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Get the latest coverage of the 2023 Florida legislative session in Tallahassee from our coverage partners and WUSF.

A plan to build more affordable housing in Florida could pass soon

Florida State of the State
Phil Sears
House Speaker Paul Renner, R-Palm Coast and Senate President Kathleen Passidomo, R-Naples, chat at the rostrum after a joint session for Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis' State of the State speech Tuesday, March 7, 2023 at the Capitol in Tallahassee, Fla.

The Florida Senate unanimously passed a bipartisan plan to create more affordable housing for the state's residents on the second day of the 60-day lawmaking session.

The measure is now heading to the House, where it's expected to pass.

The Live Local Act would give property tax breaks to developers that build affordable rental units for middle-income residents.

The federal government defines affordable housing as costing no more than about a third of household income.

Republican Senate President Kathleen Passidomo says the measure is designed to create affordable housing for more of the state’s residents.

“We’re never going to be able to provide housing for everybody. But right now, we’re in a crisis and we have got to do something, particularly for the missing middle — the people that make too much to qualify for the current programs and too little to actually be able to afford a place to live.”

Gov. Ron DeSantis has signaled his support for the Live Local Act, and Passidomo says House members "love" the bill.

“They’re all very excited about it," Passidomo said. "They’re looking forward to receiving it from us. And we’re going to bring it across the finish line.”

The measure would also increase recurring funding for the state’s SAIL program — which provides financing for low-income rental units — by $150 million each year.

It would also fully fund the state’s SHIP program, which offers rental assistance, home repair cost assistance and more to low-income residents.

Valerie Crowder hosts and produces state and local newscasts during All Things Considered. Her reporting on local government and politics has received state and regional award recognition. She has also contributed stories to NPR newscasts.
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