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Carson Kicks Off LeadingAge Florida Annual Convention

Dr. Ben Carson, Secretary of the Department of Housing and Urban Development, kicked off the 54th Annual LeadingAge Florida Convention & Exposition with a lunchtime keynote address that highlighted new HUD programs and approaches to providing affordable housing to seniors.

“We were honored to hear from Secretary Carson this afternoon,” said LeadingAge Florida President & CEO Steve Bahmer, “and to learn about his vision for ensuring our most vulnerable seniors have access to affordable housing.”

More than 350 LeadingAge members and partners attended the address, including more than 100 providers of affordable senior housing. In Florida, access to housing continues to be a serious problem, with waiting lists for seniors to find an apartment ranging from three to seven years.

LeadingAge Florida is paying particular attention to proposals regarding HUD 202 funding in Washington, DC. Last week, the House HUD appropriations subcommittee passed an FY18 spending bill which would fully fund Section 202 Project Rental Assistance Contracts and increase funding for Service Coordinators. The full committee could take the bill up as early as July 17.

During his address, Secretary Carson discussed a number of approaches intended to ensure affordable housing for seniors, including the emergence of public/private partnerships that have paired developers and housing providers to revitalize affordable housing projects without additional demands on taxpayers.

“We are honored to have heard HUD Secretary Dr. Ben Carson speak to our members at the LeadingAge Florida convention,” said Melissa Gilreath, Elderly Housing Management Corporation and LeadingAge Florida Housing Chair. “It was a terrific opportunity to begin building a relationship with him and his team that we hope will lead to increased affordable housing options for seniors in Florida."

Click here for the suggested remarks for Dr. Benjamin Carson Secretary of Housing & Urban Development at the annual LeadingAge Florida Convention and Exposition.

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For 54 years, LeadingAge Florida has served as a nonprofit statewide association of more than 250 mission-driven communities, representing the full continuum of care for seniors with members ranging from affordable housing to nursing homes and from assisted living facilities to continuing care retirement communities. LeadingAge Florida is proud to serve quality leaders who devote themselves to creating a culture of excellence that motivates and inspires others throughout the aging continuum. LeadingAge Florida’s members are trusted with providing quality care and services to Florida’s seniors. LeadingAge Florida promotes practices that support, enable and empower people to live fully as they age.