School zone no longer danger zone

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. - A potentially dangerous issue near Central Riverside Elementary School is now resolved thanks to a viewer who alerted First Coast News.

Allen Dunn, a Riverside resident, e-mailed us about a palm tree that had overgrown to the point it was covering a school zone speed limit sign.

"Oh, it's more than hidden. It's completely covered. I mean, it really took me searching to find the sign," Dunn said.

The sign sits on city property in the 2500 block of Ernest Street and requires drivers to go 15 miles per hour between 7:45 a.m. and 8:45 a.m. and 2:30 and 3:30 p.m.

The lower speed limit is a safety precaution because those are times of day when children might be present.

But Dunn's e-mail pointed out that palm leaves from the tree almost completely concealed the sign to oncoming drivers.

His concern is they would not know they were in a school zone.

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Scammers target JEA customers

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. -- A phishing scam targeting JEA customers on the First Coast is on the rise this week.

According to JEA, scammers are calling people to say their service will be disconnected unless they purchase a Moneypak card. 

The phone caller then asks for the number for the card. 

There has been an increase in the last week in the scam calls, according to JEA. 

In an email to First Coast News a JEA spokesperson wrote:

JEA will notify customers should their service be at risk for disconnect for non pay via their bill, letter and automated call. JEA will take payments via website, phone, at the main office, tax collector office, Winn-Dixie or any of the JEA-approved stores found on

Anyone who receives a call is asked to report the incident to JEA. 

Nonprofit's mission is 'Enroll America' in Obamacare

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. -- The Affordable Health Care Act, a.k.a. Obamacare is the law. If you're now uninsured, you must have health insurance by 2014. That said, the program's deadlines, the various plans and who is eligible have left many confused.

"There is a lot of people who don't understand what their options are," said Tony Penna.

Penna, a former insurance executive is with Enroll America, a privately funded nonprofit that is trying to spread the word about the Affordable Care Act.

"The biggest challenge is how many people in Duval, Clay Nassau and St. Johns who don't have insurance," said Penna, "There about 300,000 people."

Enroll America staffers are now knocking on doors, making calls to spread the word out.

"About 39 percent of the people in Florida who are eligible for insurance think that the law has been repealed," he said, "It has not been repealed."

Local truckers unaware of rolling protest in D.C.

JACKSONVILLE,Fla. -- At the truck stops near Baldwin and U.S. 301 it was exceptionally busy. Truckers leaving Interstate 10 to buy much needed fuel or to take a break from the road.

Trey Hervey, a six year veteran, was on the way to North Carolina and needed a break.

"I'm not an Independent," said Hervey. "But I want to be."

Hervey loves to talk about the industry and its challenges, but when it came to the rolling protest in the nation's capital he had no knowledge.

"I don't know anything about it," he said.

And at this truck stop, a microcosm of a tight knit community, few trucks knew what was taking place near Washington D.C.

The rolling protest was to challenge the Obama administration and Congressional leaders over the government shutdown. It was to be a strong statement about America's frustration with its government.

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Mortgage reduction for underwater homeowners

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. -- Life is good for John and Sharon Fisher, but they would be first to tell you that it would be better if they had a break on their mortgage.

"We have a very high interest rate," said Fisher, "but we've never missed a payment, we've never been late."

The Fishers are retired, on a fixed income, and they say sometimes the $1,200 a month payment becomes a struggle.

"We love our home," said Fisher, "We can't sell it and we don't want to sell it."   

They can't sell because when the economy tanked, foreclosures went up and home values went down.

"We've lost almost $100,000 in the place," he said. 

The Fishers are hoping the state's newest program will help; they've  applied to the Florida's Principal Reduction Program.

"Before I Die" notes cover entrance of local business

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. -- A business in the Avondale shopping district is turning heads and making people think about their lives.

The owner of Gottahaveit in the 3700 block of St. Johns Ave. is taking part in the "Before I Die" movement.

"I just thought it was a really cool idea," said Iva Keyworth.

Keyworth stumbled upon the international community art movement while surfing the web recently.

The movement started in 2011 after a New Orleans woman lost someone close to hear.

So she started a "Before I Die" wall to help others realize just how precious life can be.

Now, other walls and installments of the project have spread all over the world as a way for people to share the things they want to do and accomplish before it's too late.

Keyworth told First Coast News she connected with the idea because of something tragic that happened to her husband.

Typewriter business may have market cornered

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. -- If a TV breaks, typically it's easiest to buy a new one.

If the printer won't print, it seems most times folks will toss it and get a new one.

We live in a time where people are quick to update new technology with newer, and throw out the broken stuff. But Bill Pridgen slows down and fixes it.

"You gotta make it work," Pridgen said. "I got machines from all over the country to fix."


"And I actually stay busy most of the time," Pridgen said.

If you were wondering where all the typewriters have gone, you need look no farther than inside the McDavid Typewriter Service shop.

Wall-to-wall and from floor to ceiling typewriters representing every decade all the way back to the 1890s are stored.

Most of them waiting their turn on Pridgen's workshop repair table for paying customers.

"And most of our customers have been the same ones we've had for years."