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*Please Note: This Agenda is subject to change

Advocacy with Results: Grassroots Efforts and Local Housing Trust Funds

Moderator: Cheryl Howell
Panelists: Kimberly Overman, Sandra Veszi Einhorn
The dire need for affordable housing funding has caused several local governments in Florida to find additional source of local government housing trust funds. This workshop highlights the successful effort in Hillsborough County and Broward County to create local trust funds to supplement the funds from the Sadowski Act. The similarities and the differences in the path that led to success in Hillsborough and in Broward will be evident. Local elected official, Commissioner Kimberly Overman will explain the grassroots effort from HOPE, a religious action group, that was instrumental in the creating a multimillion-dollar commitment in local general revenue funding. Executive Director of the Coordinating Council of Broward County, Sandra Veszi Einhorn, will explain how a broad-based coalition of interest groups worked successfully toward a local government referendum to create multiple millions in funding dedicated for affordable housing. You will learn the why and the how for creating local housing trust funds and the effectiveness of grassroots efforts to mount successful campaigns that achieve great results.

Bonds 101

Moderator: Helen Feinberg
Panelists: Mark Hendrickson, Terry Lovell. Esq.
Bonds may seem complicated– that’s because they are. Bonds are a critical resource for developing affordable housing. But they are not money. Bonds are sometimes the appropriate financing vehicle and sometimes not. This session will unravel the complexity so that attendees gain a basic understanding of how bonds work. It will also explain when bonds are not the best tool and why. What type of rental developments are compatible with bonds and what types are not suitable? How can bonds help with first-time homeownership? And if the market is not conducive to using bonds, how can they be exchanged for tax credits for the borrower? Intrigued? Good. Come to this session and leave with the confidence you should have in understanding bonds for affordable housing.

Creative Housing Problem Solving and Diversion

Moderator: Manny Sarria
Panelists: Tamara Frazier, Allison Nye, Kristi Schulenberg
Housing problem solving and diversion are not the newest kids on the block, but they are not yet embedded in every community. This workshop will feature the Central Florida Continuum of Care and its diversion practices to help people avoid a traumatic episode of homelessness and allocate resources for the most vulnerable. Learn how to use existing funding, new funding, and staff, to optimally implement the practice of housing problem solving and diversion in your community’s response to homelessness.

Construction Law

Moderator: Shahrzad Emami
Panelists: Callhan Soldavini, Wendy Wilson
Construction is a pitfall for the unwary nonprofit, from the construction contract to compliance with Florida’s complicated Construction Lien Law. In this workshop, the experienced attorneys from the Florida Community Development Legal Project will give an overview of construction contract negotiation and the Florida Construction Lien Law. Topics covered will include: construction contract provisions; how to handle deposits; protection against an unscrupulous or under-capitalized contractor; Florida construction lien law; notice of commencement; affidavits and lien waivers; replacing a contractor; construction work by volunteer organizations; owner-builder projects; and disaster relief projects.

Digital Tools for Housing Program Administration

Moderator: Robert Von
Panelists: Nanette Cohen, Anna Graham, Martin Greenlee
Local government and non-profit providers are looking for ways to go digital with the day-to-day administration of their housing programs. Electronic files help to streamline the intake and eligibility process and require less staff time and provide for more accountability. Join this workshop to find out what products are being used by local governments and non-profits in Florida to streamline their programs and reduce dependency on paper files. You will hear about three products available on the market and how they can be used to manage documentation and record keeping for affordable housing programs.

Disaster Case Management: The Calvary Arrives

Moderator: Gladys Cook
Panelists: Susan George, Bridget Holmes, Valerie Jenkins, Anthony Pluchino
Helping Survivors find Hope and a Home. Following every disaster, an army of case managers take up where FEMA leaves off to help survivors continue to return to normal life. Volunteer Florida administers the disaster case management system in Florida and will explain how its system is organized. You will also meet some of Florida’s case managers and learn about their vital work and the importance of teaming with housing providers. Along with case management and counseling, financial institutions play a critical role in helping homeowners keep their mortgages in good standing. This workshop is a must for housing counselors, housing providers, and the financial community.

