Results (876)

Per-student funding increasing, but staff cuts possible under proposed DC schools budget | WTOP

On February 19, 2024, Executive Director Yesim Sayin was quoted by WTOP: Yesim Sayin, executive director of the D.C. Policy Center, said when the extra funding ends, school budgets are projected to “experience a loss of about 15%.” Many of the city’s public charter schools used the funding to hire staff, Sayin…

February 22, 2024 | ,

D.C. Voices: Planning for the end of ESSER funding

From fiscal year 2019 to 2024, the budget for District of Columbia Public Schools (DCPS) and public charter schools in D.C. rose from $1.7 billion to at least $2.6 billion, marking a 56 percent increase while enrollment grew by 9 percent. This expansion was fueled not only by increases to the Universal Per…

February 22, 2024 | Hannah Mason

For DC professionals, hybrid doesn’t mean housebound | WTOP

On February 19, 2024, the D.C. Policy Center was cited in a WTOP article on remote work: According to the D.C. Policy Center, 51% of jobs in the D.C. metro can be performed remotely or with a hybrid arrangement, compared to 37% nationally. Read More: For DC professionals, hybrid doesn’t mean housebound Additional…

February 20, 2024 | D.C. Policy Center

Investment in Youth Violence Prevention Programs in the District of Columbia | ArentFox Schiff

On February 16, 2024, a D.C. Voices article was cited by ArentFox Schiff: According to the DC Policy Center, between 2016 and 2022, MPD officers arrested an average of 2,235 juveniles each year, involving youth under the age of 18. Read More: Investment in Youth Violence Prevention Programs in the District of Columbia |…

February 20, 2024 | D.C. Policy Center

DCPS Budget Raises Questions About Staffing, Pandemic-Era Programming | Washington Informer

A February 14, 2024, article in the Washington Informer highlighted the Education Policy Initiative’s report on the impending fiscal cliff for D.C. schools: As outlined in a D.C. Policy Center study titled “The fiscal future of public education in the District of Columbia,” ESSER funded DCPS’ summer programming, teacher training, support for English language…

February 15, 2024 |

D.C. schools budget could send more to campuses but cut staff as costs rise | Washington Post

On February 13, 2024, an Education Policy Initiative report on the potential fiscal cliff for D.C. schools was featured in a Washington Post article: Ferebee’s budget proposal was unveiled on the same day that D.C. Policy Center released a report illustrating just how heavily schools across the city have relied in recent years on…

February 15, 2024 | D.C. Policy Center

The fiscal future of public education in the District of Columbia

Quick Links Executive Summary The fiscal landscape of the District of Columbia has experienced a significant transformation in recent years. Despite the COVID-19 pandemic’s swift and adverse impact on residents and the economy, the District’s finances initially remained strong, buoyed by a substantial federal fiscal aid package during fiscal years 2020-2024. Federal…

February 13, 2024 | Yesim Sayin,

Washington, DC, readies tax abatement program for commercial-to-residential conversions | Smart Cities Dive

On February 12, 2024, a D.C. Policy Center chart of the week was cited by Smart Cities Dive: A separate analysis from the D.C. Policy Center shows that Washington, D.C., which collects over $1.1 billion in tax revenue from office buildings, stands to lose millions of dollars in commercial tax revenue from those properties if…

February 12, 2024 | D.C. Policy Center

Budget Spotlight: Looking forward to FY2025

The District’s budget season unofficially opened with the release of the FY 2023 Annual Comprehensive Financial Report on February 1st. This is the annual audit for the city, and it includes a trove of information on the city’s economic and fiscal performance during FY 2023. It is relevant to the FY 2025…

February 9, 2024 | Yesim Sayin

D.C. Councilmember Robert White Jr. Discusses Spike In Youth Crime With Community Members | The Hilltop

On February 5, 2023, a D.C. Policy Center report was cited by The Hilltop: Between 2016 and 2022, Metropolitan Police Department (MPD) officers averaged annual arrests of 2,235 juveniles under the age of 18, as reported by the D.C. Policy Center. The juvenile arrest rate in the nation’s capital is nearly double the…

February 6, 2024 | D.C. Policy Center

D.C. Says Its Commercial Properties Lost Another $1.5B In Value, But ‘This Is Certainly Not The Bottom’ | Bisnow

On February 5, 2024, D.C. Policy Center Executive Director Yesim Sayin was quoted by Bisnow: “The picture for commercial property is very disconcerting,” D.C. Policy Center Executive Director Yesim Sayin told Bisnow in an email. “This is certainly not the bottom.”  “Things have deteriorated since [2021],” Sayin wrote. “There has been an uptick in sales of…

February 6, 2024 | D.C. Policy Center

Howard basketball wants to help the youth of Washington D.C., here’s the plan | HBCU Sports

On February 2, 2024, a D.C. Voices article was cited by HBCU Sports: According to a report from the D.C. Policy Center, a non-partisan think tank, between 2016 and 2022, the Metropolitan Police Department averaged 2,235 arrests per year under the age of 18. This arrest rate is nearly twice that of across…

February 5, 2024 | D.C. Policy Center

Study shows equitable access is opening doors for at-risk DC students | WUSA9

On February 2, 2024, the Education Policy Initiative’s report on Equitable Access in D.C. public schools was featured in a WUSA9 segment: A new report by D.C. policy center, a non-partisan think tank, analyzed 25 schools out of 200 in the lottery system that prioritized applications from at-risk students or kids who are experiencing…

February 5, 2024 | D.C. Policy Center

Top D.C. Public Schools Increase At-Risk Student Enrollment After Policy Change | DCist

On January 31, 2024, an Education Policy Initiative report on Equitable Access in D.C. schools was the subject of a DCist article: The new report supports earlier research by the D.C. Policy Center, which has shown that while the Equitable Access option may only do so much to increase diversity across the…

January 31, 2024 | D.C. Policy Center

The first year of Equitable Access: An examination of common lottery outcomes for at-risk students

Quick Links Other reports in this series Executive Summary In school year 2022-23, the District of Columbia introduced an Equitable Access (EA) option at the systems level in the common lottery system for public schools. This allowed District of Columbia Public Schools (DCPS) and public charter schools to prioritize applications from students…

January 31, 2024 | Chelsea Coffin,

Capitals’ and Wizards’ Likely Move to Virginia Forces DC Real Estate to Reassess | Commercial Observer

On January 25, 2024, Executive Director Yesim Sayin was quoted by Commercial Observer: “[It] is disquieting news for a downtown that’s already ailing,” said Yesim Sayin, executive director of the D.C. Policy Center. “It’s hard to tell what direct impacts this could have on the Gallery Place/Chinatown neighborhood in the years to…

January 26, 2024 | D.C. Policy Center

‘Shocking’ Plunge In Office Values Reveals Depth Of D.C.’s Looming Economic Crisis | Bisnow

On January 24, 2024, Executive Director Yesim Sayin was quoted by Bisnow: “Everyone stands to lose,” D.C. Policy Center Executive Director Yesim Sayin said. “Tax revenue pays for government support and services that all D.C. residents need or use. So that is a very, very disconcerting, very nerve-wracking picture for me.” Read more: ‘Shocking’…

January 25, 2024 | D.C. Policy Center

Creating an embalmer’s license in the District will not increase opportunity for workers

Unfortunately, while there was once great demand for regulation in the funeral industry, heavy regulations have made funeral services more expensive and the industry less competitive. Excess regulation does not necessarily correlate to increases in quality of services, and regulations often increase barriers to entry to the market. These barriers then protect…

January 24, 2024 | Emilia Calma

Greenest of them all: Senior Ekua Hudson tackles food insecurity in the District | The Eagle

On January 19, 2024, a D.C. Policy Center publication on food access in D.C. was cited by The Eagle: Food deserts — urban areas where residents have little to no access to affordable or good-quality fresh foods — make up 11 percent of D.C., of which 82 percent is concentrated in Wards…

January 22, 2024 | D.C. Policy Center

There’s A Growing Push To Develop Social Housing In D.C. What Is It? | DCist

On January 17, 2024, Executive Director Yesim Sayin was quoted by DCist: “Just getting to affordable housing is hard. Getting to affordable housing plus 28 other things on my wish list is even harder,” says Sayin, referring to the additional climate and labor goals attached to Lewis George’s social housing proposal.  Read…

January 18, 2024 | D.C. Policy Center

7News looks at DC program achieving success when it comes to school attendance | WJLA

On January 9, 2024, a D.C. Policy Center publication on chronic absenteeism in D.C. Public Schools was cited by WJLA: The DC Policy Center called chronic absenteeism one of the greatest challenges for DC Public Schools (DCPS). The latest numbers released from the Office of the State Superintendent of Education show chronic…

January 11, 2024 | D.C. Policy Center

The future of Downtown and the future of D.C. are inseparable

The District is now operating under a new normal. Because of remote work, people in the region are commuting less, economic activity is more localized, and competition from remote, lower cost locations—be it exurbia, or a sunbelt state—is much stiffer. Revitalizing Downtown and charting a strong course for development in the vicinity…

January 9, 2024 | Yesim Sayin

Chart of the week: Employment growth in traditionally important D.C. sectors has been weak 

Before the holidays, the Bureau of Labor Statistics released its preliminary employment by sector estimates for November 2023. The data show that, between November 2022 and November 2023, two traditionally important sectors for the District’s economy — the federal government and the professional, scientific, and technical services sector —experienced very weak or…

January 4, 2024 | Daniel Burge

The nation’s capital is struggling more than any state in the country to recover pandemic job losses | Business Insider

On December 24, 2023, Director of the Rivlin Initiative for Economic Policy and Competitiveness Daniel Burge was quoted by Business Insider: “Fewer commuters means less people buying goods or services at DC shops, restaurants, and businesses,” said Daniel Burge, an economic policy expert at the DC Policy Center. Read more: The nation’s…

December 24, 2023 | D.C. Policy Center

7 News asks DC and school leaders what they are doing to address chronic absenteeism | WJLA

On December 20, WJLA quoted D.C. Policy Center’s testimony on chronic absenteeism: The DC Policy Center calls chronic absenteeism one of the greatest challenges for DCPS. The center reports the majority of high school students are chronically absent 60% of the time due in part to perceptions of education and relaxed graduation…

December 22, 2023 | D.C. Policy Center

Chart of the Week: The most recent population numbers in three charts 

On December 19th, the United States Census Bureau released its Vintage 2023 population estimates. Between July 1, 2022 and July 1, 2023, the District’s population grew by 1.2 percent (7th fastest across all states) to reach 678,972. D.C. bucked the national trend on this front—population growth for the nation was only 0.5…

December 22, 2023 | Daniel Burge

Caps, Wizards departure may spell trouble for DC’s Downtown revitalization efforts | Fox 5

On December 19, 2023, Executive Director Yesim Sayin was interviewed by Fox 5: Executive Director Yesim Sayin says less foot traffic could mean a rise in crime in an area where violence is already a concern. “Fewer events at the arena means fewer people coming to these restaurants and that means jobs…

December 20, 2023 | D.C. Policy Center

Millions of dollars at stake if Wizards, Capitals move, DC think-tank says | WTOP

On December 18, 2023, Executive Director Yesim Sayin was quoted by WTOP: D.C. has multiple advantages compared to other jurisdictions, she said, including one level of government that’s in charge of things such as schools, police and firefighters. That enables the city to “have a holistic approach to policy because we can…

December 19, 2023 | D.C. Policy Center

Weekend Roundup: A Commanding Presence | Washington City Paper

On December 18th, 2023, Executive Director Yesim Sayin was cited by the Washington City Paper: The economic impact of the teams’ departure is huge. But, even if the deal is approved, they will continue playing at Capital One Arena at least through 2027. “This gives the city time enough to reimagine and reengineer Downtown,”…

December 18, 2023 | D.C. Policy Center

Where do we go from here?

Last week was truly difficult. The potential loss of the Capitals and the Wizards to Virginia’s suburbs is a disquieting turn of events for the District’s already struggling Downtown. This news, as wounding as it is, shines a bright light on how the policy discourse in the District of Columbia must reset…

December 17, 2023 | Yesim Sayin

Greater Washington on track for lowest office sales volume since 2009 | Washington Business Journal

On December 15, 2023, Executive Director Yesim Sayin was quoted in the Washington Business Journal. A D.C. Policy Center study released earlier this month estimates estimates D.C. could lose up to $102 million in tax revenue if available space isn’t leased, helping to buoy values. “It will take some time for the chips to…

December 16, 2023 | D.C. Policy Center

‘It Ain’t Over’: D.C. Officials Hold Out Hope They Can Keep Wizards, Capitals In The City | WAMU

On December 13th, 2023, Executive Director Yesim Sayin was quoted by WAMU: It was Capital One Arena — formerly known as the MCI Center and then Verizon Center — that revitalized the Chinatown neighborhood and contributed to the general improvement of the city’s economy when it opened downtown in 1997, according to…

December 14, 2023 | D.C. Policy Center

The Caps and Wizards Are Moving to Virginia | Washingtonian

On December 13, 2023, Executive Director Yesim Sayin was quoted by the Washingtonian: Now, with many of downtown’s offices still empty after the pandemic and widespread worries about crime, the departure of the teams could have the opposite effect: “If the teams moved out, we are probably looking at a 30- or…

December 13, 2023 | D.C. Policy Center

Downtown D.C. faces bleak future if Wizards, Capitals depart for Northern Virginia | Washington Business Journal

On December 12, 2023, Executive Director Yesim Sayin was quoted by the Washington Business Journal. “I’m shocked,” said Yesim Sayin, executive director of the D.C. Policy Center, which studies D.C.’s finances and economy. “This is something we would not be able to undo for a very long time. If the teams moved…

December 12, 2023 | D.C. Policy Center

Chronic absenteeism is still higher than pre-pandemic, especially in high school grades

On December 12th, 2023, Senior Education Research Analyst at the Education Policy Initiative, Hannah Mason, testified before the D.C. Council Committee of the Whole, at its public hearing on chronic absenteeism and chronic truancy in the District.

December 11, 2023 | Hannah Mason

New Council Legislation Aims for Universal Out-of-School Time Program | Washington Informer

On December 6, 2023, Director of Research and Policy Emilia Calma was quoted in the Washington Informer: As Emilia Calma, director of policy and research at D.C. Policy Center, explained on Monday, Dec. 4, students experience the widest access gaps in high school and during the summer. She said that issues of…

December 8, 2023 | D.C. Policy Center

Chart of the week: Since January 2020, employment growth has been weak, but the regional economy has been doing better recently

When one looks at employment growth and labor force growth since January of 2020, the numbers over the past year look more promising.

December 7, 2023 | Daniel Burge

Academic recovery in D.C.’s high schools is slow and accompanied by high chronic absenteeism

On Wednesday, December 6th, 2023, Education Policy Initiative Director Chelsea Coffin testified before the D.C. Council Committee of the Whole, at its public hearing on academic achievement in the District.

December 6, 2023 | Chelsea Coffin

‘Everybody stands to lose’: What empty office space in DC means for the city’s revenue | WTOP

On December 5, 2023, an analysis by Nick Dodds, with comments from Executive Director Yesim Sayin, was cited by WTOP: If offices in downtown D.C. remain empty and current leasing trends continue, the city could lose millions from commercial property tax revenue, according to a new analysis from the D.C. Policy Center. Demand…

December 6, 2023 | D.C. Policy Center

Two in five D.C. students were chronically absent last year, data show | Washington Post

On November 30, 2023, Education Policy Initiative Director Chelsea Coffin’s presentation to the “Every Day Counts!” was cited by the Washington Post: In dozens of interviews conducted by the D.C. Policy Center think tank, students, parents and teachers cited the need for time off for illnesses and mental health days amid rising…

December 1, 2023 | D.C. Policy Center

D.C. teachers are leaving their classrooms. Here’s why | Washington Post

On December 1, 2023, Education Policy Initiative Director Chelsea Coffin was cited by the Wasington Post: The patterns follow a brief drop-off in turnover during the first two years of the pandemic, when teacher retention across D.C. got as high as 81 percent. Chelsea Coffin, director of the Education Policy Initiative at…

December 1, 2023 | D.C. Policy Center

Chart of the week: The pandemic’s shadow still looms over D.C.’s commercial real estate market 

Earlier this year, we published a chart of the week on how difficult it is to know what commercial offices are valued at because there are so few sales occurring. This matters greatly in D.C. because the city collects over $1.1 billion in tax revenue from commercial office buildings, and uncertainty about building values adds to fiscal risks and uncertainties.
We estimate possible impacts of continued decline in the commercial real estate market on the District’s fiscal health using three potential scenarios: one in which there is no new leasing, one in which cap rates increase, and one in which both scenarios occur.

December 1, 2023 | Nick Dodds

Capital One Arena Forever Changed Chinatown. Can It Reverse Downtown’s Post-Pandemic Slump? | DCist.com

On November 30, 2023, Executive Director Yesim Sayin was cited by DCist. The neighborhoods around the arena are particularly impacted by federal workers being slow to return to offices, says Yesim Sayin, Executive Director of the D.C. Policy Center, due to the presence of federal agencies like the FBI and the U.S. Government…

December 1, 2023 | D.C. Policy Center

How Some Landlords Skirt D.C.’s Rent Control Law | Washington City Paper

On November 22, 2023, Executive Director Yesim Sayin was quoted the Washington City Paper: There are more than 73,000 rent-controlled units in D.C., according to a 2020 report by the DC Policy Center, which only looked at buildings with five or more units. “The universe of small, rent-controlled buildings is one that…

November 30, 2023 | D.C. Policy Center

Teacher retention in D.C. is back to pre-pandemic levels, with a lot of variation

On Wednesday, November 29, 2023, Education Policy Initiative Director Chelsea Coffin testified before the D.C. Council Committee of the Whole, at its public hearing on teacher and principal retention rates.

November 29, 2023 | Chelsea Coffin

Chart of the week: Is there any job growth in D.C.?

On Friday, November 17th, the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) released its “State Employment and Unemployment Summary” for October 2023. The data show that, since October 2022, total private employment grew by 2.7 percent, while total nonfarm employment only grew by 1.7 percent. Put in numbers, private employment added 14,500 jobs, but…

November 21, 2023 | Daniel Burge,

The definition for lowest performing schools must be clarified in the School Improvement Act

On Monday, November 20, 2023, Education Policy Initiative Director Chelsea Coffin testified before the D.C. Council Committee of the Whole, at its public hearing on the School Improvement Act.

November 20, 2023 | Chelsea Coffin

Chart of the week: Ridership for students is on the rebound but still not at pre-pandemic levels 

While multiple factors may have contributed to this slower recovery, data suggest that fewer students are interested in the Kids Ride Free program. As of January 2023, 44 percent of kindergarten through grade 12 students had requested and received a MetroCard. This share was 68 percent of students at its peak during school year 2019-2020.

November 17, 2023 | Hannah Mason

Families face challenges trying to move away from gun violence | NBC4

On November 15, 2023, Executive Director Yesim Sayin was interviewed by NBC4: “It’s cheaper to build these units in-less resourced parts of town. So, these units come out in probably neighborhoods with the highest poverty rates, and that creates more economic segregation for the city and for the families,” said Sayin. Read…

November 15, 2023 | D.C. Policy Center

Loss of pandemic-related resources will test DCPS’s budgeting practices

On November 13, 2023, Executive Director Yesim Sayin testified at the Committee of the Whole’s Oversight Hearing on District of Columbia Public Schools (DCPS)’s budgeting practices.

