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Province offers new tax credit for developers building rental housing

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The Selinger government, taking heat from critics on boosting the PST to eight per cent, today released more details about a new tax credit to support private-sector rental housing construction.

Housing and Community Development Minister Kerri Irvin-Ross said the tax credit is aimed at building 1,000 new rental housing units.

The Residential Rental Housing Investment Tax Credit, announced in Tuesday’s budget, provides an eight per cent credit on construction costs for private developers to build new rental housing with affordable units.

The province plans to build 1,000 new rental housing units over the next three years including 500 affordable housing units and 500 social housing units, Irvin-Ross said. These new units will add to the Manitoba government's HOMEWorks! program already underway to develop 3,000 new affordable and social housing units by 2014.

Irvin-Ross said over the next three years, the province will also spend $100 million annually to restore and redevelop housing units in its portfolio. An additional $34 million will be dedicated annually to repair existing stock and provide quality home environments for tenants.

The NDP said it will raise the PST one percentage point to eight per cent effective July 1. It’s caught heavy flak this week from doing away with a requirement in a 1995 Tory bill that called for a referendum when government planned a major tax increase.

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