Energy Efficiency and Affordable Housing

Moderator: Brad Goar
Panelists: Mike Morina, Scott Zimmerman
Reducing energy costs is one way to make housing more affordable. This session features two examples of how renewable energy is incorporated into housing development to ultimately benefit renters and homeowners. The first example is Banyan Court, a new rental development by Banyan Development Group in Lake Worth, which is receiving an award from the Florida Housing Coalition for its use of solar, demonstrating how green features and energy efficient amenities contribute to long-term financial benefits both to property owners and residents. The second example is single-family homes developed by Florida Home Partnership, a nonprofit developer in Ruskin showing how including renewable energy in the construction of homes makes homeownership more affordable upfront and sustainable over time.

Florida’s Green Building is Certifiable!

Moderator: Mike Rogers
Panelists: Barry Faske, Brianne Hefner, Drew Smith
Going green has never been easier. The Florida Green Building Coalition is your source for an abundance of information to ensure- or even certify- that your single-family homes or multifamily properties are resilient, energy efficient, and sustainable. In this workshop you will learn about Florida’s premier green building standard and how you can make affordable housing green housing. You will hear from an affordable multifamily developer who met the highest green standards along with complying with the green building requirements of Florida Housing Finance Corporation. Hear from the FHFC itself on what the green building rules require and meet last year’s Certifier of the Year. The Florida Green Building Coalition is in your corner and ready to guide your project, be it single family homes to large apartment communities to become certified and get the green light on excellence.

Florida Housing Finance Corporation Funding Resources

Moderator: Jeff Kiss
Panelists: Marisa Button, Jean Salmonsen
The 2020 Florida Legislature provided funding for rental programs from the Affordable Housing Trust Funds, to be administered by the Florida Housing Finance Corporation. These resources include funding for the SAIL program, grant funding for housing for persons with developmental disabilities, and the Community Workforce Housing Loan Program. This session will cover all competitive rental programs, including the Housing Credit program, and the current timelines for allocating these housing funds during the 2020-2021 rental cycle. Overviews of the Request for Applications process and each funding opportunity will be explained in terms of funding available, target populations, and geographic targeting throughout the state.

Getting Rapid Re-Housing Right

Moderator: Susan Pourciau
Panelists: Katherine Hammer, Amanda Rosado, Wendy Tippett
Rapid Re-Housing helps people experiencing homelessness move quickly into permanent housing and provides financial and support services to help people stabilize in housing. This workshop will provide best practices for providing Rapid Re-Housing, along with helping communities identify barriers and solutions to do it well. A brief overview will be provided of the funding sources available to fund Rapid Re-Housing. This workshop is geared toward current Rapid Re-Housing providers, as well as local government housing staff, funders, and Continuums of Care.

Government Land Trust for Multifamily Housing

Moderator: Chuck Elsesser
Panelists: Michael Cronin, Kathyrn Driver
Creating a stock of permanently affordable rental housing is key for addressing Florida’s housing crisis. The Florida Housing Coalition continually advocates for long term or permanent affordability, so that we are not losing multi-family housing due to expiring land use agreements. Pinellas County is generating funds for affordable housing through Penny for Pinellas and using a portion of those funds to create permanently affordable multi-family housing using a land trust model. This workshop will provide a detailed look at Pinellas County’s unique application of the Florida Land Trust Act as a vehicle for utilizing infrastructure surtax dollars for affordable housing. Presenters will share the history, structure and legal documents utilized to implement this successful program.

Harvesting the Resources and Expertise of Housing Authorities in More Impactful Partnerships

Moderator: Leroy Moore
Panelists: David Iloanya, David Leon, Benjamin Stevenson, Andrew Velo
PHAs have unique characteristics that makes feasible some creative and complex partnerships between public and private sectors. PHAs are oftentimes able to make doable, with public private resources and expertise, what would otherwise be too challenging to accomplish. Hear from developers, attorneys, and executives leading some of Florida‘s most unique developments and hear insight on how to use what you have to achieve extraordinary results, take advantage of opportunities presented through crisis’, down markets, and other disrupters.

