WHITEHORSE, YUKON--(Marketwired - July 31, 2014) - Together, the Governments of Canada and Yukon announced a new agreement for affordable housing investments that will provide a combined investment of some $16 million over five years, to help more individuals and families in housing need. The funding will be delivered through an Investment in Affordable Housing (IAH) agreement.
Through territorially-designed programs, the new agreement will help Yukoners in housing need, including seniors, persons with disabilities and families. Initiatives can include new construction, renovation, rent supplements, and accommodations for victims of family violence, for example.
"Our Government is proud to partner with the Yukon to invest in affordable housing. This bilateral agreement recognizes the diverse housing needs of this region and allows the Yukon the flexibility to decide how to allocate this substantial investment according to their local needs and priorities," said the Honourable Candice Bergen, Minister of State for Social Development. "As a result, we are also creating needed jobs and opportunities for apprentices."
The federal portion of this funding comes from Economic Action Plan 2013, which announced the Government of Canada's commitment to investing more than $1.25 billion nationally over five years to extend the IAH and to creating opportunities for apprentices, which will support the training of skilled labour in residential housing. Under the new agreement, federal funding is provided through a single funding envelope which combines the Government of Canada's funding in the territory for off-reserve affordable housing and renovation programs.
"This funding will enable us to build on our past and current successful housing projects like the Mayo and Alexander Street seniors' residences, Options for Independence, Ross River housing revitalization and the Salvation Army redevelopment initiative," minister responsible for Yukon Housing Corporation Brad Cathers said. "This agreement allows a great deal of flexibility in how the Yukon Housing Corporation and the Government of Yukon can address housing challenges in the territory."
In 2011, the Governments of Canada and Yukon announced the extension of the existing arrangements for the Affordable Housing Initiative with a combined investment of more than $5.9 million, as well as an additional $1.77 million federal investment for renovation programs. This extension flowed from the IAH Framework announced by federal, provincial, and territorial governments in July 2011, which recognizes that a range of solutions-from existing programs to new approaches-is most effective in addressing the need for local solutions to housing challenges.
From April 2011 to March 2014, the IAH has already helped more than 183,600 households nationally, including 203 in Yukon. Governments will report annually to the public regarding the investments and progress toward achieving the intended outcomes of the IAH.
The announcement was made at Government of Yukon Main Administration Building in Whitehorse. Under this agreement, Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation (CMHC) will provide Yukon Housing Corporation with $1.575 million per year to support affordable housing projects. Yukon will be required to contribute an equivalent amount of funding.
The mandate of the Yukon Housing Corporation is to address existing and emerging housing challenges in Yukon by providing social, senior and staff housing, as well as other programs to assist Yukoners to build, purchase, upgrade and repair their homes. The corporation supports citizens most in need to find and maintain suitable and attainable accommodation. The corporation collaborates with all levels of government, including First Nations, non-profit organizations and others to find innovative housing solutions.
To find out more about how the Government of Canada, through CMHC, is working to build stronger homes and communities for all Canadians, call CMHC at 1-800-668-2642 or visit www.cmhc.ca/affordablehousing. For more information on Canada's Economic Action Plan, call 1-800-O Canada or visit www.actionplan.gc.ca.
Backgrounder: For information on the Investment in Affordable Housing, click here.
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Source: Government of Yukon