Brewster Bevis: Affordable housing good for Florida business, economy


Associated Industries of Florida (AIF) was created to foster an economic climate in Florida conducive to the growth, development and welfare of industry, business and the people of the state, which is why we are proud to be one of the 30 statewide organizations that make up the Sadowski Coalition.

Fully funding our affordable housing programs is good for all Florida businesses and our economy. Affordable housing generates jobs in home construction, which is a major economic driver in the state. This industry also fosters growth in local businesses when they draw upon and use local resources.

Florida’s housing market and available affordable housing stock are key factors in attracting new businesses to the state. Fully funding affordable housing goes a long way toward enhancing our workforce and business climate.

If we can ensure Florida’s employees at all income levels can find a safe, reliable and affordable home near their job, our state can continue to be one of the best places to do business in the nation.

Recently, the state Senate and House released their respective budget proposals. We truly appreciate the Senate and Senate leadership, including Appropriations Chair Rob Bradley of Fleming Island and President Joe Negron of Stuart, for their commitment to affordable housing.

The Senate continues to be a strong advocate for affordable housing in Florida, and we ask they remain resolute in their recommendation of fully allocating these funds as they move through budget negotiations.

On the other hand, the House’s funding proposal only appropriates affordable housing money for areas impacted by the hurricane, which means the bulk of the state will not receive any affordable housing funding with this proposal.

We hope they will move to the Senate’s funding position. We ask they remember just how important affordable housing is to our economy, Floridians and our entire State of Florida.

If lawmakers fully fund affordable housing programs during Fiscal Year 2018-19, we can generate more than 30,000 Florida jobs and have a positive economic impact of $4 billion in the State of Florida.

We ask lawmakers to keep this in mind as their focus shifts to finalizing the FY 2018-19 budget.


Brewster Bevis is the senior vice president of state and federal affairs for AIF, which is a member of the Sadowski Coalition.

Guest Author


  • S.G.

    February 8, 2018 at 10:56 pm

    WRONG. Affordable housing increases density in already congested urban areas. Instead of allowing for the natural flow of housing, as the free market would call for, ”affordable housing” is a scam that developers and their lobbyists have convinced uneducated politicians to see it as a social justice issue. As a life long South Florida resident, in a low income bracket, I’ve seen first had the dangers that affordable housing presents. Especially in South Florida, with the most delicate ecosystem in the state, possibly the country, we do not need to increase density; we must begin to realize it is not affordable to live in South Florida because it is not meant to house millions of people.

  • G. Sparks

    February 9, 2018 at 8:39 am

    Affordable housing is a real need both in Florida as well as other areas within the US. Affordable housing doesn’t have to mean increase density in existing metro/urban areas. When you increase density you increase cost for land space thus reducing the affordability. Affordable housing can be successful in suburban and rural areas.
    Storm resistant housing is also a real need in all the coastal and mid sections of the US.

  • H Russell Soule'

    February 13, 2018 at 10:16 am

    Affordable housiong is a boon to those who cannot afford housing, but at what cost? Will the state have to continue supplying the funds needed to build these houses? Will the contractors who actually DO the building be required to give up “profits”, that dirty symbol of successfully meeting the public’s demands? And if the state is the financier of these “affordable houses”, when do the TAXPAYERS get relief on their “un-affordable” houses? This is just another cry for a give-away program that benefits one part of the population instead of the WHOLE population.

Comments are closed.


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