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Property to be improved must be free of all municipal and county liens, judgments or encumbrances of any kind. This provision can be waived by the CRA Board of Commissioners if development plans for said property meets the goals and objectives as set forth in the CRA Strategic Finance Action Plan. Upon grant approval, said property must remain free of all municipal and county liens, judgments or encumbrances of any kind under the term of the agreement.
The Community Redevelopment Agency (CRA) of North Miami Beach, Florida was created by the City of North Miami Beach, Florida in 2004. The CRA is funded through a tax increment trust fund with the primary goal being the elimination of blight or slum and the encouragement of economic development in the CRA area.
The CRA, in its attempt to reduce or eliminate the blighted conditions within the CRA boundaries and pursue the redevelopment process, seeks to coordinate the creation of an advantageous loan program with local financial institutions.
The Interest Only Grant Program allows businesses and property owners whose ground floor space is retail, restaurant, or office to borrow for purposes related to exterior and interior property improvement. It has been proven that business loan programs can be a powerful tool for economic development, including the attraction of new businesses to an area and the creation of employment opportunities. Please be advised that non-profit organizations and tax-exempt properties are not eligible for incentive programs.
A. Geographic Area
Business and property owners on NE 19th Avenue, North of the Canal, and South of the Canal within the CRA are eligible to participate. Preference will be given to those businesses operating in an area in which the CRA is undertaking its own capital improvement projects.
Type of Loans and Terms
1. The commercial building must be located in a zoning district which allows a commercial business to operate. Exterior improvement for commercial properties may include: re-roofing, painting, doors, windows, exterior modifications, landscaping, awnings, rotten wood replacement, siding and exterior lighting. Loans will not be given for property acquisition.
2. Loans may be made to either a business owner or property owner who wishes to renovate the interior of a structure as well. Funds may not be used to purchase display materials or cases, inventory, or any other items not directly related to renovations. The lending institution will disburse the funds after the approved applicant submits invoices. The lending institution will set its specific terms of disbursement. The tenant must be one whose type of business is permitted at the location by the City’s Zoning and Land Development Regulations.
3. Loans are amortized over a 5-year period; however, participating financial institutions reserve the option to extend the loan period beyond 5 years. Any extension in the principal loan repayment period will not affect the amount paid by the CRA.
Bank Lending Requirements
Lending institutions will be approached to participate in the program. There is no minimum or maximum amount of lending institutions necessary to begin the program, however each participant must sign an agreement with the City of North Miami Beach Community Redevelopment Agency. Each bank must establish its own criteria of lending requirements.
Fees and Loan Costs
There are no application fees required by the CRA, however other costs may be incurred by the applicant including recording and other fees. Financial institutions will not charge points in this loan program.
In order to accommodate both large and small renovation plans, a wide range of loan activity is available. Please note that there is no repayment agreement between the CRA and the borrower. The CRA enters into separate agreements with the institution previously mentioned, with regard to specific payment terms on each loan. The CRA does not guarantee the loans. The interest rate (which is a fixed rate) for this program is set at prime rate to be calculated the day the loan is closed. Upon closing, the CRA will become obligated to pay the lending institution a calculated amount equal to 50% of the interest for a maximum of five years, which shall be used by the borrower solely for interior and exterior renovation to the property which is the subject of the loan. If a loan is amortized for a period in excess of five years, the percentage paid by the CRA will be reduced to an amount that would result in the same total payments by the CRA that would have resulted if the loan had been amortized for five years. The CRA's obligation to make any payments shall end upon prepayment or default by the borrower. The loan covered under this program shall not exceed $350,000.00
Grant Approval Process
The applicant must submit documentation to the CRA detailing the renovation to be performed, along with proof that the property is located within the CRA boundaries. The North Miami Beach CRA Advisory Board will review the Grant request. The application, with the Advisory Board recommendation, will be presented to the CRA Board. If the application for the grant is approved, the applicant can then apply for a loan at any one of the participating financial institutions. The applicant will have a maximum of 90 days after CRA approval to close the loan with the bank. If problems arise, the applicant can request a 90-day extension. Applicants must meet the individual bank’s requirements to receive a loan.
Subsidy will be given to applicants based on the following criteria:
✓ Businesses, that due to their success, will attract other businesses to the CRA district
✓ Businesses that have a successful track record
✓ Businesses must be for-profit and not tax-exempt
✓ Renovation that will spur additional development and private investment
✓ Renovation that will attract desirable new businesses and that create an effective business mix
✓ Renovation that will have a substantial visual impact
✓ Renovation that will result in filling vacant retail space
✓ Renovation that will increase square footage of retail space
✓ Renovation that will increase property value
✓ Renovation that will increase employment
✓ Projects that will work hand in hand with other major developments
Should an applicant choose to engage the services of an agent (individual or company) to assist/represent applicant in this aspect of the process, the expenses for the agent’s service will be borne by the applicant. Such expenses are not reimbursable under the terms of any of the CRA’s incentive programs. CRA funds cannot be applied to services other than architecture, engineering, etc. related to the construction of the interior or exterior of the building.
The Capital Improvement Program benefits are contingent upon funding availability and CRA approval and are not to be construed as an entitlement or right of a property owner or applicant. Properties in the designated CRA areas are not eligible for CRA funded programs when such funding conflicts with the goals expressed in the CRA Strategic Finance Action Plan or Community Redevelopment Plan.
I have read completely and understand the program, including the application guidelines and grant reimbursement process.
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