GCS addresses zoning issues, RiverFest, anti-drug calendars

City will move to virtual meetings in future


GREEN COVE SPRINGS – Despite declaring a state of emergency four days earlier, the Green Cove Springs City Council held the last in-person meeting of the foreseeable future on Tuesday to amend zoning maps and discuss spending funds generated in police forfeitures on Safe and Drug-Free school calendars.

And the council agreed to cancel its annual RiverFest on May 25 and postpone the Veterans Recognition Ceremony to coincide with Veterans Day on Nov. 11.

The amendments to the official zoning map to correct inconsistencies of the land use and zoning designations for 22 parcels. The area is located on Bonaventure and Idlewild Avenue, from Residential Professional Office (RPO) and Gateway Corridor Residential (GCR) to Gateway Corridor Neighborhood (GCN). The rezoning will allow for the development of some vacant properties previously unable to be developed due to the previous zoning.

The amendment passed.

There was discussion for the utilization of the Police Department Forfeiture Fund in support of the county-wide distribution of the annual Safe and Drug-Free schools calendar project, but Councilwoman Connie Butler pulled the item.

She said it wouldn’t be necessary if schools were to remain closed for the remainder of the year as a response to COVID-19.

The council also addressed with the annual audit presentation.

“The main point from the annual audit presentation for the year ending September 30, 2019, is that the City was issued an Unmodified Opinion on its Financial Statements, which is the best opinion that can be received,” said Director of Finance Marlena Guthrie. “The Internal Control and Compliance per Government Auditing Standards showed no material weaknesses or significant deficiencies. The city does have some deficit assigned/unassigned fund balance and deficit unrestricted net positions, which will be addressed during the [fiscal year 2021] budget process per the City’s Fiscal Policies.”

There was also a brief on the city’s reduced staffing contingency plan amidst the COVID-19 outbreak and precautionary measures along with a local update on the virus.

Exec. Asst. Kimberly Thomas also addressed the council on the topic of the annual Memorial Day RiveFest. With the current state, it was eventually decided by the council to cancel the event and try to reschedule around Veterans Day.  

As a sidenote, the council proclaimed April as Water Conservation Month. The motion passed with no opposition.

Future City Council meetings will be held virtually. Details will be announced later.



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