Commissioner Eileen Higgins Joins New National Task Force of County Leaders Launched to Address Housing Affordability and Stability
Commissioner Higgins travels to Washington, DC from Nov. 16 to 18 to attend the first meetings of NACo’s Housing Affordability and Stability Task Force
MIAMI-DADE – Miami-Dade County Commissioner Eileen Higgins, District 5, has been appointed to the newly created National Association of Counties (NACo) Housing Task Force, comprised of over 30 county leaders from across the United States. The group will identify county-led solutions and innovations for addressing America’s housing affordability and stability crisis. The Housing Task Force will explore intergovernmental partnerships that support housing solutions among federal, state, and local officials, along with private, nonprofit, and homeownership and rental partners.
“Counties are on the front lines of responding to the housing crisis,” said NACo President Denise Winfrey. “Stable, quality housing is the foundation for better health, safety, education, a strong workforce, improved financial wellness, and lower demands on the social safety net. NACo’s Housing Task Force is committed to meeting the moment and addressing our residents’ housing needs.”
Since 2018, Commissioner Higgins has confronted Miami-Dade’s housing crisis head-on by spearheading policies that protect renters from eviction, expedite permits for affordable housing developments, preserve communities through Naturally Occurring Affordable Housing, increase incentives for homeownership programs, and reduce utility fees for small affordable housing developments. With a focus on transit-oriented development, she has increased affordable housing supply by initiating, preserving, and creating more than 3,500 affordable housing units in District 5 alone. Furthermore, she is spearheading efforts to transform nearly 20 acres of underutilized county land around Government Center to develop a walkable, mixed-use neighborhood with a minimum of 2,000 affordable housing units within minutes of the County’s transportation hub.
“I have been steadfast in my commitment to finding solutions to address our local housing crisis, which includes building more affordable housing and building it fast,” said Commissioner Higgins. “I look forward to working hand-in-hand with counties across the country to share the innovative programs and policies being implemented in Miami-Dade like the Fair Notice Ordinance, as well as to learn best practices from my peers to address this dire issue that’s frankly affecting all counties.”
The group will examine comprehensive solutions such as many recently enacted in Miami-Dade to address the complex conditions that undermine housing affordability. Housing costs are outpacing job and wage growth in many areas, with many colliding factors, including supply chain disruptions, labor shortages, increased demand for short-term rentals, land costs, institutional investors, demographic pattern shifts, and competing public, private, and community interests and incentives.
The Housing Task Force will host in-person and virtual meetings, as well as produce original research, to examine the role of county governments in providing residents with more housing, greater variety of housing, and better housing affordability and value.
Click here to see the task force members and more information.
About NACo - The National Association of Counties (NACo) strengthens America’s counties, including nearly 40,000 county elected officials and 3.6 million county employees. Founded in 1935, NACo unites county officials to advocate for county government priorities in federal policymaking; promote exemplary county policies and practices; nurture leadership skills and expand knowledge networks; optimize county and taxpayer resources and cost savings; and enrich the public’s understanding of county government. www.naco.org