Archived - Evaluation of the 1996 On-Reserve Housing Policy - Follow-up Report Status Update as of September 25, 2008

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1. INAC takes advantage of the upcoming joint INAC-CMHC evaluation of Budget 2005-2006 New Funding for On-Reserve Housing Programs, to undertake extensive field research to fully address the following questions:
  1. To what extent have the multi-year housing plans allowed First Nations to:
    1. Protect and extend the life of existing houses and ensure that housing meets minimum national standards, through maintenance, insurance and renovation programs
    2. Construct quality affordable new housing, designed to respond to the variety of housing needs within the community
    3. Support individual pride and responsibility through community involvement, home ownership incentives and private market investment; and
    4. Link housing activities to training, job creation and business development.
  2. What factors contributed to or inhibited the successful development and implementation of First Nations community-based housing plans?
  3. Is the 1996 On-reserve Housing Policy still relevant?
It is understood that this evaluation will also address the specific accountability questions defined in planning documents for the Budget 2005-2006 New Funding for On-Reserve Housing Programs.
STATUS: Pending Implementation
INAC's Audit and Evaluation Sector will work with CMHC's Audit and Evaluation Services to expand the scope of the upcoming evaluation of Budget 2005-2006 New Funding for On-Reserve Housing to explore and consider alternatives to existing on-reserve housing programs.

Terms of Reference for a joint INAC-CMHC summative evaluation will include:
  • responses to questions stated in the recommendation;
  • a comprehensive review of INAC and CMHC's performance in First Nation housing, including analysis of the factors for success; and
  • review of social and community housing delivery models being used in Canada and other countries, and their strengths and weaknesses as alternatives to current program models.
Summer 2008 As of 30/09/2008:

The terms of reference for the comprehensive evaluation of On-Reserve Housing were approved by AEC in April 2008.

Since that time, INAC's Audit and Evaluation Sector has been working with CMHC's Audit and Evaluation Services to develop their evaluation plan.
2. INAC should revise and improve the delivery and performance monitoring of its housing program.
STATUS: Pending Implementation
To ensure uniformity, to improve housing program delivery, and to positively influence program implementation and compliance, INAC will develop a Housing Procedures Guide that will be implemented across all regions. Among other objectives, this procedures guide will:
  • ensure that communities under the 1996 On-Reserve Housing Policy provide and implement community housing plans as a condition of funding, and other First Nations not under the policy comply with INAC's housing subsidy requirements; and
  • institute a program compliance regime which would outline both the incentives for compliance and the consequences of non-compliance.
INAC will introduce the Integrated Capital Management System (ICMS) database in all Regions and FNs to streamline data collection and reporting, and to aid in measuring housing program outcomes and performance indicators.
TBD As of 30/09/2008:

The work on the National Housing Procedures Guide started in 2007 and various guide components are being developed.
3. Future policy development regarding on-reserve housing at INAC should consider making access to financial and other incentives for on-reserve housing conditional upon such conditions as the establishment of rental and inspection regimes, or improvement to financial and housing management.

To help communities to access the First Nations Market Housing Fund (FNMHF) the department should ensure that any housing policy is consistent with the accessibility criteria to be developed for the fund.
STATUS: Pending Implementation
A review of INAC and CMHC's on-reserve housing programs (including engagement with First Nations) which will enable the development of policy alternatives to improve housing outcomes on reserve.

The resulting new policy alternatives may include elements such as:
  • a needs-based allocation of housing support;
  • program delivery models which are reflective of the capacity of the First Nation to manage housing programs;
  • promotion and development of rental regimes;
  • implementation of inspection regimes to ensure compliance with the National Building Code;
  • inspection of homes by qualified building inspectors reducing the incidence of mould and improving the lifecycle of homes on reserve;
  • promotion of market housing opportunities, such as the First Nations Market Housing Fund (FNMHF);
  • adoption of alternative financing options for infrastructure to increase the supply of serviced lots;
  • consistent collection and reinvestment of shelter allowance payments for First Nations housing;
  • appropriate coordination of roles in First Nation housing between the main partners including First Nations, INAC, and CMHC); and
  • review the role of Ministerial Loan Guarantees in improving housing outcomes.
Summer 2009 As of 30/09/2008:

The Community Infrastructure Branch is developing a joint INAC-CMHC housing policy position paper outlining strategic directions in providing support for on-reserve housing. This joint document and the preliminary housing evaluation findings (expected to be available in late spring 2009) will inform further work on policy alternatives.

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