Affordable Housing Program Awardees

July 7, 2010

Contact: Eric Amig - (212) 441-6807
Brian Finnegan - (212) 441-6877

Federal Home Loan Bank of New York Awards $1.1 Million in Affordable Housing Grants in Buffalo and Alden

Six projects will create more than 100 units of affordable housing

Buffalo, New York – The Federal Home Loan Bank of New York announced today the award of a $104,500 grant to People United for Sustainable Housing, Inc. for the Massachusetts Avenue Development project; the award of a $66,500 grant to Habitat for Humanity of Buffalo, Inc.; the award of a $304,796 grant to the Diocese of Buffalo, NY, for the Holy Family Senior Housing Development Project; the award of a $120,000 grant to Heart of the City Neighborhoods for the Cynthia Gardens project; the award of a $240,000 grant to West Side Neighborhood Housing Services, Inc. for the West Side NHS Home Repair Program; and the award of a $336,000 grant to the Belmont Shelter Corp. for the Alden Family Apartments project.  Home Loan Bank members M&T Bank, First Niagara Bank and HSBC Bank submitted the applications for the funding.

“Through a partnership between local Federal Home Loan Bank members M&T, First Niagara and HSBC and Western New York organization leaders, over $1.1 million will be invested in projects that revitalize our neighborhoods and make housing more affordable for local residents,” said Congressman Brian Higgins (NY, 27).

“Creating strong neighborhoods with affordable housing is one of the most important issues facing our community in Buffalo. When business, government and the not-for-profit sector work together, we can accomplish so much more and bring additional resources to projects that address vital community needs,” said Brad J. Dossinger, vice president and regional community reinvestment manager for M&T Bank, which sponsored the applications for the Massachusetts Avenue Development and Habitat for Humanity projects.

“The submission of applications to the FHLBNY is just one of the ways First Niagara is committed to serving the needs of our communities,” said Leisha Gordon, Vice President of Community Reinvestment at First Niagara Bank, which submitted the funding applications for the Holy Family Senior Housing Development, Cynthia Gardens and Alden Family Apartments projects. “We have a strong desire to partner with agencies such as Belmont Shelter, Heart of the City Neighborhoods and the Diocese of Buffalo that have demonstrated a unique expertise for developing affordable housing.”

“HSBC is pleased to join with our community partners to participate in the Federal Home Loan Bank's Affordable Housing Program,” said Kathleen Rizzo Young, Senior Vice President of Community Development for HSBC, which submitted the application for the West Side NHS Home Repair Program. “These projects, like the many this program has previously made possible, will have a tangible, visible impact on the community.”

“The Federal Home Loan Bank of New York has been proud to partner with our members for more than 20 years to help make affordable housing a reality in New Jersey, New York, Puerto Rico, the U.S. Virgin Islands and beyond,” said Alfred A. DelliBovi, president and CEO of the FHLBNY. “We are grateful to our elected officials for their leadership and support in Congress, which allows us to offer this program to the housing groups that are strengthening communities across the region.”

The $104,500 grant for the Massachusetts Avenue Development project will help finance the conversion of three vacant buildings into 11 units of affordable rental housing for very low-income families in Buffalo.  The grant recipient’s goal is to create a “vacancy-free zone” within this target neighborhood by rehabilitating vacant buildings.

The $66,500 grant to Habitat for Humanity of Buffalo, Inc. will help provide homeownership opportunities in Buffalo for seven low- and very low-income families.  The homes will be substantially rehabilitated as part of Habitat’s ongoing efforts to provide decent, affordable owner-occupied housing.

The $304,796 grant for the Holy Family Senior Housing Development Project will help finance the renovation and conversion of a former elementary school into 35 units of affordable rental housing for seniors in Buffalo.

The $120,000 grant for Cynthia Gardens will help finance the construction of eight apartment units for low- and very low-income families in Buffalo.  Two of the units will be set aside for homeless families.  These families will be referred by a local social service agency, which will provide ongoing services to the residents, including employment skills training.

