Brevard County Realtors Help Lead The Way To An Economic Recovery
Florida’s Brevard County REALTORS are determined to see their community thrive despite multiple economic challenges. When the area first began to show signs of struggle during the 2009 economic downturn, county commissioners instituted an impact fee moratorium in order to attract developers to the area.
Brevard County impact fees are typically collected during new residential and commercial construction. The fees go towards the road expansions and infrastructure improvements that become necessary as a community grows. Despite the financial impact the waiver had on city services, the economic boost and job creation new construction would bring made it a necessary step towards recovery.
However, when the Kennedy Space Center laid off more than 10,000 workers in 2012, it became clear that Brevard County was going to need more time to cycle through this difficult period. The Space Coast Association of Realtors (SCAR) stepped up, leading the charge to extend the impact fee moratorium. “We knew that it was up to us to help the housing recovery and adding impact fees at that time would only have hurt,” said 2014 SCAR President Mitch Ribak.
SCAR joined forces with several building industry organizations, hiring an attorney and a lobbyist to request an extension on the moratorium. SCAR also provided numerous studies and reports that demonstrated the negative impact ending the moratorium would have on area homeowners. “These reports helped us to show the county commissioners that Brevard had not yet healed from the devastation of years prior,” said Tammie Watts, SCAR’s Government Affairs Director.
SCAR’s ability to quickly provide solid evidence to the county commissioners played a large part in their decision to extend the impact moratorium for an additional two years. SCAR will continue to stay involved with county issues, educating commissioners on the health of the real estate market as well as advocating for homeowners. “It’s amazing what we as Realtors can accomplish as a group.” said Ribak.