Delta Regional Authority
February 11, 2019  
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Delta News Round-up

In this Issue: DLN Annual Meeting in Little Rock | Chairman Caldwell, USDA Officials Encourage Broadband Expansion | Workshop for Local Development Districts | DRA Seeks Senior Accountant

More Than 200 Delta Leaders Attend Annual DLN Conference

More than 200 leaders attended the annual Delta Leadership Network conference in Little Rock help from Feb. 5-7.

The group was welcomed with a reception at the Arkansas Governor’s Mansion by Governor Asa Hutchinson and First Lady Susan Hutchinson. Attendees were greeted with remarks from an all-star line-up of Arkansas officials, including Lt. Gov. Tim Griffin, Attorney General Leslie Rutledge and Secretary of State John Thurston.

This year’s conference featured more than 20 local and national subject-matter experts on opportunities and best practices that strengthen economic and community development in the Delta.

Arkansas-native Walt Coleman, 30-year veteran referee of the National Football League and Controller of Hiland Dairy, gave a rousing and inspiring keynote speech to open the conference. “Just do what’s right when making important decisions,” Coleman told a packed house at the Downtown Little Rock Marriott.

Charles Marohn, President and CEO of Strong Towns, provided the lunch keynote with his signature Curbside Chat. Marohn challenged participants to have the courage to challenge current approaches to economic and community development. “The challenge of this generation is not going to be growth. We’ve had decades of growth and it hasn’t given us prosperity. The challenge we face now is what to do with all the stuff we’ve already built,” he said.

Session topics included:

  • Public Private partnerships for the Economic Advancement of Delta communities;
  • Redevelopment in the Delta: How Communities are (Re)Shaping their Futures;
  • From Applying to Complying: Grants 101-401;
  • Engaging Utility Providers in the Development Process; and
  • Innovative Community Development Finance.

Thank you to our Delta leaders for sharing ideas and continuing to work together to improve economic conditions and helping create jobs for our 10 million residents!

Chairman Caldwell, USDA Officials Encourage Broadband Expansion

DRA Chairman Chris Caldwell and officials from the U.S. Department of Agriculture, Rural Development (USDA) program encouraged Arkansas lawmakers to expand broadband opportunities in the state.

Caldwell joined a discussion Feb. 6 before a joint panel of the Arkansas Senate Committee on Transportation, Technology and Legislative Affairs and the House Committee on Advanced Communications and Information Technology. He was joined by USDA officials from Arkansas, Kentucky and Louisiana.

Arkansas is considering legislation to ease restrictions that regulate broadband deployment in the state. USDA officials noted that the federal agency offers a broadband loan and grant pilot program, now called the Rural connectivity Pilot Program (ReConnect Program).
The ReConnect Program seeks to expand broadband service to rural areas without sufficient broadband access across the nation.

More information is available here.

DRA Holds Workshop for Local Development Districts

More than 80 leaders from Local Development Districts (LDDs) across the region joined DRA staff for a training workshop in Memphis on Jan. 30-31 to learn more about collaborating to enhance economic development opportunities and build jobs in the Delta.

LDDs have an instrumental role in serving local governments and other public-private partners who provide investments and technical assistance to encourage economic development in the eight states and 252 counties and parishes that DRA serves.

The training workshop provided important background about DRA’s programs and initiatives in the Delta and how LDDs can help facilitate growth in the region. LDDs help the DRA identify effective and impactful economic development projects for consideration for DRA investment. They also provide on-ground support for public outreach and participate in DRA-sponsored programs and policy initiatives, often helping to drive attendance to DRA events.

Learn more about the important role of LDDs in the Delta.

DRA Seeks Senior Accountant

Interested in a successful career supporting economic development and job growth in the Delta region? Apply today for a senior accounting position that reports to DRA’s director of finance and administration.

The position will prepare financial statements and other reports while also collecting and analyzing financial data, trends, costs and revenues. The role also includes researching accounting rules and regulations and making recommendations regarding financial policies. The position will be based at DRA headquarters in Clarksdale, Miss.

Click here to learn more about the role and how to apply.

Upcoming Events:

Click Here To Submit An Event

DRA Newsroom:

Delta Regional Authority

236 Sharkey Avenue - Suite 400
Clarksdale, MS 38614
(662) 624-8600 | DRA.GOV

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