Affordable housing advocates cheer Gov. DeSantis for funding Sadowski trust, Live Local Act
New poll shows Floridians want government to address affordable housing crisis.

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The Governor's budget fully funds SHIP and SAIL.

Gov. Ron DeSantis’ budget fully funds an affordable housing trust. Time will tell if the Legislature follows his lead.

The Sadowski Coalition praised DeSantis, who has consistently supported state housing programs.

“Time and again, this Governor has stood in support of housing, supporting both of Florida’s vital housing programs — the State Housing Initiatives Partnership program and the State Apartment Incentive Loan program,” said Mark Hendrickson, facilitator of the Sadowski Coalition and executive director of the Florida Association of Local Housing Finance Authorities.

DeSantis on Tuesday unveiled a $114 billion budget, dubbed “Focus of Florida’s Future.”

Hendrickson said the Legislature should preserve DeSantis’ plan to fully fund the state’s two key housing efforts.

“Governor DeSantis has delivered yet again for Floridians in his budget recommendations for Fiscal Year 2024-2025 by recommending full funding for Florida’s SHIP and SAIL programs,” Hendrickson said. “We commend Governor DeSantis for his unwavering support of housing, and we look forward to working with the Governor and the Legislature as the budget process continues.”

The budget includes nearly $208.6 million for the State Housing Initiatives Partnership program. The provides funds for mortgage buy-downs, emergency repairs, and homeownership counseling. The budget also calls for almost $664,000 of that money to go toward a Catalyst program to train more staff.

Another nearly $84.5 million is set aside in the budget for the State Apartment Incentive Loan program, including for a homeownership assistance program, predevelopment loans and another Catalyst program.

DeSantis notably unveiled his budget in Marco Island, in the state Senate district of Senate President Kathleen Passidomo. He noted that the budget fully funds workforce housing initiatives with more than $400 million, in support of the Live Local Act championed by Passidomo during the last Legislative Session.

“Honestly, it’s working,” DeSantis said of the legislation. “Sometimes when things are done, you can look at data and that’s important and that’s not necessarily something that can be substituted.”

But he also said that anecdotally, he’s heard rapid results in the effort to produce more attainable housing stock.

“People are like ‘Hey, we’re going to be building more housing,’ and you know it’s having its intended purpose,” DeSantis said. “Ultimately, part of the housing rents is the inflation, which has just been bad for everybody, but part of it is you need more supply.”

Jacob Ogles

Jacob Ogles has covered politics in Florida since 2000 for regional outlets including SRQ Magazine in Sarasota, The News-Press in Fort Myers and The Daily Commercial in Leesburg. His work has appeared nationally in The Advocate, Wired and other publications. Events like SRQ’s Where The Votes Are workshops made Ogles one of Southwest Florida’s most respected political analysts, and outlets like WWSB ABC 7 and WSRQ Sarasota have featured his insights. He can be reached at [email protected].


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