Housing is Healthcare: Improving the Outcomes of Children

Moderator: Cheryl Howell
Panelists: Andres Izaguirre, Erika Key, Teresa Van Alstine
How can affordable housing professionals address the root causes of chronic childhood illnesses? Representatives from Rebuilding Together Tampa Bay’s (RTTB) will present their Healthier Homes for Children Program as a model for how safe housing that is affordable can improve the health outcomes of low-income children. This workshop will include a discussion on the social determinants of health and provide ideas on how to approach housing program design and implementation to address health issues.

Housing to the Rescue: Stabilizing the Lives of Children and Families

Moderator: George Romagnoli
Panelists: Mariah Hayden, Kelly Rigell
Research shows that housing instability is a major contributor to the well-being of children. Affordable housing, and the stability it provides is linked to improved academic performance and can prevent children from entering the foster care system. This workshop will explore two models designed to save children and families from homelessness and separation and improve educational outcomes.

Inclusionary Housing: Creating Mixed Income Communities in Compliance with Florida Law

Moderator: Jaimie Ross
Panelists: Craig Collin, Kody Glazer, Minjee Kim
Inclusionary zoning (IZ) is a land use planning tool designed to produce affordable housing units in conjunction with market-rate development. In 2019, the Florida Legislature passed House Bill 7103 which, in part, amended the state’s inclusionary zoning statutes. Under this bill, if local governments ask developers of market-rate housing to provide affordable units, they must “fully offset all costs” of providing such units. This Panel discusses the various ways in which local governments can comply with HB 7103. In doing so, the concept of land value creation and land value capture will be introduced and how it can be applied in local policymaking contexts. Following the legal and planning presentations, you will hear the perspective of a large scale market-rate developer with national experience in single family and master planned developments.

Innovative Housing Designs for Rapid Rebuilding and Welcome to the Innovative Housing Showcase

Moderator: Gladys Cook
Panelists: Gladys Cook, Rullah Price
Exhibitors: Snap Space, Crisis Housing Solutions, Ablenook, Auburn Rural Studio Steelhomes
The devastating storm is over, the shelters are closing, and hundreds of survivors have nowhere to go. Mobile homes and RV’s have been the answer for this problem, but we know we can do better for Interim and Permanent Housing types. Housing providers are approached by manufacturers and builders with proposals for everything from pop up housing to shipping containers to factory-built solutions. In this workshop we will share an evaluation tool developed by FEMA and beta tested by the Florida Housing Coalition. The tool helps those making procurement decisions to compare these ideas “oranges to oranges” so comparisons reflect the needs and wishes of the community. From there, we will apply the tool to our Innovative Housing Showcase participants, and you can learn about what you will be touring when you venture into our virtual showcase of housing models. If you are interested in new technology in home building along with rapidly replacing your housing stock, join us!

Leading with Equity

Moderator: Cheryl Howell
Panelists: Regina Cannon, Daniel Ramos
We have the data. Black people, people of color, and LGBTQ-identified people are not only overrepresented among people experiencing homelessness, they have longer periods of homelessness, longer times to be housed, and higher rates of returns to homelessness. These are the results of long-time, deep-rooted systems that continue to disproportionately impact those we are supposed to serve. This workshop offers a framework to begin to change that dynamic and provides actionable strategies for housing stakeholders to assess, address, and prioritize leading with equity.

Legislative Update from 2020 Session

Moderator: Jaimie Ross
Panelists: Jeff Branch, Jerry Durham, Kody Glazer, Thomas Mitchell
Using a conversational format with subject matter experts, we will cover the central portions of legislation that passed in Florida’s 2020 session. We begin with Dr. Thomas Mitchell, Professor of Law at Texas A&M University, who was the architect of the Uniform Partition of Heirs Property Act. For a full story on the importance of the UPHPA see “Landmark Act in Florida Aims to Keep Land (and Wealth) in Black Families, found here.  HB 1339, the omnibus housing bill, covers both financing and land use planning issues which will be covered jointly by Florida Housing Coalition Legal Director, Kody Glazer and Florida League of Cities Senior Legislative Advocate, Jeff Branch. Federation of Manufactured Homes Association, President, Jerry Durham will address the sections of HB 1339 that affect the rights of homeowners living in mobile home parks. This session will be moderated by Florida Housing Coalition CEO, Jaimie Ross.

