JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – As the daily average of COVID-19 numbers continues to rise in Jacksonville, the City Council is considering new steps to combat the spike.

Legislation will be introduced that would ban large parties indoors and outside, unless those hosting them get a permit from the city.

The proposal would prohibit large gatherings, like block parties, of 50 or more people near public rights-of-way or buildings unless they have the owners’ consent or a permit.

There would be exceptions: Sporting events and those exercising First Amendment rights, such as freedom of religion or speech and the right to assemble and protest, would be allowed.

There would also be a penalty — a written warning and the possibility of a $25 fine for each violation.

The idea of blocking unauthorized

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