60 unit housing project opens in Saint John



    SAINT JOHN, Sept. 5 /CNW/ - Canada's New Government and the Province of
New Brunswick officially opened a new 60-unit housing project in Saint John
today, of which 30 units are funded under the Canada-New Brunswick Affordable
Housing Agreement. The project created housing units for non-elderly singles
and seniors.
    Rob Moore, Member of Parliament for Fundy Royal, on behalf of the
Honourable Monte Solberg, Minister of Human Resources and Social Development,
along with the Honourable Mary Schryer, New Brunswick Minister of State for
Housing, celebrated the project opening today.
    "Canada's New Government is committed to making quality, affordable
housing available in New Brunswick and across Canada for those who need it
most," said MP Moore. "The creation of these units will provide low-income
individuals and seniors in Saint John with safe, quality housing at an
affordable cost which will help them to build a better and stronger future."
    "We are pleased to work with our partners to see the construction of more
affordable housing units in our province," said Minister Schryer. "This
project shows how an effective affordable housing strategy requires strong
links between governments, communities and the private sector."
    The project involved the construction of a 60-unit building by private
developer Fern-Co Building Concept Inc. These housing units for non-elderly
singles and seniors are located on Technology Drive in Saint John. Under the
Canada-New Brunswick Affordable Housing Agreement, the $3.7 million project
received $750,000 in funding from the Government of Canada, as well as
$1.1 million in long-term rent supplements from the Province of New Brunswick
for 30 of the 60 units.
    The Phase I and II of the Canada-New Brunswick Affordable Housing
Agreement involved investments of over $45 million to create and sustain up to
700 units of rental housing for low-to-moderate income households in
New Brunswick over the last three years.
    Recently announced, Phase III of the Agreement will see the investment of
another $40 million to create at least 754 new housing units in New Brunswick
over the next two years. The Federal Housing Trust Fund contributes
$17 million will be allocated to project promoters as forgivable loans to
offset construction costs. The province will provide $23 million in long-term
rent supplements to ensure that 580 of the 754 new housing units will be kept
affordable.

    Backgrounder is attached.

    
       Backgrounder - Canada-New Brunswick Affordable Housing Agreement

    Phase I

    Objectives:

    - To create and sustain rental housing for low- to moderate-income New
      Brunswick households through new construction or rehabilitation.
    - Housing must be affordable for at least 10 years.

    Program:

    - Funding under this agreement will be used for a Rental Housing Program.
    - The program will create and sustain in excess of 600 units of rental
      housing for low- to moderate-income households.
    - Funding is available to private non-profits, cooperatives, community or
      private developers interested in developing projects for low- to
      moderate-income families, seniors, non-elderly singles, disabled
      persons and persons with special needs.

    Administration:

    - The program is administered by the New Brunswick Department of Family
      and Community Services.
    - Family and Community Services is responsible for the selection of
      affordable housing projects.

    Phase II

    Phase II of the Agreement increased the total investment under the
Canada-New Brunswick Affordable Housing Program Agreement to $45 million in
funding. The Government of New Brunswick contributed at least 50 per cent of
the matching funding; up to 10 per cent may come from municipalities and other
third parties.
    Under Phase II, funding:

    - Were used for the Rental Housing Program in Phase I plus a new rent
      supplement program;
    - targeted urban areas with considerable housing needs; and
    - targeted persons on or eligible to be on a waiting list for social
      housing.

    Phase III

    Through Phase III of the Agreement, the Federal government, through the
recently announced Housing Trust, and the province of New Brunswick are
committing over $40 million to create at least 754 new housing units over the
next two years.
    The funding is available for private entrepreneurs and non-profit
organizations to help increase the supply of affordable rental housing for low
income seniors, families and non-elderly singles. Of the 754 housing units to
be created, 580 will be subsidized and 10 per cent are to be accessible for
persons with disabilities.
    Proposal development funding is also available for non-profit
organizations to help them prepare and develop their project.
    Proponents can submit proposals to a regional office of the Department of
Family and Community Services. Projects will be selected based on their
viability and their capacity to respond to housing needs for either seniors,
low income families, non elderly singles, or persons with disabilities.
    




For further information:

For further information: Robert Duguay, Communications, Family and
Community Services, (506) 444-3684; Giselle Thibault, Marketing and
Communications Consultant, Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation, (902)
426-8320


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