Lending for Community Land Trusts

Moderator: Barbara Beck
Panelists: Sarina LoRe, Nate Schultz, Dennis Smith, Kim Spence
Though once challenging, lending for community land trust homeownership has never been easier. This session begins with an overview of CLTs for homeownership and a loan officer from Valley Bank with experience in CLT lending, followed by Freddie Mac and Fannie Mae on how they work with lenders to originate and provide liquidity for loans made to purchasers of CLT homes. Attendees will also learn about the Florida Community Land Trust Institute’s Training and Certification Program, designed to promote best practices amongst CLTs and meet lending requirements.

Local Preference and 9% Housing Credits

Moderator: Ed Busansky
Panelists: Mark Hendrickson, Steve Moore
The Florida Housing Finance Corporation gives all large and medium counties except Miami-Dade, the opportunity to give a preference for developments that meet local goals—replacing the lottery system with certainty of 9% credits for a limited number of projects each year. The technical name for this program is the Local Government Area of Opportunity Funding. This brings an important responsibility to local government—not only to select the best development, but to have a competitive, open, and transparent process when making that decision. The City of Jacksonville has partnered with its Housing Finance Authority to implement a model system, and the results have been amazing. Join this session to learn how Jacksonville administers the local preference, and how transit-oriented development has been developed adjacent to downtown. A highlight of the session will be a deeper look at a deal selected via the local preference—Lofts at Jefferson Station, which is literally located at a light rail transit stop. The Florida Housing Coalition is honored to provide an award to the Vestcor Companies for Lofts at Jefferson Station and this session will take you on a virtual tour of the beauty of transit oriented development in addition to a deeper understanding of how your community can benefit from the FHFC’s Local Government Area of Opportunity Funding.

Long Term Recovery in the COVID Era: Ending Homelessness

Moderator: Susan Pourciau
Panelists: Marcy Esbjerg, Jeannie Sutton
Long term recovery is often thought of in the context of hurricane disasters in Florida, but what does long term recovery look like in the COVID era? This workshop will look at planning efforts focused on the long-term implications of COVID-19. Many short-term solutions have been developed and deployed, but what are the long-term impacts? Utilizing a data-informed approach, the workshop will provide a glimpse into how the landscape of homelessness has changed and how local governments and Continuums of Care are responding.

Maximizing Virtual Community Engagement

Moderator: Leroy Moore
Panelists: Carter Burton, Kody Glazer
The COVID-19 pandemic has altered the Consolidated Planning process for grantees receiving federal funds through the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD). Waivers have been published providing flexibility on various regulatory requirements associated with the Consolidated Plan, including how citizen participation efforts are conducted. Virtual public meetings may become a new approach for soliciting input from residents and stakeholders during the development of Consolidated Plans, Analysis of Impediments, and other community-driven planning initiatives. Join us to discuss best practices for conducting virtual public participation. In this workshop, you will hear how to utilize virtual platforms to maximize outreach, how to comply with state and federal regulations, and how to capitalize on the opportunity to make virtual articipation methods permanent.

Navigating the Challenges at Year-15 with Difficult Partners in LIHTC Partnerships: Opa-locka Community Development Corporation Case Study

Moderator: Gary Cohen
Panelists:  David Davenport, Shahrzad Emami, Mark Hendrickson, Dr. Willie Logan

Opa-locka Community Development Corporation just won a landmark decision in the fight to preserve affordable, locally-owned housing for nonprofits participating in the Low Income Housing Tax Credit (LIHTC) program. A new breed of economic investors, “aggregators”, have been purchasing limited partner interests from the initial limited partners in LIHTC agreements with a goal of ‘cashing out’ at Year 15. This panel will discuss our latest win in the 11th Judicial Circuit Court of Miami-Dade County, as well as Year 15 aggregator red-flags, so that non-profit owners of tax credit properties can best protect themselves, their affordable housing developments, and the communities they serve. At a time when private investors use their wealth, resources, and sophistication to take advantage of non-profits, we are happy to have this decision in our arsenal. Come hear our panel to learn how to take this win, and build a strategy state and nation-wide.

