Sarasota considering setting up affordable housing fund

April 17, 2019. Sarasota Herald-Tribune.

SARASOTA — The city is considering establishing an additional affordable housing fund requested by a community group championing efforts to address the shortage of workforce housing in the area.

The Sarasota City Commission earlier this week unanimously directed its staff to explore setting up a housing opportunity fund with a dedicated revenue source to help pay for affordable housing projects. The fund would be an addition to an already established trust fund the city dips into for such projects, supported by developer contributions, city administrators said at the board’s Monday meeting. The commission wants staff to research revenue streams that could be used to replenish the potential new fund on an annual basis and see how much the current fund garners to prevent duplication.

Seidman: Answering to the common folk

March 31, 2019. The Palm Beach Post.

SURE’s annual Nehemiah Action Assembly is a cross between church social and trip to the principal’s office. The buzz of affable neighborliness within the packed crowd gathered at the Municipal Auditorium last week floated atop an undercurrent of steely resolve.

Each year the members of Sarasota United for Responsibility and Equity (SURE) — a group of 19 area churches working collaboratively to build a more “God-like” community — congregate for this come-to-Jesus meeting, named for the Biblical figure instrumental in the rebuilding of Jerusalem in the fifth century B.C. following the Babylonian exile.

Nineteen Congregations come together to discuss the affordable housing crisis in Sarasota

March 25, 2019. WWSB ABC 7.

SARASOTA (WWSB) -How much of your income goes toward your rent or mortgage?

Experts say you should only spend a quarter of it. But, a new report says in Sarasota County, around 15,000 families pay more than half of their income on housing.

SURE-ly a good approach

March 24, 2018. Herald-Tribune.

SURE’s annual Nehemiah Action Assembly is a model for advancing community justice

Though my heritage on my father’s side is Jewish, and on my mother’s Episcopalian, I wasn’t raised in either faith. In fact, the extent of my early religious training was attending Sunday school at the only church that existed in our rural village while my parents returned home for a gratefully quiet morning without children.

Over the years, I’ve studied many spiritual traditions and absorbed aspects of a few. But it wasn’t until I walked into the Sarasota Municipal Auditorium last week for the Nehemiah Action Assembly of SURE (Sarasota United for Responsibility and Equity) that I felt ready to convert.