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Community Generation Incubator

 

 

Is your co-op thinking about starting a Community Generation project?

This ACCA free 2-day event will give your co-op a rough and ready idea of project feasibilty

If your co-op is interested, please visit the Community Generation Incubator website or review the Community Generation Incubator PDF to learn more about the program.


To register, please contact Robert Henry or Seth Leon:

Robert J. Henry PEng MBA
Program Specialist
Peters Energy Solutions Inc.
robert.henry@petersenergy.com
PH: 403-813-4573

Seth Leon MDE
Manager of Co-operative Services
Alberta Community and Co-operative Association (ACCA)
email: sleon@acca.coop
PH: 587-216-2144


During the registeration you can also apply for a Project Candidate Assessment and Development Coaching Call. This initial consultation will be used to identify project possibilities and key data to qualify the opportunity, identify fatal flaws, and determine project potential at a qualitative level.

Feds Extend Subsidies to March 2028


The federal government announced on June 25, that they have extended subsidies to March 31, 2028 as part of their plan to protect affordable housing for low-income co-op households. The Honourable Jean-Yves Duclos, Minister of Families, Children and Social Development made the announcement at the Briarview Housing Co-op in Mississauga, ON.

The extension is the second phase of the Federal Community Housing Initiative that was announced as part of the National Housing Strategy in November 2017. All co-op households that are currently receiving financial assistance will continue to receive the same level of assistance until March 2028

We would like to thank CHF Canada and all the co-op members for their hard work and persistence. Our members hold the key to our future and we have to continue make our voice heard. This is a great step in protecting affordable housing and a time to celebrate. We also have work to do as 2028 is not that far away and we need a more permanent solution.

Ayanna Inniss, NACHA Executive Director

The announcement is a great start but we need additional information on how the new agreement works. Are their any changes, what do we need to do to ensure that each co-op has been extended etc. As a result, we will continue to obtain and share the information with you.  

CHF Canada’s news release indicate that “enrollment” will begin in the fall. So please stay tuned and we will provide you with updates via the NACHA website.  

CMHC Funding Opportunities

Housing Co-operatives come in many forms, and CMHC offers a variety of programs and resources to support the diverse needs of Co-ops across the country.

By taking the lead role in the delivery of Canada’s first-ever National Housing Strategy, CMHC administers a number of funding programs to assist Co-ops in undertaking long-term operating and maintenance planning, repair & renewal projects, as well as new construction activities supporting the expansion or development of Housing Co-operatives across Canada.

Further, as Canada’s authority on housing, CMHC’s resource library includes information on a wide range of topics including:

  • Co-operative & Membership roles and responsibilities;
  • Provincial and Territorial regulations;
  • rent/fee collection; and 
  • administrative/maintenance practices.

We are encouraging your co-op to take advantage of the various CMHC Housing Solutions such as the Preservation Funding for Community Housing, Seed Funding (for co-ops out of their operating agreement) and the National Housing Co-Investment Fund. We would love to see all 34 co-ops take advantage of the funding opportunities to help improve our housing co-op structure.

There are a variety of studies that you can apply for. Ten co-ops have already been approved and have received approximately $217,000 to conduct studies such as Energy Audits, Refinancing Analysis, Asset Management Plan, Building Foundation etc. Once their studies have been completed, these co-ops will be in a position to apply for the Co-investment Fund and obtain further funding to improve the condition and life of their housing co-op buildings, which will translate to better member satisfaction.

Don’t let this funding opportunity pass you by! NACHA and the Agency are available to help you navigate the requirements. You can also contact Kyle Taylor of Casa Housing Services (587-487-4397) if your co-op is interested in making an application for one of the CMHC Housing Solutions.   

National Resources Canada Invests in Energy Efficiency with Sundance

By Gillian Austin


On May 24 the Honourable Amarjeet Sohi, Canada’s Minister of Natural Resources was at Sundance Housing Cooperative to announce a federal investment of $2.5 million for Sundance to retrofit 59 townhomes. This retrofit will allow the units to be net-zero ready.

“The membership of Sundance Housing Co-operative is extremely pleased to be partnering with NRCan on this project. Not only will this project provide the members long term, energy savings with better comfort and indoor air quality, it will also be a working example for deep-energy retrofits that hopefully will accelerate the uptake of such retrofits across the country.”

Beth Nilsen President, Sundance

Natural Resources Canada is funding the project through its Energy Innovation Program (EIP), which supports initiatives to accelerate clean technology development. The project is also part of Canada’s $180-billion Investing in Canada Infrastructure Plan.

The Sundance retrofit will focus on installing new, energy-efficient exterior wall panels, which will be designed and fabricated off-site by using digital imaging. The panels will be installed over the existing exterior walls, thus requiring no demolition and allowing the work to be done quickly and with less disruption to occupants.

This retrofit project aims to accelerate the uptake of panelized prefabricated deep energy retrofits across North America — cutting costs and reducing pollution.

Sundance’s Deep Energy Retrofit (DER) involves the retrofit of a building enclosure and other building systems in a way that results in high performance buildings and also provides benefits to building durability, comfort, and indoor air quality. The proposed DER will create a high performance envelope with a high degree of air-tightness and significantly enhanced insulation values. The end result will have an expected reduction in energy use of 70-80%, using a strategy of re-cladding the exterior of the building (typically walls, foundations and roof) with a new continuous moisture/air barrier which dramatically reduces the air leakage rates, exterior applied thermally broken insulation layers and a rain-screen finish detail. The DER includes the addition of Heat Recovery Ventilators to ensure healthy indoor air quality once the air leakage rate of the building is lowered.