Opportunity Zones and Affordable Housing

Moderator: Ben Johnson
Panelists: Russell Ginise, Robert Nettina, Paula Rhodes, Clayton Wyatt
Opportunity Zones were heralded for their great potential to direct capital to disinvested communities and increase affordable housing development. While real estate has been the preferred investment type, there has been little application to affordable housing to date. Do Opportunity Zones still hold promise? This workshop will answer this question by exploring recent transactions with low-income housing tax credits to provide clues on how to unlock the potential of Opportunity Zone investment in affordable housing.

Race Disparity in Homeownership: Closing the Gap

Moderator: Marilyn Drayton
Panelists: Cerita Battles, Mary Daniels, Antoine Thompson
Homeownership among people of color is significantly down from homeownership among white people, a major factor contributing to the racial wealth gap. In this session we will frame some of the reasons for this disparity and learn about successful efforts to close the gap. We will hear from the founder of the Hannibal Community Land Trust, established in Winter Park Florida to create homeownership for an historic black community, nearly decimated by land speculation and gentrification; the Executive Director of the National Association of Real Estate Brokers to discuss advocacy, education, and programs to create homeownership and maintain homeownership for black families; and the Senior Vice President, Head of Retail Diverse Segments for Wells Fargo Home Mortgage to discuss the Bank’s commitment and progress towards advancing homeownership among African American and Hispanic borrowers as well as outline key strategies and tactics that helps to dispel myths, create access to credit, instill confidence and build trust and consideration within minority communities.

Rapid Disaster Assistance with State Housing Trust Funds

Moderator: Michael Chaney
Panelists: Sonya Burns, Cormac Giblin, Wendy Schlesinger, Lori Switzer
Ever since the 2004-05 hurricane seasons that impacted most of Florida, SHIP administrators have been ready, willing and able to make early emergency repairs, help survivors shelter in temporary housing, and repair or rebuild what they lost in the storm. While the State Housing Initiatives Partnership is not specifically designed for disaster recovery, the Hurricane Housing Recovery Program (HHRP) is. Both have the flexibility needed for each community to respond to emergencies appropriately. Learn how these funds have been deployed and how you can prepare your SHIP program to be ready when the inevitable storm comes.

Rebuilding Florida Better for the Long Term

Moderator: Mike Rogers
Panelists: Jennifer Languell, Danny McKearan, Drew Winters
Thousands of homes in Florida have been severely damaged or destroyed in the last four years by Hurricanes Hermine, Mathew, Irma, and Michael. The largest program responsible for repairing and replacing homes is funded by the CDBG-DR program administered by the Florida Department of Economic Opportunity, Rebuild Florida program. A key feature of the Rebuild Florida home repair strategy is adherence to green building principles. In this workshop we hear from DEO staff, a green building expert on how these principles are deployed and from a builder in the field with firsthand experience. This session is intended for housing providers managing housing rehab programs, contractors, and planners

The RFP and RFA process: How to Make Applications

Moderator: Jeff Kiss
Panelists: Marisa Button, Ashon Nesbitt
The Florida Legislature annually provides funding for rental programs from the Affordable Housing Trust Funds, to be administered by the Florida Housing Finance Corporation (FHFC). These resources include funding for the SAIL program, grant funding for housing for persons with developmental disabilities, and special hurricane recovery funding for rental housing in hard-hit Hurricane Michael counties. Additionally, FHFC will administer Coronavirus Relief Funds (CRF) from the US Department of Treasury to be distributed to local governments as well as provide direct assistance to FHFC-funded properties. This session will cover all rental programs, including the current timelines for allocating these housing funds during the 2020-2021 rental cycle. Overviews of the Request for Applications process for each funding opportunity will be explained in terms of funding available, target populations, and geographic targeting throughout the state. Further, presenters will answer questions about the invitation to participate process for CRF funds to assist FHFC-funded properties.

