Whitehorse affordable housing project seeks $1M grant from city

Cornerstone Building doesn’t qualify for city’s development incentive

Backers of an affordable housing complex in Whitehorse are asking for a one-time $1 million grant from the city to help get the project off the ground.

The Cornerstone Building project, an initiative of the Challenge Resource Disability Group (CRDG), will provide 48 affordable rental units and seven condos for sale in downtown Whitehorse.

However, council heard at the July 4 standing committees meeting, CRDG has asked the city to amend its operating budget to cover a grant.

In March of 2018, the Yukon government agreed to provide up to $6 million of funding to support the project. CDRG has continued to apply for funding elsewhere to help the project succeed. Council had previously asked city administration to come up with ideas to help.

The report on the one-time contribution of $1 million was presented on July 4 after it was determined CRDG does not qualify for the city’s development initiative policy, which may grant a maximum of $50,000 annually to develop a housing project.

The report prepared for council said the development initiative policy “inadvertently disqualifies CRDG” and that the policy is being rewritten.

Coun. Jocelyn Curteanu said she was excited by the project, and pleased to see it come to fruition.

Coun. Samson Hartland called the granting agreement “exceptional” and asked if it was based off of an existing agreement, or if it was drafted specifically for Cornerstone.

Hartland was told by city staff that it was a unique agreement, based off the development incentive, but very different.

Hartland also said he was concerned with some of the language around how accounting was going to take place between the city and CDRG, with respect to the project.

“It’s a great project, don’t get me wrong, I just want to make sure that our contribution agreement here is in line with other orders of governance agreements,” he said, asking about audits and financial statements.

City staff said the city is confident in the project. Administration also told council that the city can ask for audits as part of the agreement, and that no major financial impact would be anticipated by agreeing to the grant.

The matter will come back to council on July 9.

Contact Amy Kenny at amy.kenny@yukon-news.com

affordable housingWhitehorse city council

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Kwanlin Dün First Nation chief Doris Bill holds up a signed copy of the KDFN <em>Lands Act</em> agreement during an announcement at the Kwanlin Dün Cultural Centre in Whitehorse on Oct. 20. Under the new act, called Nan kay sháwthän Däk’anúta ch’e (We all look after our land) in Southern Tutchone, KDFN will be able to allot citizens land to build their own houses on, for example, or to use for traditional activities. The First Nation will also be able to enforce laws around things like land access and littering. (Crystal Schick/Yukon News)
Kwanlin Dün First Nation’s Lands Act comes into force

The act gives the First Nation the authority to manage, protect and enforce laws on its settlement lands

Two doctors in Watson Lake say they are at risk of losing their housing due to a Yukon Housing Corporation policy that only allows one pet per family. (Wikimedia Commons)
Healthcare workers in Watson Lake say housing pet policy could force them to leave

The Yukon Housing Corporation has threatened evictions for having more than one pet

The Many Rivers Counselling and Support Services building in Whitehorse on March 28, 2019. Three people who sat on Many Rivers’ board immediately before it closed for good say they were relieved to hear that the Yukon RCMP has undertaken a forensic audit into the now-defunct NGO’s financial affairs. (Crystal Schick/Yukon News file)
Former Many Rivers board members relieved to hear about forensic audit, wonder what took so long

Three people who sat on Many Rivers’ board immediately before it closed… Continue reading

Whitehorse General Hospital in Whitehorse on Feb. 14, 2019. The Yukon Employees’ Union and Yukon Hospital Corporation are at odds over whether there’s a critical staffing shortage at the territory’s hospitals. (Crystal Schick/Yukon News file)
YEU, Yukon Hospital Corp. at odds over whether hospitals are understaffed

YEU says four nurses quit within 12 hours last week, a claim the YHC says is “inaccurate”

Two former Whitehorse Correctional Centre inmates, Ray Hartling and Mark Lange, have filed a class action against the jail, corrections officials and Yukon government on behalf of everyone who’s been placed in two restrictive units over the past six years. (Joel Krahn/Yukon News file)
Class action filed against Whitehorse Correctional Centre over use of segregation

Two former Whitehorse Correctional Centre inmates have filed a class action against… Continue reading

Education Minister Tracy-Anne McPhee, right, before question period at the Yukon legislative assembly in Whitehorse on March 7, 2019. The Yukon government announced Oct. 19 it has increased the honoraria rates for school council members. (Crystal Schick/Yukon News file)
Honoraria increased for school council members

Members of school councils throughout the territory could soon receive an increased… Continue reading

Triple J’s Canna Space in Whitehorse on April 17, 2019, opens their first container of product. Two years after Canada legalized the sale of cannabis, Yukon leads the country in per capita legal sales. (Crystal Schick/Yukon News file)
Yukon leads Canadian cannabis sales two years after legalization

Private retailers still asking for changes that would allow online sales

A sign greets guests near the entrance of the Canada Games Centre in Whitehorse on June 11. The city announced Oct. 16 it was moving into the next part of its phased reopening plan with spectator seating areas open at a reduced capacity to allow for physical distancing. (Crystal Schick/Yukon News file)
CGC reopening continues

Limited spectator seating now available

During Whitehorse city council’s Oct. 19 meeting, planning manager Mélodie Simard brought forward a recommendation that a proposed Official Community Plan amendment move forward that would designate a 56.3 hectare piece of land in Whistle Bend, currently designated as green space, as urban residential use. (Courtesy City of Whitehorse)
More development in Whistle Bend contemplated

OCP change would be the first of several steps to develop future area

asdf
EDITORIAL: Don’t let the City of Whitehorse distract you

A little over two weeks after Whitehorse city council voted to give… Continue reading

Whitehorse City Hall. (Joel Krahn/Yukon News file)
City hall, briefly

A look at decisions made by Whitehorse city council this week

Northwestel has released the proposed prices for its unlimited plans. Unlimited internet in Whitehorse and Carcross could cost users between $160.95 and $249.95 per month depending on their choice of package. (Yukon News file)
Unlimited internet options outlined

Will require CRTC approval before Northwestel makes them available

Legislative assembly on the last day of the fall sitting in Whitehorse. Yukon’s territorial government will sit for 45 days this sitting instead of 30 days to make up for lost time caused by COVID-19 in the spring. (Crystal Schick/Yukon News file)
Legislative assembly sitting extended

Yukon’s territorial government will sit for 45 days this sitting. The extension… Continue reading

Most Read