Mayor Jay Gillian Dear Friends,A new state law that went into effect on Jan. 1 requires battery-powered smoke detectors to have 10-year sealed battery units. This change will affect many properties that do not have hard-wired smoke detectors.The new equipment is powered by long-life batteries that never need to be replaced – homeowners can rest assured that their alarms are always on.After 10 years, the entire units must be replaced.Starting immediately, properties without hard-wired detectors must have the new 10-year sealed battery smoke detectors to pass inspection for transfers of title and rental units.The new equipment is readily available at local hardware and home improvement stores. Click here for more information. Earlier this week, crews demolished a building on city-owned property along the marshes near 36th Street and Bay Avenue.This structure has served many purposes over the years – from a rescue squad station to a dryland training facility for local crew teams – but it is no longer viable.I have instructed the city team to preserve this site as open space. Because it has a little elevation, we may try to create a few unpaved parking spots to accommodate cars during flood tides, and we may install some small playground equipment. But no new buildings are planned for the site.The city team is finishing work on the draft municipal budget for 2019 and the capital plan for 2019-2023. On Thursday, Feb. 28, I will deliver my annual State of the City address, and my administration will make a capital plan presentation and deliver the draft budget to City Council.The public meeting will be in Council Chambers on the third floor of City Hall. It starts at 6 p.m., but Council is expected to go into executive session for 30 to 45 minutes to conduct interviews for a Zoning Board appointment before moving on to the rest of the agenda.Warm regards,Mayor Jay A. Gillian
Laid-off workers in the Sunshine State should get money going retroactively to the day they tried to file, Gov. Ron DeSantis said on Wednesday.Since the middle of last month, thousands of workers who have been laid off or furloughed due to the coronavirus pandemic have attempted to file claims with the Department of Economic Opportunity’s (DEO) CONNECT system.In many cases, they were unable to access the overwhelmed system.DeSantis did not take action to make the additional payments a requirement. According to state law, benefits are typically calculated from the date an unemployment application is filed.“If someone was trying to apply last Wednesday and the system wasn’t really working, you should count that as the day,” the governor told reporters. He says he also shared that sentiment with the DEO. In recent days, the state has reassigned hundreds of government employees to help process claims. It is also establishing a system to distribute and receive paper applications, which are already available through some libraries.Additionally, Gov. DeSantis has hired a private call center firm, waived several requirements that applicants must meet in order to expedite the filing process, and had more than 70 servers added to the state’s unemployment system to handle the large number of claims being submitted.