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Hickox Now President of Florida Property Appraisers

Nassau County, FL – Property Appraiser A. Michael Hickox has been elected by his peers to serve as the President of the Florida Association of Property Appraiser’s.

The Florida Association of Property Appraiser’s (FAPA) is a statewide professional organization composed of locally elected, constitutionally authorized Property Appraisers. The mission of FAPA is to actively work with the Florida Legislature by providing technical assistance and advice in drafting ad valorem legislation affecting Florida citizens and property appraiser’s offices.

Hickox, took the position last month and is ready for the challenges ahead. “My goal is to ensure that property tax policies will benefit citizens throughout the state. Our organization will do this by effectively advocating for residential and commercial property owners.”

Hickox previously served as the organizations President-Elect and Legislative Committee Chairman where he met with legislators regarding proposed policies affecting property valuation and property tax exemptions.

Arts Market Now Open Every Saturday

The Fernandina Beach Arts Market is home to local artists, potters, and crafters, and beginning this Saturday, they will be set up in downtown Fernandina Beach every Saturday through the end of December.

You will find hand crafted furniture, woodworking, both whimsical and fine jewelry, apparel, glass and stemware, holiday and home decor, pottery, paintings, sculptures and more.

This is the best opportunity to shop for unique and one of a kind pieces, where you can meet the artists, too. Learn what inspires them, tips of the trade, and get some fantastic decorating ideas. These small business owners LOVE to talk about their creations.

Located adjacent to the farmers market on North Seventh Street, the Arts Market is open from 9:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m., rain or shine, and includes some amazingly talented craft persons.

Mike McBryan makes beautiful and practical cedar bird houses. Made from natural wood, the cedar maintains Mother Nature’s unique texture and no two houses are alike. He also makes cedar aromatic closet pieces.

Bill and Christina, of BC Gemstones, make unique sterling silver jewelry with rough rocks that have been turned into beautiful gemstones. They will have approximately 50-60 pieces of jewelry on display including necklaces, pendants, rings and bracelets. They often bring their jewelry making equipment with them, so stop by and see how they turn the stones into gems.

Sonia Cardoos brings lovely scarves that she crochets, as well as unique cork key chains and earrings. Gail Green paints wildlife onto glasses and stemware that are dishwasher and microwave safe, and Joel Venditti has Tie Dye Threads in sizes from infants to adults.

The Arts Market has much to offer, and currently there is a waiting list to become an exhibitor, so you can expect to find a wide variety of the finest art in the area. This weekly event is free and open to the public.

For more information, please visit FernandinaBeachArtsMarket.com, or call Joe at (904) 557-8229.

A message to Small Business Owners from ScaleUp North Florida

Please note the ScaleUp North Florida 2017 application is open. Click HERE for the online link.

ScaleUp North Florida is an entrepreneurial growth program that is hosted by UNF and is fully funded by the U.S. Small Business Administration. They help entrepreneurs increase sales, hire additional people, get government contracts, increase profitability and get access to the money they need to grow their businesses.

They’ve been doing this for two years and have graduated over 75 people from the program so far.

They accept up to 50 small businesses a year. The owners go through 24 hours of education and a business health assessment that gives them an action plan for their growth. Then, they connect each entrepreneur with a consultant from the Small Business Development Center at UNF who they work with closely to help them achieve their goals. The SBDC, also hosted by UNF, is also fully funded by the SBA and has been in business for over 30 years. They have a lot of experience!

The program is totally free to the participants but there are a set of qualifications they must meet. They must have been in business for a minimum of 2 years, have annual revenues of between $150,000 and $500,000 and be interested in growing. The next class will be selected in December of this year and start in January 2017.

