- 2014 - January - 1st -

Forrest High name, Gator Bowl and gas tax: Readers weigh in on issues

By Karen Brune Mathis, Managing Editor

Daily Record readers by and large do not intend to attend a bowl game this year.

Just 6 percent of those responding to a Weekly Poll question posed Dec. 9 said they planned to travel to a bowl game, while 94 percent said they would not.

Two other questions in the fourth quarter of 2013 also drew heavily lopsided responses:

• 84 percent responded the week of Nov. 11 that they did not think the name of Nathan Bedford Forrest High School should be changed, although the seven-member Duval County School Board voted unanimously Dec. 16 to rename the school. A new name has not been determined. Forrest was a Confederate general known as a founding leader of the Ku Klux Klan, a slave owner and seller, and an accused Civil War criminal. Supporters of keeping the name indicated they wanted to maintain historic references and community traditions and several told the school board the name change was a waste of money and warned that a change would result in other school name changes in Jacksonville.

• 83 percent do not plan to participate in any Gator Bowl events this week. The University of Georgia and the University of Nebraska play in this year's Gator Bowl scheduled at noon today at EverBank Field. Events took place earlier this week to celebrate the game.

The Daily Record posts a question every week at jaxdailyrecord.com and on Page 2, asking readers to respond online. The results are not scientific, but do indicate trends and preferences among those responding.

The results are tallied after the poll closes at midnight Sunday. A new question is posted and published Monday morning.

The 13 questions in the fourth quarter were asked from October through December.

Among other responses with agreement among at least 60 percent of the respondents:

• 64 percent said the first week of October that their commute was not affected by the Mathews Bridge closure. The bridge was closed Sept. 26 after being hit by a large cargo ship being towed and was reopened Oct. 28 after repairs.

• 63 percent said the week of Nov. 4 that they will not visit the healthcare.gov website.

• 62 percent said the week of Oct. 28 that they thought the Georgia Bulldogs would beat the Florida Gators at the annual Florida-Georgia game, and they were right. Georgia won 23-20.

• 60 percent said city incentives should not be used to improve the Jacksonville Landing.

Closer responses came to questions about medical marijuana and the Jacksonville Jaguars playing in London.

During the week of Dec. 16, 58 percent of respondents said they support City Council President Bill Gulliford's efforts to extend the 6-cent gas tax by 20 years to 2036.

During the week of Oct. 14, more than half, or 53 percent, of readers said they would use medical marijuana if it was legal in Florida. It isn't.

The following week, 54 percent of readers said they thought that the Jaguars' playing in London was not necessarily good for the team.

The Jaguars agreed to play one game a year in London for four consecutive seasons.

Three questions provided three possible responses.

• The Florida Legislature will consider increasing the speed limits on interstates to 75 mph. More than half, or 54 percent, of readers said the speed limit should be increased, while 43 percent said it should stay the same and 3 percent want it decreased.

• Taxpayers spent $310,000 in fiscal 2012-13 to pay salaries and benefits for two Jacksonville police officers to provide security for Mayor Alvin Brown. Asked how many should be assigned, 45 percent of readers said none; 37 percent said one; and 18 percent said two.

• Asked Dec. 2 how much readers were planning to spend on holiday gifts this year compared to last year, 56 percent said less, 37 percent said about the same and 7 percent said more.

This week's question, the first of the first quarter of 2014, is: "Are you planning to buy a home in 2014?" You can respond online at jaxdailyrecord.com.

Thanks for participating, and Happy New Year.



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