Deadline For Homestead Exemptions is March 1

23 02 2004

Florida home buyers who purchased homes in 2003 should make sure they apply for the $25,000 homestead exemption before March 1, according to the Florida Association of Realtors.

Any Florida property owner with legal title to a home and who uses it as his or her permanent, primary residence by Jan. 1 is eligible for the exemption.

Generally the homestead exemption is a $25,000 deduction from a home’s assessed value (as determined by the county property appraiser.) Take the home’s assessed value, minus $25,000, and then apply the local millage rate to calculate the property taxes due.

Homeowners making their first claim have to go to their respective county property appraiser’s office, bringing along the deed to their property or a property tax bill — something to show they own the home.

Property appraisers’ offices will accept applications for homestead exemption until the March 1 deadline.

Once a homeowner has applied for and received a homestead exemption, it will be automatically renewed for that property each year on Jan. 1.





Deadline For Homestead Exemptions is March 1

22 02 2004

Florida home buyers who purchased homes in 2003 should make sure they apply for the $25,000 homestead exemption before March 1, according to the Florida Association of Realtors.

Any Florida property owner with legal title to a home and who uses it as his or her permanent, primary residence by Jan. 1 is eligible for the exemption.

Generally the homestead exemption is a $25,000 deduction from a home’s assessed value (as determined by the county property appraiser.) Take the home’s assessed value, minus $25,000, and then apply the local millage rate to calculate the property taxes due.

Homeowners making their first claim have to go to their respective county property appraiser’s office, bringing along the deed to their property or a property tax bill — something to show they own the home.

Property appraisers’ offices will accept applications for homestead exemption until the March 1 deadline.

Once a homeowner has applied for and received a homestead exemption, it will be automatically renewed for that property each year on Jan. 1.





Jacksonville Ranks 8th in Nation for Entrepreneurs

22 02 2004

Jacksonville was one of three Florida cities ranked in the top 10 cities for entrepreneurs by Inc. magazine. Jacksonville was eighth on the list, while West Palm Beach was fifth and Fort Lauderdale-Hollywood-Pompano Beach was seventh. The list is in the March issue of the magazine.

The magazine evaluated 277 cities across the country on factors including job growth, local support and overall affordability. Atlanta was the top-rated city, while the worst city for entrepreneurs was San Jose, Calif. The cities at the opposite ends of the rankings reflect a change in the climate for entrepreneurs since the crash of the tech industry.

Florida’s strength was based on job creation. The state now has 21 consecutive months of job growth. The state unemployment rate was a full point lower than the national rate of 5.7 percent, according the Agency for Workforce Innovation.





Jacksonville Ranks 8th in Nation for Entrepreneurs

21 02 2004

Jacksonville was one of three Florida cities ranked in the top 10 cities for entrepreneurs by Inc. magazine. Jacksonville was eighth on the list, while West Palm Beach was fifth and Fort Lauderdale-Hollywood-Pompano Beach was seventh. The list is in the March issue of the magazine.

The magazine evaluated 277 cities across the country on factors including job growth, local support and overall affordability. Atlanta was the top-rated city, while the worst city for entrepreneurs was San Jose, Calif. The cities at the opposite ends of the rankings reflect a change in the climate for entrepreneurs since the crash of the tech industry.

Florida’s strength was based on job creation. The state now has 21 consecutive months of job growth. The state unemployment rate was a full point lower than the national rate of 5.7 percent, according the Agency for Workforce Innovation.





Custom Staffing Continues Expansion

19 02 2004

Custom Staffing Inc. has moved into the Iterra building in Deerwood Park and continues to add employees, a reflection of the company’s Jacksonville growth.

The company now employs 25 people in Jacksonville. Custom Staffing’s clients include such companies as Winn-Dixie Stores, Fidelity National Financial, Rayonier Inc., Iterra Communications and Convergys.

Maitland-based Custom Staffing Inc. has branched out in the last year to specific areas in the staffing industry with CSI Search Group, an executive search division; Healthcare Support Staffing; and Blue Chip Consulting, which focuses on the pharmaceutical, manufacturing and engineering industries.

