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N.S. government to invest in social housing

DCN News Service
N.S. government to invest in social housing

HALIFAX, N.S.—The Nova Scotia government is planning to invest $8 million to undertake repairs at housing co-operatives through funding from the Social Housing Assistance Repair Program (SHARP).

"Co-ops are an important piece of the affordable housing mix," said Joanne Bernard, minister responsible for housing Nova Scotia. "Residents have access to stable, long-term housing, and they have a voice in how the co-operatives are governed."

The $8-million investment will be made over the next three years to help co-ops make repairs to members’ homes.

Many of the province’s housing co-operatives are showing their age and the funding will help preserve affordable housing.

"The SHARP program will allow co-ops to make necessary repairs while keeping their rent affordable," said Opal Brinton, a 23-year co-op member at Needham Housing Co-op in Halifax. "This announcement is welcome news for the housing co-op community."

Housing co-ops can apply for up to $24,000 per unit for repairs, including structural, electrical, plumbing, heating and modifications for accessibility. Funds from the program are forgiven over a maximum 10-year period.

The province is partnering with the Co-operative Housing Federation of Canada (CHF Canada), which will help with applications. There are 69 housing co-operatives in Nova Scotia providing affordable housing to 4,300 households.

The funds will be drawn from the $42 million in deferred federal contributions the province committed to invest in affordable housing.

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