Morgan Stanley (NYSE: MS) and National Equity Fund (NEF) today announced that they are expanding the Rebuilding Local Economies Fund, established earlier this year, to additional states that were severely impacted by Hurricane Irene.
The Rebuilding Local Economies Fund, which seeks to accelerate affordable housing construction and create jobs in disaster-affected areas, will now encompass counties in states hard hit by Hurricane Irene including Connecticut, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New York, North Carolina, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, Vermont and Virginia.
This is in addition to the 13 states covered by the fund when it was first announced, as well as other states that the fund subsequently included in response to further flooding this year. The full list of states now encompassed by the fund is below.
Morgan Stanley initially established the $100 million Rebuilding Local Economies Fund in June to support recovery efforts in states affected by spring flooding and tornados.
"In a number of areas, Hurricane Irene exacerbated what were already tough economic conditions," said Mike Mantle, Senior Advisor in Morgan Stanley's Global Sustainable Finance group. "The expanded Rebuilding Local Economies Fund will help expedite the process of rebuilding homes and creating jobs and hasten economic recovery in afflicted communities."
The Rebuilding Local Economies Fund is focused on affordable rental housing developments that utilize Low Income Housing Tax Credits to finance their construction or rehabilitation. NEF, a national nonprofit and leading national syndicator of the housing credits, is managing the fund, adding $4 million in predevelopment lending to help projects move forward quickly.
The fund is anticipated to replace as many as 1,000 units of affordable housing and create approximately 4,000 new jobs.
"When you think about housing recovery — particularly in communities already struggling with economic decline — timing is critical," said Joe Hagan, president and CEO of NEF. "Real estate development tends to be a lengthy, costly process. We want this program to both provide predevelopment money that can help move the early development stages along quickly, and ensure that equity is available to support high-quality rebuilding that is affordable to low-income residents," he said.
NEF and Morgan Stanley have already begun identifying potential project investments in the original target areas. Most closings are expected to take place within the next six months.
"We are grateful that Morgan Stanley is continuing its work to help distressed communities regain their economic foothold," Hagan said. "By expanding this program, people will be able to re-establish roots in decent affordable housing, which will in turn create jobs, support local businesses and help their communities recover. In many places, these projects represent important steps toward renewed economic stability."
For more information about project investments, contact: Robert Johnston at NEF: 972-342-6621 or email@example.com.
States covered by the Rebuilding Local Economies Fund:
|New Hampshire||New Jersey|
|New York||North Carolina|
About Morgan Stanley
Morgan Stanley is a leading global financial services firm providing a wide range of investment banking, securities, investment management and wealth management services. The Firm's employees serve clients worldwide including corporations, governments, institutions and individuals from more than 1,300 offices in 42 countries. Morgan Stanley seeks to give back to the communities in which its employees live and work through its Global Sustainable Finance group. The Firm and its employees have provided nearly $2.5 million in disaster-relief funds in 2011. For further information about Morgan Stanley, please visit www.morganstanley.com.
About National Equity Fund
National Equity Fund, Inc. (NEF) is a nonprofit Chicago-based affiliate of the Local Initiatives Support Corporation (LISC) and the nation's largest syndicator of Low Income Housing Tax Credits. Since 1987, NEF has invested $8.8 billion in more than 2,000 LIHTC projects that have built and preserved nearly 122,000 homes affordable to low-income families and individuals. For more information, visit www.nefinc.org or www.lisc.org.
Morgan Stanley, Sandra Hernandez, 212-761-2446, firstname.lastname@example.org
National Equity Fund, Inc., Colleen Mulcahy, 312-342-8244, email@example.com