Beyond Shelter, Inc. (BSI) and the North Dakota Housing Finance Agency (NDHFA) marked the successful completion of one housing development in Dickinson today and broke ground on a new project. The Patterson Heights Apartments is an affordable 24-unit, family-friendly complex. Heritage Hills Apartments will provide 42 rental units for lower-income households age 55 and older.
"The completion of the Patterson Heights development and the Heritage Hills groundbreaking illustrate the progress the state is making in addressing the need for affordable housing in western North Dakota, especially for essential services employees and those on fixed incomes," said Gov. Jack Dalrymple, who attended today's ceremony. "These two projects will help Dickinson meet the housing needs of its aging population and expanding workforce."
Supported by a $1.4 million allocation from the state's Housing Incentive Fund (HIF) and $744,000 from a Law Enforcement Pilot Program (LEPP), Patterson Heights was one of the first affordable housing projects in the state to set-aside rental units specifically for law enforcement personnel.
"Law enforcement agencies in western North Dakota repeatedly cite housing costs and shortages as an issue in recruiting and retaining personnel," said Attorney General Wayne Stenehjem. Eight units in the Patterson Heights property are reserved for Dickinson Police Department and Stark County Sheriff's Department employees.
BSI's Heritage Hills development received an allocation of $647,500 in federal Low Income Housing Tax Credits (LIHTC) from NDHFA. The agency has also made a $200,000 HIF commitment to the project. Eight Heritage Hills units will be fully accessible. The apartments are expected to be complete by fall 2014.
"The development resources provided by the State of North Dakota are making these much-needed projects possible," said Lynn Fundingsland, BSI CEO. "It takes a cooperative effort to successfully address the affordable housing needs of a community like Dickinson."
"For many years LIHTCs were our development mainstay," said Jolene Kline, NDHFA acting director. "With federal resources becoming highly competitive, more local, state and private funding is needed to handle our current and future affordable housing needs in North Dakota."
Both developments also received funding from the Governor's discretionary Community Development Block Grant (CDBG) program administered by the North Dakota Department of Commerce. Heritage Hills received a $300,000 grant and Patterson Heights received more than $178,000. The CDBG program provides financial assistance for public facilities, housing and economic development projects.
HIF is capitalized by state taxpayers. The fund provides low-cost financing to developers of affordable rental housing. Contributions can be directed to a specific project or community. Marathon contributed $2.5 million to HIF in December 2011 targeting a portion of the funds to developments in Dickinson.
The attorney general, working in conjunction with the North Dakota Industrial Commission, asked NDHFA to develop the law enforcement program. LEPP was funded with the state's approximately $3 million share of the Mortgage Servicing Settlement Fund. The legislature has since established a HIF program priority of providing affordable housing for essential service workers, including law enforcement personnel.
Additional partners in the developments include Affordable Housing Developers, Inc.; Bank of North Dakota; Housing Authority of Stark County; Stark Development Corporation; the City of Dickinson; and American Bank Center.
BSI is a nonprofit developer of affordable housing based in Fargo, ND. In partnership with many key stakeholders, the organization has developed more than 550 affordable residential units in North Dakota, South Dakota and Minnesota communities. New 2013 developments will bring the total to 654 affordable residential units.
NDHFA is a public financial institution. The Industrial Commission of North Dakota, consisting of Governor Jack Dalrymple as chairman, Agriculture Commissioner Doug Goehring and Attorney General Wayne Stenehjem, oversee the agency.