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Jax Daily Record Tuesday, Dec. 10, 201902:10 PM EST

Resigned JEA board member says utility’s privatization effort was impacting his business

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Corner Lot Development Group CEO Andy Allen resigned Dec. 2.
by: Mike Mendenhall Staff Writer
Andy Allen is the CEO of Corner Lot Development Group.

Andy Allen, who resigned from the JEA board of directors this month, said Dec. 10 the debate surrounding the public utility’s effort to possibly privatize had a noticeable effect on his business.

“I’m protecting the business and that’s first and foremost,” said the Corner Lot Development Group CEO.

Allen emailed his resignation letter to Mayor Lenny Curry on Dec. 2, citing “increasing demands” from family and business responsibilities. Curry appointed Allen to the JEA board June 25.

Allen said his resignation letter “sums everything up” and that he “listens to his inner circle.” 

The email, provided Dec. 10 by JEA Media Relations Manager Gina Kyle, states:

Dear Mayor Curry,

Thank you for the opportunity to serve the city as a member of the JEA Board of Directors during the last year. It has been an honor to be part of this board at such an important time for JEA and our city. The management and board members in place are a talented group of individuals that put the needs of ratepayers and taxpayers first. Unfortunately, there has been increasing demands on my time from my family and business responsibilities that must take precedence over my continued service on the board.”

His resignation was effective immediately.

Corner Lot Development Group, based in the San Marco area, is working with Harbert Realty Services of Birmingham, Alabama, to develop the estimated $30 million Park Place at San Marco.

The proposed development comprises 141 apartments and a 302-space, three-floor parking garage on property to the north and east of South Jacksonville Presbyterian Church.

Allen’s resignation comes as JEA receives increasing criticism from the public and some City Council members in its push toward a possible sale. The public utility is negotiating with nine private companies interested in buying some or all of its assets.

JEA Board Chair April Green was the first board member to speak publicly to Council members about the utility’s invitation to negotiate. On Dec. 9, she called for the Council to “hit the reset button” on JEA’s strategic planning process.

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