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City highlights housing initiatives for National Housing Day

November 22, 2017 -

Tomorrow is National Housing Day – a good time to highlight a number of City of Kingston programs and services aimed at helping people find and keep affordable homes.

"Facilitating affordable housing is a top priority for the City. The cost of housing is the main component of household budgets. These City efforts are intended to make more housing more affordable for more people in Kingston's tight housing market," says Sheldon Laidman, director of housing & social services.

He notes that the City is guided in its approach to housing by strategies outlined in the 10-Year Municipal Housing and Homelessness Plan. Its goal is to end chronic homelessness in Kingston by 2023 (it is available at www.CityofKingston.ca/Housing).

Here are some of this City's housing highlights:

  • From January 1 to June 30, 75 clients were housed in permanent homes through the City of Kingston's Housing First/Rapid Re-housing program for homeless persons.
  • Work continues on the implementation of the Rideau Heights Regeneration Strategy. This year's work included the design and initial construction of the new Community Centre and Shannon Park improvements.
  • The City provided funding for new affordable housing projects begun in 2017 by Kingston Frontenac Housing Corporation, Dawn House Women's Centre, and Addictions and Mental Health Service – KFLA.
  • The City is participating in a two-year pilot program which provides a rent subsidy to survivors of domestic violence approved under the Special Priority Policy on the Centralized Waiting List for rent-geared-to-income (RGI) assistance, which allows clients to access safe and affordable housing in the private sector. The pilot program began on July 1, 2016 and ends March 31, 2018. Locally, 13 households have been assisted under the Survivors of Domestic Violence Portable Housing Benefit (SDV-PHB). The Ministry recently announced there will be a three-year extension of funding providing $30M to serve approximately 3,000 survivors of domestic violence under this program throughout the province. 
  • The City is set to receive $736,054 from the Ministry of Housing to fund repairs and retrofits to social housing units to improve living conditions and fight climate change. The investment is part of Ontario's Climate Change Action Plan and is funded by proceeds from the province's carbon market

The City and County of Frontenac continue to operate these programs for those seeking to own safe and affordable homes (for details on these programs, see www.CityofKingston.ca/Housing):

  • Kingston-Frontenac Renovates – this program helps eligible homeowners' access funds to complete renovations to make their homes safe, accessible and efficient so they can stay in them longer. The program runs from April, 2017 – March, 2018 and has assisted 10 households to date, equalling $81,028 in funding.
  • Home Ownership Program – this program helps eligible people access funds for a down payment on their first homes. The program runs from April, 2017 – March, 2018 and has assisted five households to date, equalling $55,900 in funding.
  • Secondary Suites Program – this program offers grants to help homeowners create affordable suites to rent out in their homes. This creates affordable housing – and helps homeowners to pay off their mortgages.

About the City of Kingston

The City of Kingston provides municipal services to 125,000 residents living in this visually stunning, historic city, often ranked one of the best places to live in Canada. Kingston is focusing on being smart and livable as it pursues its vision to become Canada's most sustainable city. We focus on environmental responsibility, social equity, economic health and cultural vitality –ensuring that today's decisions don't compromise our future. 

Please visit www.CityofKingston.ca and join the conversation on social media.

Twitter: @CityofKingston
Facebook: www.facebook.com/TheCityofKingston

Plan your bus trip with Google Transit: www.kingstontransit.ca/tripplanner

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Media contact: For more information call the communications and customer experience department at 613-546-4291, ext. 2300.