November 14, 2023 | Yesim Sayin

New Program Intended to Expand College Access | Washington Informer

On November 8, 2023, an article by Julie Rubin was cited by the Washington Informer: In its March 2023 report, D.C. Policy Center criticized OSSE’s collection of post graduation data, saying that more information about who’s completing their postsecondary education and where could help improve college and career outcomes.  According to the report,…

November 9, 2023 | D.C. Policy Center

Chart of the week: Higher income households move to D.C. often and move out of D.C. even more often

In mid-September, drawing on IRS migration data spanning from 2019 to 2021, researchers at the Office of Revenue Analysis in D.C. found that people who moved out of D.C. had higher average incomes than people who moved in. This trend resulted in a loss of taxable income for the District. Using last month’s release of the one-year American Community Survey (ACS) Public Use Microdata Sample (PUMS), we examined whether household migration trends from 2019 to 2022 tell a similar story, and whether anything changed in 2022.   

November 9, 2023 | Daniel Burge,

Alternative Workforce Plans can help grow local talent, especially in construction where workers are lacking 

On November 9, 2023, Director of Policy and Research Emilia Calma submitted written testimony during the Executive Administration & Labor Public Roundtable on First Source requirements and the use of Alternative Workforce Plans.

November 9, 2023 | Emilia Calma

D.C. Voices: Juvenile Justice

We asked individuals from multiple institutions that serve incarcerated youth to find out more about how D.C. can better serve its incarcerated youth.

November 1, 2023 | Hannah Mason

Amid chronic absenteeism from pandemic, fewer DC students repeating 9th grade | WTOP

On October 30, 2023, an article by Chelsea Coffin and Hannah Mason was cited by WTOP: Since the pandemic, data from the superintendent’s office shows that fewer D.C. public school students have been repeating the ninth grade. Taken at face value, that may sound like a good thing. However, a D.C.-based think…

October 31, 2023 | D.C. Policy Center

Policy Brief: How the District of Columbia Can Create Universal Out-of-School Time Opportunities for Youth | DC Action

On October 26, 2023, the D.C. Policy Center report Needs assessment of out-of-school time programs in the District of Columbia was cited in a DC Action policy brief on out of school time programs: Disinvestment linked to structural racism, as shown by data from the DC Policy Center’s 2023 OST needs assessment of OST,…

October 26, 2023 | D.C. Policy Center

D.C. releases ‘highest ever’ school enrollment figures | Washington Post

On October 26th, 2023 Education Policy Initiative report State of D.C. Schools, 2021-2022 was cited in the Washington Post: Before the public health crisis, schools had been growing by an average of about 1,600 students annually, according to the D.C. Policy Center, a local think tank. The city added 2,120 students to its schools…

October 26, 2023 | D.C. Policy Center

Chart of the Week: 9th grade repetition is down after the pandemic

Before the pandemic, 9th grade repetition was on the rise. In school year 2019-20, 28 percent of all ninth graders were repeaters. In school year 2021-22, that share fell to 25 percent. This is likely due to the relaxation of related requirements around grading and attendance during the pandemic, which made it easier to earn the requisite credits for grade promotion.

October 26, 2023 | Chelsea Coffin,

Truancy Still an Issue in D.C., Community Members and Experts Say | Washington Informer

On October 25, 2023, Director of the Education Policy Initiative Chelsea Coffin was cited in the Washington Informer: During an Every Day Counts! Task Force meeting in September, Chelsea Coffin of the DC Policy Center revealed that school attendance during the 2022-2023 academic year hadn’t reached pre-pandemic levels, even with a 12 percentage point…

October 26, 2023 | D.C. Policy Center

Why D.C. Residents Are In Prisons Across the U.S. | City Cast DC

Emilia Calma, D.C. Policy Center’s Director of Research and Policy is interviewed by City Cast DC on D.C. residents in BOP custody.

October 23, 2023 | D.C. Policy Center

How D.C.’s Parole System Could Change | City Cast DC

D.C. Policy Center’s Emilia Calma is featured on a City Cast DC episode about D.C.’s parole system and how it could change.

October 23, 2023 | D.C. Policy Center

Chart of the week: Job growth remains tepid with growth coming from an unlikely sector

This morning, the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) released the preliminary data for September employment. According to the data, the District added 2,190 jobs, bringing total nonfarm employment in the city (all employees in the city, regardless of their residence, reported by employer location) to 779,300. In the last 12 months, total nonfarm employment…

October 20, 2023 | Yesim Sayin

Power 100 2023: Advocates & Game Changers | Washington Business Journal

On October 11, 2023, D.C. Policy Center’s Executive Director Yesim Sayin was named one of the Power 100 in the D.C. region by the Washington Business Journal. “It’s like Alaska losing oil overnight.” That’s how Yesim Sayin, the executive director of the D.C. Policy Center, has described the devastating impact remote and…

October 11, 2023 | D.C. Policy Center

Office to residence conversions | Evidence Matters

On October 10, 2023, the D.C. Policy Center Executive Director Yesim Sayin was cited in a HUD publication, Evidence Matters: “That’s the big idea,” says DC Policy Center’s Yesim Sayin. “You have one type of use in a building, offices, that is in low demand, and another kind of use, housing, that…

October 11, 2023 | D.C. Policy Center

D.C. on track to meet its housing goals, but some advocates say they aren’t seeing benefits yet | The Wash

On October 10, 2023, D.C. Policy Center Executive Director Yesim Sayin was cited by The Wash: That’s because regions like these are easier to build upon, said Yesim Sayin, executive director of the D.C. Policy Center, a nonprofit research center. “The zoning is more permissive than, say Wards 3 or 6, with…

October 11, 2023 | D.C. Policy Center

New Knowledge | City Observatory

On October 6, 2023, City Observatory’s weekly newsletter published a commentary on a recent D.C. Policy Center report: The DC Policy Center has an interesting new report charting key population changes in Washington.  In contrast to the simple (and largely wrong) “doom loop” narratives, about cities, this study shows that dense, amenity-rich…

October 7, 2023 | D.C. Policy Center

Chart of the week: In 2022, multifamily rents grew much faster in the suburbs and exurbs than in D.C. 

A recent Wall Street Journal article presenting a comparative analysis of rent growth between urban and suburban communities, shows that across the country, rents in the suburbs are rising at a much higher rate than their urban counterparts. The author ties this trend to pandemic-induced out-migration from cities to their neighboring suburban communities. Wondering whether these trends held true for D.C. and the surrounding region, we conducted a regional analysis of multifamily rental growth using data from CoStar. The data show that while rents have grown much faster in the surrounding exurbs and suburbs than D.C., rent growth has slowed down significantly across the board in the last year.

October 5, 2023 | Nick Dodds

D.C.’s household growth is predominantly driven by singles aged 25 to 34

Recently, the main source of population growth in the District shifted from net in-migration to natural growth. During the same period, the city experienced slower growth in tax filers relative to taxable incomes and income tax revenue. Outmigration, net of those who moved into the city,  resulted in a loss of over…

October 3, 2023 | Bailey McConnell,

D.C. school boundary study sparks debate, worry from parents | Washington Post

On September 30, 2023, our Education Policy Initiative’s s recent publication on school boundaries was cited by the Washington Post. Almost three-quarters of students in D.C. do not attend their neighborhood public school — though in-boundary enrollment is higher in wealthier areas — opting instead to apply through the common lottery to…

September 30, 2023 | D.C. Policy Center

The Government Shutdown Will Be as Painful as Biden Wants it to Be | National Review

On September 29, The D.C. Policy Center Executive Director Yesim Sayin was cited by the National Review: “For all practical purposes for D.C., the federal government has been shut down since March 9, 2020” the D.C. Policy Center Executive Director Yesim Sayin said recently as the prospect of government shutdown loomed even…

September 29, 2023 | D.C. Policy Center

Metro’s Financial Crisis Demands Leadership from D.C. But the Prospect of New Taxes is Making Politicians Skittish | Washington City Paper

On September 29, 2023, the D.C. Policy Center’s Executive Director, Yesim Sayin, was cited by the Washington City Paper: “I was shocked by how little Metro can do to solve this problem,” says Yesim Sayin, the head of the D.C. Policy Center and a former official in the CFO’s office, after reading through WMATA’s…

September 29, 2023 | D.C. Policy Center

What Shutdown? Downtown D.C. Is Already a Ghost Town | POLITICO

On September 29, 2023, the D.C. Policy Center’s Executive Director, Yesim Sayin, was cited by Politico: “For all practical purposes for D.C., the federal government has been shut down since March 9, 2020,” said Yesim Sayin, executive director of the D.C. Policy Center, a leading District-focused think tank. Read More: What Shutdown? Downtown…

September 29, 2023 | D.C. Policy Center

D.C. raises revenue estimate in the short-term, but shutdown and commercial real estate cloud the future | Washington Business Journal

On September 29, 2023, the D.C. Policy Center Executive Director Yesim Sayin was cited by the Washington Business Journal: “Commercial property has always been the District’s workhorse … and these are the kinds of buildings that are increasingly under duress,” Yesim Sayin, executive director of the D.C. Policy Center, said at the…

September 29, 2023 | D.C. Policy Center

2023 State of Business Report: Doing Business Under Fiscal Distress

Executive summary The past three years have been turbulent for many businesses in the District of Columbia. The pandemic shifted regional labor dynamics and economic activity away from urban job centers, in turn weakening the District’s economic competitive position.  As people spend less time in the city and more time in the…

September 28, 2023 | Bailey McConnell,

Chart of the week: D.C. business applications are still up versus 2019, but slowing down compared to early pandemic

In the first year of the pandemic, one bright spot in D.C.’s economy was an uptick in start-up businesses. Business applications with a high likelihood in transitioning into a business with a payroll (high propensity business applications) were up by 8 percent in 2020 the previous year. The trend continued into 2021,…

September 22, 2023 | Bailey McConnell

Chart of the week: New PARCC data show overall gain for DC students last year—but high school progress remained flat 

D.C. released the PARCC statewide assessment results for school year 2022-23. The results shed light on academic recovery, which was a key focus for the District during school year 2022-23—and that recovery, in terms of learning, is off to a good start. But digging deeper reveals large differences in the results between elementary, middle, and high schoolers.

September 7, 2023 | Chelsea Coffin

DC Greens Brings Fresh Produce to East of The River | The Washington Informer

On September 6, 2023, the D.C. Policy Center’s work on food security in D.C. was cited by the Washington Informer The D.C. Policy Center conducted a series of reports on food insecurity issues across the District, citing that over 75% of food deserts amassed in Wards 7 and 8 alone, making up…

September 6, 2023 | D.C. Policy Center

Pandemic-era migration cost D.C. more than $1 billion | Axios D.C.

On August 30, 2023, the D.C. Policy Center’s chart of the week, What does the IRS migration data tell us about outmigration from D.C.?, was cited by Axios D.C.: Yes, but: The District has made up its losses thanks to the growing incomes of those staying put. “Between 2020 and 2021, non-migrant resident…

August 30, 2023 | D.C. Policy Center

Families prepare for federal demand to return to in-person work | Washington Examiner

On August 24, 2023, the D.C. Policy Center’s report, Remote work and the future of D.C. (Part 2): What does remote work mean for the District of Columbia’s tax base?, was cited by the Washington Examiner: A 2022 study by the D.C. Policy Center found that 137 of 733 large office buildings…

August 24, 2023 | D.C. Policy Center

Chart of the week: How much is commercial office property worth in D.C.?

One feature of real estate is we are never sure how much a property is worth until it is sold. Usually, when estimating the value of a commercial office building, appraisers and tax assessors rely on the sales price of comparable buildings that had been recently sold. Comparable sales data offer a…

August 17, 2023 | Yesim Sayin

Chart of the week: What does the IRS migration data tell us about outmigration from D.C.?

Recently published migration data compiled by the IRS using addresses on federal income tax filings provide additional insights on the pandemic-induced exodus from the District of Columbia (national analyses here). According to these data, between tax years 2020 and 2021, net outmigration (inflow minus outflow) from the District added up to 8,365 tax filing units…

August 11, 2023 | Yesim Sayin

Human Rights Watch’s Opposition to AB 645 – Letter to California Senate Appropriations Committee | HRW

On August 7, 2023 the D.C. Policy Center’s article, Predominately black neighborhoods in D.C. bear the brunt of automated traffic enforcement, was cited by Human Rights Watch: As such, implementation of AB 645 risks the same results as those found in Chicago, where between 2015 and 2019, speed cameras ticketed households in…

August 7, 2023 | D.C. Policy Center

Chart of the week: D.C. teachers earn 55 cents for every dollar principals earn—but more overall than in most nearby jurisdictions

DC teacher and principal salaries are both higher than the national average and surrounding areas with the exception of New York City. The National Teacher and Principal Surveys uses representative data to demonstrate just how much these occupations earn annually.

August 3, 2023 | Hannah Mason

D.C. region’s federal workforce is shrinking again. Here’s why it’s a concern. | Washington Business Journal

That lines up with findings the D.C. Policy Center put out this year that remote work is hollowing out D.C.’s urban center as jobs shift to the cheaper Maryland and Virginia suburbs. Workers are holding on to schedules where they work in-office only part of the week, saving them thousands of dollars in commuting and other costs. And economic development wins, such as those promised by Amazon.com Inc. in Arlington, are losing some of their punch as fewer workers and companies move to be near them, said Yesim Sayin, executive director of the center.

August 2, 2023 | D.C. Policy Center

Chart of the week: Employment in D.C. in one chart

The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics released the most recent state and local employment numbers on Friday, July 21. These data show that as of June 2023, roughly 39 months after the pandemic began, private sector employment in D.C. is still very much in recovery.   In the last year, private sector employment…

July 28, 2023 | Yesim Sayin

Where the most U.S. residents bake because of concrete and lack of trees | Washington Post

Forty-one million residents among all nine cities experience the temperature boost, some up to 10 degrees or more, exposing them to higher risks of heat-related illness and more expensive cooling costs, the study found. Climate Central’s analysis did not include demographic data, Brady said, but other organizations such as the D.C. Policy Center have conducted research showing that lower-income communities face disproportionate impact from the heat island effect, partly because their neighborhoods often lack trees.

July 26, 2023 | D.C. Policy Center

Chart of the week: Are D.C. commuters self-selecting out of longer-distance commuters, or are their commutes just going faster?

Prior D.C. Policy Center research has shown that since the onset of the pandemic, fewer workers have reported their place of work as D.C. because of the continued popularity of remote work. In 2019, for example, an estimated 779,000 residents of the Washington metropolitan area reported D.C. as their place of work….

July 21, 2023 | Bailey McConnell

Chart of the week: D.C.’s heat exposure index shows the impact of severe heat is worst east of Rock Creek Park

D.C. summers feature hot temperatures and high humidity, compounded by effects of urban heat islands which trap heat in highly developed parts of the city. However, not only can temperatures vary widely across the city, but sensitivity to heat varies widely across the District as well.   Exposure to heat in the District…

July 6, 2023 | Emilia Calma

‘A pile of assumptions’: How a long-delayed database project affected decision-making on rent caps | The DC Line

On June 26, 2023, the D.C. Policy Center’s report, Appraising the District’s rentals, was cited by The DC Line: This form of rent stabilization in DC dates to passage of the Rental Housing Act of 1985, which limited rent increases for most apartments built before 1976.  But there’s no firm number available on…

June 27, 2023 | D.C. Policy Center

Advocating for a Better Data Ecosystem | Jobs for the Future

On April 26, 2023, the D.C. Policy Center’s work was cited by Jobs for the Future: Defining the why. CityWorks DC partnered with the D.C. Policy Center to publish their first brief, The Case for Creating a Local Talent Pipeline in the District of Columbia. The brief shifts the narrative away from anecdote and…

June 27, 2023 | D.C. Policy Center

Chart of the week: Distribution of radon in the District of Columbia 

Environmental toxins can have serious health effects including radon, a gas that comes from uranium deposits. Most homes tested in the District are within safe levels of radon, but testing is uneven across the District’s wards.

June 23, 2023 | Emilia Calma

Chart of the week: The relationship between race and income in D.C., the region, and nationwide

What do we know about income distribution patterns in the District, and how they change by race? And how does the income distribution within racial groups in D.C. compare to the rest of the country? Looking at ACS income data for Black and white-headed households, we uncovered three interesting observations. 

June 16, 2023 | Nick Dodds

5 things we know about regional business migration trends

Business migration trends offer important insights on regional dynamics. While the Washington metropolitan area shares a labor force and many economic strengths, D.C. has, on net, lost businesses to elsewhere in the region. And, though D.C. is strongest at attracting small, young firms, it is still a net exporter of these businesses. This can be an indicator of what businesses are lacking in D.C. and feel that they can get elsewhere. Businesses move for a variety of reasons, but it is possible that these firms need to operate in different environments as they begin to mature, or that they grow out of the city as they hire more employees and increase sales. In the future, a better understanding of why businesses move will be central to D.C.’s future economic success, especially as economic activity has become more dispersed.

June 13, 2023 | Bailey McConnell

Chart of the week: Domestic in-migration is still strongest in the region’s exurbs

New data show that since the peak of the pandemic, population growth has slowed in the exurbs and is improving in D.C. But, domestic in-migration is still strongest in the region’s exurbs.

June 9, 2023 | Bailey McConnell

While we know where students with special education needs live and go to school, more study is needed to address gaps in accessibility for out-of-school time programs

On June 7, 2023, Director of Policy and Research Emilia Calma testified during the Committee of the Whole Public Hearing on the provision of out of school time (OST) programs, and Bill 25-36, “Out of School Time Special Education Inclusion and Standards Amendment Act of 2023.” The testimony focuses on where students with special education needs live and go to school, as well as issues that will have to be addressed to increase OST access for students with special education needs.

June 7, 2023 | Emilia Calma

Chart of the week: The long view of the District’s labor market

For the nearly fifty years since Home Rule—except for a two-year period between 1979 and 1981, the eight-year period prior to the Revitalization Act, and the few months that followed the pandemic—the District’s labor force and resident employment has grown. This happened even during periods when the labor force-eligible population (non-institutionalized residents 16 and older) was declining.

June 2, 2023 | Yesim Sayin

Programs servicing youth who are experiencing homelessness in the District of Columbia: A public expenditure review

This report examines how providers of housing for youth experiencing homelessness obtain their funding (sources of funds), how they spend this funding (uses of funds), how these vary across providers and program types, and what role D.C. government funds play in the finances of the providers. The report also presents some information on how the COVID-19 pandemic impacted the providers and what they see as risks to their financial models in the coming years. This information helps inform the city about housing capacity and funding levels.

