The Federal Government has allocated $208 million dollars to Florida in the latest round in the fight to reverse the foreclosure blight. Central Florida will receive $48 million dollars of that money. The amount of federal funds flowing into our state is greater than any other state. Coming in second is California with an allocation of $149 Million dollars. The Florida foreclosure rate is among the highest of any state in the nation.
The money is intended to address the impact of the current housing crisis. Housing and Urban Development Secretary Ron Sims said the federal funds are an investment. He said “it means someone will wake up and have a job to go to.” According to Sims, the money will provide communities with new neighbors and families with new homes.
The new round of federal funding is part of the neighborhood stabilization program. This is the third round of grants that are designed to buy and renovate abandoned properties. The money is part of $1 billion dollars in recovery money approved by the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act, enacted into law earlier this year. In 2008, Congress authorized $3.92 billion dollars and in 2009 $2 billion dollars was allocated in similar programs.
Orlando Mayor Buddy Dyer said that the money has a ripple effect. Orlando received $6.7 million dollars last year. That translated into the creation of 200 new jobs to renovate abandoned homes. This year Orlando expects to receive 3 million in funding.
Low and moderate income families can also tap into the funds for assistance in purchasing a home. Families receiving assistance through the program are required to complete financial counseling in an effort to reduce future foreclosures.
Source: Orlando Sentinel, “Feds give Central Florida $48 million to battle foreclosure blight,” Kate Santich 9 Sep 2010