TOKA Homes #3 honored with Charles L. Edson Tax Credit Excellence Award

TOKA Homes #3 is a 2020 recipient of the Charles L. Edson Tax Credit Excellence Award (Edson Awards) in the Rural category. Administered by the Affordable Housing Tax Credit Coalition, the Edson Awards recognize affordable housing developments and organizations that have demonstrated especially impactful use of the Low Income Housing Tax Credit (LIHTC).

“We congratulate the Tohono O’odham Ki:Ki Association (TOKA) on their well-deserved Edson Award,” said Elizabeth Glynn, Travois CEO. “The Low Income Housing Tax Credit helps tribal communities to build desperately needed housing, where traditional financing is especially challenging. We’re proud to have worked with TOKA on this important development to bring new homes and amenities to community members.”

Announced each year from the nation’s capital, the awards honor LIHTC developments that are strengthening communities, improving residents’ opportunity and boosting economies in urban, suburban and rural areas across the country. The awards come at a time when the COVID-19 pandemic and its economic impact have intensified the need for affordable housing, compounding the challenge facing at-risk families and individuals already struggling to pay rent.

Developed by Tohono O’odham Ki:Ki Association, TOKA Homes III provides 38 new affordable homes in the San Xavier District of the Tohono O’odham Nation in Tucson, AZ. To make this development possible, LIHTCs were awarded by the Arizona Department of Housing, resulting in $8.7 million provided by American Express and syndicated by Red Stone Equity Partners. Travois served as the consultant and architect and Kappcon served as the general contractor. Of the 38 new homes, 24 serve families with children, two of the townhomes are ADA accessible and one of the single-family units can accommodate those who are sensory impaired. The development is located near tribal services and amenities, a grocery store, health center, public park, public library, high-quality primary education and public transportation. Also available to residents is before and after-school educational assistance, financial literacy classes, computer training and job training. Door-to-door transportation services are also provided at no cost.

“The Tohono O’odham Ki:Ki Association has been an essential part of the Tohono O’odham Nation for over fifty years. Thanks to their efforts, the Tohono O’odham people are leading the way in innovative solutions to providing high-quality, affordable housing to their people,” wrote U.S. Representative Raul M. Grijalva (D-Ariz., 03), in a letter of congratulations. “With COVID-19 ravaging tribal communities and an eviction crisis looming on the horizon across the country, urgent solutions are needed to ensure affordable housing for everyone. The TOKA Homes III development is emblematic of the creativity we need at this time. It’s an example of the Tohono O’odham’s commitment to affordable housing that not just provides working families with houses, but a community. I want to commend them for this tremendous honor and look forward to continuing to work with my tribal partners to ensure affordable housing for everyone.”

“The LIHTC continues to spur development of affordable homes that go above and beyond for the families they serve,” said AHTCC Executive Director Emily Cadik. “The Edson Award winners this year demonstrate how innovative and high-quality affordable housing can transform communities and help meet the need for education, child care, health care and other services vital to a community’s support system for at-risk families and individuals.”

Since 1986, the LIHTC has financed more than three million homes for low-income households, including veterans, senior citizens, individuals with disabilities, essential workers, and families with children. Through public-private partnerships, the LIHTC offers a proven track record of financing safe, decent affordable homes in communities where they are needed most.

“The Edson awardees highlight the creative and innovative solutions that exist to combat the nation’s lack of affordable housing,” said AHTCC President and WNC, Inc. Executive Vice President Michael Gaber. “As the impact of COVID-19 continues to create hardships for a growing number of families and working people across the country, now more than ever we need effective tools like the LIHTC to provide stable, affordable homes.”

For more information about the 2020 Edson Awards, please visit taxcreditcoalition.org/edson-awards/.

About the Affordable Housing Tax Credit Coalition

Founded in 1988, AHTCC is a trade organization of housing professionals who advocate for affordable rental housing financed using the Low Income Housing Tax Credit (LIHTC). AHTCC’s for-profit and non-profit members—including syndicators, investors, lenders, developers, legal and accounting professionals and state allocating agencies—seek to preserve, expand and improve the Housing Credit and complementary programs through legislative outreach and education.

Please visit www.taxcreditcoailtion.org for more information about the Affordable Housing Tax Credit Coalition.

About the Low Income Housing Tax Credit (LIHTC)

The LIHTC was created as part of the Tax Reform Act of 1986, and today is widely regarded as the nation’s most successful housing production program. The LIHTC has financed more than 3 million affordable apartments through public-private partnerships, and supports 96,000 jobs each year, mostly in the small-business sector. It has earned strong bipartisan support, and was recently preserved in the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act of 2017, and expanded and strengthened in the omnibus spending bill for fiscal year 2018. The broadly-supported Affordable Housing Credit Improvement Act would further expand and strengthen the program.

About the Charles L. Edson Tax Credit Excellence Awards

Given annually by the Affordable Housing Tax Credit Coalition, The Edson Awards are named for Charles L. Edson, an affordable housing luminary who was Transition Director for the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) on President Carter’s Transition Staff. Mr. Edson served in the Office of the General Counsel at HUD and served as Co-Editor-in-Chief of Housing and Development Reporter for nearly 40 years. He is a founding partner of the law firm Lane and Edson, and was later a partner of Nixon Peabody LLP.

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