June 1, 2023 | Yesim Sayin,

The Futility of School Reform | The American Thinker

Tales of out-of-control schools regularly surface.  A report from the D.C. Policy Center tells how the Washington D.C.’s often violent public school system has been boosting graduation rates while measured student academic achievement fell. Horror stories from majority Black school systems in cities like Baltimore tell of illiterates graduating in the top of their class.  Nearly everyone knows why Whites flee schools as Black enrollment increases. Ironically, when professional educators finally confront these educational dystopias, everything adheres to the Black victimization narrative — yes, Blacks are routinely disproportionately punished, but this punishment just reflects society’s inherent racism.

May 29, 2023 | D.C. Policy Center

Lawsuit exposes horrific conditions in Washington D.C. jail | WSWS.org

On May 24, 2023, the D.C. Policy Center’s report, The District of Columbia’s Criminal Justice System under the Revitalization Act, was cited by WSWS: According to the DC Policy Center, at least 60 percent of the facility’s 1,400 male and female detainees “are awaiting trial, or in other words, have not yet…

May 24, 2023 | D.C. Policy Center

D.C.’s adult public charter schools: Who they serve, how they serve, and what they achieve

In D.C., many adults lack a high school diploma, and most jobs require some postsecondary education. Thus, career and education support for adult learners is incredibly important. While workforce training and postsecondary learning programs are common, D.C. is rare in that it has publicly funded schools at which adult learners can earn a high school degree, gain English language skills, or enroll in workforce programs.  

May 23, 2023 | Chelsea Coffin,

DC Schools Are Still Enforcing COVID Protocols, Keeping Kids Out Of Class As Grades Plummet | Daily Caller

Of third through eighth graders, 31% of students met English grade level expectations in the 2021-2022 school year, a decline from 37% during the 2018-2019 school year, according to the D.C. Policy Center

May 11, 2023 | D.C. Policy Center

Public school enrollment in Maryland not back to pre-pandemic levels | DC News Now

A just-released report by the D.C. Policy Center says that while enrollment has rebounded post-pandemic, there has been an uptick in students dealing with mental health issues.

May 11, 2023 | D.C. Policy Center

How programs for adult learners are contributing to a rise in school enrollment in DC | ABC 7

On May 8, 2023, the D.C. Policy Center’s chart of the week, D.C.’s enrollment is up in school year 2022-23, with uneven growth by grade band, was cited by ABC 7: An analysis by the D.C. Policy Center shows the 2022-2023 school year enrollment climbed nearly 3% at D.C. Public Charter and Pre-k…

May 8, 2023 | D.C. Policy Center

D.C. school enrollment boom helped by rise in adult learners | Washington Post

On May 6, 2023, the D.C. Policy Center’s chart of the week, D.C.’s enrollment is up in school year 2022-23, with uneven growth by grade band, was cited by the Washington Post: Most of those students entered prekindergarten, elementary, middle and high school classrooms. But a sizable chunk — more than one-third…

May 6, 2023 | D.C. Policy Center

Worker sprawl in the Washington metropolitan area: Is D.C. still the region’s job hub?

How is job activity is shifting, and what does it mean for the District’s competitiveness in the region? Traditional job data do not account for where workers are working. This can obscure where labor market recovery is taking place. Examining a worker-based measure shows that significant portions of job activity have moved to suburbia and exurbia in occupations where employees can work remotely.

May 1, 2023 | Bailey McConnell,

Chart of the week: D.C. has a smaller share of the region’s service-sector jobs now than pre-pandemic, a bellwether of continued economic distress

The pandemic accelerated labor market shifts that present new challenges and risks to large metropolitan areas like the D.C. region. When it comes to attracting talent, D.C. not only competes with neighbors like Arlington, Fairfax, and Montgomery Counties, but also large and small cities across the country. This has always been the case, but now, workers and businesses alike are increasingly mobile thanks to the rise of remote work.

April 28, 2023 | Bailey McConnell,

Organizers Demand Racial Equity in Tax Policy Recommendations | The Washington Informer

On April 26, 2023, D.C. Policy Center Executive Director Yesim Sayin was mentioned by the Washington Informer: In total, there are 11 members, 10 of which are appointed by the mayor and D.C. Council. Other commissioners include David Catania, former D.C. council member and current managing director of Georgetown Public Affairs, Rashad…

April 26, 2023 | D.C. Policy Center

As Council Committee Embraces SROs, a Grassroots Organization Touts Different Approach to Gun Violence | The Washington Informer

On April 25, 2023, the D.C. Policy Center’s publication, D.C. students are exposed to more community violence, was cited by The Washington Informer: According to D.C. Policy Center, nearly 80% of District residents lived within half a mile of a homicide — more than likely in places where children live — in 2021. A study conducted…

April 25, 2023 | D.C. Policy Center

This Bill Could Help D.C. Turn Vacant Homes Into Grocery Stores | DCist

On April 25, 2023, Executive Director Yesim Sayin was quoted by DCist: The bill echoes a proposal floated by Bowser in her budget support act that would allow the D.C. government to buy land underneath rental or owner-occupied housing, entering into a ground lease with the owner with the intent to secure its long-term…

April 25, 2023 | D.C. Policy Center

D.C. public schools increased graduation rates despite plummeting test scores, report reveals | The Lion

On April 25, 2023, the D.C. Policy Center’s report, State of D.C. Schools 2021-22, was cited by The Lion: A new report reveals that Washington D.C.’s public schools have increased their graduation rates despite marked declines in both reading and math. The D.C. Policy Center report, which compared recent data with pre-pandemic statistics,…

April 25, 2023 | D.C. Policy Center

Chart of the week: Roughly one third of students who match in the common lottery do so through a preference

My School DC has released the results of the 2023 common lottery, which matches students who newly enroll in pre-kindergarten, at a public charter school, or at a District of Columbia Public Schools school aside from their in-boundary option. Overall, the number of applications increased to 22,912 in 2023, up from a pandemic dip to 19,926 in 2021 but still 9 percent down from pre-pandemic levels

April 21, 2023 | Chelsea Coffin

Recommendations for out-of-school time programs in the District of Columbia

Out-of-school time (OST) programs, such as afterschool and summer programs, are important to many families the District of Columbia. Based on our analyses of where students live and go to school, locations of OST programs, potential need for additional programs, proximity analyses, and issues faced by providers and parents, this article contains recommendations for the Deputy Mayor for Education on OST programming.

April 18, 2023 | Emilia Calma,

Out-of-school time programs in the District of Columbia: Parent and guardian experiences

Out-of-school time (OST) programs, such as afterschool and summer programs, are important to many families the District of Columbia. The experience of families is important in understanding what kinds of out of school time (OST) programs and service levels are desired and needed, as well as barriers families face to accessing programs. To understand more about the experience of families with OST programs, the D.C. Policy Center administered a survey to parents and guardians of children who are eligible to participate in OST programs and conducted a listening session with parents who are members of Parents Amplifying Voices in Education (PAVE).

April 18, 2023 | Emilia Calma,

Who provides of out-of-school time programs in the District of Columbia?

Out-of-school time (OST) programs, such as afterschool and summer programs, are important to many families the District of Columbia. In addition to the number of out of school time (OST) seats available, it is important for the types of programming and services offered by providers to meet the needs of students. To learn more about program characteristics, times programs are offered, and what kinds of services and staff programs have, the D.C. Policy Center administered two surveys to providers of OST programs. This article describes provider characteristics identified through the responses to the survey, and discusses issues frequently mentioned by providers as pressure points or points of concern.

April 18, 2023 | Emilia Calma,

How close are out-of-school time programs to where students live?

Out-of-school time (OST) programs, such as afterschool and summer programs, are important to many families the District of Columbia. Where programs are located is an extremely important factor for access to out of school time (OST) programs in the District. For some families, having programs located close to where they live might be the most helpful, whereas for others it might be most helpful for programs to be located near where children go to school. This article presents analyses of current coverage, defined as the number of OST seats by ward compared to the total number of public school students who live in that ward as well as the number of students who attend school in that ward. It also develops metrics of exposure, which shows proximity of OST seats to children and youth weighted by the number of students.

April 18, 2023 | Emilia Calma,

Needs assessment of out-of-school time programs in the District of Columbia

Out-of-school time programs, such as afterschool and summer programs, are important to many families the District of Columbia. This report examines, for school year 2021-22, the subsidized OST seats that exist across the District, including how many are available versus needed, based on four different policy metrics. The greatest OST capacity, in raw numbers, is in wards where most students live and go to school. However, the number of students is still proportionally higher than the number of seats.

April 18, 2023 | Yesim Sayin,

Progressives Fear Business Interests Have Dominated a Key Tax Policy Group Guiding Future Budgets | Washington City Paper

On April 18, 2023, D.C. Policy Center Executive Director Yesim Sayin was mentioned by Washington City Paper: It’s probably no great surprise to see this kind of talk among commission members considering its composition; Bowser got to appoint five members, and she picked Catania, McLean, Williams, attorney James Hudson, and Carolyn Rudd, a past board…

April 18, 2023 |

Chart of the week: D.C. children face unequal access to out-of-school time programs

Out-of-school time (OST) programs, such as afterschool and summer programming, provide childcare, academic support, and social and emotional development to students and families in D.C. But, access to these programs is not equal across the District.

April 13, 2023 | Emilia Calma,

D.C. Voices: Highlights from the release of State of D.C. Schools, 2021-22

In school year 2021-22, all students returned to in-person learning for the first time in almost two years after the COVID-19 pandemic began in spring 2020. The D.C. Policy Center’s State of D.C. Schools, 2021-22 report examines the transition back to in-person learning, measuring outcomes for the first time since the start…

April 13, 2023 | Julie Rubin

How many more out-of-school time seats does the District of Columbia need?

Out-of-school time (OST) programs, such as afterschool and summer programs, are important to many families the District of Columbia. To determine what kind of out-of-school time (OST) programming and how many OST seats the city needs to invest in, the city must first determine policy goals and what populations need these services. Using the universe of children and youth attending D.C. public schools as the base (including both DCPS and public charter schools), this section identifies the potential need for subsidized out-of-school time programs based on the distribution of children and youth across two broad age groups and four broad policy targets, and identifies what gaps exist under each metric.

April 12, 2023 | Emilia Calma,

How many out-of-school time seats D.C. has, and where they’re located

Out-of-school time (OST) programs, such as afterschool and summer programs, are important to many families the District of Columbia. Access to out-of-school time (OST) programming is dependent on many factors, including the availability of seats and location of programs. This article presents information on the number and location of subsidized OST programs in the District of Columbia, focusing on afterschool and summer programs by location and by two main age groups: prekindergarten (PK3) to 8th grade and grades 9 to 12.

April 12, 2023 | Emilia Calma,

Demand for out-of-school time programming shifts, based on where students live versus where they go to school

Out-of-school time (OST) programs, such as afterschool and summer programs, are important to many families the District of Columbia. Policy decisions around OST programming, like where OST seat are located, and how the city invests funding, are highly dependent on where children live and where they go to school. To set the stage for a deeper analysis of out-of-school time programs, this article examines where students live, where they attend school, and how these vary both geographically across the city, and by various student characteristics.

April 12, 2023 | Emilia Calma,

Mayor Bowser Made a Wrong Turn on Traffic Safety. A Real Task Force Can Get DC Moving in the Right Direction. | Fines & Fees Justice Center

Enforcement-heavy safety strategies, coupled with flat fine systems, also have a particularly devastating impact on lower-income and working-class communities, as well as communities of color. A 2018 DC Policy Center report stated that predominantly Black neighborhoods in the District bore the brunt of automated traffic enforcement.

April 11, 2023 | D.C. Policy Center

D.C. school lottery sees uptick in applications, high school interest | Washington Post

It is still early — the number of students who end up attending each of D.C.’s schools will fluctuate until at least October — but interest in the lottery this year could signal that enrollment next year will be on par with this year’s figures, said Chelsea Coffin, director of the Education Policy Initiative at the D.C. Policy Center, a think tank.

April 9, 2023 | D.C. Policy Center

Chart of the week: D.C.’s enrollment is up in school year 2022-23, with uneven growth by grade band

The Office of the State Superintendent of Education (OSSE) has released enrollment audit data for school year 2022-23, showing that enrollment in D.C.’s public schools is up by 2.7 percent. This is a notable shift from virtually no growth in enrollment during the two pandemic school years in a system that historically adds 1,500 students a year. About two-thirds of the additional students are in pre-kindergarten through grade 12, and a significant share are adult and alternative students.

April 7, 2023 | Chelsea Coffin

DC’s Coolidge High School to allow students to take college classes with new program | WJLA

For every 100 ninth-graders in D.C., 37 students will graduate high school but not enroll in postsecondary school. Only eight out of 100 will graduate college within six years of leaving high school, D.C. Policy Center reported.

April 6, 2023 | D.C. Policy Center

Festival season over | Axios DC

D.C. Policy Center executive director Yesim Sayin Taylor says she thinks of D.C.’s rent control laws as more like rent stabilization that prevents price gouging.

April 6, 2023 | D.C. Policy Center

How to find rent-controlled units in D.C. | Axios DC

On April 6, 2023, D.C. Policy Center Executive Director Yesim Sayin was quoted by Axios DC: D.C. Policy Center executive director Yesim Sayin Taylor says she thinks of D.C.’s rent control laws as more like rent stabilization that prevents price gouging. State of play: There was an attempt by the D.C. Council during…

April 6, 2023 | D.C. Policy Center

Bowser Budget Proposal Calls For Repurposing Camera Ticket Money, New Task Force To Look At Equity In Fines | DCist

He cited a 2019 study from the D.C. Policy Center that shows the cameras are distributed in neighborhoods that have more people of color and lower incomes. He also said D.C. fines more money per capita than any other city.

April 5, 2023 | D.C. Policy Center

New On-Campus Exhibit Showcases a Century of Eastern’s History | Washington Informer

During the 2021-2022 school year, Eastern High School had 766 students, the majority of whom were Black. Among all of the District public school feeder patterns, the one leading to Eastern most closely represents the District’s racial demographics, according to a report the D.C. Policy Center released earlier this year. 

April 5, 2023 | D.C. Policy Center

Out-of-school time capacity is unevenly spread across the District, and barriers to access remain

On April 5, 2023, Director of Policy and Research Emilia Calma testified during the FY2024 budget oversight hearing on education agencies before the Committee of the Whole. The testimony focused on findings on OST capacity across the District and how it compares to where students live and go to school. The testimony is based on a forthcoming D.C. Policy Center report, Needs assessment of out-of-school time programs in the District of Columbia.

April 5, 2023 | Emilia Calma

The Closure of Walmart is Blow for an Entire Community. Former Employee Says H Street Store Was A Site of Community ConnectionThe Closure of Walmart is Blow for an Entire Community | HillRag

Recent research by the DC Policy Center shows that there is a specific geography to food access in DC. So-called “food deserts” are neighborhoods that lack ready access to a full-service grocery store.

The Walmart on H Street NW was just blocks from one such residential area. It’s a neighborhood with multiple public and low-income housing buildings with thousands of residents who call the area home.

April 5, 2023 | D.C. Policy Center

Funding an Education to Employment Data System would fill an important gap in knowledge about D.C.’s public school alumni

On April 5, 2023, Director of the Education Policy Initiative Chelsea Coffin testified during the FY2024 budget oversight hearing on education agencies before the Committee of the Whole. The testimony focused on the critical importance of knowing what happens to D.C.’s high school alumni that will now be possible with the creation of the Education to Employment Data System (or P20W System) in the FY 2024 Budget.

April 4, 2023 | Chelsea Coffin

Bowser Offers Bigger Tax Breaks For Office-To-Housing Conversions In Downtown, But Critics Question Value | DCist

On April 5, 2023, D.C. Policy Center Executive Director Yesim Sayin was quoted by DCist: For Yesim Sayin Taylor, the director of the D.C. Policy Center, some type of government incentives — whether tax breaks, grants, or some other public offerings — will be needed to speed up the process of converting downtown…

April 4, 2023 | D.C. Policy Center

D.C.’s Test Scores and Absenteeism Rates Are Getting Worse, so Why Are More Students Graduating? | Reason Magazine

The high school graduation rate in Washington, D.C., is climbing. However, student school performance seems to be falling dramatically. While more and more seniors graduate high school, test scores are down and absenteeism is up.

April 3, 2023 | D.C. Policy Center

There are large variations in unit costs and grants for youth homelessness, and providers cite need for additional funds

On March 31, 2023, Director of the Policy and Research Emilia Calma testified during the FY2024 budget oversight hearing on the Department of Human Services before the Committee of on Housing. The testimony focused on findings about financial structures of housing providers of youth experiencing homelessness. The testimony is based on a forthcoming D.C. Policy Center report, Public Expenditure Review: Programs servicing youth who are experiencing homelessness in the District of Columbia.

March 31, 2023 | Emilia Calma

Chart of the week: The share of businesses with at least some employees teleworking is 2x higher in D.C. than the U.S.

Data from the 2022 Business Response Survey—a survey administered by U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) to provide timely information to assess the impact of specific events—was released last week. As we begin to emerge from the pandemic, establishments continue to allow telework in D.C.—more so than the rest of the U.S….

March 31, 2023 | Bailey McConnell

Bowser Proposes Slashing Emergency Rental Assistance, Housing Production Funds Amid Grim Economic Forecast | DCist

When the money starts drying up, you have to ask the hard questions. Do I want housing? Do I want [rental assistance]? Do I want money for schools? I mean, they’re competing, and that’s the big change,” says Yesim Sayin Taylor, executive director of local think tank D.C. Policy Center. “This is a city that has been planning for growth since 2005 or so. And in the pandemic years we didn’t have to think about it because money rained from the skies.” 

March 29, 2023 | D.C. Policy Center

Program Allows Black Male Students to Speak Candidly with Elders | Washington Informer

The American Counseling Association estimates that 40% of Black male teenagers suffer from persistent sadness and feelings of hopelessness, with nearly one out of four seriously considering suicide. On the education front, the D.C. Policy Center found two years ago that 14 percent of high school graduates who enter college could expect to obtain their degree within six years. 

March 29, 2023 | D.C. Policy Center

Republicans link DC education system to rising juvenile crime rates | Washington Examiner

Washington schools reported a sharp decline in school attendance for the 2021-22 school year, with nearly half of students missing at least 10% of the entire school year, according to the D.C. Policy Center. Roughly 42% of students were labeled as “truant.” 

March 29, 2023 | D.C. Policy Center

If test scores and attendance are down, how are more students earning high school diplomas? | KQED

On March 27, 2023, the D.C. Policy Center’s report, State of D.C. Schools 2021-22, was cited by KQED: A troubling post-pandemic pattern is emerging across the nation’s schools: Test scores and attendance are down, yet more students are earning high school diplomas. A new report from Washington, D.C., suggests bleak futures for…

March 27, 2023 | D.C. Policy Center

Too few D.C. students finish college. This program aims to change that. | Washington Post

But amid the applause and happy tears, officials acknowledged more must be done — to not only send more children to college but also make sure they graduate. A recent report from the D.C. Policy Center, a local think tank, found that for every 100 ninth-graders in D.C., just eight will graduate college within six years of leaving high school.

March 27, 2023 | D.C. Policy Center

PROOF POINTS: One city hits a high school graduation record but few ninth graders are predicted to end up with a college degree | The Hechinger Report

The numbers are stark in a March 2023 report by the D.C. Policy Center, a nonpartisan research organization. Almost half the students in the district – 48 percent – were absent for 10 percent or more of the 2021-22 school year. Seven years of academic progress were erased in math:  only 19 percent of third through eighth graders met grade-level expectations in the subject in 2021-22, down from 31 percent before the pandemic. 

