First Coast Gears: Edsel among the highlights at Main St. cruise

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. - Ford's failed Edsel division has been the butt of jokes for decades but sometimes history has a way of changing perceptions.  A case in point: Jim Trice's 1958 Edsel Ranger.

The Orange Park Edsel owner has lovingly restored his Ranger, which he bought about three years ago in Texas.  From a styling standpoint, it certainly holds its own.  The most unique element of any Edsel was the vertical grille, which you either love or hate (mark me in the love column).

The Edsel brand only lasted three model years (1958-1960) before Ford pulled the plug due to lackluster sales and a poor quality reputation, according to edselclub.org.

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JSO: Man fatally shot by police had criminal past

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. -- The Jacksonville Sheriff's Office said a man fatally shot by police Monday had a long criminal history.

Chief Tom Hackney released new details Tuesday on the officer-involved shooting that happened just after 8:00 p.m. Monday night.

According to Chief Tom Hackney, 38-year-old Anthony Dwayne Harris got into an altercation with his 17-year-old son at his son's home on Pearl Street.

Hackney said Harris threw the teen into a china cabinet, which broke, and the boy's mother called 911.

When police arrived, Hackney said there was a struggle outside the home as officers attempted to handcuff Harris.

"The officers began to handcuff the subject, who repeatedly told them that he was not going back to jail," said Hackney during a news conference. 

Resident-driven community redevelopement plan unveiled

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. -- A community redevelopment plan has been unveiled for the Historic Eastside/Springfield and Northwest Jacksonville neighborhoods that has the residents fingerprints all over it.

A packed house heard the plan at Everbank Field Thursday evening for the kickoff of Building EPIC Communties.

The Local Initiatives Support Corporation, known as LISC, with the help of Operation Hope, and the Northwest Jacksonville Community Development Corporation, has spent the last year doing one-on-one interviews with neighborhood residents and group meetings to determine what residents want to see in their communities.

Each community has come up with a quality of life plan for their area.

The goal is for better neighborhoods and housing, more businesses and jobs, good schools, grocery stores and safe streets.

LISC will invest $20 million into these areas to bring improvements and bring more private investment.

$74k fine keeps man from having driver's license

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. -- Andre Sapp is trying to put his past behind him but has a $74,000 fine to remind him and keep him from driving legally.

"I'm not trying to get no pity party or anything," said Sapp,"I'm just trying to get my license so I can go back to work."

Sapp served nearly three years in prison for cocaine trafficking and is now trying to start his life over, but he said the system has him in a legal maze. 

"It is really hindering me," he said.

In 2007, Sapp, 48, was stopped in Brevard County with more than 28 grams of cocaine in his vehicle.

In 2009, he entered a plea agreement; at the time the state imposed a fifty-thousand dollar fine.

"They were expecting payments while I was incarcerated," said Sapp.

In prison and unemployed, Sapp failed to pay the fine. Brevard County turned it over to a collection agency, with interest and penalty, he now owes $74,363.80.

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Can a trillion dollar coin help with national debt?

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. -- It's a suggestion so radical, one Congressman plans to introduce a bill to block it.  There are some proposals out there to solve our national debt crisis with a coin.

Nenad Djondric knows coins.  He owns A Penny for Your Thoughts Coin Shop in Jacksonville.  So we took this proposal of creating a one trillion dollar platinum coin to help pay down the nation's more than 16 trillion dollar debt directly to the expert on precious metals. 

"It's nonsense.  It's just not possible to do," Djondric suggested.

School district to hold minority business certification workshop

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. -- The Minority Business Affairs Office of Duval County Public Schools will host a workshop on how to get certified as a Minority Business Enterprise (MBE).

The workshop will take place Tuesday, January 22 from 6 to 8 p.m. at the Historic Springfield Community Learning Center located at 1601 North Main Street. The learning center is located on the second floor of Wells Fargo Bank.

A release from the school district said an MBE is defined as being a business that is at least 51 percent owned, operated and controlled on a daily basis by one or more American citizens who are:

A New Year means new laws for Florida drivers

JACKSONVILLE, Fla.- It is a new year in the Sunshine State and on Florida's roadways there are some new laws in effect.

To start, say you want to flash your headlights to warn other drivers about nearby police.

"Just to alert," said Kim Rolfe, of Jacksonville. "It's just a courtesy to let other driver's know 'Hey, you're about to pass a cop.'"

Before the new year, that was illegal in Florida.

"I did not know that that was illegal!" Rolfe shouted with a laugh. "I thought I was just doing something nice for my fellow drivers!"

As of January 1, 2013, it's now legal, after the state legislature cleared up the law.

"So, it could be a good law to aide in safety," William Lee, of St. Augustine, said Tuesday morning. "So, I think it's good."

If you're ever in an accident, there's another law you should know about. It's about the personal injury protection (PIP) portion of your Florida policy.