Along the way, Custom Staffing increased its revenue from $8.7 million in 2002 to $17.6 million in 2003.

For more info, visit www.bizjournals.com.





Custom Staffing Continues Expansion

18 02 2004

Custom Staffing Inc. has moved into the Iterra building in Deerwood Park and continues to add employees, a reflection of the company’s Jacksonville growth.

The company now employs 25 people in Jacksonville. Custom Staffing’s clients include such companies as Winn-Dixie Stores, Fidelity National Financial, Rayonier Inc., Iterra Communications and Convergys.

Maitland-based Custom Staffing Inc. has branched out in the last year to specific areas in the staffing industry with CSI Search Group, an executive search division; Healthcare Support Staffing; and Blue Chip Consulting, which focuses on the pharmaceutical, manufacturing and engineering industries.

Along the way, Custom Staffing increased its revenue from $8.7 million in 2002 to $17.6 million in 2003.

For more info, visit www.bizjournals.com.





JEA Proposes Rate Increase in 2004

18 02 2004

JEA officials proposed water rate increases on top residential users and fixing rates for reclaimed water as it hits the residential market on a widespread basis.

The proposed rate and fee changes presented to the board also included raising rates on 44 commercial electric customers who have agreed to shut down during peak use times. The water increase would affect residential customers who use more than 22,000 gallons a month — about 3 percent of JEA’s 200,000 customers in Duval and parts of St. Johns and Clay counties.

If approved by the board, the water rate increase would be the first since JEA acquired the utility from the city in 1997. It would be the first electric rate increase for any type of customer in 13 years.

The utility plans to begin offering reclaimed water to large residential developments. Large commercial customers, such as golf courses and parks, comprise the majority of current users.

The board discussed a possible rate increase last summer. State regulators must approve rate increases. The JEA board plans to conduct a public hearing on the proposed water rates in May 2004.

For more info, visit www.bizjournals.com





Southeast Regional Library Expansion

17 02 2004

Bob Mathews Construction Company, the Westside contractor, has landed the library contract with the city of Jacksonville to renovate the Southeast Branch Library on 10599 Deerwood Park Boulevard.

Site clearing, addition and alterations for the Southeast Regional Library will include 12,710-square-foot addition, 38,478 square feet in alterations, 12,000 Square Foot Expansion, New Adult Learning Center Classroom, Relocation and 3,600 Square Foot Expansion of Children’s Area, New Children’s Story Room, New Circulation Desk, New Interior Book-Drop, Relocation of Conference Area, New Conference Room, 7,000 Square Foot Expansion of the Adult Reading Room, Security Improvements

Completion is expected Early 2005. For more info, visit http://www.betterjax.com





JEA Proposes Rate Increase in 2004

17 02 2004

JEA officials proposed water rate increases on top residential users and fixing rates for reclaimed water as it hits the residential market on a widespread basis.

The proposed rate and fee changes presented to the board also included raising rates on 44 commercial electric customers who have agreed to shut down during peak use times. The water increase would affect residential customers who use more than 22,000 gallons a month — about 3 percent of JEA’s 200,000 customers in Duval and parts of St. Johns and Clay counties.

If approved by the board, the water rate increase would be the first since JEA acquired the utility from the city in 1997. It would be the first electric rate increase for any type of customer in 13 years.

The utility plans to begin offering reclaimed water to large residential developments. Large commercial customers, such as golf courses and parks, comprise the majority of current users.

The board discussed a possible rate increase last summer. State regulators must approve rate increases. The JEA board plans to conduct a public hearing on the proposed water rates in May 2004.

For more info, visit www.bizjournals.com





Southeast Regional Library Expansion

16 02 2004

Bob Mathews Construction Company, the Westside contractor, has landed the library contract with the city of Jacksonville to renovate the Southeast Branch Library on 10599 Deerwood Park Boulevard.

