Nassau County road and lane closures: week of June 16-20, 2018

FDOT Media Release
June 15, 2018 7:21 p.m.


Daytime closure from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday and Tuesday southbound near the Nassau County line and Georgia State line for Gateway sign and guardrail construction.

I-95 at Florida and Georgia State line
Nighttime northbound lane closures Monday from 11 p.m. to 7 a.m., Sunday, Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday from 7 p.m. to 7 a.m. for road work.

I-95 from Florida State Line to Georgia exit 22 (Horsestamp Church Road)
Daytime lane closures for GDOT resurfacing project.

I-95 from Georgia State line to Airport Road
Daytime southbound lane closures Tuesday through Friday from 9:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. for road work.

I-95 one half mile south of State Road A1A
Nighttime northbound lane closure Monday and Tuesday from 7 p.m. to 6 a.m. to install roadway markings. Continue reading

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Interstate 95 northbound overnight lane closures planned, 6/18 and 6/19 Half mile before exit 373 in Yulee

FDOT Media Release

June 15, 2018 7:19 p.m.Yulee – The Florida Department of Transportation (FDOT) will have an overnight inside and middle lane closure on Interstate 95 northbound a half mile before exit 373 in Yulee, between 7 p.m. to 6 a.m. Monday, June 18 and Tuesday, June 19, weather permitting. The closure will allow construction crews to remove existing striping and for placement of new temporary striping in preparation for an Interstate 95 traffic shift to provide workers with a construction work zone. The exit ramp to Yulee, Callahan, Fernandina Beach and Amelia Island will not be affected by this lane closure.

This project in Yulee consists of reconstruction and widening of 2.2 miles of A1A from west of I-95 to west of Still Quarters Road, widening of ramps at Interstate 95/A1A exit 373 (to Yulee/Callahan/Amelia Island/Fernandina Beach), and the reconfiguration of the interchange under Interstate 95 into the region’s first diverging diamond interchange (DDI).

The widening project increases the roadway from four lanes to six lanes and includes raised medians, bicycle lanes, curbs and gutters, sidewalks and high mast lighting.

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Nassau County surveying unincorporated Amelia Island beaches

From The County Insider
Sabrina Robertson
County Manager’s Office

June 15, 2018 11:02 a.m.

Nassau County has hired a local surveyor to conduct a survey of the erosion control line on the unincorporated beaches from Peters Point south to the State Park utilizing GPS technology. This will take place over the next few days.  This process includes placement of colored PVC pipes which will be used to mark the erosion control line and allow surveyors to take photographs that clearly depict the areas east and west of the line. The pipes will be removed as the photos are taken.

The surveyor will be accompanied by a Sheriff Deputy and one County staff member who will ensure the best approach is being used to accomplish the County’s intent.

If you have any questions, please contact County Attorney, Mike Mullin, at (904) 530-6100 or via e-mail at [email protected].

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Spotlight on Nassau County Gardens – Sue and Gary Fredrick

Nassau County Extension Service
Photos and information by Elizabeth Wilkes
June 15, 2018 11:00 a.m.

Sue and Gary Frederick in their Hilliard garden.

Sue and Gary Frederick bought their property in Hilliard in 1965 and built their home in 1974. At first, the job of removing all the wild grape and poison ivy vines along with all the weeds it seemed over-whelming. However, with a lot of hard work, Sue and Gary managed to make turn the unruly yard into something quite lovely. Her quote is “I prune roses in the daytime but in the dark of night I write killer spy thrillers.”

Hurricane Irma wrought much damage to the property but Gary, also know as “the cabana boy”, worked diligently to replaced their fence, arbor and numerous other structures in the landscape. There is still plenty of work to be done on their summer kitchen and several trees and plants will need some tender loving care to bring them back to their full beauty. The Fredericks enjoy sharing their outdoor kitchen with friends, who gather around to play guitars, fish and warm themselves over the open fires.

The colorful part of the garden is a duplicate of Sue’s mothers garden which always brings Continue reading

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Weekly comments from Dale Martin

Dale Martin
City Manager
Fernandina Beach
June 15,2018 12:00 a.m.

