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Mainehousing Invests $30.4 Million, Generating $74 Million in Funds, to Build Affordable Housing

Published on March 16, 2021 by MaineHousing
Mainehousing Invests $30.4 Million, Generating $74 Million in Funds, to Build Affordable Housing

For the first time, MaineHousing has awarded Maine’s new state-level affordable housing tax credits to support the construction of affordable housing.

MaineHousing allocated Maine Affordable Housing Tax Credits and federal Low Income Housing Tax Credits (LIHTC) to build or renovate nine affordable housing developments in Maine. The combined $26.2 million in tax credits will generate over $69.8 million in equity from private investors. With an additional $4.2 million in subsidy from MaineHousing, approximately $74 million of funding will create or preserve 430 housing units. Of those units, 388 will serve households at or below 60% of the area median income.

“We knew when I signed this bill into law last year that Maine needed more affordable housing options, and the pandemic has only further underscored that need,” said Governor Janet Mills. “I am glad to see these important projects moving forward. As a result, more Maine people will have a safe place to rest their head at night, a place where they can care for their family, get ready for work, and live with dignity and comfort – a place where they can say to their loved ones ‘Welcome Home’. That is what Maine is about.”

MaineHousing selected nine developments from 15 proposals requesting nearly $12.6 million in federal tax credits. Developments that received funding include the renovation of the historic Moses and Columbia Blocks in Bath, the demolition and new construction of 45 units of public housing in Portland, and 40 new units in Skowhegan.

“As we’ve seen throughout the last year, the COVID-19 pandemic has driven home the significant need for affordable housing here in Maine,” said Daniel Brennan, director of MaineHousing. “Housing is critical to the overall well-being of Maine’s people and communities. The combination of the new Maine Affordable Housing Tax Credits and the federal Low Income Housing Tax Credits have substantially contributed to the growing momentum we need to increase our affordable housing supply across the state.”

MaineHousing approved the following projects for tax credit allocation:

Development & Location Developer Units & Type Federal Tax Credits Awarded Maine Tax Credits Awarded Est. Total Tax Credit Equity
Oak Grove Estates, Bath

 

Realty Resources 34 affordable units for families $415,958 N/A $3,493,698
Martel School Apts., Lewiston Lewiston Housing / Avesta 44 affordable units for older adults $880,000 N/A $7,655,234
Front Street Re-Development II, Portland Portland Housing Authority 45 affordable units for families $900,000 N/A $7,649,235
The Uptown, Bath The Szanton Company 42 affordable units for older adults. Mixed income, mixed use; historic $840,000 N/A $7,223,278
Senior Living at the Marketplace, Augusta Tim Gooch 42 affordable units for older adults $840,000 N/A $7,055,294
Middle Street Apts., Portland CHOM 50 affordable units for older adults $481,493 $4,814,930 $8,666,470
337 Cumberland Avenue, Portland Portland Housing Authority 48 affordable units for families.  Mixed income, mixed use $610,365 $6,103,650 $11,169,158
Valley Street Apts., Portland Avesta Housing 48 affordable units for families;  mixed income $503,479 $5,034,790 $9,062,191
Mary Street Apt. Homes, Skowhegan KVCAP 40 units of affordable housing for families; historic $435,281 $4,352,810 $7,798,127

“Maine needs more affordable housing options. I am thrilled to see this program move from an idea to Maine law to investment and soon bricks and mortar,” said Speaker Ryan Fecteau of Biddeford, who sponsored a 2019 bill that paved the way for this project’s funding. “In these affordable homes people will raise their families and older Mainers will age with dignity. I could not be happier to see this program come to life. I hope what we’re accomplishing in Maine becomes a model for the nation.”

“I am delighted to see this moving forward,” said Senator Matt Pouliot of Augusta who co-sponsored the bill with Speaker Fecteau. “The new state tax credit is an excellent example of a bipartisan approach to solve Maine’s affordable housing challenges. I look forward to seeing more Maine people find an affordable place to call home because of this initiative.”

MaineHousing is the agency that allocates all federal housing tax credits in Maine. Each year, MaineHousing allocates these federal tax credits using the Qualified Allocation Plan (QAP). Applications are scored on a 100-point scale outlined in the QAP. Scoring criteria include the proposed development’s access to amenities, services, and transportation and financial feasibility of the development.

The Maine Affordable Housing Tax Credits were signed into law by Governor Janet Mills in February 2020. MaineHousing allocated the state credits using the rule its Board of Commissioners adopted in October 2020.

“We were able to finance more units thanks to the Maine Affordable Housing Tax Credit,” Brennan said. “We’re pleased with the investment the state tax credits are already generating – and look forward to seeing these developments become communities Mainers can call home.”

MaineHousing has helped Maine people own, rent, repair, and heat their homes since 1969. MaineHousing is an independent state authority created to address the problems of unsafe, unsuitable, overcrowded, and unaffordable housing. MaineHousing is a $1.8 billion financial institution with a staff of over 170 people. MaineHousing assists more than 90,000 Maine households and invests more than $300 million in the Maine economy annually. For more information, visit mainehousing.org.