March 27, 2023 | D.C. Policy Center
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Report: DC kids exposed to more community violence than peers | DC News Now

On March 22, 2023, the D.C. Policy Center’s article, D.C. students are exposed to more community violence, was cited by DC News Now: WASHINGTON (DC News Now) — Children in the District are exposed to more community violence than their peers across the country. That’s according to a report published by the…

March 22, 2023 | D.C. Policy Center

Special-Needs Families Tackle School Placement, Out-of-School Time Quandaries | The Washington Informer

The report said that students with disabilities experienced high levels of absenteeism. They also had the lowest learning outcomes during the 2021-2022 school year, as seen in their scores on the Partnership for Assessment of Readiness for College and Career, also known as PARCC. Researchers attributed that, in part, to staffing vacancies that prevented students from receiving speech and language services and, in some cases, relegated them to a general education classroom without support.

March 22, 2023 | D.C. Policy Center

D.C. students are exposed to more community violence

Rising community violence in the District is exacerbating the academic and socio-emotional issues students D.C. students face as they recover from effects of the COVID-19 pandemic. How can schools, in collaboration with the broader D.C. community, be part of the solution and extend their reach in supporting students holistically?

March 21, 2023 | Jasmine Brann

D.C. Kicks Off Once-A-Decade Process To Redraw School Boundaries | DCist

The report found that current attendance patterns in most cases do not reflect the city’s overall racial diversity, and that some schools are significantly overcrowded while others have trouble filling their seats. Still, the possible changes to boundaries are only likely to impact a relatively small number of schools and kids.

March 21, 2023 | D.C. Policy Center

1 big thing: 🍎 The state of our schools | Axios

On March 15, 2023, the D.C. Policy Center’s report, State of D.C. Schools 21-22, was cited by Axios: D.C. public school students still haven’t fully recovered from the pandemic despite returning to the classroom. Driving the news: A report out today from the D.C. Policy Center says students are still struggling with the residual impacts of…

March 15, 2023 | D.C. Policy Center

Charting D.C. schools’ road to recovery, from enrollment to retention | Washington Post

On March 15, 2023, the D.C. Policy Center’s report, State of D.C. Schools 21-22, was cited by the Washington Post: In the year that D.C. schools fully reopened after being forced to shutter campuses because of the pandemic, math and reading proficiency plummeted, more high school students reported feeling sad or hopeless, and…

March 15, 2023 | D.C. Policy Center

District Links: New council bill aims to boost teacher retention

On March 15, 2023, the D.C. Policy Center’s report, State of D.C. Schools 2021-22, was cited by The DC Line: A report out today delves into the many changes for DC schools since the start of the pandemic. Meanwhile, nine members of the DC Council are introducing a bill that seeks to…

March 15, 2023 | D.C. Policy Center

State of D.C. Schools, 2021-22: In-Person Learning, Measuring Outcomes, and Work on Recovery

State of D.C. Schools is an annual systemwide overview of public education in the District of Columbia. In school year 2021-22, all students returned to in-person learning for the first time in almost two years after the COVID-19 pandemic began in spring 2020. This report examines the transition back to in-person learning, measuring outcomes for the first time since the start of the pandemic, and beginning work on recovery.

March 15, 2023 | Chelsea Coffin,

Map of the week: Where are D.C. Code offenders housed today?

The average distance between D.C. Code offenders and their communities and families is farther than the average distance in other states. The average distance between D.C. and D.C. Code offenders in BOP facilities is 818 miles.6 While there is no recently available data on the U.S. as a whole, one study from 2001 found that the average distance between an incarcerated male and his home or family is 100 miles across all states, and the average distance between an incarcerated female and her home or family is 160 miles.

March 10, 2023 | Emilia Calma,

How much would it cost to build and maintain a new D.C. prison?

Amid ongoing work toward D.C. statehood, an outstanding question is the cost of the District fully re-assuming responsibility for its criminal justice system. One of the most talked-about components of that re-assuming is that the District would need its own prison. Our research suggests that building a new prison for 4,000 to 6,000 inmates could cost between $400 million and $750 million. The annual operating costs for such a facility would range between $180 million and $230 million.

March 8, 2023 | Emilia Calma,

A look at who is incarcerated in D.C.’s criminal justice system

The District’s criminal justice system is largely federalized, and individuals may be held either locally by the District’s Department of Corrections (DOC). or federally by the U.S. Bureau of Prisons (BOP). What do we know about the individuals incarcerated within D.C.’s criminal justice system? How does D.C.’s uniquely federalized system impact D.C. Code offenders, and what does it mean for their access to rehabilitation programs during their incarceration?

March 6, 2023 | Emilia Calma,

Chart of the week: Despite a recent uptick in layoffs and discharges, hiring still lags behind job openings

Layoffs in both D.C. and the entire U.S were up in the second half of 2022 compared to earlier in the year. However, layoffs remain below pre-pandemic levels. And, in D.C., hiring continues to lag historically high levels of job postings.

March 3, 2023 | Bailey McConnell

Processing through D.C.’s criminal justice system: Agencies, roles, and jurisdiction

A long list of entities and agencies make up the District’s criminal justice system. Which ones are local, and which are federal? What are their individual responsibilities, and how are they funded? Finally, how does an individual D.C. Code offender process through this complicated stream of entities?

March 2, 2023 | Emilia Calma,

D.C. collects minimal data on how students do once they’ve graduated. More data could help improve early career outcomes.

In the last budget cycle, OSSE invested in postsecondary supports including the reimagining high schools work-based learning investments, the college rising project, and the DC Futures Tuition Assistance Project. It is critical to measure the impact of these programs, as well as our school system as a whole to see how students…

March 1, 2023 | Julie Rubin

How D.C.’s criminal justice system has been shaped by the Revitalization Act

What does the history of D.C.’s criminal justice system look like, and what changes were enacted under the Revitalization Act? As part of Criminal Justice Week 2023, this introduction to the District’s criminal justice system outlines its current structure, analyzes Revitalization Act changes have impacted justice system operations, and evaluates outcomes for D.C. residents. 

March 1, 2023 | Emilia Calma,

The District of Columbia’s Criminal Justice System under the Revitalization Act: How the system works, how it has changed, and how the changes impact the District of Columbia

The District’s criminal justice system is complex and involves an overlapping system of agencies and organizations that are a mix of federally funded and under federal jurisdiction, federally funded and independently operated, locally funded and under local jurisdiction; and locally funded and independently operated. This unique configuration of entities with disparate leadership—which makes cooperation challenging, and systems change complicated—is the direct result of the federal Revitalization Act of 1997.

March 1, 2023 | Emilia Calma,

Chart of the week: Office occupancy rates and remote work

Hybrid work schedules continue to remain popular with most remote-eligible workers coming into the office 2 to 3 days per week. And, office vacancy rates remain high. As of Q4 2022, office vacancy is 17.3 percent in the central business district. Thus, remote work trends still present a risk to D.C.’s future tax base. While the city cannot likely influence worker preferences and behavior, the best way for the city to maintain and grow its tax base in this new post-pandemic environment is to double down on retaining existing and attracting new residents. 

February 24, 2023 | Bailey McConnell

Enrollment Season Compels Conversation About Educational Equity | The Washington Informer

On February 21, 2023, the D.C. Policy Center’s report, The role of school boundaries in the District of Columbia, was cited by The Washington Informer: In January, the D.C. Policy Center released a report showing that most District students — nearly three out of four — opt to leave their neighborhood to attend either…

February 21, 2023 | D.C. Policy Center

In the second year of the pandemic, D.C. gained early-career workers, but lost high-income residents

Last year, we looked at migration data from 2020 to track demographic shifts in D.C. following the first year of the COVID-19 pandemic. We found the ability to telework was driving some workers out, particularly those well-educated and aged 25 to 34. Recently, 2021 data was released, so we look again at migration across three key demographic groups—age, income, and education—to see if our observations from 2020 held in the second year of the pandemic.

February 17, 2023 | Bailey McConnell

DC’s school boundary review could advance equity, advocates say | Greater Greater Washington

“Within the Jackson-Reed feeder pattern, families tend to have the resources to either choose where they live and therefore choose their by-right school or choose to attend a private school,” said Chelsea Coffin, the Director of the Education Policy Initiative at DC Policy Center and one of the report’s authors.

February 16, 2023 | D.C. Policy Center

Should the Bureaucrats Get Back to Their Desks? | Washington Post

It’s hit the economy of the capital hard — there are some 280,000 federal workers in the region, about 141,000 in Washington itself. The city’s tax revenue is down, stores are closed, and subway ridership is low. “It’s like a three-year hurricane in the city,” says Yesim Sayin, executive director of the D.C. Policy Center, a nonpartisan think tank.

February 16, 2023 | D.C. Policy Center

D.C. Mayor to Biden: Your Teleworking Employees Are Killing My City | Politico

“People kind of want to live in places that give them the opportunity at reasonable prices,” says Yesim Sayim, who runs a local think-tank called the D.C. Policy Center. “They don’t particularly care about the flag that adorns the sky.” Washington always worked well for people, a place that may not have offered the startup-economy upsides of Manhattan or Silicon Valley, but also didn’t come with the risks of an employer going out of business. “But now, if you have a chair and a computer, the world is your oyster. And the presence of a job in D.C. is not necessarily a reason for someone to move to D.C.”

February 16, 2023 | D.C. Policy Center

If federal employees keep working from home, D.C. mayor says White House should flip ‘vast property holdings’ to residential use. How would that work? | MarketWatch

The District of Columbia’s economy is also largely dependent on commuters, given that 70% of its workers lived outside the city before the pandemic, according to a May report from the D.C. Policy Center. 

February 16, 2023 | D.C. Policy Center

Coworking Spaces in Suburbs On the Rise | Commercial Observer

Out-migration from the District to the suburbs led to a decrease of 23,000 residents in 2021, according to D.C. Policy Center, a record high in the last two decades, so it’s not surprising that more people are working from spaces outside the city.

February 16, 2023 | D.C. Policy Center

School boundaries are more than just geographic lines | The DC Line

There are 116 DCPS facilities; 98 of those are considered by-right and 18 are citywide. According to “The Role of School Boundaries in the District of Columbia,” a recent analysis conducted by the DC Policy Center, 72% of students use the common lottery each year to secure a seat in a charter school or a DCPS institution outside of their community; only 28% of students attend their by-right school.

February 9, 2023 | D.C. Policy Center

Downtown D.C.’s struggles mount as many workers remain remote | Washington Post

On January 27, 2023, the D.C. Policy Center’s report, Remote work and the future of D.C. (Part 2), was cited by the Washington Post: Even before the pandemic, downtown Washington had an oversupply of offices that was aggravated by the emergence of telework and competition from emerging neighborhoods such as the Wharf. That dynamic…

January 27, 2023 | D.C. Policy Center

Falling D.C. Office Valuations Making Teardowns More Feasible | Bisnow

“The more successful the conversions are, the less the conversation is about whether the floor plates are right or wrong, because if the value is in residential, then you may as well just tear down and rebuild,” DC Policy Center Executive Director Yesim Sayin said.

January 26, 2023 | D.C. Policy Center

The role of school boundaries in the District of Columbia: Facts and findings on boundary participation, student representation, and facility utilization

For only the second time since 1968, D.C. is reviewing school boundary assignments. Based on their home address, these assignments determine the schools where each D.C. student is guaranteed a seat. There is much we can explore about school boundaries: Where in the city are students are more students attending their by-right school? Which by-right schools are most representative of all public school students? How does enrollment compare to capacity at by-right school facilities? And where in the city could changes to student assignment policies impact the largest number of students?

January 25, 2023 | Chelsea Coffin,

Chart of the week: D.C.’s FY 2024 budget forecast and calendar

D.C. faces conditions that it hasn’t seen for years—the past decade’s rapid growth trends slowing, together with federal pandemic assistance ending. The city’s revenue picture remains stable. But it not strong enough to make up for the end of federal COVID assistance. Thus, the city is already committed to spending much less in FY 2024 than it did in FY 2023, at least on paper.

January 20, 2023 | Yesim Sayin,

A 2023 recession would still hurt Washington | Axios DC

Conventional wisdom says that Washington is recession resilient thanks to Uncle Sam. Federal spending and jobs helped us stave off the worst during the Great Recession. But relying on the federal government isn’t what it used to be, local economists who are concerned about a 2023 slowdown tell Axios. For one, federal workers staying remote means the District is “no longer as protected” from a recession as it was in the past, says Yesim Taylor, head of the D.C. Policy Center.

January 18, 2023 | D.C. Policy Center

Chart of the week: D.C. business establishments are getting smaller post pandemic. But this is because many more start-ups are taking off.

Prior to the pandemic, a typical business establishment in the District’s private sector employed 13.4 employees. By the second quarter of 2022, that number had declined to 10.7, representing a 20 percent contraction in the average establishment size. This decline was observed for all of the District’s major sectors. The average size…

January 13, 2023 | Yesim Sayin

DC Faces Transformative Moment In Federal Hybrid Work Era | Law360

“Washington, D.C., has always been a recession-proof place before the pandemic because we have the federal government here that is countercyclical … It operates in an expanded capacity during bad times,” said Yesim Sayin, executive director of the D.C. Policy Center. “I don’t believe the federal government will be the same type of floating device in the future we had before. Federal spending may still expand, but federal spending accrues everywhere.”

January 10, 2023 | D.C. Policy Center

Chart of the week: When a low unemployment rate is not good news

After peaking in April or May of 2020, unemployment rates declined across large metropolitan areas, often to below pre-pandemic levels. For example, in the Washington metropolitan area, the unemployment rate increased from 3.4 percent in January 2020 to 9.6 percent in May 2020. But the most recent data release from the Bureau…

January 6, 2023 | Yesim Sayin

Two Tickets in DC? Metro Says ‘Pleasant Surprise’ as Fare Evasion Crackdown Starts Slow | NBC 4

On January 3, 2023, D.C. Policy Center Executive Director Yesim Sayin was quoted by NBC 4: Yesim Sayin, executive director of the nonprofit think tank D.C. Policy Center, told the I-Team it’s too soon to say what success looks like for the fare crackdown campaign. She noted the estimated money lost to…

January 3, 2023 | D.C. Policy Center

The Growing Movement For Socialized Housing Could Win A Big Victory In D.C. | Bisnow

Yesim Sayin, executive director of the D.C. Policy Center and one of the only witnesses to speak against the Green New Deal For Housing during its 11-hour public hearing on Nov. 22, said she doesn’t believe there are enough market-rate renters willing to pay the rent needed to cross-subsidize the social housing developments’ cheapest units.

December 22, 2022 | D.C. Policy Center

Food halls, ranked | Axios DC

Public school enrollment in our region has dipped since 2019, especially in suburban school districts.The declines might be caused by decreased demand for public schools during the pandemic and lower birth rates, per the D.C. Policy Center.

December 20, 2022 | D.C. Policy Center

Map of the week: Where did D.C.’s former students attend postsecondary in the fall of 2020?

Out of the graduating class from the first pandemic school year of 2019-20, 51 percent of students from District of Columbia Public Schools (DCPS) and public charter schools enrolled in postsecondary education (including bachelor’s degree and two-year programs) within six months following graduation. This marks a decrease of five percentage points in postsecondary enrollment compared to pre-pandemic school year 2018-19. This suggests that the uncertainty brought by the pandemic led some students to delay or change their plans compared to a typical year.

December 16, 2022 | Chelsea Coffin

D.C. Voices: Supporting students with disabilities

While virtual learning during school year 2020-21 presented challenges to all students, students with disabilities experienced significant impacts to their instruction because of obstacles with service delivery or difficulties identifying students who need additional interventions in the virtual format.[i] Students with disabilities were among those prioritized for an early return to physical…

December 15, 2022 | Julie Rubin

D.C. is a step closer to changing its school funding model | Washington Post

“Our main funding model is that money follows students,” Sayin said. If a school loses students — but not enough in a single grade to eliminate a classroom teacher, for example — DCPS would have to figure out how to provide that school with the lost per-pupil funding.

December 14, 2022 | D.C. Policy Center

Chart of the week: A look at the fare-free bus proposal

On Tuesday, D.C. Council unanimously advanced a bill that would make all Metrobus rides that begin in the District of Columbia free (upon approval of the WMATA Board). The fare-free rides are estimated to cost $34.4 million per the fiscal impact statement issued by the OCFO. In addition, the bill provides $8.5 million to support the…

December 9, 2022 | Yesim Sayin

Public oversight testimony on literacy and the NAEP and PARCC assessments

School year 2021-22 marked an incredibly challenging transition back to in-person learning in D.C., after a difficult virtual school year 2020-21 and shortened school year 2019-20. Chronic absenteeism rose to a high of 48 percent,[i] up from 29 percent in the last full school year of 2018-19. COVID-19 cases spiked to an…

December 8, 2022 | Chelsea Coffin

D.C. Council proposes more incentives to address office, retail vacancies | Washington Business Journal

Of 733 large buildings in D.C., about one in five are more than 25% empty and could rise to one in three if leasing activity does not increase, according to analysis of tax data from D.C. Policy Center, further stressing the city’s tax base.

December 1, 2022 | D.C. Policy Center

‘Wave of the future’: How DC’s million-dollar investment in tutoring is helping students catch up | WTOP

It’s called high-impact tutoring — at least 90 minutes of tutoring per week, divided across a few sessions before, during or after the school day, including immediate tutor feedback. Many sessions include three or fewer students, according to a D.C. Policy Center report.

November 30, 2022 | D.C. Policy Center

Public oversight testimony on attendance, chronic absenteeism, and truancy in the District of Columbia

How much school students attend is a strong indicator of student wellbeing and future academic success, making it a critical metric to track and understand. In D.C., during the virtual school year of 2020-21, even with relaxed attendance requirements, 31 percent of students were chronically absent, up from 29 percent in 2018-19. Among high school students, 35 percent of students were chronically absent, and among students designated as at-risk, this share was 48 percent.

November 30, 2022 | Chelsea Coffin

Highlighting internet disparities | Axios DC newsletter

Between the lines: Before the pandemic, 28% of D.C. households lacked access to broadband internet or a home computer, according to the D.C. Policy Center. This disparity was further highlighted by the rise in remote work and virtual learning during the pandemic.

November 28, 2022 | D.C. Policy Center

Office Giants Call For D.C. Government To Take Risk Of Distress More Seriously | Bisnow

There are 733 large office buildings in the office-heavy parts of the District today, of which 228 are more than 25% vacant or are likely to become vacant in the next two years as tenants leave with no one to replace them, according to a data analysis by the D.C. Policy Center. Those buildings, in turn, could trade for bargain prices and potentially depress the values of similar properties.

