Delta Communities: The Transformative Potential of Affordable Housing Development on Communities and Families in the Delta

Registration for this meeting is closed.

Date:  Thursday, Sept. 21, 2017
Time:  10 a.m.- 1 p.m. CT
Location: The Bank
123 East Second St.
Clarksdale, Miss. 38614 (map it)

National demand for affordable rental housing has been rising, but the rate of building these kinds of units has declined. The 2017 annual report from The Joint Center for Housing Studies of Harvard University, The State of the Nation’s Housing, found that the demand for affordable rental housing far outpaces supply. In 2015, more than 11 million renter households were severely cost burdened (i.e., spending more than 50 percent of their income for housing).

The Low Income Housing Tax Credit (LIHTC) program was added to the Internal Revenue Code in 1986 to provide an incentive to private owners to create and maintain affordable housing. Since its inception, LIHTC has, at times, been synonymous with low-quality housing in southern states. When used properly as urban renewal capital, however, LIHTC transforms blighted or disinvested neighborhoods into thriving, strong communities.

This Delta Communities meeting will explore how affordable housing development, done properly, can break the cycle of poverty and generate economic development for communities and families in the Delta. Speakers will include:

  • Clarence Chapman, CEO of Chartre Consulting Ltd., who will explain how—as a private developer—his company produces high-quality housing available exclusively for lower-income residents;
  • Billy Nowell, mayor of Cleveland, Miss., who will share the positive impact that affordable housing built by Chartre Consulting has had on a blighted neighborhood, city and residents; and
  • Jere “Trey” Hess, director of brownfields and economic development at PPM Consultants, who will discuss how one city’s liability (an old hospital) will be transformed into an asset: an affordable housing development.

 There will also be two panels comprised of representatives from lenders who offer financing for single- and multifamily housing.

Participation in this session is free; however, registration is required by Monday, Sept. 18, as space is limited. Lunch will be provided.

For more information, please contact Faith Weekly at 502-568-9216 or

Delta Communities Initiative

With an aim of strengthening communities across the Arkansas and Mississippi Delta region, the St. Louis Fed launched the Delta Communities initiative to build awareness through regional forums of promising tools and strategies for community and economic development. The meetings feature presentations from St. Louis Fed staff and regional and national representatives with experience in building and sustaining community and economic development efforts. Five additional forums have been scheduled through the beginning of 2018. Please hold these dates:


  • Sept. 21
  • Oct. 19
  • Dec. 7


  • Jan. 18
  • Feb. 28

Representatives from financial institutions, nonprofit organizations, small businesses, chambers of commerce, government entities and other local leaders are welcome to participate. While the forums will be held in Clarksdale, Miss., leaders from communities across the Delta region are encouraged to attend.