First Coast News: Sen. Marco Rubio on Eureka Gardens: Optimistic about apartment complex's future
JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – On Tuesday, HUD Secretary Ben Carson toured Eureka Gardens - the first time the organization's leader toured the apartment complex.
“I don’t think you can come here a year ago and come here today and not be optimistic about the future,” said Sen. Marco Rubio.
For years the property has had issues ranging from crime to poor living conditions. Some residents say seeing lawmakers tour the property is nothing new and others say there have been a lot of empty promises.
When asked about ‘empty promises’ of change at Eureka Gardens, Rubio pointed out Carson's visit. “You have never had the HUD Secretary here and to have him come here and have a personal interest," he said.
Newly elected U.S. Congressman Al Lawson was also there. He says that Eureka Gardens is in the national spotlight and he hopes Carson and others can make real change.
“For the next four years there will be a considerable interest in subsidized housing all around this country and Eureka Gardens has been the poster child for what we need to do to improve the lifestyle,” Lawson said.
This visit comes on the heels of a failed HUD inspection. Global Ministries International, the current owner of the property says they are appealing the failure.
A spokesperson for Global Ministries went on to say that they have appealed and passed past failed inspections. First Coast News has reported more than once that Eureka Gardens failed inspections.
We are working to confirm the past appeals and 'passed inspections.' When we get that information we will update this story.