The 2019 Florida Legislative session has officially closed, and the Florida House and Senate have agreed to budget that allocates a total of $200 million toward affordable housing initiatives.
This $200,000,000 approved budget comes as a disappoint to those affordable housing advocates who were pushing Representatives and Senators not to sweep the Sadlowski Affordable Housing Trust Funds as they had done in previous years. In January, Gov. Ron DeSantis had pledged to keep the nearly $350 million of annual revenue to the housing trust funds in the hands of affordable housing programs.
After the budget approval, the following programs were funded in Florida in 2019:
$31 million for the State Apartment Incentive Loan (SAIL) program.
$46 million for the State Housing Initiatives Partnership (SHIP) program.
$65 million for hurricane housing recovery.
$50 million for hurricane housing rental recovery.
$8 million for a Jacksonville specific workforce program.
While we certainly understand the need to provide housing to the most urgently needed areas in the state, there is still plenty of opportunity to fund nearly $150 million on an annual basis toward affordable housing initiatives.