City Manager Dale Martin

Earlier this month, I attended the annual conference of the Florida City/County Managers Association in Orlando. This event provides an opportunity to examine the current state of affairs in local government, explore new products and services, and to renew acquaintances.

Since being introduced to rail service between Jacksonville and Orlando by my neighbor, I take the Amtrak train whenever possible. The cost is low- $35 each way, then a $15 Uber ride to the hotel, but I get to avoid the $20 daily parking fee at the hotel. The trip, however, should not be made if you are in a hurry (although you shouldn’t be driving on I-4 if you are in a hurry, either). The southbound train, which originates in New York City, is typically late. Once aboard, though, it is an enjoyable trip without the perils of traffic congestion.

The opening keynote speaker of the conference was Dr. Natalie Stavas. Dr. Stavas is a pediatrician and an avid runner. She found herself nearly at the finish line of the 2015 Boston Marathon when two bombs detonated. Dr. Stavas recounted how she was confronted with the spontaneous decision as to how to respond- turn and flee, stand in shock, or charge into chaos. She charged and is credited with saving several lives.

Her message was that as community leaders, we are regularly confronted, usually on a smaller and safer scale, with such decisions. We operate in a very open environment which can be chaotic. How we are “wired” matters greatly to the communities that we serve: are Continue reading

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Amelia Hotel at the Beach reopens after fire

Submitted by G. Holly Germano
June 14, 2018 2:00 p.m.

“While the section where the fire started has significant damage, most of the hotel remained unscathed and was able to open the following day. Renovations will begin immediately to the damaged areas.”

The Amelia Hotel at the Beach, located at 1997 South Fletcher Ave on Fernandina Beach, had a guest commit arson to her guest room, on Sunday June 10, 2018 at approximately 10:15 in the morning. The hotel staff notified guests and quickly directed guests to evacuate the building at once. The Fire Department and Police Department quickly extinguished the fire, ascertained guest safety, and removed all of the hazardous material from the building. Once the area was deemed safe, they assisted guests in retrieving their belongings.

The Amelia Hotel closed Sunday night and relocated guests to surrounding hotels, until they could safely reopen. While the section where the fire started has significant damage, most of the hotel remained unscathed and was able to open the following day. Renovations will begin immediately to the damaged areas.

The Germano family, who own The Amelia Hotel, expressed “We are thankful no guests or employees were harmed during this event. We are extremely grateful to the Fire and Police Continue reading

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OHPA transitions with new port operator, departure of Administrative Officer Joanna Cason

Submitted by Suanne Z. Thamm
Reporter – News Analyst
June 14, 2018 1:00 p.m.

UPDATED June 15–new ship arrival time

Senator Aaron Bean presents OHPA with ceremonial check for $2M to fund a new port crane. Pictured from l-r:  OHPA Chair Adam Salzburg (Dist. 3); Commissioner Danny Fullwood (Dist. 2), Board Attorney Clyde Davis, Commissioner Robert Sturgess (Dist. 1),  Commissioner Carrol Franklin (Dist, 4), and Senator Aaron Bean.  Absent from the presentation:  State Representative Cord Byrd and OHPA Commissioner (Dist. 5) Lissa Braddock.
OHPA Chair Adam Salzburg (r) presents resolution of appreciation to Senator Bean.

The Nassau County Ocean Highway and Port Authority (OHPA) is moving on to a new chapter in its history with a new port operator and what appear to be increased shipping opportunities for the Port of Fernandina.   Thanks to the Florida Legislature, the Port has received $2M for the purchase of a new crane.  State Senator Aaron Bean was on hand to receive an OHPA resolution of appreciation at the June 13, 2018 OHPA meeting for his successful lobbying work in securing the funds.  State Representative Cord Byrd, who was also thanked in the resolution, was not able to attend.