Scattered Site Single-Family Rehab Programs: Models of Success and Best Practices

Moderator: Jim Walker
Panelists: Brenda Dollison, Michael Roberts, Pat Tracey
As the third largest state, Florida has one of the most pronounced deficits of affordable housing in the nation. We all know we need more affordable housing, but how can we make it happen? In this session you will hear from several local nonprofit developers about their challenges and successes in acquiring, renovating, and selling scattered site single-family homes. They will share best practices and tips gleaned from their struggles, strategies, and successes. This session is produced and designed by the Florida Community Loan Fund.

Senior Housing: Best Practices from the Public and Private Sector

Moderator: Armando Fana
Panelists: Michelle Norris, Jennifer Ferriol, Shannon Guzman
Affordable rental housing for seniors is an evergreen need in Florida with growing demand as the population ages. This workshop will showcase rental developments aimed at meeting this need, covering finance, development and property management for this demographic. This workshop will also provide examples of how local governments can incentivize and work together with developers and service providers to create the housing that seniors need to live affordably and independently.

Subsidy Savvy: Preserving Affordability and the Public Investment

Moderator: Suzanne Cabrera
Panelists: Jonathan Brown, Cindee LaCourse-Blum, Kim Spence
Local governments attending this workshop will learn how to maximize the benefit derived for low- and moderate-income households from the use of SHIP, CDBG, and HOME funds in down payment assistance programs as well as single family homeownership development projects. When financing affordable housing, local governments have a choice between subsidy retention or subsidy recapture. Retaining rather than recapturing subsidy creates a permanent stock of affordable housing that will be available for generations rather than the status quo where subsidized housing units are lost from the affordable housing inventory at the expiration of the period of affordability. Community Land Trusts can take a single infusion of public funds keep units affordable for the first and every subsequent occupant. In this workshop, you will hear from CLTs that have used federal and state resources to create and preserve permanent affordable housing and learn how to implement a similar approach in your community.

Two Years and Counting: Research, Community Engagement, and Hurricane Michael Recovery

Moderator: Anne Ray
Panelists: Ann Carptenter, Bill O’Dell, Sarah Stein
As Florida juggles the challenges of COVID-19 and storm season, we are also continuing our recovery from Hurricane Michael in the Panhandle. What lessons can we learn from the response? Sarah Stein, Community and Economic Development Advisor to the Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta, will present the Fed’s community engagement work with Panama City and changing rental and credit markets in the aftermath of Michael. Bill O’Dell, Director of the Shimberg Center, will present new plans for regional data centers to help coastal areas prepare for the impacts of natural disasters on homes, communities, and vulnerable populations.

Using COVID Resources to Strengthen the Housing Crisis Response System

Moderator: Amanda Rosado
Panelists: Manny Sarria, Amanda Wander
COVID-19 has presented an unprecedented challenge for housing crisis response systems. Households who may have never experienced housing instability are now at risk of experiencing homelessness. People who are unsheltered are considered one of the highest at-risk populations for contracting COVID-19. Every part of the crisis response system has been challenged. This workshop provides a practical look at how different housing providers and Continuums of Care responded and ultimately strengthened their crisis response system. Presenters will discuss lessons learned, along with their challenges and opportunities.

Wind and Flood Insurance: Are dark clouds forming and can we mitigate during blue skies?

Moderator: Gladys Cook
Panelists: Tasha Carter, Jack Nicholson, Zac Taylor
In a strong insurance market, policies protecting homeowners from multiple perils are available and reasonably affordable. In the real estate market, lenders cannot make mortgages without it. Post hurricane, homeowners cannot rebuild or repair without it. There could be dark clouds forming as Florida’s insurers react to intensifying weather patterns and costlier claims. As Florida veers toward more active storm seasons and the inevitable impacts of rising sea levels, will the insurance industry be able to remain solvent- and keep the real estate market afloat? Can a robust mitigation effort shore up our housing stock to not only protect lives and property but to keep insurance policies available especially for low income households? Our expert panelists examine the vulnerability of the hazard insurance market and how a series of catastrophes could upend its ability to underwrite Florida’s housing in the future. We also consider the upside, a strong mitigation and resilience program, that can help strengthen our housing stock and at the same time keep insurance policies both reasonable and accessible.