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NYC Department of Housing Preservation & Development

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Press Release # 10-08
Wednesday, April 30, 2008



Catholic Charities Brooklyn and Queens, the City and Enterprise Announce Preservation of 1,000 Units of Affordable Housing for Low-Income Seniors in Brooklyn and Queens

Innovative Refinancing Package Serves as National Model for Housing Refinanced Under HUD Section 202 Program

New York, NY, April 30, 2008 - Catholic Charities Progress of Peoples Development Corporation (Catholic Charities), the housing developer of Catholic Charities Brooklyn and Queens, Enterprise, a leading nonprofit provider of affordable housing nationwide, the New York City Housing Development Corporation (HDC) and the New York City Department of Housing Preservation and Development (HPD) today announced the completion of the full rehabilitation of ten affordable senior housing buildings located in Brooklyn and Queens.  More than just improving the structures, this has allowed for enhanced social services crucial for the 1,300 seniors living in these buildings. The rehabilitation was made possible by a pioneering $170 million pooled refinancing package, which is now used as a model throughout the country for the refinancing of housing built under the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) Section 202 Program.

“Catholic Charities Progress of People’s Development Corporation is one of the largest providers of housing for low-income seniors and families in New York City,” said Monsignor Alfred LoPinto, Vicar for Human Services, Diocese of Brooklyn. “This refinancing package allows us to continue our commitment to provide low-income seniors with the highest quality housing and services, as well as to keep them in their neighborhoods.”

“Enterprise is committed to helping ensure that all New Yorkers have access to affordable housing, especially the seniors who are most vulnerable to rising rents as a result of their fixed incomes,” said Abby Jo Sigal, Vice President and Director of Enterprise New York. “By working with a diverse group of partners, we were able to put together a creative refinancing package that not only helps to keep low-income seniors in their homes, but that also allows the money saved as a result of the refinancing to be invested in expanded services for the residents.”

Originally built in the 1970s and 1980’s under HUD’s Section 202 Program, the facilities were renovated with funds made available through HDC’s Section 202 Refinancing Program.  By refinancing at a lower interest rate than the previously existing HUD mortgages, Catholic Charities’ monthly mortgage payments were reduced, freeing up money to pay for enhanced social services for the residents of these buildings. The financing included $55 million in long-term bonds issued by HDC with credit-enhancement provided by Fannie Mae, $28.4 million in short-term bonds issued by HDC with a Citibank letter of credit and $42.7 million of tax credit equity administered by HPD and syndicated by Enterprise.  Enterprise also provided to Catholic Charities a $500,000 predevelopment loan for the project.  Other partners in the deal included Wachovia’s Multifamily Lending Group which served as Fannie Mae’s seller-servicer and Forsyth Street Advisors, which conceived the method of financing and led the project team. Renovations began in 2006.

Roughly 1,300 low-income seniors occupy the 1,000 housing units included in the ten properties. Many of the residents are elderly immigrants who wish to remain in their neighborhoods where they raised their families. Forty percent of the units are affordable to individuals with incomes below $14,880, fifty-five percent are affordable to individuals with incomes below $24,800 and five percent are affordable to individuals with incomes below $39,680.

The project is a key part of Mayor Bloomberg’s New Housing Marketplace Plan to build and preserve 165,000 units of affordable housing in New York City over 10 years, the most ambitious municipal housing initiative in the country.

”Preserving affordable housing is critical to New York City’s future,” said HPD Commissioner Shaun Donovan. “Our seniors deserve safe, good quality and affordable housing that allows them to stay in their communities near their families and friends. By developing creative financing packages, the City can preserve and rehabilitate existing affordable housing, allowing residents to remain in their refurbished homes, which costs significantly less than building new housing. The Mayor’s Ten Year Plan has a particular focus on preserving the affordability of existing government-assisted housing like Section 202 and Mitchell Lama. Innovation is a hallmark of the Mayor’s plan and we are delighted to see this financing model now being adopted across the country.  Enterprise’s one billion dollar commitment to New York City is helping us build and preserve 165,000 affordable homes over ten years for 500,000 low and middle-income New Yorkers.” 

“There is no more vulnerable segment in our society than our elderly,” said Teresa Bainton, New York HUD Director for Multi-family Housing. “That is why the refinancing of these ten developments is so important. It will ensure that these seniors remain in their beautifully renovated homes and also have access to the services they need in their golden years.  HUD is proud to be part of this rehabilitation and preservation project, and we are equally proud to work with one of our most important partners, Catholic Charities.”