November 28, 2022 | D.C. Policy Center

Opinion: D.C.’s downtown is comatose. Here’s how to revive it | Washington Post

At the same time, leaders of America’s biggest cities are grasping the fact that remote and hybrid work are here to stay. A D.C. Policy Center report in May summed up the city’s challenge: “Our best estimate is that of the 401,481 workers who commuted to D.C. from elsewhere prior to the pandemic, 155,550 can do their jobs from home.” There simply won’t be as much need for office space going forward. That’s a massive problem for downtown D.C.‚ which the mayor’s office says consists of more than 90 percent commercial space and only 8 percent residential.

November 23, 2022 | D.C. Policy Center

D.C. Council Testimony on the Green New Deal for Housing Amendment Act of 2022

Bill 24-802, the “Green New Deal for Housing Amendment Act of 2022,” begins with a financially impossible proposition and makes it even costlier.   The bill is premised on the idea that higher-income tenants can cross-subsidize the rents for lower-income tenants, all combined in a mixed-income project. However, the parameters of the bill—the…

November 22, 2022 | Yesim Sayin

Testimony on the RECOVERY Amendment Act of 2021 and D.C.’s fiscal risks

Since the introduction of B24-454 in October of 2021, there have been some improvements in economic activity in the Central Business District (CBD). Office occupancy during the last week of October 2022 was at 40 percent—or 10 percentage points above the same week in October 2021. While economic activity at retail and…

November 22, 2022 | Yesim Sayin

Bowser and Grant Celebrate Record D.C. School Enrollment | Washington Informer

On November 16, 2022, the D.C. Policy Center’s report, Declining births and lower demand: Charting the future of public school enrollment in D.C., was cited by the Washington Informer: The DC Policy Center released a study earlier this year that highlighted declining pre-school and elementary school enrollment in the pre-pandemic years. This had especially…

November 16, 2022 | D.C. Policy Center

D.C. school enrollment hits 15-year high, mayor says | Washington Post

The figure represents an increase of almost 3 percent from last school year, or about 2,600 more students, according to preliminary data from the Office of the State Superintendent of Education (OSSE). Before the pandemic, public school enrollment had been growing by an average of about 1,600 students every school year since the 2007-2008 academic year, according to the D.C. Policy Center, a local research group. That progress stalled during the public health crisis.

November 14, 2022 | D.C. Policy Center

Increased transit delays in fall of 2021 and the potential impact on high school commutes

In the fall of 2021, students in DCPS and public charter schools returned in-person, after spending roughly a year and a half learning at home. Students returned to school at roughly the same time that most of Metro’s 7000-series trains were removed from service due to safety concerns. The reduction in service doubled wait times at Metro stations and put additional strain on the Metro’s bus network. This is concerning because transportation vulnerability, including increased commute times or unreliable service, has been linked to issues with school attendance—which may result in loss of academic achievement.

November 14, 2022 | Alexander Din

Enrollment in D.C. Public Schools Is Back Up After Dipping During The Pandemic | DCist

A July report by the D.C. Policy Center predicted enrollment in D.C.’s public schools could drop by 6,000 students — the equivalent of 16 average-sized schools — over the next five years, driven by falling birth rates and lower demand for living in the District due to the pandemic. “An enrollment decline of this magnitude would have significant implications for D.C.’s public schools.”

November 14, 2022 | D.C. Policy Center

How Metro’s $2 fares have fared | Axios

On November 7, 2022, D.C. Policy Center Executive Director Yesim Sayin was quoted by Axios: Yes, but: There are a few factors besides the price drop that could be contributing to weekend ridership’s rebound.  Historically, Metro has largely been used by commuters during the week — fewer weekend riders means a smaller pool…

November 7, 2022 | D.C. Policy Center

Testimony on housing and affordable housing District-wide and downtown

Executive Director Yesim Sayin testified at a public roundtable hosted by the D.C. Office of Planning on the future of housing in downtown areas. She discussed why housing production is even more critical today than it has ever been for the city’s continued vibrancy, some of the promising ways to increase the production of housing in downtown areas (specifically those areas within the D Zone overlay), and why the Office of the Attorney General’s proposal to expand Inclusionary Zoning requirements into D Zones will impede, and not support, the goal of increasing housing, especially affordable housing in D Zones.

November 1, 2022 | Yesim Sayin

Chart of the week: D.C.’s decline in learning outcomes on the national assessment is similar to declines in other large cities

After years of improvement in D.C., NAEP standardized test scores released in October 2022 show that students’ performance declined across math and English for school year 2022 when compared to 2019. Nationwide and in D.C., the pandemic had a greater negative impact on math than reading.

October 28, 2022 | Julie Rubin

D.C. Council testimony on teacher/principal turnover and B24-355, the Statewide Data Warehouse Amendment Act

B24-355 requires collection and publishing of certain data on educators in D.C.’s public schools. However, some of the requirements would also introduce new burdens on schools, and may be better suited to periodic surveys (data collection every five years, for example) or an internal dataset. Teacher attendance, or ideally instructional time, is one data point missing from the requirements and should be added.

October 25, 2022 | Chelsea Coffin

D.C. Voices: High-impact tutoring and strong student-tutor relationships

As high-impact tutoring (HIT) continues to scale in school year 2022-23, it is important to take stock of provider, tutor, and teacher experiences and challenges during the first year of HIT. We asked tutoring providers, tutors, and teachers involved with HIT to tell us about the day-to-day realities of HIT in D.C. last year. What changes are being implemented during this school year, and where do they see the program going forward?

October 18, 2022 | Julie Rubin

Chart of the week: Learning outcomes by cohort before and during COVID-19

Results from D.C.’s 2021-22 statewide PARCC assessment show declines in both English language arts (ELA) and math since the last time the test was administered in 2018-19. But how did learning outcomes change for a cohort of students as they moved from lower to upper grades? To take a closer look, we compared PARCC results and enrollment for elementary school students to middle school students three years later to answer two questions: First, have student cohorts experienced learning gains during the pandemic years that were similar to pre-pandemic patterns? And what do we know about how enrollment in this cohort has changed over time?

October 14, 2022 | Chelsea Coffin

Landscape of high-impact tutoring in D.C.’s public schools, 2021-22

Quick Links Access the one-page report summary here. View the launch event, including a recording, here. Introduction In D.C., learning outcomes for public school students had been improving for over two decades.[1] Then, in March of 2020, the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic transitioned all students to distance learning and ended school…

October 13, 2022 | Chelsea Coffin,

Chart of the week: The long view on labor turnover in D.C.

While job openings remain at historically high levels, employment growth has not been strong enough to make up for all the losses the District experienced since the pandemic. Since June 2020—the first month employment growth turned positive after the pandemic, D.C. added 47,000 jobs, making up about half the job loss the…

October 7, 2022 | Yesim Sayin

Apples to hand grenades: Why transit fare evasion is an untimely distraction | Greater Greater Washington

On October 4, 2022, D.C. Policy Center analysis on Metro’s Kids Ride Free program was cited by Greater Greater Washington: Take the Kids Ride Free program, for which every District student from age 5–21 is eligible. Distribution of SmarTrip cards for Kids Ride Free is poor, estimated at 38% last year by DC…

October 7, 2022 | D.C. Policy Center

D.C. sets ambitious goal of 20,000 new Black homeowners by 2030 | WAMU

On October 3, 2022, the D.C. Policy Center’s analysis, How the region’s racial and ethnic demographics have changed since 1970, was cited by WAMU: Just 34% of Black residents own their home, a 12 point drop from the 46% Black homeownership rate in 2005, according to a report from various housing experts convened by…

October 7, 2022 | D.C. Policy Center

Lidl opens doors to its first DC grocery store | Fox 5

The location at 2224 Town Center Drive SE is the first new grocery store in Ward 7 in over a decade. Local leaders hope the new store will address gaps in access to food for residents in neighborhoods east of the Anacostia River. 80 percent of D.C.’s food deserts were in Ward 7 and Ward 8  in 2017, according to D.C. Policy Center. 

October 6, 2022 | D.C. Policy Center

What do migration and labor force trends tell us about D.C. and other large, high-cost metro areas?

Many large cities, including D.C., have lost population due to out-migration through the pandemic. Researchers have found that (1) this exodus is pandemic-induced, and (2) many people are leaving behind large, high-cost cities in favor of less populated regions with a lower cost of living. Looking at labor market recovery, we find that lower-cost metro areas have emerged from the pandemic as more economically competitive than their high-cost peers, which may shift workforce dynamics to the D.C. region’s detriment.

October 5, 2022 | Bailey McConnell

D.C. Sets Ambitious Goal Of 20,000 New Black Homeowners By 2030 | DCist

Just 34% of Black residents own their home, a 12 point drop from the 46% Black homeownership rate in 2005, according to a report from various housing experts convened by the mayor. Meanwhile, homeownership has increased for white residents over that same time period, hovering around 49%. D.C. has also seen a decline in Black residents over that time, falling to 49.2 percent by 2011 according to the D.C. Policy Center.

October 3, 2022 | D.C. Policy Center

D.C. saw a wave of new businesses during Covid-19. Supporting them is key to recovery, study says. | Washington Business Journal

Seventy-six percent of establishments in D.C. are small businesses with less than 500, and they account for 49% of its employment and 43% of its annual payroll. Even businesses under 50 employees count for one in five jobs in the District. So, it’s all the more important to find ways to keep them here, especially as remote work has proven its usefulness and “can’t be legislated away,” said Yesim Sayin, executive director of the D.C. Policy Center.

September 30, 2022 | D.C. Policy Center

2022 State of Business Report: Doing Business Under the New Normal

The 2022 State of Business Report builds a better understanding of the post-pandemic city, with a special focus on small businesses: How has the pandemic changed businesses and entrepreneurial activity in DC? What trends are emerging in the labor market and how do they impact business operations? What are the greatest risks and opportunities in the post-pandemic era? And how have businesses’ needs evolved to this new reality?

September 30, 2022 | D.C. Policy Center

Chart of the week: Here, but gone: The impact of remote work on local talent

COVID-19 has changed migration trends across the entire country, pushing an increasing number of people outside of high-cost areas like the D.C. region, to lower cost, smaller metropolitan areas. When these folks move, do they take new jobs close to their new homes? Or with remote work taking hold, are they moving away but keeping their existing jobs in the region? Remote work may disguise the extent of talent shifting away from places like Washington area to elsewhere in the country.

September 30, 2022 | Yesim Sayin,

WMATA’s Silver Line hopes to find success | Axios DC

D.C. Policy Center executive director Yesim Sayin Taylor tells Axios that the Washington region’s high concentration of workers who are able to do their jobs remotely has continued to make it even harder for Metro to rebound from pandemic losses. 

September 29, 2022 |

D.C. Voices: Safe Passage program and student commutes

A recent increase in violent crimes across the District has amplified concerns about community safety, including for students on their commutes to school. To improve student safety on their way to and from school, the Safe Passage Program places trusted adults from the community along specific routes. Mayor Bowser’s office allocated more than $4.3 million to community organizations to hire 215 Safe Passage workers during Fiscal Year 2022. We asked students, businesses, and administrators about their perceptions of safety for students during their commutes, and what experiences they have had with the Safe Passage program.

September 28, 2022 | Aniyha Brown

Chart of the week: Federal recovery spending likely increased school-level spending by an average of 2 percent in school year 2020-21

The federal government has provided three rounds of Elementary and Secondary School Emergency Relief Fund (ESSER) grants to help schools with pandemic recovery. In D.C., the three rounds of ESSER funding added up to $540 million to be spent locally by the end of FY2024. This is the equivalent of about $1,307 per student per year.

September 23, 2022 | Chelsea Coffin

Washington D.C. Economic Partnership to take more active role in bringing companies downtown | Washington Business Journal

Sellars said this entity will be focused just on D.C., which has had far less success than both Maryland and Virginia in attracting companies and generating jobs thus far. Of 120 large headquarters that have moved to Greater Washington this century, just 16 have come to the District itself, according to research from D.C. Policy Center, and the city is losing 2.4 jobs for every job it adds.

September 22, 2022 | D.C. Policy Center

Testimony on the Stop Discrimination with Algorithms Act of 2021

As drafted, the regulatory requirements of this bill would create uncertainty and a regulatory burden on a large number of D.C. businesses, including businesses or organizations whose area of work is completely disconnected from algorithms and other scoring mechanisms.

September 22, 2022 | Yesim Sayin

Testimony to D.C. SBOE on ESSER funds and the future of school finance in the District

The three rounds of ESSER funding mean $540 million allocated to schools to be spent by the end of fiscal year 2024 (September 30, 2024). This means approximately $1,307 in additional funding per student across five school years between 2019-20 and 2023-24 for the 48 LEAs receiving ESSER funds, assuming constant enrollment from last school year. ESSER funds are therefore about 10 percent the size of the foundation level of funding per pupil for school year 2022-23, making it important to take stock of how these funds are spent along the way and what may happen when funds expire.

September 21, 2022 | Chelsea Coffin

What experts say needs to be done to disrupt historic patterns of segregation in DC’s schools | Greater Greater Washington

While a 2018 study found that giving at-risk students a higher priority would improve outcomes for just 8.2% of at-risk participants, a 2020 study by DC Policy Center was much more promising. They looked specifically at charter schools with long waitlists that had just 15% of at-risk students enrolled (city-wide, 45% of students are at-risk). At these schools, given the preference siblings get in the lottery, it was hard for at-risk students to snag a coveted spot.

September 19, 2022 | D.C. Policy Center

Testimony on the Schools First in Budgeting Amendment Act of 2021

Three of the concerns we expressed in January – implementing an inflationary adjustment in a high inflation year, baking the existing inequities into the system, and basing calculations on proposed budgets and not actual spending — remain under this staff draft. We also have two additional concerns, related to new language and stemming from new information.

September 16, 2022 | Yesim Sayin

The ripple effects of how – and if – kids are able to commute safely to school | Greater Greater Washington

Research by the DC Policy Center found that in 2021 almost 80% of people lived within half a mile of a homicide (which are on the rise in DC) occurring that year. Black residents, however, are 19 percentage points more likely than their white peers to live within that radius.

September 15, 2022 | D.C. Policy Center

The D.C. Housing Authority Pays Top Dollar To Landlords In Wealthy Areas. Some Say That’s Bad Policy. | DCist

D.C.’s nearly 40-year-old rent control law caps annual rent increases at the rate of inflation plus 2% at larger apartment buildings constructed before 1976. Roughly one third of rental units in D.C. fall under rent control, but that number has decreased over time, according to the D.C. Policy Center.

September 13, 2022 | D.C. Policy Center

D.C. launches grant program to expand early child care facilities | Axios DC

According to the D.C. Fiscal Policy Institute, early childhood educators, who are predominantly Black and brown, earn a median annual income of approximately $31,950 — barely above minimum wage and not on par with public school teachers. The median teacher pay in D.C. is just over $81,000, says the D.C. Policy Center.

September 13, 2022 | D.C. Policy Center

Chart of the week: School districts are struggling to retain and recruit teachers

In the 2021-2022 school year, D.C. public and public charter schools retained an average of 74 percent of their teachers, compared to a national average of 84 percent. However, some areas of D.C. have faced lower teacher retention than others, with greater shares of teachers in Wards 6, 7, and 8 choosing to leave their schools.

September 9, 2022 | James Treuthardt

How school boundaries and feeder patterns shape DC’s housing and education inequalities | Greater Greater Washington

At-risk kids are also less likely to get into their lottery choices. A major reason is that the lottery gives preference to siblings, according to research by the D.C. Policy Center, which tends to maintain school demographics rather than disrupt them.

September 2, 2022 | D.C. Policy Center

Navigating the wilderness, avoiding predators urban and rural | Washington Post

A report in June by the D.C. Policy Center noted that just being in proximity to repeated criminal acts can have a deleterious effect on mental and physical health. The study found that 80 percent of District residents lived within a half-mile of a homicide in 2021. However, in wealthy and predominantly White Ward 3, there were only two homicides, and no one lived within a half-mile of either killing.

August 30, 2022 | D.C. Policy Center

D.C. Schools Face Major Substitute Teacher Shortage: Analysis | Washington Informer

On August 3, 2022, the D.C. Policy Center’s Chart of the week, Ongoing substitute teacher shortages affect schools’ ability to function, was cited by the Washington Informer: D.C. Public Schools may face a huge shortage of substitute teachers in the upcoming academic year, which could have an impact on classrooms and school…

August 4, 2022 | D.C. Policy Center

Nationals Fans Have Lost Hope. Here’s Why They Shouldn’t | City Cast DC

Meanwhile, with three weeks to go until school starts back up, DC Public Schools is facing a serious shortage of substitute teachers. The number of subs has dropped by 50 percent in the past two years, according to a new D.C. Policy Center report. A lot teachers say they’re quitting because of low pay, lack of benefits, and COVID concerns.

August 4, 2022 | D.C. Policy Center

The number of licensed health care clinicians in Washington D.C. increased during the early pandemic period 

To show how the pandemic and ensuing policies have affected the HCC supply in D.C., we submitted multiple Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) requests to the D.C. Department of Health (DOH) to create a database of clinicians who are licensed to practice in D.C. This licensee database is a full census of licensed clinicians in D.C. at three points in time (April 2020, January 2021, and August 2021), presenting the clearest picture of who is available to provide care to the District’s residents.

August 2, 2022 | Igor Geyn,

DC Substitute Teachers Cite Low Pay, Lack of Benefits for ‘Mass Exodus’ | NBC 4

According to a recent analysis from local research group D.C. Policy Center, the number of substitutes on the DCPS payroll has gone down from 987 at the start of 2020 to 501 in the first quarter of 2022. It’s not known exactly how many substitutes there are going into the upcoming school year, as D.C.’s public employee salary database has yet to update with the most recent quarter’s data.

August 2, 2022 | D.C. Policy Center

Office Conversions Are Good for Cities | The American Conservative

On July 30, 2022, the D.C. Policy Center’s article, Examining office to residential conversions in the District, was cited by The American Conservative: An analysis by the D.C. Policy Center found that while a Class C office building could increase in value if converted to residential, converting it to Class A would yield…

August 1, 2022 | D.C. Policy Center

These are the hottest neighborhoods in D.C. | City Cast DC

On July 25, 2022, a map from the D.C. Policy Center’s article, D.C.’s heat islands, was cited by City Cast DC: The last few days have been some of the most wretchedly hot ones I’ve seen in D.C. Apparently, D.C. is an urban heat island (a.k.a it’s hotter than neighboring counties, lucky us). However,…

August 1, 2022 | D.C. Policy Center

Chart of the week: Ongoing substitute teacher shortages affect schools’ ability to function

D.C. has not escaped the national substitute shortage facing districts across the country. According to public salary data published by District of Columbia Public Schools (DCPS), the number of substitute teachers on the payroll has dropped from a peak of 987 in the first quarter of 2020, to 501 in the first quarter of 2022 (data are not available for public charter schools). While enrollment has shrunk in DCPS schools by four percent since 2019, the decrease in substitutes has outpaced that.

July 29, 2022 | James Treuthardt

D.C.’s changing public school enrollment: Trends by ward

How do and enrollment trends differ across different areas of D.C.? While the number of births decreased across all wards, some wards have seen larger declines than others. These declines have varying levels of significance for enrollment trends as the relationship between the number of births and where students live and where they enroll in school varies across the city. While we can look to births and cohort retention ratios to project future public school enrollment by grade, it is very challenging to do so by ward.

