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Thursday, June 28, 2018

Should Forever Bond money go to Grove homeowners?

At today's City Commission meeting, district Commissioner Ken Russell will propose that the city allocate $2 million from the Miami Forever Bond for single-family home rehabilitation within District 2 for residents at or below 140 percent of the area median income. One of the main challenges in our city is clearly the rising cost of housing at all levels of income. One of the gaps Commissioner Russell would like to address is helping low-income homeowners make repairs to their homes, which will help them stay put in their neighborhoods. 

This ties in with an on-going issue in Village West are the historic wooden homes, which are historic in nature, but not historic legally. There have been meetings and talks about making the homes historic, but many homeowners feel that this hurts them regarding resale value and high costs in keeping up historic homes is an issue, too. Also, they don't want to be told what to do with their own private property.

In November, voters approved the Miami Forever Bond, including $100 million to be spent on a variety of affordable housing initiatives. This proposal would be the first potential spend of bond money and will open up the conversation to all commissioners about what Ken feels should be a priority.

The wood frame vernacular residences of Coconut Grove are associated with the overall establishment and continued settlement of the area by black Bahamians, African-Americans from the South and their descendants. These significant structures are associated with the community's contributions to the development of Coconut Grove.

There is a link here in the dropbox, that describes the various houses that still exist in Village West and this report explains the concept of making the houses historic.


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10 Comments:

Anonymous Anonymous said...

No way! Why should my tax money go to pay private homeowners fix their homes? It's one thing if the City wants to spend the money to build City-owned affordable or workforce housing, but this is a direct transfer of taxpayers' money to private individuals for improving their private property. Not ok.

June 28, 2018 8:05 AM  
Anonymous John Dolson said...

I think this is a fantastic idea. I am not sure it is enough. Why not double or round off at 5 million? Village West has, and is, being exploited to the detriment of the wishes of many (or most) of the long term residents. This measure would help preserve some of the historic old wood structures and bring them up to standards that showcase that history. There was clear community support for the appropriation of the money. Now let's spend some and get value from it.

June 28, 2018 10:05 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I agree with anonymous above -- no public money for private housing. Build county housing as on Grand Ave.

June 28, 2018 11:44 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I am against giving tax money to homeowners to fix up their homes. The fact that a building is old does not necessarily mean it is historic and worth preserving. Also, a historic designation comes with a lot of restrictions usually resulting in making the home harder to sell in the future.

June 28, 2018 4:16 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Wait what? $2 million for what? So I assume this means that the $400 million general obligation bond was allocated and the projects completed so efficiently that they said we have this extra $2 million sitting around so why not just put a bunch of ridiculous ideas in a hat and give it away like a raffle. On that basis I would assume this means they completed the following:
- $200 million of improvements to make the city more resilient to sea level rise correct? NOPE!
- $100 million in affordable housing in Miami, correct? - NOPE!
- $78 million in parks and cultural facilities improvements, correct? - NOPE!
- $23 million in road improvements were completed, correct? - NOPE!
- $7 million toward public safety, correct? - NOPE!
This can’t be a serious proposal!

June 28, 2018 6:45 PM  
Anonymous Carla Blanco said...

I can't understand the obsession of some people with preserving houses that not even the owners want to preserve. If you designate a house historic, who is going to pay for the upkeep to keep it in "historic" condition" Why should my tax dollars go to help some people fix their houses? There is no way this is an appropriate appropriation of funds.

June 28, 2018 8:32 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

If you are going to be giving money away, you might as well buy the property from the owner and make it a museum, at least you could charge for the entrance and pay the upkeep with that money.

June 28, 2018 9:05 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

140% below area median income. Have some compassion for your neighbors, probably elderly and out of luck. Are bail outs only for billionaires. SMH

June 29, 2018 1:32 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I agree 100% with all of the common-sense responses above. We, the Citizens of the City of Miami, approved the incurrence of this debt for the use of the public good. That means parks, CIP, the Playhouse, public safety, etc... NOT paying to fix peoples' private homes. Ken Russell has gotten out of control lately. It seems like the only constituents he cares about are those in the West Grove. Enough is enough.

Ken, are you LSITENING? it's time to shape up or ship out.

June 29, 2018 8:27 AM  
Anonymous John dolson said...

Those mean spirited individuals who can’t allocate 2 percent to at least help the poorest amongst us stay on the community should at leadt have the courage to post theirn names! Cowards!

June 29, 2018 8:01 PM  

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