The work is being done by Butterwick Projects Ltd. The project will be done in two Phases. Phase 1 (research and development phase) will focus on units 8 & 9. The work on this Phase started in March will be completed this spring. Between the completion of this work and the fall of 2019, the design and development team will test the performance of the building envelope, assess the results and modify the approach a required. Work should start on Phase 2 (balance of the 57 units) in October of 2019 and be completed by the spring of 2020.

Sundance’s first homes were occupied in 1979. Nearly 40% of our members have lived in Sundance for more than 20 years! We are inspired by a vision of sensible and affordable housing, environmental responsibility and a nurturing community for our members. We are a strong and financially secure community. As we approach our fifth decade, we are excited to see this retrofit project take place.

Links

http://www.butterwick.ca
https://www.newswire.ca/news-releases/canada-invests-in-better-energy-efficiency-for-edmonton-housing-828193259.html
http://ecosolar.ca/

Chainsaw Retrofit Examples

An animation of a “chainsaw retrofit.” A method of deep-energy retrofitting small buildings to the Passive House standard. Rob Harrison cPHc

Vilogia Timelapse Energiesprong 2018


National Housing Strategy Update

On May 8, CMHC hosted a free event to educate our housing co-ops members on how to navigate the National Housing Strategy and its components.  CMHC and the Agency presented information to help housing co-op members develop a better understanding of how to apply for grants to repair and maintain the units.  This was a great opportunity as those in attendance learned about the:

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Ecofitt – Energy Efficiency Solutions

Your co-op is eligible to receive free energy efficiency upgrades through Energy Efficiency Alberta’s (EEA) Affordable Housing Energy Solutions Program! The goal of the program is to lower utility costs and increase Alberta’s energy efficiency! All upgrades are optional to the members living in the household so you can choose what works best for you. This is mainly an opportunity to take advantage of money put aside by the government to help Albertans make the switch to more energy efficient living.

Eligible upgrades include:

  • LED lightbulbs and night lights
  • smart thermostats
  • smart power bars
  • high-efficiency shower heads
  • faucet aerators
  • block heater timers

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ACCA Youth Leadership Camp

ACCA’s Co-operative Youth Leadership Program provides an opportunity for your children to develop their leadership and teamwork skills. It is designed to give them the independence and confidence in their abilities while creating lasting friendships.

The 7-day programs take place at the Goldeye Centre, located near Nordegg, Alberta. The beautiful remote setting provides the perfect environment for your children to build friendships, discover hidden talents, learn new skills, gain a positive view of the world, and contribute to their future.

 

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Commercial Insurance

 

CHF Canada has released the Commercial Insurance Program Update.  They are reporting an average 10% rate increase for 2019 renewal.  The good news for housing co-ops in the Edmonton region is that most can expect to see their rates either stay the same or drop by anywhere from a few hundred dollars to a couple thousand dollars.  There are a couple co-ops with claims issues who may experience a moderate increase.

 

Members should also point their attention to the CHF Canada’s new Risk Management Program Checklist. They launched this program earlier this year in an effort to help you identify areas of concerns that you can address to keep your premiums down. You will receive a new checklist for 2019 in January. CHF Canada is aware that many co-ops pair the checklist with their annual unit inspections (Spring & Summer). As a result, they have extended the deadline to August 31st.

 

You will receive credit for completing the checklist and addressing any issues raised. While it would be great to see you complete the checklist for all of your units, credit will be given to co-ops that use the checklist on at least 15% of their units.  The Co-operators will not raise premiums or restrict coverage because of anything brought to light by these checklists as long as your co-op is working towards fixing the problem.

CHF Canada’s Vision Summit

NACHA was pleased to join with over 70 Housing Co-op Leaders in Toronto at the two-day CHF Canada Vision Summit earlier this year, to share ideas for the future of Canada’s co-operative housing movement. Our own Kyle Taylor (Casa Housing Services, Assiniboia Housing Co-op), gave a passionate address to those assembled that I encourage you to read and share with your members for inspiration.  (more…)

Federal Community Housing Initiative (Phase 2) Survey

Rise and Shine Fellow Co-operators.  The National Housing Strategy was released last November but it contains sections that require more design.  CMHC is asking us (the beneficiaries and administrators) how the new subsidy program should be structured.  They are asking us for input!

Grab your morning coffee and let’s dig into this together.  The National Housing Strategy contained $500 million for the Federal Community Housing Initiative (FCHI), a new rental subsidy program for community housing providers (includes co-ops) whose federally administered Operating Agreements expire between April 1, 2016 and March 31, 2027. This new program is being rolled out in two phases – the first phase will extend rental subsidies to 2020, while Phase 2 will extend subsidies ($482 million) until 2028.

CMHC will be distributing a survey on FCHI Phase 2 to all co-ops with federally-administered operating agreements later today.  Check your inboxes.  This is an important opportunity for the co-op sector to have its voice heard.  To help focus the conversation a bit, CHF Canada has prepared a brief for our consideration.  The brief centres around three key issues: maintaining principle 4: Co-op Independence and Autonomy, no-net loss, that is, we should lose a single subsidized unit, and the kiss method is best; the program should be easy for the members to use and for the co-op to administer.