FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: Tuesday, December 3, 2013

Christie Administration Marks Groundbreaking of Affordable Housing Project Assisted with Federal Sandy Recovery Funds

Harrison Senior Project in Hudson County Helped by CDBG Disaster Recovery Funds



Harrison, NJ – New Jersey Housing and Mortgage Finance Agency (HMFA) Executive Director Anthony Marchetta today joined Harrison Mayor Raymond McDonough, Hudson County Executive Thomas Degise and representatives of Catholic Charities of the Archdiocese of Newark to break ground on the Harrison Senior Project, which will provide 15 units of affordable housing for low- to moderate-income seniors in this Hudson County community. This project is the second affordable housing project that has been awarded federal Community Development Block Grant (CDBG) Disaster Recovery funds to break ground.

"The Christie Administration is gratified to be a part of the Harrison Senior Project, which would not have broken ground without the hard work, persistence and commitment of the development team, and the assistance of the state’s Sandy recovery programs," said HMFA Executive Director Anthony L. Marchetta, whose agency is helping to distribute CDBG Disaster Recovery funds for the state to repair and replace affordable housing lost due to Superstorm Sandy. "This project will allow seniors of limited income to continue living with dignity in their community. We look forward to more such groundbreakings in the weeks and months ahead.”

Harrison Senior Project is designed for seniors and frail elderly who are facing financial hardship. Three of the 15 one-bedroom housing units are reserved for very low income residents with net rents at $560 per month. The remaining 12 units are for moderate-income residents with rents at $705 per month. Each housing unit will have a range, refrigerator and air conditioning. Project amenities include two laundry rooms, a 1,600-square-foot community room and garbage/recycling centers on each floor. Onsite services will include needs assessment and case management, a medical screening program, job training and job placement.

The HFMA committed $1.8 million in CDBG Disaster Recovery for the project, or nearly half of the project’s total $3.78 million development cost. The project is located within walking distance to a retail area, a park, various churches and a food store. The site is also close to public transportation. Harrison Township agreed to convey the land for a nominal fee and will grant long-term tax abatement.

The $1.8 million in CDBG Disaster Recovery funds was awarded through the HMFA-administered Fund for Restoration of Multifamily (FRM) Housing. The FRM fund provides for-profit and non-profit housing developers an opportunity to secure zero- and low-interest loans to finance the development of affordable housing through new construction, conversion of vacant commercial/industrial buildings, or rehabilitation of uninhabitable dwellings, primarily in those counties impacted by Superstorm Sandy.

Aside from the $1.8 million FRM award, the project has been awarded nearly $1.5 million in Hudson County HOME Funds and more than $500,000 in funds from the Harrison Affordable Housing Trust Fund.

The Newark-based Domus Corporation, a non-profit housing development corporation affiliated with Catholic Charities of the Archdiocese of Newark, will develop the Harrison Senior Project. They have developed and managed several affordable housing projects in North Jersey, including Kearny Senior Residence in Kearny and St, Mary’s Senior Residence in Dumont.

The first ground breaking for a project awarded FRM funds was on September 23, 2013 for Somerset Mews Apartments, a mixed-use, mixed-income affordable housing project in New Brunswick. It was awarded $4.8 million in CDBG Disaster Recovery funding through the FRM program.

For more information about the Fund for Restoration of Multifamily Housing, go to http://www.state.nj.us/dca/hmfa/developers/cdbg/ on the HMFA website.