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North Miami CRA expands foreclosure assistance and approves $14.1
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by Oscar Pedro Musibay
The city of North Miami’s redevelopment agency expanded its foreclosure
assistance fund before voting to approve next year’s budget.
The CRA’s board voted 4-1 Wednesday night to approve the $14.1 million
budget, which is funded by taxes on new development in the agency’s
The CRA’s budget includes millions for work on two affordable housing
projects, more than a million for its museum, and tens of thousands for
city purposes, including a water retention program and an assistant
city manger’s salary.
The foreclosure assistance money rose by $50,000 to $200,000.
North Miami resident Judy Feldman warned that the CRA’s spending
priorities may be out of whack, considering the potential for an
economic collapse nationwide, a point that didn’t dissuade the CRA
Two big items in the budget for next year are the rehabilitation of the
hurricane-damaged Bel House apartments and the redevelopment of the
Pioneer Gardens site, a landfill slated to become condominiums. Work on
the 65-unit Bel House, which saw its funding shrink by $100,000 to $1.1
million before the vote, is slated to begin by the beginning of the
An asbestos and fuel cleanup costing $1 million will continue into next
year at the Pioneer Gardens site. Construction on the 136-unit project
is expected to cost $13.3 million.
A big part of the CRA’s mission includes building thousands of
affordable housing units. The affordable housing program is tied
directly to the massive, mixed-use Biscayne Landing project. The CRA
must build one affordable unit for every market rate unit built at
The city’s council met immediately after the CRA board meeting and
approved the CRA budget on a 3-1 vote.