Feds have funding flexibility for housing projects facing rising costs, Hussen says

·1 min read

OTTAWA — The federal minister in charge of boosting the stock of affordable housing says the government can loosen its usually strict rules to help groups manage rising costs for construction materials.

The federal government doesn't usually cover overruns on projects once funding has been approved, which puts the onus on project proponents to cover the extra costs.

Lately, construction costs have been rising as materials such as lumber go up in price through a combination of demand and supply-chain issues.

Social Development Minister Ahmed Hussen says affordable housing projects receiving federal funding have seen their costs rise, but adds that there is wiggle room at the federal level to help.

He says groups can adjust the size of their projects to make sure they can afford the per-unit cost of construction or renovations.

Hussen announced $165.6 million in federal funding — including $65.4 million as a forgivable loan — over nine years to help with capital repairs for 11,000 aging, affordable housing units in Ottawa.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published June 24, 2021.

The Canadian Press

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