers and animals.

The show was more daring and well, “extreme,” than a traditional circus, as it was influenced by the X games and freestyle sports. There were BMX riders, human cannon balls, contortionists, and all kinds of animals; like: elephants, camels, tigers, horses, and dogs.

Gemma Querida, or “Gemma the Jet,” performed as the show’s human cannonball and was one of the event’s highlights. Audiences gasped as the 25-year-old launched out of a cannon and shot 44 feet into the air, where she landed safely on an airbag (phew!).

Circus Xtreme is touted as great for children of all ages and it includes some child-friendly activities where kids are encouraged to participate. Performers invited children on stage for acts like the Xtreme Jump and a more traditional game of tug-of-war. If guests showed up early, they were allowed to meet some of the circus’ clowns and acrobats and even try on costumes!

Circus Xtreme was a great show to bring your children to if you recently moved to the Jacksonville area. But if you missed it, don’t worry! The circus comes to town each year, and the theme changes annually. Your Jacksonville moving company will be there!

As a coastal city, Jacksonville has a love affair with boats. Whether it is for fishing, crabbing, or cruising, folks love to spend their days on the water. That is why your Jacksonville moving company is so excited about the upcoming Jacksonville Boat Show. The event will be held at Prime Osborn Convention Center Friday the 23rd, through Sunday the 25th.

The Jacksonville Boat Show is in its 68th year and has become an event that locals always look forward to. It is a great way to spend the weekend with your family and explore the 75 exhibits and hundreds of boat displays. You can check out fishing boats, skiing boats and cruisers, or grab a bite to eat at one of nine food trucks. There will also be fishing clinics for women and children, and a special boat care seminar hosted by Don Racine.

Boat sales are on the rise, largely due to a decline in gas prices. Many show attendees will be looking to purchase a boat, but they will have a chance to win some free prizes too. There will be a seven-day trip to Cosa Rica, sponsored by Nosara Paradise Rentals (score!). Jacksonville Marine Association and All Wet Sports will partner together to give away a stand up paddleboard and free lesson. There will also be daily giveaways, including floatation devices and sunglasses to keep your kids safe and stylish.

If you are new to the area, be sure to check out the Jacksonville Boat Show with your family. It will be a great way to meet your neighbors, entertain your children, and get outdoors on the beautiful coast of your new town!