Tri-State Housing Summit poised to uncover solutions for housing crisis – Hannibal.net

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HANNIBAL — Gas prices have been on the decline, but rent and housing costs remain high — underscoring the importance of finding solutions to the region’s housing crisis during this year’s Tri-State Housing Summit.

Carla Potts, deputy director for housing programs with NECAC, explained the annual summit gathers stakeholders from economic development agencies, government officials, representatives from higher education institutions and other community members to team up and help find “concrete solutions” to address the housing crisis in the area.

Potts said there are several barriers facing community members throughout the nation and in the region spanning northeast Missouri, western Illinois and southeast Iowa. She stressed the annual summit’s importance is particularly relevant today.

“I think it’s appropriate. I think it’s hard right now to find affordable housing. It’s hard to find rental properties. If you’re wanting to be a homeowner, it’s hard to find a house to buy. The houses that are out there — a lot of times are priced high enough that working families can’t afford them,” Potts said.

As you look at inflation, you see gas prices coming down. The one thing that’s not coming down is housing cost. Rent’s not coming down, the prices of homes are not coming down,” she added. “So I think it’s such an important time to continue this conversation and to do what we can do out here to be a problem-solver.”

Ulysses Clayborn, Region 7 Administrator of the Department of Housing and Urban Development, will speak during the event. Alison Ross will also share her personal experiences about how housing availability has affected her life and her path toward earning a degree in business and teaching from the University of Missouri.

Potts said representatives from the federal, state, county and local levels of government will be in attendance. She pointed out how countless influential programs and initiatives have begun from the grassroots level during events like this summit. 

The Tri-State Housing Summit begins with registration at 8:30 a.m. and a program from 9 a.m. to noon Thursday, Sept. 8 at the Rialto Banquet Hall at 601 Broadway. Afterward, lunch will be served to provide additional networking opportunities and discussion about potential housing solutions.

After the featured speakers’ remarks, participants will divide into small groups to address three key areas related to the housing crisis: creating new, affordable housing, rehabilitating existing property and buildings and create targeted affordable housing opportunities. 

Each group will tackle three questions related to the selected topic, then everyone will reconvene to share their findings and work on ways to put those ideas into motion.

Potts said the summit dates back to 2005, and she is excited about this year’s opportunity for a diverse group of people to come together toward a common goal.

“I look forward to seeing partners every year. Some of us have been partnering together for a very long time. Some of us are new to partnering together,” she said. “I look forward to hearing the ideas. I think we do a lot at NECAC, but there’s so many people with so many great ideas out there — just coming together and being able to network together.”

Community members interested in being a part of the summit can still register by Wednesday, Aug. 17, by calling Potts at 573-324-6622 or by emailing cpotts@necac.org.

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August 11, 2022 at 11:17PM

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