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2013, year in review: politics and business

2013 was a busy year for Pensacola, both on the political and business front, from the Blue Angels being grounded to the Escambia County Jail controversy.

Channel 3's Christina Leavenworth takes us through all the big stories.

2013 started off on a somber note, Northwest Florida lost a political icon back in March.
State Representative, Clay Ford, died of cancer. He was 74 years old. In a special election, Mike Hill was elected to fill the District 2 Seat.

Then in April, our  beloved  Blue Angels, grounded. Due to sequestration, they had to cancel most of their season, including the Pensacola Beach Air Show and the annual Homecoming Show. They were reinstated in November. The contracts for current team members were extended one year.

In May, controversy over the Escambia County Jail.  The US Department of Justice released the findings from a five year investigation into the conditions of the jail. Their conclusion, the mismanagement of the jail had led to likely violations of inmates constitutional rights, it sparked some arguments between Sheriff David Morgan and Escambia County Commissioners. The county ended up deciding to take over the jail.

They were once 9, now 7. In June, city residents voted to downsize the Pensacola City Council. They voted to eliminate the two at large seats, Megan Pratt and Charles Bare. The positions will expire at the end of the their terms.

In October, Baptist Hospital CFO, Kerry Vermillion, was found dead in the Santa Rosa Sound.
Authorities say he  was on a boating trip with friends, and he jumped in the water to go swimming and never came back up.
Investigators are waiting on the final autopsy results before they determine the cause of Vermillion's death.
That report could take up to 4 months to complete.

It had been in the works for awhile, but in November, Southwest officially took over Airtran and started flying out of Pensacola There are 3 daily flights, to to Nashville and one to Houston.

And Pensacola made history in December by passing a domestic partnership registry. It allows unmarried couples some of the same rights that married couples receive. City officials say it will be several months until the law is fully implemented.

Christian Leavenworth, Channel 3 News.