July 28, 2022 | Julie Rubin,

Chart of the week: The majority of teachers in the District are rent burdened

The increasing cost of renting an apartment in the District of Columbia is making it more difficult for essential community workers (teachers, nurses, police officers etc.) to live in or near the communities they serve. Given the current salaries teachers receive, how affordable is the city for the median teacher? Comparing the…

July 22, 2022 | Robert Newman

D.C.’s changing public school enrollment: Trends by race and grade band

in recent years, the share of students who are Black enrolled in D.C.’s public schools has declined across all grade bands – due in part to fewer births to mothers who are Black and weaker preferences for pre-kindergarten during the pandemic.

July 21, 2022 | Julie Rubin

Report shows enrollment in DC schools is down and projected to continue to decline | WJLA

A report by the DC Policy Center shows enrollment growth stalled in D.C. schools during the pandemic and if the trend continues, an enrollment that currently stands at 87,000 could decline to 81,000 by 2026.

July 18, 2022 | D.C. Policy Center

Chart of the week: Business response to COVID in D.C. and across the country

Data released by the Bureau of Labor Statistics based on a survey of businesses across the country show that a larger share of private sector businesses in D.C. adopted telework, reduced their office space, and moved their offices, compared to the private sector establishments across the entire U.S. Across D.C., 68 percent…

July 15, 2022 | Yesim Sayin

D.C. school enrollment expected to drop after years of increases | Washington Post

Enrollment in D.C.’s traditional public and charter schools is expected to drop over the next five years, a disappointing turn for a city that had celebrated more than a decade of growth in its public schools. The current enrollment stagnation and anticipated decrease in the coming years — according to a study released Wednesday by the local research group D.C. Policy Center — was propelled by declining birthrates and adults leaving the city or pulling their children out of public schools during the pandemic.

July 14, 2022 | D.C. Policy Center

Study reveals decline in DC school enrollment, what’s expected in coming years | WTOP

School enrollment numbers in D.C. are projected to decline, the latest shift after years of growth in its public and charter schools.

July 14, 2022 | D.C. Policy Center

Remote work and housing costs: D.C.’s new economic development plan will consider pandemic’s impact | Washington Business Journal

Even if employees do come back a few days a week they’ll be spending less. If the estimated 155,000 who commute into D.C. from nearby came in just days a week, D.C. would lose out on $62.9 million a year in sales tax revenue, according to the analysis. Yesim Sayin, its executive director, said that puts more importance on a strategy that proves a value of in-person work.

July 14, 2022 | D.C. Policy Center

Declining births and lower demand: Charting the future of public school enrollment in D.C.

The two main drivers of enrollment growth (births in D.C. and preference of families to live in D.C. and choose public schools) have both been on the decline in recent years. This report analyzes how changing trends will impact future enrollment projections for D.C.’s public schools.

July 13, 2022 | Chelsea Coffin,

Chart of the week: Students’ use of public transit remains at a fraction of pre-pandemic levels

As of January 2022, student ridership on public transit, as measured by Kids Ride Free trips, was 11 percent of pre-pandemic levels (September 2019), according to data from the Office of the Deputy Mayor for Education’s Performance Oversight data for FY21 and FY20.

July 8, 2022 | Chelsea Coffin

Black-owned stores work to end D.C.’s food deserts | Washington Post

On July 7, 2022, the D.C. Policy Center’s article, Food access in D.C is deeply connected to poverty and transportation, was cited by the Washington Post: Wards 7 and 8 lost four of their seven full-service grocery stores between 2010 and 2020, while the city’s other six wards gained 37 grocery stores…

July 7, 2022 | D.C. Policy Center

Remote work and the future of D.C. (Part 2): What does remote work mean for the District of Columbia’s tax base?

This report is the second in a two-part series focused on building a better understanding of how remote work will impact the District’s future. We estimate how the shift to remote work might impact the city’s tax base and propose next steps to ensuring the District has an upward economic growth trajectory as the city recovers from the pandemic.

July 7, 2022 | Bailey McConnell,

Chart of the week: ‘Professional, Scientific, and Technical Services’ is the only subsector where employment is now above pre-pandemic levels

As of May 2022, total employment in D.C. stood at 766,900—still 38,400 below the pre-pandemic peak of 805,400 in February of 2020. Most of these job losses are in the private sector (37,600 jobs behind pre-pandemic level, accounting for 98 percent of the loss).

July 1, 2022 | Yesim Sayin

Thousands of DC kids were exposed to gun violence in 2021. This group is working to stop the spread | WUSA 9

Data showing how many D.C. kids are impacted by shootings reflects just how important that support is.The DC Policy Centermapped it out. “On average, when a homicide happened in DC [in 2021], there were about 2,800 kids that were nearby,” executive director of the center, Yesim Sayin said. Sayin said in areas that see more violent crime, that number can get up into the hundreds of thousands.

June 29, 2022 | D.C. Policy Center

Chart of the week: Share of jobs in D.C. with median annual wages > $150,000

Despite a 6 percent decline in employment between 2019 and 2021, total wages earned in the District of Columbia in that same time grew by 7 percent. And, average wages increased by 14 percent—faster than the inflation rate.

June 24, 2022 | Bailey McConnell

Proximity to homicide exposure in Washington, D.C., 2021

When neighborhoods are exposed to crime, children are less likely to play outside, more likely to be stressed out or experience poor mental health. They worry about safe passage to their schools and fall behind in their schoolwork. The incidence of homicides has increased dramatically in the District of Columbia since 2017. And homicides are increasingly happening in parts of the city that are denser, exposing a larger number of people. But less dense neighborhoods tend have more children, so when adjusted for child population, many more neighborhoods start lighting up on our maps, showing the great toll these events take on the District’s children.

June 23, 2022 | Alexander Din

What Really Happens When Dollar Stores Replace Grocers | Mashed

The Anacostia River branches off the Potomac just two miles due south of the U.S. Capitol building near the Nationals baseball stadium, running through Washington, D.C. past the National Arboretum, and into Maryland. Across the 11th Street bridge is a low-income and predominantly-Black neighborhood (per Statistical Atlas) which, on a map published by the D.C. Policy Center, is lit up with blue dots, each marking a bodega or corner store. The area contains only two full-service grocers — which, as the map shows, are abundant and accessible everywhere north and west of the river.

June 21, 2022 | D.C. Policy Center

Urban exodus that began during pandemic shows no signs of slowing down | Washington Examiner

On June 20, 2022, the D.C. Policy Center’s article, Charts of the week: A pandemic-induced exodus has broken the District’s population boom, was cited by the Washington Examiner: The availability of remote work, the persistence of pandemic-related restrictions, and the rise of crime and inflation have all contributed to a stream of…

June 21, 2022 | D.C. Policy Center

Chart of the week: Back to work(ing)

Between May 2021 and May 2022, the District’s labor force has grown by nearly 6,000. The labor force, as estimated by the BLS per today’s data release, is at 386,440—still about 14,323 below pre-pandemic levels. The bad news: this is probably due to population loss including the loss of working adults. The good news: the 6,000 increase is recent, perhaps signaling that employment growth will also pick up. The labor force remained virtually flat between May 2020 and May 2021, and of the 6,000 increase almost 15 percent happened in a single month between April and May of 2022.

June 17, 2022 | Bailey McConnell

Giant Close To Deal For 55K SF Store Where Walmart Infamously Changed Course | Bisnow

“Bowser has directed several new initiatives to address food insecurity in Wards 7 and 8, where the D.C. Policy Center estimates 82% of the city’s food deserts lie.”

June 16, 2022 | D.C. Policy Center

Testimony on Bill 24-0712, the “Domestic Worker Employment Rights Amendment Act of 2022”

In contrast to its stated intent, the bill may reduce opportunities for the most vulnerable workers. Little is known about the demographics and number of domestic workers in the District, and the bill does not examine the impact employment agreements will have on workers. By formalizing employment agreements, the bill may close doors to workers whose immigration status cannot be verified.

June 16, 2022 | Emilia Calma

Testimony on the Confirmation Resolution of Glen M. Lee: What fiscal picture is awaiting the new CFO?

Good morning, Chairman McDuffie and members of the Committee. My name is Yesim Sayin, and I am the Executive Director of the D.C. Policy Center—an independent non-partisan think tank advancing policies for a strong, competitive, and vibrant economy in the District of Columbia.  As we welcome a new CFO to the city,…

June 15, 2022 | Yesim Sayin

Understanding why the region grapples with unequal access to TOD | Greater Greater Washington

High-income earners eventually started returning to the city, and so did the jobs, according to a DC Policy Center study. Growth in DC, according to the DC Policy Center, was driven by young people between the ages of 25-35 in the early 2000s. Areas like Fairfax, Montgomery, and Prince George’s also experienced huge spikes in population growth. And TOD sprouted up in places throughout the District as more and more people wanted to be able to walk to their destinations.

June 14, 2022 | D.C. Policy Center

Deanwood neighborhood center with grocery store clears major hurdle | Washington Business Journal

Medici Road has been working for over a year to resurrect what is now an overgrown lot on a main neighborhood thoroughfare within the Deanwood policy focus area, which emphasizes infill development, especially with neighborhood-serving retail. Advisory Neighborhood Council 7C supported the project, noting the corridor has much under-used land, and the grocery store has been a popular demand in an area the D.C. Policy Center designates as a food desert. The grocery store and coffee shop users haven’t been made public, Jackson said.

June 13, 2022 | D.C. Policy Center

Puzzle of the week: Why are D.C.’s withholding taxes growing, if residents and tax filers are leaving?

According to the Internal Revenue Service’s migration data, D.C. lost 15,304 residents and 7,990 tax filers between 2019 and 2020. Pre-pandemic, between 2018 and 2019, D.C. also lost residents and filers, but in the first year of the pandemic, these losses increased greatly. Importantly, 60 percent of the leavers were tax filing units (individuals, couples, or families) that had taxable incomes of $100,000 or more. These are clearly filers with jobs. At the same time, the withholding portion of income tax collections–the income taxes that are directly taken out of paychecks every pay period–is growing at 10 to 11 percent. That means that the wage and salary incomes of District residents are growing despite this loss.

June 10, 2022 | Bailey McConnell,

Chart of the week: Rents in Ward 5 are catching up to more expensive places in the city

Washington D.C. has long been an expensive city to rent an apartment, but where within the city renting housing is most expensive has changed during the pandemic. In the past three years, the cost of renting an apartment in the District has increased overall by an average of 15.46 percent—but these increases are inconsistent across both apartment size and between the city’s eight wards.

June 3, 2022 | Robert Newman

Updated: Database of D.C. Planned Unit Developments (PUDs)

There have been hundreds of PUDs over the past two decades, but the data isn’t particularly well organized. It lives in a series of individual zoning orders and supporting documents — hundreds of PDFs buried within the zoning website. In 2019, contributor Nick Sementelli systematically combed through those documents to build a scannable, sortable database. We are publishing an update to that database to include 92 more recent PUDs.

June 1, 2022 | Sunaina Bakshi Kathpalia

D.C. bypasses national public school enrollment drop | Axios DC

D.C.’s high school graduation rate was on the decline for years, D.C. Policy Center’s Education Policy Initiative director Chelsea Coffin tells Axios. But it increased during the pandemic as some graduation requirements were relaxed or waived. What to watch: Coffin says the decrease in D.C. births will impact public school enrollment in the future, especially for younger students.

June 1, 2022 | D.C. Policy Center

Chart of the week: Pandemic enrollment in postsecondary institutions has been more stable in D.C. than across the country

Nationally, enrollment across public and private/not-for-profit postsecondary institutions (including undergraduate, graduate, two-year, and four-year programs) declined by 3.6 percent from Fall 2019 to Fall 2020. D.C.’s enrollment likewise declined, but to a lesser extent.

May 27, 2022 | Julie Rubin

Chart of the week: The impact of new at-risk concentration funding at the school level 

This week, the Council of the District of Columbia added a subtitle to the FY23 budget with two additional weights to the student funding formula, which would provide additional funds to schools where 40 percent or more of the student population is designated as at-risk, and to schools where 70 percent or…

May 13, 2022 | Chelsea Coffin

Remote work and the future of D.C. (Part 1): How is remote work changing the geography of work in the District of Columbia?

As remote work is taking hold, it is breaking the relationship between where people live and where they work. Historically, proximity to work has been a key driver of population growth in the District of Columbia. And commuters have been an important source of economic activity, both supporting the local service economy and sustaining the demand for office space. 

May 12, 2022 | Bailey McConnell,

Nation’s capital grapples with violence, juvenile crime as DC leaders look for answers | Fox News

D.C.’s population fell by about 3%, representing a loss of more than 20,000 residents, in 2021, the D.C. Policy Center reported on March 25, citing data from the U.S. Census Bureau.

May 9, 2022 | D.C. Policy Center

Chart of the week: How will the region’s geography of work change if remote work continues?

Remote work is likely here to stay and is breaking the relationship between where we live and where we work. This has implications on the District’s attractiveness, competitiveness, economic growth, and fiscal health. As workers spend less time near their workplaces and more time near their homes, it shifts the geography of…

April 21, 2022 | Bailey McConnell,

Masks on Metro? | The D.C. Line

On April 20, 2022, The D.C. Policy Center’s article, D.C. Voices: D.C. schools ramped up mental health resources during the pandemic. How well do these services address student needs?, was cited by The D.C. Line: The D.C. Policy Center has a new analysis of the extra mental health resources provided by DC schools during…

April 20, 2022 | D.C. Policy Center

D.C. Voices: D.C. schools ramped up mental health resources during the pandemic. How well do these services address student needs?

While schools invested in supports like hiring additional staff and providing social-emotional integration trainings during the 2020-21 school year, many students and families reported challenges when trying to access mental health resources. In this latest installment in our D.C. Voices series, we hear directly from students, researchers, and administrators to learn more about the barriers students may face when accessing services and how available mental health services currently meet needs.

April 20, 2022 | Julie Rubin

Not easy being Orange | 730DC

On April 15, 2022, the D.C. Policy Center’s article, Do residential properties in D.C.’s historic districts outperform the rest of the city in value appreciation?, was cited by 730DC: Appreciating historyContrary to what you might expect, homes in DC’s historic districts have actually risen less in value. Read more: Not easy being Orange…

April 15, 2022 | D.C. Policy Center

Chart of the week: Equitable access seat matches in D.C.’s common lottery for school enrollment

kindergarten, at a public charter school, or at a DCPS school aside from their in-boundary option. Last week, applicants to the common lottery received their results, which for the first time included an equitable access priority for students who are identified as “at-risk” with 400 applicants matching in this category.

April 15, 2022 | Chelsea Coffin

Breakfast links: Prince George’s County receives $2.5 billion for economic growth | Greater Greater Washington

On April 14, 2022, the D.C. Policy Center’s article, Do residential properties in D.C.’s historic districts outperform the rest of the city in value appreciation?, was cited by Greater Greater Washington: Residential properties in DC’s historic areas have underperformed in value appreciation compared to homes in the rest of the city, despite the properties…

April 14, 2022 | D.C. Policy Center

Do residential properties in D.C.’s historic districts outperform the rest of the city in value appreciation?

Residential properties in the District’s historic neighborhoods are generally more expensive than those outside these neighborhoods. But data show that these buildings have underperformed in value appreciation compared to the rest of the city.

April 13, 2022 | Sunaina Bakshi Kathpalia,

Groups call on D.C. to classify more kids as at-risk for academic failure | Washington Post

The D.C. Policy Center, a local research group, crunched the numbers and determined that expanding the eligibility for at-risk funds could cost the city anywhere between $20 and $33 million each year. Analysts figured that many children who would fall under these new categories already qualify for at-risk funding because their families qualify for food stamps.

April 9, 2022 | D.C. Policy Center

Chart of the week: Employment and labor force recovery remains slow in the region, slower in the District

Since the beginning of the pandemic, the District has been underperforming relative to the Washington metropolitan area both in employment recovery and the growth of the labor force.

April 7, 2022 | D.C. Policy Center

Chart of the week: Which D.C. residents have returned to in-person work?

During the first two weeks of March 2022, 36 percent of working-age District residents reported working (or volunteering) outside their homes during the previous week.

April 1, 2022 | Yesim Sayin

The case for investing in trauma-informed management practices in the workplace: Knowledge, practice, and policy that can improve life outcomes in the District of Columbia

Individuals with trauma responses can face great difficulties in finding and retaining a job. Trauma responses oftentimes make it difficult for workers to handle everyday stressors at work. While many publicly-funded job training programs have adopted a trauma-informed approach, it is rare to find private employers who have adopted trauma-informed management practices as these changes are often considered difficult and outside of the scope of management.

March 30, 2022 | Emilia Calma,

Morning newsletter: D.C. struggles to retain millennials | Axios DC

The District is no longer attracting as many of the young and well-educated adults who have fueled its recent population growth, census data shows. The migration of young people over the past two decades led to an increase in public school enrollment, new development, and more tax revenue for the District. But the number of people aged 25 to 34 moving into the city has slowed in the past four years, further declining during the pandemic, local think tank D.C. Policy Center found.

March 28, 2022 | D.C. Policy Center

FY23 Budget Oversight Hearing: Committee of the Whole (Education Agencies)

The FY23 budget includes substantial investments in academics, with a historic increase of 5.87 percent to the UPSFF foundation level and $14 million for high impact tutoring, among others. These resources intended to boost learning outcomes are essential for success in school year 2022-23, but there is a need to focus more on the expected results. OSSE’s Annual Performance Plan has FY22 targets of 43.2 percent of students being college and career ready in English Language Arts (ELA) and 40.1 percent in Math, which indicate an increase of 6.2 percentage points in ELA and 9.1 percentage points in Math from 2018-19.

March 28, 2022 | Chelsea Coffin

Chart of the week: A pandemic-induced exodus has broken the District’s population boom

According to data recently released by the U.S. Census Bureau, the District’s population fell by around 3 percent in 2021, to 690,093 – a loss of 20,043 residents. Domestic out-migration, or people moving from D.C. to other parts of the country, is the primary source of this decline. While domestic out-migration has been underway since 2018, over 23,000 residents left the city in 2021, setting a record high of the last two decades.

March 25, 2022 | Sunaina Bakshi Kathpalia

Swimming in money — but how soon will the drought come, and what’s the plan? | The DC Line

On March 24, 2022, the D.C. Policy Center’s article, Chart of the week: Mayor Bowser’s FY 2023 proposed budget, was cited by The DC Line: If folks want to understand what irresponsible financial planning and management look like, they need only review the recent Chart of the Week published by the D.C. Policy…

March 24, 2022 | D.C. Policy Center

Do you live in a DC apartment building? Take our survey and tell us about your “high-rise life” | Forest Hills Connection

The majority of DC residents rent their homes, and in 2019, when the D.C. Policy Center was collecting data for its 2020 report on rental housing in the District, 60 percent of rental units were in apartment buildings. That’s 124,641 apartment units, in 3,121 buildings. And we’d like to know more about what it’s like to live in them.

March 23, 2022 | D.C. Policy Center

“I break things and put them back together again” | 730DC

Adults ages 25-34 left DC in record numbers during the pandemic, new data shows. This is worrisome not just because you have to make new friends now*, but because maintaining a net inflow of young adult workers can be crucial to a city’s ability to attract new business and maintain what the D.C. Policy Center calls “strong fiscal health.”