The $240,000 grant for the West Side NHS Home Repair Program will help assist 20 moderate-, low- and very low-income homeowners in Buffalo by providing them with the financing to make moderate home repairs.  Many of these homeowners cannot afford to make repairs and do not have access to other funding. 

The $336,000 grant for the Alden Family Apartments will help finance the construction of 28 units of rental housing for very low-income families in Alden.  The project will consist of residential buildings in a campus-like setting with a mix of one- and three-bedroom units.

Additional financing for the Massachusetts Avenue Development project will be provided by the New York State Housing Trust Fund, the Division of Housing and Community Renewal, and City of Buffalo HOME funds.  Additional financing for the Holy Family Senior Housing Development Project will be provided by the New York State Housing Trust Fund, Low Income Housing Tax Credits, and City of Buffalo HOME funds.  Additional financing for Cynthia Gardens will be provided by Small Project Program funds from the New York State Division of Housing and Community Renewal, a grant from the New York State Assembly, and First Niagara Bank.  Additional financing for the West Side NHS Home Repair Program will be provided by the sponsor’s Revolving Loan Program and the Division of Housing and Community Renewal Weatherization funds.  Additional financing for the Alden Family Apartments will be provided by the New York State Housing Trust Fund Corporation, the New York State Division of Housing and Community Renewal, and Low Income Housing Tax Credits.

These grants are part of a total of $29.7 million in AHP subsidies that the Federal Home Loan Bank of New York will award in conjunction with the approval of the first competitive application round of 2010.  In total, these grants will help to finance the creation of 54 housing projects that will generate 2,917 units of affordable housing in New Jersey, New York, Connecticut, Delaware, Maryland and Pennsylvania. Last year, the Federal Home Loan Bank System celebrated the 20th Anniversary of its Affordable Housing Program. In June 2010, the program was recognized by the National Housing Conference as its “Housing Person of the Year”. The Federal Home Loan Banks have distributed nearly $4 billion in AHP funds since 1990.  For more information on these grants, please visit www.fhlbny.com/news/pressrelease.htm.

The Federal Home Loan Bank’s Affordable Housing Program, created in 1989, provides member community lenders with direct subsidies, which are passed on to qualified households through a sponsoring local non-profit organization. AHP financing is combined with other funding sources to create housing for moderate-, low- and very-low-income families. Program awardees receive this funding through semi-annual competitive rounds. Each competing project must be sponsored by a financial organization that is a member of the Federal Home Loan Bank in partnership with a community-based sponsoring organization.

First Niagara Financial Group
First Niagara Financial Group, Inc. through its wholly owned subsidiary, First Niagara Bank, N.A., has $ 20 billion in assets, 255 branches and $ 14 billion in deposits.  First Niagara Bank is a community-oriented bank providing financial services to individuals, families and businesses across Upstate New York and Pennsylvania.  For more information, visit www.fnfg.com

Federal Home Loan Bank of New York
The Federal Home Loan Bank of New York is a Congressionally chartered, $107 billion, wholesale Bank. It is part of the Federal Home Loan Bank System, a national wholesale banking network of 12 regional, stockholder-owned banks. The Federal Home Loan Bank of New York serves 330 community lenders in New Jersey, New York, Puerto Rico, and the U.S. Virgin Islands. The mission of the Home Loan Bank is to advance housing opportunity and local community development by maximizing the capacity of community-based member-lenders to serve their markets.

Federal Home Loan Bank of New York
The Federal Home Loan Bank of New York is a Congressionally chartered, wholesale Bank. It is part of the Federal Home Loan Bank System, a national wholesale banking network of 12 regional, stockholder-owned banks. The FHLB of New York currently serves more than 340 financial institutions in New Jersey, New York, Puerto Rico, and the U.S. Virgin Islands. The mission of the Federal Home Loan Banks is to support the efforts of local members to help provide financing for America’s homebuyers.

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