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The movement to change the name of Dixie Highway has gained a lot steam across Broward and Miami-Dade in recent weeks.
Both counties have held discussions on the topic and even sent it to a vote.
Broward County Mayor Dale V.C. Holness (who proposed the renaming) says there is a “legacy of racism” associated with the term “Dixie”.
“We can’t forget our history, but we need to understand that Dixie brings pain,” Holness said. “For some people, it is painful, it is horrific to think back of what your ancestors went through.”
Last Wednesday, Miami-Dade commissioners voted unanimously to name the major roadway after Harriet Tubman. However, the name change is not official. The county says it still must petition the state to make the change on the highway as a whole.
Portions of Dixie Highway are state roads, the county needs the help of the Florida Legislature to rename the entire roadway.
In Broward, some commissioners are playing a different tune. They say dozens of businesses and residents have asked for the name to stay – worried it may affect their bottom line.
But, how much would it cost to change a street name?
According to Florida’s Department of Motor Vehicle, there’s a $25 fee to update the address on any person’s license.
Broward says it would cost the county anywhere between $100,000 to $200,000 to change the street signs alone.
For those businesses concerned with the name change, there is no real fixed cost.
Ray Garcia, a barber with New York Cuts in Hollywood, says changing the business’s registered address may be hassle for owners.
Commissioner Lamar Fisher says the name ‘Dixie’ is valuable for store owners who have existed on the roadway for years.
“Their name is engraved in it, they’ve been a business for many years now, they got to recalculate and decipher what they want to do,” Fisher said.
Back in 2017, activists successfully renamed Hollywood streets that were dedicated to Confederate icons.
They say they were later fronted with a $30,000 bill for the change.
A letter from the City Clerk’s Office to the activists gave a peek into what costs are considered when a street name is changed.
“Pursuant to the City of Hollywood Naming Policy and Procedures, Section II, D.2 states the applicant shall bear all costs associated with the street renaming, including but not limited to, the cost of City mailings, recordings, administration and the costs of all road signs,” the letter read.