March 21, 2022 | D.C. Policy Center

Chart of the week: Mayor Bowser’s FY 2023 proposed budget

Mayor Bowser submitted her budget to the D.C. Council on Wednesday, March 16 and the budget tables show that the proposed FY 2023 budget (local portion only), set at nearly $10.7 billion, grew by 10 percent from the revised FY 2022 budget. Recurring revenue (money from taxes, non-tax revenue, and the lottery) is at $9.5 billion, showing a growth of 4 percent from FY 2022’s projected revenues. The budget is balanced by $1.2 billion of non-recurring, one-time resources which include the city’s savings from previous years (including the surplus from FY 2021) and federal fiscal aid. 

March 18, 2022 | D.C. Policy Center

D.C.’s Moving Target: Prince George’s County is steadily absorbing movers from D.C. | Washington Business Journal

Overall, the D.C. Policy Center has found that domestic in-migration into the nation’s capital in particular had turned negative in 2019, remaining that way through the pandemic. For every resident who moved into D.C. from the nearby suburbs in recent years, two moved out, and household formation markedly slowed, according to the center.

March 18, 2022 | D.C. Policy Center

Breakfast links: How DC’s population has changed in the COVID era | Greater Greater Washington

Educated young adults have left DC at historic levels during the pandemic and are no longer moving to the District at the rate of years past. DC also lost workers in key industries, particularly those with more remote-eligible jobs.

March 18, 2022 | D.C. Policy Center

Demographic shifts in the District of Columbia following the COVID-19 pandemic

Even prior to the pandemic, the District was experiencing decelerating population growth, particularly among the young, educated adults who have traditionally driven growth in the city. Now, the ability to telework may be driving some workers out, particularly those that are well-educated and aged 25 to 34. While it is uncertain whether these moves are temporary or permanent, maintaining and retaining a net inflow of young adult workers is crucial to any city’s ability to attract new businesses, as well as ensure strong fiscal health.

March 15, 2022 | Bailey McConnell

Chart of the week: Are D.C.’s 25-34 year olds leaving the District because of pandemic telework? 

With the rise of teleworking and shifting preferences in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic, the District of Columbia finds itself at greater risk of losing its young professional population. In the first year of the pandemic, the largest population group that left the District was young adults. Of the residents who moved out of the District in 2020, 54 percent were aged 25 to 34 (margin of error: 0.5 percent).

March 11, 2022 | Bailey McConnell

State of D.C. Schools, 2020-21

State of D.C. Schools is an annual systemwide overview of public education in the District of Columbia. The report’s main purpose is to give D.C. residents, parents, caregivers, policymakers, and other stakeholders a snapshot of the overall performance of the District’s public schools. This report captures school year 2020-21 and how it continued to be impacted by COVID-19, with most students learning virtually for the entire school year. It also provides an update on 2021-22, when in-person learning resumed with the Herculean tasks of keeping students and teachers safe while making up for the unfinished learning from previous pandemic years.

March 10, 2022 | Chelsea Coffin,

Testimony for Performance Oversight Hearing: Committee of the Whole – Education Agencies

Likely because of the economic impacts of the pandemic, there was an increase in the percentage of students designated as at-risk to 45 percent, two percentage points higher than the previous year (see Figure 1). This was mostly driven by an increase in the number of students who were eligible for SNAP – the numbers of students in foster care, experiencing homelessness, or overage decreased.

March 2, 2022 | Chelsea Coffin

Chart of the week: The pandemic’s toll on employment in the city and resident employment

The pandemic has had a chilling effect on both resident employment and private sector employment in D.C. In the first few months of the pandemic, 37,413 D.C. residents lost their jobs. Since then, we have gained back 26,633 jobs (through December 2021), but we are still behind by nearly 11,000 jobs. Private sector jobs in the city—regardless of the residency of the employee—took a bigger hit. We lost 85,700 private sector jobs and made up for less than half of it. We are still missing 47,700 jobs.

February 25, 2022 | D.C. Policy Center

Chart of the week: In-person learning in the 2020-21 school year

DCPS and public charter schools returned to full-time in-person learning in August 2021, which was a huge shift from the previous school year. At the start of school year 2020-21, 99 percent of students were learning virtually for five days a week, followed by a gradual re-introduction to in-person learning for some students according to D.C. School Report Card data.

February 18, 2022 | Chelsea Coffin,

State Board of Education testimony on COVID recovery data collection

One of the biggest changes in school year 2020-21 was that there was likely less instructional time and less content covered. At the start of the school year, 99 percent of students were learning virtually for five days a week (many with one day of asynchronous learning), and 79 percent of students were still doing so by the year’s end.

February 16, 2022 | Chelsea Coffin

Map of the week: Three percent of businesses migrated out of D.C. in response to the pandemic

We used United States Postal Service data to examine how business move patterns have changed in the post-pandemic era. These data show that business establishments were quick to respond to the pandemic: The net domestic outmigration of business establishments (address changes out of D.C. minus address changes into D.C.) within the first three months of the pandemic (March, April, and May of 2020) was about 3 percent of all private sector business establishments in D.C. at that time.

February 11, 2022 | Yesim Sayin

D.C. Council testimony on Bill 24-301, the “Business and Entrepreneurship Support to Thrive (BEST) Amendment Act of 2021”

The BEST Amendment Act would greatly simplify the steps businesses will need to take in order to obtain the licenses necessary to operate a business in the District of Columbia. There are costs to today’s complicated system, which may be impairing entrepreneurial success without any discernible public benefits. This reform is much needed to improve business conditions in the District.

February 7, 2022 | Yesim Sayin

Anacostia Reshaped: The D.C. neighborhood is facing unprecedented change through a series of development projects inside and outside its borders | Washington Business Journal

“A walk down Martin Luther King Jr. Avenue SE from Good Hope Road toward Morris Road reveals cranes and a string of rising projects, adding to what has long been the area’s quirkiest landmark, an oversized chair…But even amid those plans, not nearly enough has changed. The area median income in Anacostia’s northwest portion is $35,750, sliding down to $17,159 in its eastern sections. It’s still designated a food desert, according to the D.C. Policy Center. More than half of area residents have no access to a car.”

February 4, 2022 | D.C. Policy Center

Chart of the week: Public school enrollment for older students grew slightly, while elementary and pre-kindergarten declined

Newly released audited enrollment data for the District’s public schools (both DCPS and public charter) for school year 2021-22 show that enrollment stands at 94,532 students: almost the same as last year. Enrollment in high school is up by 7 percent, while adult learner enrollment rebounded from last year’s dip, growing by 8 percent. Enrollment in early grades (pre-kindergarten and elementary) declined, continuing last year’s trend.

February 4, 2022 | Chelsea Coffin

Corporate naming raises concerns in D.C. | Axios DC

D.C. Policy Center executive director Yesim Sayin Taylor tells Axios that because the pandemic pushed workers away from downtown and out of D.C., new businesses are more important now than ever.

February 3, 2022 | D.C. Policy Center

Chart of the week: The tepid monthly employment numbers in D.C. hide the great churn

D.C. employment has not grown in recent months. However, this is not because of lack of job openings. In fact, we are experiencing a historically high level of job openings with an average of 41,000 job openings per month between June and November 2021—that is more than 5 percent of total employment in D.C.. But employment is not growing because employers are slower at hiring new employees, and more people are leaving their jobs at rates faster than we have ever observed.

January 28, 2022 | Yesim Sayin,

Bowser Calls For Eminent Domain To Bring 55K SF Grocery Store To Ward 7 | Bisnow

Approximately 82% of the city’s food deserts — areas where residents have low rates of car access, a high poverty rate and are located more than half a mile from a grocery store or supermarket—occur in Wards 7 and 8, and that trend has persisted for decades, according to research by the D.C. Policy Center.

January 27, 2022 | D.C. Policy Center

A new regional playing field: How can D.C. stay economically competitive with its suburban neighbors?

The District’s competitive position within the region has weakened in the past few years. As regional policies and dynamics has changed, the flow of people, businesses, and jobs has changed as well. The region’s suburbs have increased in importance as competing destinations, and this trend has only been amplified by the pandemic. Now, to reset the District’s economic growth trajectory, new approaches to policy may be required.

January 27, 2022 | Bailey McConnell,

TOPA Has Tanked D.C.’s Multifamily Sales Market | Bisnow

Yesim Sayin Taylor, executive director of the D.C. Policy Center, said the city should consider how it wants TOPA to influence its affordable housing priorities. She said a shortened timeline or even waiver of the TOPA process for housing operators with a commitment to affordability should be on the table as the city moves out of the pandemic.

January 25, 2022 | D.C. Policy Center

D.C. Council testimony on school budget bills 24-570 and 24-571

Bill 24-571, “The Schools Full Budgeting Amendment Act of 2021” aims to prove schools budget stability by ensuring that schools will have at least the same budget as they got in the previous year unless the school loses a grade level, is poised for closure or must absorb students from a school poised for closure, or there is a systemwide shock that reduces total DCPS formula funding by more than 5 percent.

January 20, 2022 | Yesim Sayin

5 things we can achieve together with a new playbook | Washington Business Journal

Yet, according to the Brookings Metro Monitor 2021 report, Greater Washington ranks 51st among 53 large metro areas for racial inclusion, or the gap between the white population and people of color on key poverty indicators. In addition, the DC Policy Center found that even when District-born and raised youth find jobs, they are likely to be in low-paying occupations with little opportunity for economic mobility.

January 3, 2022 | D.C. Policy Center

State Board of Education testimony on SR20-11: Resolution on Improving the STAR Framework

On Wednesday, December 15, 2021, Education Policy Initiative Director Chelsea Coffin testified at the public meeting of the D.C. State Board of Education (SBOE) on SR20-11: State Board of Education Resolution On Improving the School Transparency and Reporting (STAR) Framework.

December 15, 2021 | Chelsea Coffin

The American Addiction to Speeding | Slate

Some civil rights advocates oppose automated enforcement on the grounds that even race-blind cameras are used to scale up America’s traditions of revenue-driven and racist policing. In D.C., for example, researchers found that drivers in segregated Black neighborhoods received 17 times as many camera tickets per capita as their counterparts in white neighborhoods. Black Washingtonians are indeed more likely to live near high-speed arterials where drivers (including white suburbanites) go very fast, but the disparity suggests the cameras aren’t improving driver safety so much as raising money.

December 15, 2021 | D.C. Policy Center

D.C. Voices: Using information on early career outcomes

Survey data suggest that students with access during high school to career supports such as connections to employers, exposure to careers, and professional counseling tend to earn wages 20 percent higher than their peers—and such access could have lasting impacts. In this latest installment in our D.C. Voices series, we hear directly from students and counselors about the implications better early career outcomes data could have as students make their postsecondary education and career choices.

December 15, 2021 | Julie Rubin

‘At-risk’ D.C. students to get priority in pre-K lottery | Washington Post

A 2020 study conducted by the D.C. Policy Center found that prioritizing at-risk students had the potential to improve their chance “to match at a school they have ranked and to increase socioeconomic diversity, especially at a subset of schools that serve low percentages of students who are at-risk.” The study said sibling preference preserved schools’ preexisting demographics by making it harder for students without siblings at a school to get in.

December 11, 2021 | D.C. Policy Center

The Federal Government Is Embracing Telework. Can D.C.’s Economy Survive It? | DCist

Increasingly, it looks like office owners downtown need to start considering a range of possibilities for their buildings, according to the D.C. Policy Center. Office vacancies were already rising before the pandemic, says a recent report from the think tank, and neighborhoods with a combination of commercial and residential space proved to be more resilient during the crisis.

December 9, 2021 | D.C. Policy Center

“The Perfect Tax”: Land Value Taxation and the Housing Crisis | Brown Political Review

An example from the D.C. Policy Center is informative: The owner of a single-family home can increase the value of the property by replacing the single-family home with a duplex or triplex while still paying the same in taxes under a system of land value taxation, reducing the average tax burden per unit. In contrast, under the standard property tax regime, this increased densification would result in a higher property tax burden due to the increased value of the property, and the landowner may decide not to undertake this improvement.

December 3, 2021 | D.C. Policy Center

Breakfast links: Purple Line construction is affecting small businesses. A proposed grant program could help. | Greater Greater Washington

Mixed use neighborhoods with a heavy office presence have proved more resilient to the effects of the pandemic than office-heavy downtown areas, which have been seeing more vacancies.  (Bailey McConnell / DC Policy Center)

December 1, 2021 | D.C. Policy Center

Enrollment In D.C. Public Schools Drops For Second Year In A Row | DCist

Most students who left their schools at the end of last year did not transfer to another campus within the city but moved out of the District entirely, according to city officials. It is hard to pinpoint exactly how many of those departures are because of the pandemic. Chelsea Coffin, who directs education research at the D.C. Policy Center, said birth rates in the District have declined since 2016, a possible indicator that fewer students can be expected to enroll in school.

December 1, 2021 | D.C. Policy Center

District Links: DC reaches 200 homicides for first time since 2003; Metrobus to offer all-door boarding next year; and more | The DC Line

A new report from the D.C. Policy Center asks whether mixed-use projects represent downtown’s future. Senior research analyst Bailey McConnell notes that areas replete with mixed-use development have proved more resilient to the economic impact of the pandemic.

November 23, 2021 | D.C. Policy Center

Is mixed-use the future of downtown D.C.?

Introduction The impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic have led to a lot of speculation about the future of cities, but many agree that cities, and especially downtowns, will experience some changes in use as people alter how and where they live and work.[1] At the onset of the pandemic, economic activity in…

November 23, 2021 | Bailey McConnell

With infrastructure windfall possible, D.C. can avoid mistakes of the past | Washington Informer

In 1867, the federal government purchased a 375-acre site in Anacostia for the settlement of African Americans after the Civil War. In 1941, the government seized a 34-acre section of the community’s land to build Barry Farm Dwellings, a public housing development for African Americans, per a report from the D.C. Policy Center.

November 21, 2021 | D.C. Policy Center

Metro derailment brings transit equity issues to light | StreetSense

Right now, many Black D.C. residents cannot afford to live within walking or biking distance of their workplace.  Data from the D.C. Policy Center found that those who biked to work earned an average of $60,000 a year, while workers who took the bus earned an average of $32,000, the 2017 data found.

November 17, 2021 | D.C. Policy Center

Measuring early career outcomes in D.C.

Quick links Download this report in the original PDF format here. Access the 1-page report summary here. Access the launch event page and event program here. Chapter 1. The importance of tracking early career outcomes D.C.’s public schools, serving students from pre-kindergarten through grade 12, strive to prepare students to succeed as young…

November 17, 2021 | Chelsea Coffin,

District Links: Council hearing airs stark divisions over encampment pilot; new bill would keep DC’s mail-in ballots and drop boxes; and more | The DC Line

On November 10, 2021, the D.C. Policy Center’s article, D.C. high school alumni reflections on their early career outcomes, was cited by The DC Line: DC Council hears testimony on effectiveness of pilot program on school security [WTOP] ‘Old news? 214-unit development proposed for former Fox 5 site on Wisconsin Avenue’ [UrbanTurf]…

November 10, 2021 | D.C. Policy Center

Oyé Palaver Hut Brings African Culture, Conflict Resolution East of the River | Washington Informer

Earlier this year, the D.C. Policy Center collected data showing that isolation and increased economic hardship during the pandemic further primed young people for socioemotional challenges. In anticipation of months of unresolved trauma spilling into the classroom, Yaa-Anna participated in workshops about trauma-informed instruction.

November 10, 2021 | D.C. Policy Center

D.C. high school alumni reflections on their early career outcomes

Introduction Data exist on D.C.’s public and public charter school students’ high school graduation rates and student’s enrollment in postsecondary education six months after graduation. But beyond that six-month mark, in terms of publicly available data the picture goes dark: there is very little qualitative or quantitative information on early career outcomes…

November 10, 2021 | Emilia Calma

How feeder patterns influence school decisions in D.C.

Many of D.C.’s public school students change schools at some point between pre-kindergarten and grade 12, transferring into a different feeder pattern. At the final transition point, which is between 8th and 9th grade, the most popular school-to-school feeder pattern in the District of Columbia Public Schools (DCPS) system is Wilson High…

November 4, 2021 | Chelsea Coffin

Shifting landscape: A brief history of the fiscal relationship between the District of Columbia and the federal government

Executive summary It is a common myth that the District has always been dependent on a steady stream of reliable federal funding. This myth clouds the D.C. statehood debate.  The truth is that, going back to the 1790s, federal fiscal supports to the District are better characterized as erratic, unpredictable, and declining…

October 27, 2021 | D.C. Policy Center

D.C. shouldn’t fear losing federal money as it pursues statehood, business-backed group argues | Washington Business Journal

“For most of its history, the District suffered from underinvestment that can, at least in part, be attributed to the lack of stable and proper fiscal supports from the federal government in several fields including education and infrastructure,” researchers with the D.C. Policy Center, which prepared the report alongside Statehood Research, wrote.

October 27, 2021 | D.C. Policy Center

Is anyone safe in DC crosswalks when one dangerous driver per minute passes by? | Greater Greater Washington

Incidents like these continue to occur across DC and are prevalent in every ward. A recent study by the DC Policy Center documented these incidents across the city. It also points out that many of these incidents have not been tracked. Upwards of 30% of incidents involving a pedestrian outside a vehicle that resulted in a 911 call were not actually logged by the Metropolitan Police Department.

October 26, 2021 | D.C. Policy Center

Gentrification Blamed for Food Insecurity in Wards 7, 8 | Washington Informer

The residents located in those areas have limited access to nutritious food, which leads to higher reliance on junk food and fast food, experts say. Additionally, food deserts are usually in low-income areas and communities of color, according to a Department of Agriculture study. Those neighborhoods also often report higher rates of obesity and diabetes, according to a study done by the D.C. Policy Center.

October 26, 2021 | D.C. Policy Center

There’s a new push to incentivize office conversions in downtown D.C. But the idea still faces an uphill climb. | Washington Business Journal

Researchers at the D.C. Policy Center and D.C. Office of Planning have both argued in recent studies that the dearth of conversions often stems from a simple math problem: Even with declining vacancy rates, the shift to residential still may not generate high enough rents to justify the expense of making the switch. Owners of older, class B and C buildings are therefore much more likely to explore the prospect, and even then, owners in the suburbs have more incentive to convert than those in downtown D.C.

October 21, 2021 | D.C. Policy Center

Mayor Bowser Opens Applications for $1.25 Million Inclusive Innovation Equity Impact Fund | EOM

“Over the past couple of years City leadership has propelled the District to be ranked as the #11 startup ecosystem in the world. Moreover, according to the DC Policy Center annual data through Q4 2020 shows there was a 5 percent increase in total private establishments in the District between 2019 and 2020. Now is the time to ensure that the growth of businesses in DC is equitable for all,” said Melissa Bradley

October 20, 2021 | D.C. Policy Center

DC programs connect job seekers and employers during national hiring struggles | StreetSense

“As of June 2021, nearly half the small businesses that operated in January of 2020 were closed, and revenue was down by about 57%,” according to a D.C. Policy Center report commissioned by the D.C. Chamber of Commerce. Those closures were concentrated in “consumer-facing industries” such as leisure and hospitality, where employment remained 35% below February 2020 levels. In contrast, the report found, employment in office-based jobs was only 3% below February 2020 levels.

