Daytona Beach Shakes Up Affordable Housing Effort

Daytona Beach Shakes Up Affordable Housing Effort

Daytona Beach is ready to move into the next phase of its affordable housing efforts, but city commissioners want to find a new partner to help get there.

At a meeting earlier this month, commissioners approved a motion to hire a new consultant to move forward with an affordable housing plan.

“I am a little disappointed because this is taking too long for me,” said Mayor Derrick Henry, referring to progress on affordable housing issues in the city. “Now I’m feeling pressure to choose someone I don’t really want.”

Deputy City Manager Jim Morris, who gave a presentation on the affordable housing plan, said commissioners are free to find another consulting firm to work with.

Henry said he was not happy with consultant Robert Gray, Strategic Planning Group, Inc. and did not want to do something that was not “a good decision” for the city.

“Because I’m in a rush to make a bad decision, then you get something worse,” he said.

City Manager Deric Feacher said the city will move as fast as it can but pointed to progress the city has made in its affordable housing effort.

“I think it is important for us to show what you all have already done ,” he said. “There are things we are doing.”

Henry acknowledged that some progress has been made.

“I’m not saying we have not been moving,” he said. “Just not as broad as we like. This is our No.1 priority, has been for several years.”

Daytona Beach resident Sandy Murphy said finding a new consultant was a good idea.

“I think this is a great decision to go out and find somebody who can put a little more energy for something specific to Daytona Beach and meets our needs,” she said.

The motion to send out a request for proposals for a new consultant was approved unanimously.

“You have a mandate,” Henry said to city staff. “Let’s go.”