Site clearing, addition and alterations for the Southeast Regional Library will include 12,710-square-foot addition, 38,478 square feet in alterations, 12,000 Square Foot Expansion, New Adult Learning Center Classroom, Relocation and 3,600 Square Foot Expansion of Children’s Area, New Children’s Story Room, New Circulation Desk, New Interior Book-Drop, Relocation of Conference Area, New Conference Room, 7,000 Square Foot Expansion of the Adult Reading Room, Security Improvements

Completion is expected Early 2005. For more info, visit www.betterjax.com





American Dream Downpayment Act

16 02 2004

The American Dream Downpayment Initiative (ADDI) was signed into law on December 16, 2003. The American Dream Downpayment Assistance Act authorizes up to $200 million annually for fiscal years 2004 – 2007. ADDI will provide funds to all fifty states and to local participating jurisdictions that have a population of at least 150,000 or will receive an allocation of at least $50,000 under the ADDI formula. ADDI will be administered as a part of the HOME Investment Partnerships Program, a formula grant program.

Though the American Dream Downpayment Act is now in effect, National Association of Realtors reports that funds for homebuyers may not be available until the spring. The initiative provides a maximum downpayment assistance grant of either $10,000 or 6% of the purchase price of home, whichever is greater. HUD expects the program will enable 40,000 Americans to buy a home.

For more info, visit: www.hug.gov





American Dream Downpayment Act

15 02 2004

The American Dream Downpayment Initiative (ADDI) was signed into law on December 16, 2003. The American Dream Downpayment Assistance Act authorizes up to $200 million annually for fiscal years 2004 – 2007. ADDI will provide funds to all fifty states and to local participating jurisdictions that have a population of at least 150,000 or will receive an allocation of at least $50,000 under the ADDI formula. ADDI will be administered as a part of the HOME Investment Partnerships Program, a formula grant program.

Though the American Dream Downpayment Act is now in effect, National Association of Realtors reports that funds for homebuyers may not be available until the spring. The initiative provides a maximum downpayment assistance grant of either $10,000 or 6% of the purchase price of home, whichever is greater. HUD expects the program will enable 40,000 Americans to buy a home.

For more info, visit: www.hug.gov





CONDO SALES UP EVERYWHERE

10 02 2004

Sales of existing condominiums and cooperatives surged to another annual record in 2003, while the pace of sales activity in the fourth quarter was the second highest on record, according to the National Association of Realtors.

There was a total of 898,000 existing condo and co-op sales last year, up 9.5 percent from the previous record of 820,000 units in 2002.

Aging baby boomers, young professionals and wealthy investors are fueling a trend of condominium construction near the oceanfront in Jacksonville Beach, supporting at least 23 condos that have been built or are under way since the boom began in 2002. Condo values at the Beaches have been appreciating at least 18 percent in the last two years. Generally, luxury oceanfront condos in Jacksonville Beach can range from about $500,000 to $2.8 million. Condo values are increasing faster than single-family home values, according to the National Association of Realtors.

Jacksonville’s Southside has seen a strong development of condominiums including Il Villagio, Point Meadows Place, Deerwood Place, Southern Grove, Grand Reserve, Landing at Belle Rive Condominiums and Boxwood at Baymeadows.

For more info, visit www.topproducer.com





CONDO SALES UP EVERYWHERE

9 02 2004

Sales of existing condominiums and cooperatives surged to another annual record in 2003, while the pace of sales activity in the fourth quarter was the second highest on record, according to the National Association of Realtors.

There was a total of 898,000 existing condo and co-op sales last year, up 9.5 percent from the previous record of 820,000 units in 2002.

Aging baby boomers, young professionals and wealthy investors are fueling a trend of condominium construction near the oceanfront in Jacksonville Beach, supporting at least 23 condos that have been built or are under way since the boom began in 2002. Condo values at the Beaches have been appreciating at least 18 percent in the last two years. Generally, luxury oceanfront condos in Jacksonville Beach can range from about $500,000 to $2.8 million. Condo values are increasing faster than single-family home values, according to the National Association of Realtors.

Jacksonville’s Southside has seen a strong development of condominiums including Il Villagio, Point Meadows Place, Deerwood Place, Southern Grove, Grand Reserve, Landing at Belle Rive Condominiums and Boxwood at Baymeadows.

For more info, visit www.topproducer.com








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