Kingston city council will be asked to consider a merger between its two social housing providers, Town Homes Kingston and the Kingston Frontenac Housing Corporation, at its meeting on Tuesday, August 7th.
At the meeting city staff will submit a KPMG report providing details regarding the serious operational and financial concerns surrounding Town Homes Kingston which were initially made public on July 23rd, when the Service Manager for the City Of Kingston and County Of Frontenac declared Town Homes Kingston as a Project In Difficulty due to health and safety concerns, consequently relieving its Executive Director and taking control of the corporation.
“Considering that the City owns assets of both THK and KFHC and considering the type of concerns identified through the KPMG review such THK’s lack of investment in assets, governance under different legislations, and inconsistent financial reporting, the Service Manager believed that it was critical to explore the option of merging these two organizations,” said the Service Manager, Lanie Hurdle, in the report to council.
The KPMG report noted that the Kingston Frontenac Housing Corporation had a much stronger governance policy and financial position, and that it did so with essentially the same number of staff as Town Homes Kingston, despite the fact that KFHC manages a much higher number of residential units. It is anticipated that the merger, if approved, would create savings of approximately $340,000 per year, a greater consistency in support for tenants, and a more robust plan for care and maintenance of all city-owned social housing buildings.