Christopher Ragucci, who heads up Worldwide Terminals Fernandina, LLC, the new port operator, reported that shippers are returning to the Port of Fernandina, and contracts with new shippers will bring in more business starting next month.  Continue reading

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Speakers announced for 2018-19 Florida Forum Series

The Women’s Board of Wolfson Children’s Hospital
June 14, 2018 11:00 a.m.

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. (June 12, 2018) – The Florida Forum Speaker Series, produced by The Women’s Board of Wolfson Children’s Hospital, raises funds with the goal of providing the best, most technologically advanced health care for children. Since 1992, the Florida Forum has been honored to host renowned speakers from around the world offering profound insights and fascinating discussion on a broad range of issues.

The series is presented by long-time partners Wells Fargo, Florida Blue and Landstar, avid and valued supporters of The Women’s Board and its mission to raise funds and awareness for Wolfson Children’s Hospital. These presentations will take place at the Times-Union Center for the Performing Arts.

For more information, go to The Women’s Board website at

Lara Logan

The 2018-2019 series will open on October 17 with Lara Logan presented by Landstar. Logan’s bold, award-winning reporting has earned her prominence among the world’s best foreign correspondents. Logan is a full-time 60 Minutes correspondent, as well as CBS News Chief Foreign Correspondent and Chief Foreign Affairs Correspondent. A Veteran journalist in Afghanistan and Iraq, Logan earned electronic journalism’s highest award, a DuPont-Columbia University Silver Baton, for her 2010 report from the Afghan battlefield, “A Relentless Enemy.” In 2011, she was almost killed in Tahrir Square in Egypt. While reporting on the revolution there, she was sexually assaulted and beaten by a mob.


Bryan Cranston

The series continues on January 28, 2019 when Florida Blue presents Bryan Cranston, an acclaimed actor, writer, producer, director, and author. On television, Cranston’s portrayal of Walter White on AMC’s Breaking Bad garnered him four Emmy® Awards, four SAG Awards, and a Golden Globe Award. Cranston holds the honor of being the first actor in a cable series and the second lead actor in the history of the Emmy® Awards to receive three consecutive wins. He was also nominated for a Golden Globe and three Emmy® Awards for his portrayal of Hal in FOX’s Malcom in the Middle. In 2014, he won a Tony Award for his role as President Lyndon B. Johnson in the Broadway bio-play, All the Way. He reprised his role in the HBO television film of the same name and won a SAG Award for his performance. For his leading role in Trumbo in 2015, Cranston received widespread acclaim and was nominated for an Academy Award. He recently starred in Wes Anderson’s stop-motion animated film,Isle of Dogs, and is currently in production on Disney’s The One and Only Ivan. In addition, Cranston is a New York Times bestselling author of A Life in Parts.

Tony Dungy

The season concludes March 27, 2019, with Pro Football Hall of Fame member Tony Dungy presented by Wells Fargo. Dungy spent 31 years in the NFL, where he amassed a 148-79 overall record as head coach of the Indianapolis Colts and Tampa Bay Buccaneers. In 2007, he became the first African American coach to lead his team to a championship when the Colts defeated the Chicago Bears in Super Bowl XLI. Dungy won his first Super Bowl ring playing for the Pittsburgh Steelers in 1978. Known as a leader who emphasizes decency and respect, Dungy’s memoir, Quiet Strength: the Principles, Practices and Priorities of a Winning Life, was a #1 New York Timesbestseller.


Continue reading

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Legislation introduced to protect Right Whales

U.S. Senator Bill Nelson
Press Release
June 14, 2018 9:00 a.m.

Fewer than 450 North Atlantic right whales remaining in world

WASHINGTON, D.C. – U.S. Sen. Bill Nelson (D-FL) unveiled legislation today aimed at protecting the highly endangered North Atlantic right whale.

The move coincides with World Oceans Day, which is observed internationally on June 8.

The SAVE Right Whales Act of 2018 (S. 3038) establishes a new grant program to fund collaborative projects between states, nongovernmental organizations and members of the fishing and shipping industries to reduce the impacts of human activities on North Atlantic right whales.

There are fewer than 450 North Atlantic right whales remaining in the world, with a Continue reading

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