After nearly three years of negotiations, an agreement was finally reached between Quebec and Ottawa on social and affordable housing. In Longueuil, the news was well received.
“I am proud to announce that an agreement in principle has been reached with the federal government as part of the National Housing Strategy,” Minister of Municipal Affairs and Housing Andrée Laforest said on Twitter. , September 17.
Federal Minister of Families, Children and Social Development Ahmed Hussen spoke on Twitter of a “win-win” agreement, details of which will be revealed later.
Such an agreement was long overdue, especially by municipalities struggling with the housing crisis.
The strategy represents investments of $ 55 billion, spread over 10 years. One of its objectives is the construction of 135,000 new homes. How the Strategy will be implemented was at the heart of the negotiations, with Quebec demanding that the amounts owed to it be paid unconditionally.
Many pending projects
“The announced social housing agreement was more than expected and necessary. For example, for Longueuil, 15 social housing projects are awaiting authorization from AccèsLogis Québec, some of which have been for six or seven years, explains Mayor Sylvie Parent. The citizens need these homes. They challenge us, but we do not have the power to accelerate these projects. We therefore hope that the agreement will allow short-term projects to be carried out. ”
The City quotes the report of the Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation published in January: the vacancy rate has dropped in Longueuil, to 1.5%. One in three tenant households must spend 30% or more of their income for housing.
Almost 1,500 households are placed on a waiting list for subsidized housing.
City councilor Michel Lanctôt also described the agreement on the National Housing Strategy as “good news”.
“We would like the new amounts expected from the federal government to be paid quickly to the Accès Logis program to finance new housing projects. Let’s get to work now! ” he expressed.
Quebec will receive the funds that “sleep” in Ottawa
The member for Longueuil – Saint-Hubert and spokesperson for the Bloc Québécois in matters of social solidarity Denis Trudel is delighted that “Quebec will finally be able to receive its share of Strategy funds, which would represent approximately $ 1.8 billion, and which have been sleeping in the coffers of the federal government for over 3 years. ”
“The attempt to impose standards in exchange for the signing of the affordable housing agreement was an irresponsible gesture,” he said. But fortunately, the Prime Minister and his Minister of Social Development understood that the political and social prices would be heavy in the current context. ”
List of pending projects, drawn up by Ville de Longueuil
• A project of 7 units intended to welcome young mothers
- A temporary accommodation project in mental health and development of a day center for external beneficiaries: 30 housing units
- A project intended to meet the needs of homelessness, to provide housing for low-income households and housing for the elderly: 93 housing units
- An adapted housing project intended for people with reduced mobility and having a modest income: 50 housing units
- A project intended to provide suitable housing for the blind: 23 housing units
- A project for families: 18 housing units
- Two projects for retired people: 54 housing units