01/22/2015 10:56 EST | Updated 03/24/2015 05:59 EDT

Saskatchewan housing programs to merge, weed out those who don't need it

REGINA - The Affordable Housing Program is merging with the Social Housing Program in the province's larger centres to improve access for those who need it.

Social Services Minister Donna Harpauer says this will also weed people out of the system who shouldn't be in it in the first place.

There are 15 people currently using affordable housing who make more than $100,000 a year and 90 who make $60,000.

The goal is to move the higher income earners out, freeing up the units for those more in need and also shortening the wait lists.

The NDP says eliminating the affordable housing program altogether is not a good idea.

The Social Housing Program is for only the very lowest income and vulnerable people so it leaves out the thousands of struggling low-income families who previously qualified.

The NDP says about 1,400 families living in affordable housing will see their rents increase.

Harpauer says the transition means 1,300 low-income households will have their rents reduced or they will stay the same.