St. Pete Actions Impacting Multifamily Properties

Posted By: Eric Garduño Advocacy News ,

There are several policy issues currently pending before the City of St. Petersburg's City Council that BAAA member should be aware of.  If you would like to be involved BAAA’s efforts in response to any of these issues, please send Eric Garduno a note at GAD@baaahq.org. 

Tenant Bill of Rights –  The original text of this ordinance would have required apartment communities to accept Housing Choice Voucher Program participants by protecting "source of income."  As a result of overwhelming public opposition to this provision, including public comments given by a number of BAAA members, the proposed ordinance has been edited to remove source of income.  BAAA is continuing engagement with the lead sponsor of the ordinance to identify other potential issues and make recommendations on further possible edits to the ordinance.  We expect the ordinance will come back for a vote before City Council on November 7. 

Consideration of Other Tenant-Related Ordinances:  Two additional proposals related to Tenant rights are also under consideration.  The first focuses on a requirement on landlords to provide tenants with basic information concerning their rights and where they can seek legal assistance.  The second focuses on tenant relocation when residential rental properties are slated for rehabilitation, redevelopment, or demolition.  Possible actions attached this this idea include various requirements placed on landlords/developers.  

Nexus Study & Linkage Fee – the City of St. Petersburg commissioned a study to examine instituting a linkage fee, i.e., impact fees on new development to fund the city’s affordable housing programs.  The Nexus Study has recently been completed and made public.  The study recommends $1-5 per square foot linkage fee on new development.  

Coastal High Hazard Area – Coastal High Hazard Area (CHHA) is defined as the area below the elevation of the Category 1 storm surge line established by computerized storm surge models.  These are the first areas to evacuate when a hurricane comes.  Current rules in the City of St. Petersburg prohibit development with higher density in the CHHA.  The most recent model from 2016 more than doubled the size of the CHHA to 16,328 acres (from 7,705 acres in the 2010 map).  The City Council will be considering how to permit increased density in new development within the CHHA, which will likely include requirements like higher building standards, higher elevations for residences, evacuation plans, and other mitigation.