Marc Jahr, President of the New York City Housing Development Corporation said, “As our senior population ages, the need for quality senior housing with expanded supportive services becomes all the more imperative.  Originally built using HUD’s 202 Program – HDC’s POP refinancing will allow the ten underlying developments to extend their usable life while preserving their affordability for New York’s seniors. HDC is proud that our participation will ensure that a thousand apartments are preserved for one of New York’s most vulnerable populations. HDC and HPD look forward to continuing to collaborate with our nonprofit partners to ensure that all New Yorkers have access to affordable, safe and suitable homes.”

The ten rehabilitated buildings include: Bishop Boardman Apartments in Park Slope, Brooklyn; Bishop Mugavero Apartments in Fort Green, Brooklyn; Holy Spirit Apartments in Borough Park, Brooklyn; Mary Star of the Sea Apartments in Carroll Gardens, Brooklyn; Monsignor Burke Apartments in Borough Park, Brooklyn; Monsignor Campbell Apartments in Long Island City, Queens; Monsignor O’Brien Apartments in Borough Park, Brooklyn; Pope John Paul II in Bay Ridge Brooklyn; Sister Lucian Apartments in Bushwick, Brooklyn; and St. Brendan’s Apartments in Midwood, Brooklyn.

“Few occasions are as gratifying to me as the kind we celebrate today,” said Deborah VanAmerongen, Commissioner of the New York State Division of Housing and Community Renewal.  “To have been a part of preserving what has become such an irreplaceable resource, and to know that the lives of so many seniors have been stabilized, makes all of the time and effort invested worthwhile.  On behalf of Governor Paterson, I would like to congratulate my colleagues at HUD, Catholic Charities, the City of New York and Enterprise for having the courage and commitment to preserve affordable housing for our senior citizens.”

Speakers commemorating the preservation and rehabilitation of the 1000 units of affordable housing today at the rededication ceremony at the Catholic Charities Bishop Boardman Apartments included the following people: Most Reverend Alfred LoPinto, Vicar for Human Services, Diocese of Brooklyn; Vice President and New York Director Abby Jo Sigal, Enterprise; President Marc Jahr, New York City Housing Development Corporation;  Commissioner Shaun Donovan, New York City Department of Housing Preservation and Development (HPD);  Commissioner Deborah Van Amerongen, of the New York State Division of Housing & Community Renewal (NYS HCR); and, Teresa Bainton, the New York Multifamily Hub Director for Housing and Urban Development (HUD).

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About Catholic Charities

Catholic Charities Brooklyn and Queens creates a community of caring and sharing by reaching out to the poor, the sick, and the isolated. For over 100 years, Catholic Charities has been providing quality social services to the neighborhoods of Brooklyn and Queen and currently offers 183 programs and services for children, youth, adults, seniors, the developmentally disabled, and the mentally ill. One the largest providers of affordable housing in New York City, Catholic Charities provides 3,000 units of housing for low-income seniors, families, and the formerly homeless throughout Brooklyn and Queens.

About Enterprise

Enterprise is a leading provider of the development capital and expertise it takes to create decent, affordable homes and rebuild communities. For more than two decades, Enterprise has pioneered neighborhood solutions through public-private partnerships with financial institutions, governments, community organizations and others that share our vision. Enterprise has raised and invested $8 billion in equity, grants and loans and is currently investing in communities at a rate of $1 billion a year. Enterprise New York has been working to revitalize low-income communities across New York City since 1987.  In that time, Enterprise New York has housed approximately 70,000 men, women, and children, developed more than 26,000 affordable homes, and committed $1.7 billion in equity, grants, and loans to community development projects across the city. Visit www.enterprisecommunity.org to learn more about Enterprise’s efforts to build communities and opportunity, and to meet some of the half a million people we have helped.

About HPD

The New York City Department of Housing Preservation and Development's (HPD) mission is to promote quality housing and viable neighborhoods for New Yorkers. The department is the nation’s largest municipal housing development agency and is implementing Mayor Bloomberg’s New Housing Marketplace Plan to build and preserve 165,000 units of affordable housing over ten years. The New Housing Marketplace Plan is the largest municipal affordable housing effort in the nation’s history. HPD also encourages the preservation of affordable housing through education, outreach, loan programs and enforcement of housing quality standards.

About HDC

The New York City Housing Development Corporation (HDC), using both tax-exempt and taxable bonds, provides a variety of financing programs to support the creation and preservation of multi-family affordable housing throughout the five boroughs of New York City.  Our programs are designed to meet the wide-range of affordable housing needs of the City's economically diverse population. 




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