Resolutions - C7 W
|TO:||Honorable Mayor and Members of the City Commission|| |
|FROM:||Raul J. Aguila, Interim City Manager|| |
|DATE:||February 10, 2021|
|SUBJECT:||A RESOLUTION OF THE MAYOR AND CITY COMMISSION OF THE CITY OF MIAMI BEACH, FLORIDA, URGING THE FLORIDA LEGISLATURE TO ENACT HOUSE BILL 387, AMENDING THE "PROPERTY ASSESSED CLEAN ENERGY" ("PACE") PROGRAM TO ASSIST PROPERTY OWNERS WITH A FINANCING OPTION UNDER THE PACE PROGRAM FOR FLOOD MITIGATION AND RESILIENCY IMPROVEMENTS.|
The Administration recommends the adoption of the Resolution.
In 2010, the Florida Legislature adopted provisions in Section 163.08 of the Florida Statutes that allow local governments to create Property Assessed Clean Energy (“PACE”) programs for residents and businesses that provide financing for energy conservation and efficiency (e.g., energy-efficient heating, cooling, or ventilation systems), renewable energy (e.g., solar panels), wind resistance (e.g., impact resistant windows), and other improvements that are consistent with State law. PACE is a financing platform which eliminates the barrier of high upfront costs by allowing property owners to pay off these improvements through an assessment on their property tax bill.
The City of Miami Beach participates in the PACE program, allowing property owners to access PACE financing and the savings from reduced energy use. Through the existing PACE program, the State, residents, and businesses are able to reduce their carbon footprint and energy costs, and local economies are benefitted by the stimulation of construction and contractor jobs. While PACE can be a beneficial financing option, the current program does not allow improvements that reduce flood risk.
Expanding PACE is also a priority of the City’s unique partnership with Miami-Dade County and the City of Miami. Resilient305, the shared strategy to address resilience challenges prioritized through intergovernmental and community collaboration, contains actions for resilient housing and funding.
The combination of the City of Miami Beach’s low geographic elevation with projections for sea level rise underscore the vulnerability of our valuable housing stock, much of which was built prior to the first Flood Insurance Rate Maps (FIRMs) and accompanying regulations that over time have progressively required higher elevation of the first finished floor of buildings. The City Commission has adopted numerous resilience standards for new construction, however the existing older building stock, including historic districts, can greatly benefit from PACE as an alternative financing mechanism for flood mitigation and resiliency improvements.
The City faces flood risk from high tides, storms, hurricanes, and sea level rise, with 93% of all buildings located in the FEMA Special Flood Hazard Area. This risk is expected to increase over time due to sea level rise and the severity of storms. On July 24, 2020, the Mayor and City Commission passed Resolution No. 2020-31315 adopting the Unified Regional Sea Level Rise Projection – 2019 update of the Southeast Florida Regional Climate Compact, which projects sea level rise impacts of 10 to 17 inches by 2040, and 21 to 54 inches by 2070.
Investment in resilience makes economic sense as well, with multiple studies demonstrating strong benefits. The City’s commitment to activities that help reduce flood risk have resulted in improved FEMA Community Rating System (CRS) results, resulting in 25% flood insurance premium insurance savings for the community, approximately $8.2 million annually. The Southeast Florida Regional Climate Change Compact, along with local business and nonprofit communities, partnered with the Urban Land Institute (ULI) to comprehensively assess the economic impact of investment in resilience in southeast Florida. The study found that climate adaptation measures are predicted to offer a significant return on investment, protecting communities, jobs, and properties. Lack of adaptation investment and infrastructure now will have major consequences for the future economic well-being of the region. According to the study, building-specific adaptations have 5:1 return. In a different methodology, Miami Beach’s Business Case Analysis of the Stormwater Program, presented to City Commission on January 27, 2020, highlighted that every dollar invested by private property owners would return nearly $3 in benefits in the pilot study area.
SUPPORTING SURVEY DATA
From the overall community perspective, the 2019 Community Satisfaction Survey shows that 43% of residents are satisfied, 33% neutral, and 24% dissatisfied with their buildings’ flood risk protections. In addition, “efforts to manage stormwater drainage and flooding” was ranked in the top 3 priorities for the City.
The City of Miami Beach supports the enactment of House Bill 327 filed for consideration during the Florida Legislature’s 2021 session, which expands the PACE program to assist property owners with raising and reinforcing sea walls and other infrastructure, and improvements that mitigate flood risk, which may include raising a structure above base flood elevation, repairing or building seawalls, using flood damage resistant materials and making improvements to mechanical or electrical systems. Additionally, expanding PACE to assist property owners with retrofitting their property to protect it from flooding is included in the City’s State Legislative Priorities.
|Is this a "Residents Right to Know" item, pursuant to City Code Section 2-14?|| ||Does this item utilize G.O. Bond Funds?|
|Yes|| ||No|| |
|Environment & Infrastructure - Reduce risk from storms, high tides, groundwater, and sea level rise.|
Office of the City Manager
Commissioner Mark Samuelian & Co-sponsored by Commissioner Micky Steinberg