Citizens of Live Oak, I am J.W. Yulee, your city councilman for District 1. It has been an honor and a privilege to serve you the citizens for the past 16 years. As your elected official, I have enjoyed the challenges as well as the successes.
We have had tremendous growth in District 1 since the expansion of the city limits. We have acquired major home improvement and retail stores such as Wal-Mart and Lowes in the area where the city boundary was extended. Recently Tractor Supply, AT&T and Palms Medical Group have come to District 1.
I am pleased that those working in various positions in the city and county saw my vision for this growth.
The city welcomes all viable industry to locate here. I believe, the more the better. This is the reason why I recommend to the city council to extend the city limits north of Live Oak. The city is now providing city water and sewer services just past Interstate 10. These businesses provide revenue and help attract new businesses in this extended area of our city.
Much work have been achieved, but there is still much more to do in our neighborhoods. I am up for the challenge. We want to keep up with the changes that are occurring in society that will be good for Live Oak.
A friendlier atmosphere is needed to assist those looking to pursue dreams of owning a business. I am pushing for LDRs (Land Development Regulations) to reflect the needs of the community. Regulations should allow for economic growth not prohibit new prospects. We are not there yet. I want to help build a better working environment in this area to alleviate some of the present concerns.
My job as a councilman is to ensure resources allotted for the district will provide security and stimulate economic growth for all residing within it. I will continue working to help our city improve. Sometimes progress is slow because we must be fiscally responsible guaranteeing these resources are not wasted. It takes an experienced councilman communicating effectively with his counterparts to move Live Oak into the future. The five members of the council all represent the citizens of their districts. We all bring concerns and different requests to the council meetings. While we all favor the needs of our individual districts, we work cooperatively for the good of the entire city.
Several years ago, I worked on a three-member committee to improve the water and sewer system. The city received a $5 million grant. It took approximately two years before the city received the funds. However the much-needed finds were put to good use improving our system.
I am concerned about protecting both the city’s landmarks and the needs of citizens, At the present time, we are working to cut down on some restrictions the LDRs have in place without incurring undesirable results for the city and or hassles for new businesses.
Live Oak is a historic town. We have lost many priceless historical buildings and 100 year old oak trees in the past. In 1990, the council decided to tear down the old city hall building on US 129 N to create space for a parking lot. I considered the building to be not only a landmark, but a valuable community treasure. I made a recommendation to the council to keep this historic building and rallied citizens of Live Oak to come to city hall to save the building. The old building was renovated and now houses the Chamber of Commerce. Check it out. The Chamber is a valuable resource for information.
I care about the city and its future and have worked continuously to give back. Each of us has a part to play. That’s why I have served on the Executive Board for the PAL Program for approximately eight years. Our youth need all of us working to provide the activities and programs they need. I support the Douglass Center Alumni Association in their efforts to restore and preserve this part of our history.
Here are some programs currently available for youth through the city, county, private businesses and churches:
The Suwannee County School District’s 21st Century Program offers enrichment, tutoring, computers and recreation
The Suwannee River Regional Library offers tutoring, access to computers, reading programs, activities and summer camp
The Suwannee County School District’s Athletic Program offers football, baseball, tennis, volleyball and soccer
The County’s Recreation Department offers Little League football, baseball and softball
The Sheriff’s PAL Program at the Douglass Center offers football and basketball and a summer program
The Heritage Park and Garden’s program for youth offers disc golf and playgrounds, and special events
The Suwannee County Parks and Recreation Department offers playgrounds, basketball courts, two skate parks and swimming
Our churches also offer after school clubs and activities
Daycare, private tutoring and after school care with extended hours
Local businesses have provided our youth with fun recreation in bowling, enrichment in dance (some of which include ballet, tap and jazz)
Available soon, a new art gallery
I am concerned about the youth in Live Oak. I have helped to provide security for out football team at home and at away games for more than 30 years as a deputy sheriff and for our girls and boys basketball teams at home games.
The expansion of the city’s boundary north of town has brought new business growth. The city streets are bright downtown with added street lights, more beautiful with new trees that have been planted and neighborhood streets are safer from speeders with speed humps installed where requested. A beautiful new park has been added. An amphitheater has been built downtown for musical programs and events. Old parks in the city have been updated and expanded. Selected local homes have been remodeled through block grants. “In God We Trust” has been added to the city seal.
I introduced the first speed hump in the city in District 1, voted to establish Heritage Park and Gardens and recommended that “In God We Trust” be added to our city seal. I am proud to have had a part in some of these improvements in the past.
In the future, we hope to be able to extend the sewer lines within the city with the help of Suwannee River Water Management.
Affordable new housing is coming to District 1. Within the next two years, brand new comfortable homes will become available. Families will enjoy comfortable homes with brighter futures. New housing is much needed in the city. I will continue to work for the needs of our citizens as I did during the aftermath of the last storm when I wrote Governor Scott’s Office for assistance for a citizen denied help from FEMA. The Governor’s Office responded and FEMA returned and help was provided.
I am community oriented and work with and support several community based organizations. It has been my honor to serve for many years as a mail carrier, deputy sheriff and as a councilman. I am committed to serve!
I have worked for District 1 citizens in the past and I will continue to work in the future! There is more to come!
On May 8, I would appreciate your vote! I am always available. I invite you to continue to call or stop by with your concerns. I am Committed to Serve You!