For more information contact:
Yvonne Katzman
Administrative Assistant
ScaleUp North Florida
1225 West Beaver Street, Suite 116
Jacksonville, FL 32204
Phone (904) 265-0750, ext. 4011
Yvonne.Katzman@unf.edu

Island Chamber Singers Fall 2016 Concert

Island Chamber Singers are presenting a fall concert “Happy Feast Day, Saint Cecilia” on Friday November 18, 7:00 PM, and again on Sunday, November 20, at 3:00 PM.

The concert will be held at the Amelia Plantation Chapel and tickets are available at the door for $25.00, or $20 in advance.

Students in K-12 and college students are admitted FREE!

Storm and Yard Debris Pickup Information

In order to receive financial reimbursement, it was necessary for the City to activate a pre-positioned contract with a FEMA-approved debris management company, Ceres. Hurricane Matthew storm debris clean-up began on October 12. Since then, normal yard debris pick-up by Advanced Disposal has been postponed until at least one complete tour was done by Ceres.

The first tour will be completed by Saturday, November 5, 2016. A second tour by Ceres through the City limits will start on Monday, November 7.

Advanced Disposal will also resume the normal scheduled route for yard debris collection on Monday, November 7, as well. So far, over 1,600 tons of storm debris material has been removed following Hurricane Matthew.

Thank you for patience and assistance in making this clean-up a success.

Property Appraiser to Estimate Hurricane Damage

Nassau County, FL – Property Appraiser Mike Hickox, along with his field staff, began inspecting properties damaged by Hurricane Matthew immediately after the storm passed. “We are tracking structural damage throughout the county to estimate how much was adversely affected from the Hurricane,” said Hickox. “It’s hard to estimate the actual effect on value at this time, but we anticipate the properties most affected are on the Island and low lying areas in close proximity to the Island.” According to reports from the Emergency Operation Center (EOC), over 700 properties were damaged from the storm. The Property Appraiser will now begin locating those properties and monitoring their repairs to determine if they warrant a value reduction for 2017 based on the severity of the damage.

The market value is estimated based on the condition of the property as of January 1st of each year. Properties damaged from Hurricane Matthew could possibly see a reduction in their 2017 value based on the severity of the destruction if repairs are not completed by January 1st. The Property Appraiser and his staff will make every effort to locate and inspect each property, but those wishing to make the office aware of their damage may do so by calling 491-7300.

Evacuation of Amelia Island Ordered

The Fernandina Beach website has announced than an evacuation of Amelia Island, Florida, has been ordered!

“October 4, 2016 12:58 PM
Hurricane Matthew
Mandatory evacuation of Amelia Island begins Thursday, October 6th at 6:00am. Further updates will be posted here.”

Failing to evacuate, when informed to do so, is a violation of state statute.

Remember…
-Once you are instructed to evacuate, you must do so without hesitation.
-All residents should have an Evacuation Plan in place before Hurricane Season.
-Keep in mind that the Shave bridge on the west side of the island may be closed to vehicular traffic when it is determined that sustained winds of 45 mph or more render it unsafe.

Always…
-Keep a full tank of gas in your car if an evacuation seems likely. Gas stations may be closed during emergencies and unable to pump gas during power outages.
-Plan to take one car per family to reduce congestion and delay.
-Make transportation arrangements with friends or your local government if you do not own a car.
-Listen to a battery-powered radio and follow local evacuation instructions.
-Gather your family and go if you are instructed to evacuate immediately.
-Leave early enough to avoid being trapped by severe weather.
-Follow recommended evacuation routes. Do not take shortcuts; they may be blocked.
-Be alert for washed-out roads and bridges. Do not drive into flooded areas.
-Stay away from downed power lines.

If Time Permits…
-Gather your disaster supplies kit.
-Wear sturdy shoes and clothing that provides some protection, such as long pants, long-sleeved shirts, and a cap.

Secure your home:
-Close and lock doors and windows.
-Unplug electrical equipment, such as radios and televisions, and small appliances, such as toasters and microwaves.
-Leave freezers and refrigerators plugged in unless there is a risk of flooding.
-Let others know where you are going.