Miami-Dade Economic Advocacy Trust Fails to Provide Homeownership Aid to African-Americans

Only 20 percent of the special loans went to African-Americans in Miami-Dade.
Only 20 percent of the special loans went to African-Americans in Miami-Dade. Photo by Dan Moyle / Flickr
Buying a first home is nearly impossible for most African-Americans in Miami-Dade. There's a county program that's supposed to make it easier for more black people to become homeowners by providing first mortgages to folks who can't get conventional bank loans. Instead, because Miami-Dade government is so corrupt, nonblacks are scoring a majority of financing. It's fucked up, and no one is doing anything to fix it.

From October 1, 2018, through August 31, 2019, the Miami-Dade Economic Advocacy Trust, a county agency that claims its mission is to "ensure the equitable participation of blacks in economic growth," has doled out $57.4 million in first mortgages to 246 Miami-Dade residents who qualified for its homeownership assistance program. Only 50 of them are African-American. In August, only three black people received loans while 17 Hispanics received financing.

Yet the county commission districts represented by black politicians Audrey Edmonson, Barbara Jordan, Jean Monestime, and Dennis Moss accounted for 63 percent of the loans handed out by the trust. Because only 20 percent of 246 loans went to African-Americans, that means nonblacks are receiving the lion's share of financing to purchase properties in historically African-American neighborhoods.

This is an outrage that should be at the very top of the agenda for every candidate running for Miami-Dade mayor and commissioner. And Miami-Dade State Attorney Katherine Fernandez Rundle should investigate the trust. Someone needs to find out why black people are not getting their fair share.

Miami-Dade Mayor Carlos Gimenez and black county commissioners are too busy wasting resources on billboards warning about a teen curfew. They should be putting up billboards that advertise the homeownership assistance program. But making sure African-Americans can't buy homes in their own neighborhoods is by design.

Cubans are taking money meant to help black people. At the same time, blacks are being priced out of their own neighborhoods, and public housing projects are getting hijacked by private developers. The goal is to push the middle class into the communities populated by African-Americans, who are then forced to live south in Homestead or Florida City. Meanwhile, areas such as downtown Miami, Wynwood, and Edgewater become so expensive only wealthy foreigners can afford to buy properties.

The problem is the black community continues to vote for people who look cute in church, say what they want to hear, and are friends with the pastor. No candidate should be allowed to speak to a congregation unless they talk about this program and how black people can apply for it.
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