Community Redevelopment Agencies Explained
Under Florida law (Chapter 163, Part III), local governments are able to establish a Community Redevelopment Agency (CRA) when certain conditions exist. Since all the monies used in financing CRA activities are locally generated, CRAs are not overseen by the state, but redevelopment plans must be consistent with local government comprehensive plans. Examples of conditions that can support the creation of a CRA include, but are not limited to: the presence of substandard or inadequate structures; a shortage of affordable housing; inadequate infrastructure; insufficient roadways; and inadequate parking. To document that the required conditions exist, the local government must survey the proposed redevelopment area and prepare a Finding of Necessity. If the Finding of Necessity determines that the required conditions exist, the local government may create a CRA to provide the tools needed to foster and support the targeted Community Redevelopment Area (District).
The Florida Redevelopment Association’s CRA Basics page offers an overview of how CRAs function and benefit the community.
The Community Redevelopment Agency (CRA) administers all the activities and programs within a Community Redevelopment Area (District). A five- to seven-member CRA "Board" created by the local government (city or county) directs the agency. The Board can be comprised of local government officials and or other individuals appointed by the local government. Although one local government may establish multiple CRA districts, there generally may be only one CRA Board. Each district must maintain separate trust funds, and expend those funds only in that district. In the City of Sebastian, the City Council - a five member board serves as the CRA Board.
Creating the CRA
All CRA’s within the State of Florida are created through the same steps:
- Adopt the Finding of Necessity. This will formally identify the blight conditions within the targeted area and establish the District boundary.
- Develop and adopt the Community Redevelopment Plan. The plan addresses the unique needs of the targeted area and includes the overall goals for redevelopment in the District, as well as identifying specific projects.
- Create a Redevelopment Trust Fund. Establishment of the Trust Fund enables the Community Redevelopment Agency to direct the revenues realized from increases in real property values back into the redevelopment District.