DÉGELIS, QUÉBEC--(Marketwire - Jan. 23, 2013) - As a result of combined efforts of the governments of Canada and Quebec and their local partners, semi-independent seniors in Dégelis now have access to 21 new affordable housing units adapted to their needs. The second phase of the Manoir Rose-Marquis, the expansion of which required a total investment of more than $2.7 million, was announced today by the Honourable Christian Paradis, Minister of Industry and Minister of State (Agriculture) and Member of Parliament for Mégantic-L'Érable, and by Pascal Bérubé, Minister for Tourism, Minister responsible for the Bas-Saint-Laurent region and Member of the National Assembly for Matane-Matapédia, on behalf of Sylvain Gaudreault, Minister of Municipal Affairs, Regions and Land Occupancy, Minister of Transport and Minister responsible for the Société d'habitation du Québec (SHQ). With the completion of this second phase of the Manoir Rose-Marquis, this seniors' residence now provides a total of 38 affordable housing units.

The Government of Canada, through the Affordable Housing Initiative Program Extension Agreement, and the Government of Quebec, under the AccèsLogis Québec program of the SHQ, jointly invested more than $1.3 million in the project. The community contributed $671,000, including over $580,000 from the Municipality of Dégelis. In addition, the SHQ has secured the mortgage loan taken out by the organization to complete the financing of the project.

"Our government remains committed to helping seniors in Dégelis and throughout the country" said Minister Paradis. "Initiatives like this one are providing safe, affordable housing to many residents in this community, while creating jobs and stimulating our economy."

"By growing from 17 to 38 units, the Manoir Rose-Marquis not only increased the supply of affordable housing for seniors but also responded to the wish of many older people in Dégelis, that of staying in their community, close to their loved ones. The success of this project demonstrates that the Government of Quebec has made the right choice in investing considerable sums in the construction of affordable housing here in our region and across Quebec," said Minister Bérubé, in the presence of Claude Lavoie, Mayor of Dégelis, Jean-Yves Lavoie, President of Les Habitations Dégelis, and local partners.

More than $360,000 in additional financial assistance over five years, assumed by the SHQ (90 per cent) and the Municipality of Dégelis (10 per cent), enables all the tenants of the second phase of the Manoir Rose-Marquis to benefit from the Rent Supplement program, ensuring that they will not pay more than 25 per cent of their income on housing.

The project also received a grant of just over $35,000 from the Bureau de l'efficacité et de l'innovation énergétiques of the Ministère des Ressources naturelles to help it obtain the Novoclimat certification. This requirement ensures that tenants have comfortable units and, especially, lower energy bills, which can make a substantial difference at the end of the month for a number of households.

The Government of Canada, through CMHC, will invest approximately $2 billion in housing this year. Of this amount, $1.7 billion will be spent in support of almost 605,000 households living in social housing. In Quebec, this represents some 129,550 households. These investments are improving the quality of life for low-income Canadians and households living in social housing, including individuals who are homeless or at risk of homelessness, seniors, persons with disabilities, recent immigrants and Aboriginal people.

To find out more about how CMHC is working to build stronger homes and communities for all Canadians, call CMHC at 1-800-668-2642 or visit www.cmhc-schl.gc.ca.

SHQ's mission is to facilitate citizens' access to appropriate housing conditions. Housing constitutes a structured response to numerous challenges and needs of Quebec society. Whether by helping to preserve the health of families and seniors, by addressing poverty, social exclusion and homelessness or by revitalizing neighbourhoods and regions, the Société d'habitation du Québec contributes to improving the quality of life of 230,000 households across Quebec each year. The SHQ also supports job creation and the economic development of all regions of Quebec. That's why the Government of Quebec announced, in its latest budget, total funding of $231 million for the construction of 3,000 affordable housing units over the coming years.

For more information on the programs and services offered by the SHQ, visit www.habitation.gouv.qc.ca/english.html. You may also visit Espace Habitat, a new Web magazine (in French only) that features, among other things, the benefits of the SHQ's initiatives on all of Quebec society.

Contact Information:

Marie-Eve Imonti, Press Secretary
Office of the Minister of Municipal Affairs,
Regions and Land Occupancy and Minister of Transport

Marian Ngo
Press Secretary
Office of Minister Finley

Alexandra Pare
Communications Advisor
Societe d'habitation du Quebec
418-643-4035, ext. 1297

Monique LaPlante
CMHC, Quebec Region