Maine Awarded $2.1 Million for Affordable Housing


Bangor, Harpswell, Perry, and Portland Initiatives Will Create 127 Rental and Ownership Units

BOSTON, Nov. 29 /PRNewswire/ — The Federal Home Loan Bank of Boston (the Bank) awarded $2.1 million in grants, loans, and rate subsidies to fund 127 units of affordable housing in Bangor, Harpswell, Perry, and Portland. In all, 25 New England initiatives received more than $16 million in grants, loans, and rate subsidies as part of the Bank’s Affordable Housing Program (AHP) to create or preserve 674 rental and ownership units for very low-, low-, and moderate-income individuals and families.

Each year, the Bank sets aside 10 percent of its net profits to provide grants and subsidized, below market-rate loans through the AHP. “Regardless of the economy, AHP funds always provide a welcome boost for affordable housing initiatives,” said Michael A. Jessee, the Bank’s president and chief executive officer. “Safe, decent, affordable housing is essential for everyone, and the Bank is proud to contribute to the well-being of region.”

“Maine faces a critical shortage of affordable housing, and the Federal Home Loan Bank’s AHP grants help to make good housing available to more families in Maine and across New England,” said Congressman Tom Allen. “I strongly support the AHP, and I am grateful to the Bank for building on its record of success. I will continue to work with the Bank and my colleagues in Congress to strengthen this program and provide it with the resources needed to develop more units of housing middle and lower income families can afford.”

AHP funds are used to create or preserve affordable housing and help pay construction, acquisition, or rehabilitation costs. Member financial institutions work with local developers to apply for AHP funding, awarded twice a year through a competitive scoring process. The application deadline for the first round of next year’s AHP awards is April 18, 2008.

The mission of the Federal Home Loan Bank of Boston is to support the residential-mortgage and community-development lending activities of its members, which include over 450 financial institutions across New England. To accomplish its mission, the Bank utilizes private-sector capital to provide members and other qualified customers with reliable access to low-cost wholesale funds, liquidity, a competitive outlet for the sale of loans, special lending programs, technical assistance, and other products and services.

Information on the awards follows, and is also available at
Location: Bangor
Member: Bangor Savings Bank
Sponsor: Volunteers of America, Northern New England, Inc.
Number and Type of Units: 54 rental units
Amount and Type of Subsidy: $400,000 grant

Bangor Senior Housing. Construction of a four-story building downtown designed to help seniors age in place, with 35 units for very low-income households and 19 units for those earning less than 60 percent of the area median income. One market-rate unit will be reserved for a live-in manager. A network of supportive services, including transportation and financial planning assistance, will be provided. The building will be designed to meet MaineHousing’s green building standards. Bangor Savings Bank is providing construction financing, and HUD 202 and Low Income Housing Tax Credit equity provide the majority of the project funding.
Location: Harpswell
Member: Bath Savings Institution
Sponsor: Greater Brunswick Housing Corporation
Number and Type of Units: 13 ownership units
Amount and Type of Subsidy: $351,000 grant

Hamilton Place. Construction of 13 energy-efficient, single-family homes on a 22-acre parcel for low- and moderate-income first-time home buyers. The sponsor will provide a variety of services, including pre- and post-purchase homeownership training and transportation. Bath Savings Institution will provide construction lending and end mortgages to home buyers. Other funders include MaineHousing and Cumberland County Community Development Block Grant Program.
Location: Perry
Member: Bangor Savings Bank
Sponsor: Passamaquoddy Housing Authority
Number and Type of Units: 20 rental units
Amount and Type of Subsidy: $493,414 grant and subsidy, $500,000 advance

Pleasant Point Passamaquoddy Homes II. Construction of rental housing in a five-building development located within the Pleasant Point Passamaquoddy Reservation. The Pleasant Point Passamaquoddy Tribe is donating the use of the land through an extended lease. The units will be rented to 14 very low-income and six low-income households, with two additional market-rate units. Five units will be reserved for homeless households. Residents will receive supportive services including employment training, transportation, managed healthcare, and daycare. This initiative will create a residents’ council and a neighborhood crime-watch program. Bangor Savings Bank will provide construction and permanent financing through the AHP-subsidized advance. Other funding sources include Low Income Housing Tax Credits, MaineHousing, and sponsor equity.
Location: Portland
Member: TD Banknorth, N.A.
Sponsor: Avesta Housing
Number and Type of Units: 40 rental units
Amount and Type of Subsidy: $400,000 grant

Florence House. Creation of 40 energy-efficient, supportive housing units for chronically homeless women. Thirty units will target those earning below 50 percent of area median income and 10 will target those earning 51 to 60 percent of area median income. The sponsor is partnering with the city and the Preble Street shelter to provide a variety of services, including managed healthcare and GED training. The sponsor also worked with a green consulting firm to provide green development and operating guidelines. Seventy-five percent of the annual operating costs are being funded by the Continuum of Care Supportive Housing. MaineHousing is the major funder in the development and TD Banknorth will provide construction and permanent financing.

SOURCE The Federal Home Loan Bank of Boston

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