While one Maine tribe recently completed rehabilitating its first housing project, another will soon begin a new one in the same county, both helped by awards of Affordable Housing Program (AHP) funds.
Check out video I took of one of the 28 homes completed last year by the Houlton Band of Maliseet Indians Tribal Housing Authority here: http://travois.com/houlton-band-maliseet-indians-completes-first-lihtc-project/.
With the latest project, the Aroostook Band of Micmacs is the owner and developer, and the band will rehabilitate 23 homes in Presque Isle, Maine, about 40 miles to the north of the Maliseet project in Houlton. Just before the holidays, the band was notified it won an award of $350,000 for Micmac Rehab Project #1. (As a side note, this brings Travois’ total in AHP funds raised for 2015 to $2,133,567 over five projects!)
The homes were originally built in 1957 as military housing for Loring Air Force Base and were moved to their current locations after the base closed. Now nearly 60 years old, the homes are in critical need of repair. Exterior improvements will include foundation repairs, new siding, new windows and improvement to grading. Interior work will add water-conserving fixtures, an improved ventilation system and improved insulation.
The project is conveniently located adjacent to the Northern Maine Community College and the band’s tribal administration offices in Presque Isle. Of the 12 buildings to be included in the project, one is a single-family detached home. The 11 other buildings are duplexes.
Along with serving very low income populations (8 units will be reserved for households with incomes less than 60 percent Area Median Income (AMI) and 15 units will be reserved for households with incomes less then 50 percent AMI), the project will also provide a number of empowerment services at no charge to residents of the project. GED classes and employment training will be provided as well as on-site primary healthcare services.
We thank the Federal Home Loan Bank of Boston for the grant award, and the local member bank, Bangor Savings Bank. Construction is expected to start this summer.
It has been a pleasure working for the band on this project, and I look forward to a return visit to Maine for a chance to take more video of completed homes!
For more information about AHP funds, check out this recent blog from Bryan: http://travois.com/affordable-housing-program-ahp-funds-continue-excellent-leveraging-tool-tribal-lihtc-projects/.