Nunavik housing office finally gets go-ahead to apply new rent scale
New KMHB chair promises to make housing maintenance a priority
The Quebec government has finally signed off on a new rent scale for social housing tenants in Nunavik.
The province recently published a new by-law that makes official the new scale, in which annual rent increases in the region drop from eight per cent to six per cent, retroactive to July 2016.
“This will provide significant relief to the most critically affected families, and I encourage Inuit to apply for reduced rent with the Kativik Municipal Housing Bureau office,” said Makivik Corp. President Jobie Tukkiapik in a June 23 release.
Social housing tenants in the region should bring their 2015 and 2016 assessments into their local KMHB office to find out if they’re eligible for the reduction.
The rent reduction will have the biggest impact for Nunavik families who have an annual income of less than $34,000, regional leaders have said.
A family of four living in a three-bedroom unit currently pays $270 a month; under the new agreement, the same family will pay $218 a month—a rent reduction of 19 per cent.
A family of six would see their monthly rent drop from $410 to just $100.
The new agreement is still technically an interim one, in place until July 1, 2019.
The Kativik Regional Government, Makivik and Quebec have agreed to continue working on a new long-term rent scale which should be in place by July 2020.
The new rent scale comes alongside other major changes at the KMHB, which oversees the administration and maintenance of Nunavik’s 3,144 social housing units.
The agency recently appointed Kuujjuaq businessman Sammy Duncan as the chair of its board of directors. He replaces outgoing chair Daniel Oovaut, whose three-year mandate ended in February.
“One of the first goals of the board of directors is to improve its housing maintenance and repair service so that tenants can live in a safe and peaceful environment,” said Duncan, a well-known Kuujjuaq businessman, in a KMHB release.
The board welcomed three other new members: Paulusie Mark and Adamie Thomassie who represent tenants, while KRG representative Noah Eetook is the KHMB’s new vice-chair.
The KMHB also has a new director general, Marie-France Brisson, who started at the organization in January 2017.