Daytona Beach launches new program to incentivize improvement projects in core area

DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. — The City of Daytona Beach is working to tackle blight in one of its core areas.

The city announced a program through which they’ll waive fees for building permits and inspections on properties between US-1 and Nova Rd., and Mason Ave. and Shady Pl.

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The program officially launched Thursday. Residents agree the area needs help.

Betty Powers has lived in a home just south of Mason Ave. since the 1980s. She says the neighborhood has seen better days.

“People will come and leave their tires there. If they work on a house or something, they will leave their paint cans and things there,” Powers said.

By waiving fees for inspections and building permits for the next two years on properties in the area, Daytona Beach officials hope to incentivize business and home owners to make changes to their properties.

Officials are also considering a grant program through which the city would pay fully for improvements up to $10,000.

“You’ve got to begin somewhere,” Deputy City Manager Jim Morris said.

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Morris says the city targeted the area they did because it’s what they consider a core area, and has code enforcement issues.

He says the Daytona Beach City Commission saw there were grants available to fix up the properties that were not being used and decided to change that.

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“If you have permit expenses and limited resources to even start, and the permits are not an impediment to you doing the work, then a paper permit helps that,” Morris said.

Betty Powers says she wants the program to work, but remains cautiously optimistic.

“It can be done, I can believe, but I’m going to see,” Powers said. “I’m going to hear what they say and I’m going to watch.”

Watching and waiting to see if those promises materialize into something real.

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The program would apply to work like roof repairs, interior renovations, fencing, and driveway work.

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