TAMPA, Fla. — The Tampa Housing Authority is hoping the state can help fix a problem — a years-long waiting list with no end in sight.

  • Tampa Housing Authority hopes state steps in to help fix need
  • Housing Authority has about 22,000 people on waiting list 
  • State has housing trust fund they could appropriate

"You got anywhere from 12 to 14 families moving here daily to the Tampa, St. Pete/Clearwater area, and if that's the case, the need is continuously growing for affordable housing," Jerome Ryans, President and CEO of Tampa Housing Authority. 

Ryans said they have about 22,000 people on the waiting list and it takes anywhere from four to five years to get off the waiting list.  He said new construction can't keep up and would like to see the state step in. 

"There's a housing trust fund at the state level, millions of dollars, and if they begin to appropriate those dollars, then you could begin to address a major need," Ryans said. "In a lot of instances, you have people living in their cars, you have people living in the parks, you have people living everywhere, and it's sad but true."

It's a hard truth people learn as they wait for a home. 

"I'm not convinced that we can address the total problem, but I think we can do a better job than what we're doing now," Ryans said. 

The wait list has been closed for several years but is opened periodically.