October 20, 2021 | D.C. Policy Center

The D.C. region’s transition to clean energy

In April, President Biden set a national greenhouse gas emissions reduction target of 50-52 percent of 2005 emissions levels by 2030. Meeting this goal will require the U.S. electricity sector to source 80 percent of its generation from carbon-free energy sources by 2030, with President Biden setting a further target of 100…

October 14, 2021 | Evan Bennett,

District Links: Robert White makes his mayoral bid official; new report delves into why DC families leave public schools; and more | The DC Line

“Parents who move their children from D.C. public schools to surrounding jurisdictions cite school quality and housing affordability as major contributing factors to leaving — but what makes a quality school varies widely by household, a new report out today by the D.C. Policy Center found. 

October 13, 2021 | D.C. Policy Center

Why some parents leave D.C. public schools | Axios D.C.

On October 13, 2021, the D.C. Policy Center’s report, Exit & voice: Perceptions of the District’s public schools among stayers and Leavers, was cited by Axios D.C.: Parents who move their children from D.C. public schools to surrounding jurisdictions cite school quality and housing affordability as major contributing factors to leaving —…

October 13, 2021 | D.C. Policy Center

Morning links: Racine declines 2022 run | Axios D.C.

Parents who move their children from D.C. public schools to surrounding jurisdictions cite school quality and housing affordability as major contributing factors to leaving — but what makes a quality school varies widely by household, a new report out today by the D.C. Policy Center found. 

October 13, 2021 | D.C. Policy Center

Exit & Voice: Perceptions of the District’s public schools among stayers and leavers

Quick links Download this report in the original PDF format here. Access the 1-page report summary here. Download additional tables prepared with the survey data here in MS Excel format. View the launch event discussion recording here. Executive summary Enrollment in D.C.’s public schools had been steadily increasing since 2009 until the COVID-19 pandemic disrupted this…

October 13, 2021 | Chelsea Coffin,

Testimony on office to residential conversions before the D.C. Council Special Committee on COVID-19 Pandemic Recovery

Good morning, Councilmember Allen, Councilmember Gray, and the members of the Special Committee on COVID-19 Pandemic Recovery. My name is Yesim Sayin Taylor, and I am the Executive Director of the D.C. Policy Center—an independent non-partisan think tank advancing policies for a strong and vibrant economy in the District of Columbia. I thank you for the…

October 12, 2021 | Yesim Sayin

D.C.’s Extended State Of Emergency Policies Adding Hurdles To Struggling Apartment Market | Bisnow

On October 9, 2021, D.C. Policy Center Executive Director Yesim Sayin Taylor, was quoted by Bisnow: D.C. Policy Center Executive Director Yesim Sayim Taylor said the data shows the vast majority of eviction cases have involved nonpayment of rent.  “Landlords are not happy with the extension of eviction to all causes, they…

October 9, 2021 | D.C. Policy Center

Breakfast links: With dual trails and cyclist rush hours, the W&OD starts to look more like a (car-free) road | Greater Greater Washington

On October 8, 2021, the D.C. Policy Center’s article, Examining office to residential conversions in the District, was cited by Greater Greater Washington: A housing shortage and recent pandemic-driven changes in work patterns mean the District seems to have too much office space, and too little residential. But office to home conversions…

October 8, 2021 | D.C. Policy Center

Less than 25 percent of office workers have returned to downtown D.C., new report says | Washington Post

On October 8, 2021, the D.C. Policy Center’s article, Examining office to residential conversions in the District, was cited by the Washington Post: The D.C. Policy Center came out with its own study Thursday focused on the potential of turning office buildings downtown into residential space. It painted those conversions as an answer to…

October 8, 2021 | D.C. Policy Center

Breakfast links: DC’s pedestrian crash data has a huge missing piece | Greater Greater Washington

On October 7, 2021, the D.C. Policy Center’s article, Observed disparities between 911 calls and crash reports, was cited by Greater Greater Washington: A study by the DC Policy Center found that nearly a third of crashes involving pedestrians, cyclists, and scooter riders go unlogged in DC crash data. Police say they…

October 7, 2021 | D.C. Policy Center

MPD crash data is incomplete, study finds | Axios DC

On October 7, 2021, the D.C. Policy Center’s article, Observed disparities between 911 calls and crash reports, was cited by Axios DC: A third of crashes during a six-week period where a driver hit a cyclist or a pedestrian was not publicly reported by police, a new report by the D.C. Policy Center found….

October 7, 2021 | D.C. Policy Center

District Links: City resumes encampment clearing in NoMa; Supreme Court rejects DC voting rights lawsuit; and more | The DC Line

On October 7, 2021, the D.C. Policy Center’s article, Observed disparities between 911 calls and crash reports, was cited by The DC Line: A new analysis out today from the D.C. Policy Center finds that Metropolitan Police Department’s crash data is incomplete but nonetheless provides the basis for safety decisions by the District Department of Transportation. “While…

October 7, 2021 | D.C. Policy Center

Examining office to residential conversions in the District

Employment centers in the District of Columbia have long been a source of economic activity and city revenue. Office buildings not only bring in businesses that pay corporate franchise taxes, but they also bring in workers, create employment for those who staff these buildings, and support surrounding retail and restaurants. The historically…

October 7, 2021 | Sunaina Bakshi Kathpalia,

A new accessible medical center opens in Ward 8, DC | StreetSense

On October 6, 2021, the D.C. Policy Center’s article, Pushing through complacency to fight health disparities in D.C.’s African American communities, was cited by StreetSense: Opening the medical center east of the Anacostia River was done strategically, according to Bread for the City’s press release. Access to quality healthcare has been a…

October 6, 2021 | D.C. Policy Center

Study says nearly 1/3 of crashes involving pedestrians and cyclists go unreported in DC | WTOP

On October 6, 2021, the D.C. Policy Center’s article, Observed disparities between 911 calls and crash reports, was cited by WTOP: You wouldn’t necessarily expect every single car accident to get a police report after the fact, even if an ambulance is sent out to respond to the scene as a precaution….

October 6, 2021 | D.C. Policy Center

Observed disparities between 911 calls and crash reports

In D.C., the District Department of Transportation (DDOT) is responsible for planning and building the city’s transportation infrastructure, including where bicycle lanes, crosswalks, and safety features are installed. When making decisions about public infrastructure investments, DDOT relies on public crash data provided by the Metropolitan Police Department (MPD) to understand where crashes happen in…

October 5, 2021 | Emilia Calma,

2021 State of Business: What risks and opportunities exist as the District builds back from COVID-19?

Over the past year and a half, the COVID-19 pandemic has placed unprecedented burdens on the District’s residents, establishments, and economy. As businesses were forced to adjust to a new way of operating under a rapid shutdown of the city and the nation, the pandemic induced a historic spike in unemployment, with…

October 4, 2021 | D.C. Policy Center

2021 State of Business Report: Building Back

Photo/Joe Flood (Source) Message from the Chamber One of the nation’s most resilient regions, Washington, DC, like the country itself, experienced unprecedented changes in its economy, workforce, and business community during the COVID-19 pandemic.    The 2021 State of Business Report provides both data and analysis of the impact of COVID-19 on…

October 4, 2021 | D.C. Policy Center

The Pandemic Hit Cities Hard, but Especially Washington, D.C. | Wall Street Journal

On September 27, 2021, the D.C. Policy Center’s article, Births and international in-migration maintain the District’s population 15-year population growth, was cited by the Wall Street Journal: People are pushing farther out. Stafford and Loudoun counties in Virginia and Frederick County in Maryland saw the strongest area population growth rates, almost 2%, as well…

September 27, 2021 | D.C. Policy Center

11 charter schools in DC will give admissions preference to at-risk students | WTOP

On September 18, 2021, the D.C. Policy Center Education Policy Initiative Director Chelsea Coffin was cited by WTOP: During a public hearing in July 2020, before the law was passed, Chelsea Coffin, the director of the Education Initiative of D.C. Policy Center, testified before the city council on the report the center published on…

September 18, 2021 | D.C. Policy Center

Eleven D.C. Charter Schools To Give Admissions Preference To At-Risk Students | DCist

On September 17, 2021, the D.C. Policy Center’s report, At-risk priority in D.C.’s common lottery: Potential implications for access and diversity, was cited by DCist: In an analysis published last year, the D.C. Policy Center determined that a new at-risk preference would likely accomplish those goals. “Implementing a priority for at-risk applicants…

September 17, 2021 | D.C. Policy Center

The District’s business incentives should target its comparative advantages

Introduction Over the last four decades, deindustrialization, automation, trade with China, the rise of the tech economy, and industry concentration have all contributed to the country’s regional divergence in economic prosperity. A 2019 Brookings report found that 90 percent of growth in high-tech jobs happened in just five metropolitan areas–Boston, San Francisco,…

September 15, 2021 |

How The Rise Of Post-9/11 Defense Contracting Helped Reshape Local Neighborhoods | DCist

On September 10, 2021, the D.C. Policy Center’s article, How big of a deal is Amazon HQ2 for the DC Metro Region?, was cited by DCist: Economist Yesim Sayin Taylor with the D.C. Policy Center wrote in a 2018 paper that Amazon would likely be “an unimpressive flare in the region’s chronic housing crisis,”…

September 10, 2021 | D.C. Policy Center

Friendship PCS Blow Pierce Campus Maintains Ties with Parents During In-Person Learning | Washington Informer

On September 8, 2021, D.C. Policy Center’s article, Challenges outside of school for D.C.’s students and families during the pandemic, was cited by the Washington Informer: A report published by the D.C. Policy Center in March found that District children who stayed home during the pandemic experienced social isolation, anxiety and depression. As adults…

September 8, 2021 | D.C. Policy Center

Washington, D.C. Is Planning an Unnecessary and Harmful Wealth Tax | Citizens Against Government Waste

On August 25, 2021, the D.C. Policy Center’s article, The long view for the District’s budget: What is awaiting the District in Fiscal Year 2022 and beyond, was quoted by Citizens Against Government Waste: Both policy analysts on the right and left agree that the city has enough money and will continue…

August 25, 2021 | D.C. Policy Center

Temperatures in D.C.’s Heat Islands, Can Register Ten to Twenty Degrees Hotter Than in Leafy Neighborhoods | Washington City Paper

On August 19, 2021, the D.C. Policy Center’s article, Discriminatory housing practices in the District: A brief history by Kathryn Zickuhr, was cited by Washington City Paper: “[G]overnment regulations and recommendations at every level of government sought to keep Black and white residents separated, subsidizing construction, loans, and housing for white residents…

August 19, 2021 | D.C. Policy Center

Goodbye, Chocolate City | Washington Post

On August 14, 2021, the D.C. Policy Center’s article, How the region’s racial and ethnic demographics have changed since 1970, was cited by the Washington Post: White people, who didn’t face labor market discrimination or the legacy of slavery, got there first. But plenty of Black people wanted houses with yards and…

August 14, 2021 | D.C. Policy Center

Property Taxes And Pot In Col., VAT In Texas: SALT In Review | Law360

On August 13, 2021, the D.C. Policy Center’s article, What is happening to the District’s personal income tax base?, was cited by Law360: The D.C. Policy Center is among the most influential think tanks in the nation’s capital. The center conducts excellent research and analysis on a wide variety of public policy…

August 13, 2021 | D.C. Policy Center

How rising property taxes are disproportionately impacting low-income, gentrified neighborhoods | WUSA9

On August 13, 2021, the D.C. Policy Center’s article, The rise and demise of racially restrictive covenants in Bloomingdale, was cited by WUSA9: Much of what shaped these Black neighborhoods was the result of racially restrictive covenants throughout the mid-20th century that banned Black people from buying property in White neighborhoods forcing…

August 13, 2021 | D.C. Policy Center

Developer duo tackles mixed-use project from the ground up in Deanwood | Washington Business Journal

On August 6, 2021, the D.C. Policy Center’s article, Food access in D.C is deeply connected to poverty and transportation, was cited by the Washington Business Journal: The grocery store is a necessity for her neighbors, too. The D.C. Policy Center, a research group launched years ago by the Federal City Council,…

August 6, 2021 | D.C. Policy Center

D.C. public schools’ plans for instruction in school year 2020-21

In October 2020, all 67 Local Education Agencies (LEAs) in the District submitted their Continuous Education and School Recovery Plans (CEPs), providing information on what changes they were aiming to implement during school year 2020-21 to best serve their students. The plans were mandated by the Office of the State Superintendent of Education (OSSE)…

July 27, 2021 | Tanaz Meghjani

The declining importance of commute times

Housing prices—especially the price of single-family homes—in the Washington metro region have increased rapidly since COVID-related restrictions were first implemented in March of 2020. The House Price Index (data, methodology) compiled by Federal Housing Finance Agency, shows that single-family home prices (including the appraised values for both purchased and refinanced homes) in the…

July 23, 2021 | Yesim Sayin

Who is providing COVID-19 care in the Washington Metropolitan Area?

Since March 2020, over 33 million people have contracted COVID-19 in the United States.[1] Compared to the national average and many other large metropolitan areas, D.C. fared relatively well, with a case rate of 6,996 per 100,000 people, compared to the national average of 10,140 per 100,000 people.[2],[3] While many elements contributed to D.C….

July 21, 2021 | Igor Geyn,

What is happening to the District’s personal income tax base?

The D.C. Council is considering various proposals to increase income taxes on high-income earners. Supporters argue that a tax hike is necessary to meet needs like childcare and reducing homelessness. But paying for a good cause and public support for higher taxes are only tangentially related to what constitutes good tax policy.

July 19, 2021 | Yesim Sayin

D.C. Voices: Social studies standards in D.C.’s public schools

In July 2020, the District of Columbia State Board of Education (DC SBOE), in partnership with the Office of the State Superintendent of Education (OSSE), created the Social Studies Standards Advisory Committee to review and update the District’s social studies curriculum. These standards were last revised in 2006. The goal of this…

July 14, 2021 | Ava Lundell

Landscape of student engagement during the pandemic

One year after schools physically closed on March 16, 2020,[1] an estimated 88 percent of students in the District of Columbia were still learning from home[2], as most programs for students in kindergarten to grade 12 remained virtual through the end of the fall 2020 semester and start of the spring 2021…

July 6, 2021 | Yanesia Norris

Births and international in-migration maintain the District’s population 15-year population growth

The U.S. Census Bureau’s recently-released estimates of components of population changes (April 2010 to July 2020) show that the District’s population total rose to 712,816 between 2019 and 2020—a gain 4,563 new residents. This gain is approximately a third of the average annual change seen in the first half of this decade….

June 24, 2021 | Sunaina Bakshi Kathpalia

D.C. Voices: Professional development for teachers in summer 2021

In focus groups conducted by the D.C. Policy Center in August 2020, some teachers reported that when D.C.’s public and public charter schools transitioned to distance learning in March, they didn’t have the tools they needed to design and deliver virtual lesson plans. They didn’t know how to best engage students in…

June 24, 2021 | Tanaz Meghjani

D.C. statehood could cost more than $1 billion. City officials aren’t fazed. | Washington Post

On June 4, 2021, D.C. Policy Center Executive Director Dr. Yesim Sayin Taylor, was quoted by The Washington Post: Some analysts said statehood could bring other financial opportunities as well. If the District had voting representation in Congress, lawmakers could lobby more effectively for federal grant funding available to all states, said…

June 4, 2021 | D.C. Policy Center

Education testimony by Chelsea Coffin at the FY2022 D.C. Council budget oversight hearing

On June 3, 2021, D.C. Policy Center Education Policy Initiative Director Chelsea Coffin testified at the Committee of the Whole Public Oversight Hearing on education, addressing what the budget means for students who are designated at-risk. You can read her testimony below or download a PDF version here.  Good morning, Chairman Mendelson…

June 3, 2021 | Chelsea Coffin

This bill would create a new tool for DC to expand its dedicated affordable housing stock | Greater Greater Washington

On June 1, 2021, the D.C. Policy Center was mentioned by Greater Greater Washington: There’s no cost estimate yet for the program, but White expects cost estimates to be “very compelling.” He said they are working with the DC Policy Center to estimate how much funding the program would need and how…

June 1, 2021 | D.C. Policy Center

D.C. Voices: Spending federal ESSER funds

To help schools and students cope with the extreme challenges created by COVID-19, the U.S. Department of Education awarded three rounds of Elementary and Secondary School Emergency Relief (ESSER) funds. These grants were given to states to assist schools and Local Education Agencies (LEAs) in addressing the impacts of COVID-19 on elementary…

May 27, 2021 | Chelsea Coffin

Testimony at Special Committee on COVID-19 Pandemic Recovery & Committee of the Whole Joint Public Oversight Hearing

On May 26, 2021, D.C. Policy Center Education Policy Initiative Director Chelsea Coffin testified at the Special Committee on COVID-19 Pandemic Recovery & Committee of the Whole Joint Public Oversight Hearing, addressing learning gaps and ensuring that students’ mental and physical health needs are met. You can read her testimony below or…

May 26, 2021 | Chelsea Coffin

Testimony of Yesim Sayin on tax policy through a racial equity lens

Good morning, Councilmember McDuffie, and the members of the Committee on Business and Economic Development My name is Yesim Sayin Taylor, and I am the Executive Director of the D.C. Policy Center—an independent non-partisan think tank advancing policies for a strong and vibrant economy in the District of Columbia. I thank you…

May 25, 2021 | Yesim Sayin

He was denied an SBA grant. But the gated community nearby would qualify. | Triad Business Journal

On May 21, 2021, D.C. Policy Center Executive Director Dr. Yesim Sayin Taylor was quoted by the Triad Business Journal: But that can cause issues, according to Yesim Taylor, head of the D.C. Policy Center, who noted that these maps are based off census tracts. Read more: He was denied an SBA…

May 21, 2021 | D.C. Policy Center

Testimony of Yesim Sayin on transitioning out of the public health emergency

On May 21, 2021, D.C. Policy Center’s Executive Director Yesim Sayin testified before the Special Committee on COVID-19 Pandemic Recovery to share ideas on how the District can gradually transition out of the public emergency and wind down safety net supports in the least disruptive ways. You can read her testimony below…

May 21, 2021 | Yesim Sayin

The long view for the District’s budget: What is awaiting the District in Fiscal Year 2022 and beyond

COVID-19 related federal legislation and administrative actions have provided an unprecedented amount of federal funding for the District of Columbia. The American Rescue Plan Act alone—the latest in a series of federal legislative initiatives—is delivering the District $2.2 billion in operating expenditure support, $107 million for COVID-19 related capital expenditures, $386 million…

May 13, 2021 | Yesim Sayin

Outcomes for high school students during the pandemic

High school students in D.C. have been especially impacted by the pandemic. In an EmpowerK12 survey of 2,500 public charter school students, high schoolers’ responses indicated that they were the least confident in their ability to succeed during distance learning compared to students in other grade bands.[i] Although some have thrived in…

May 12, 2021 | Tanaz Meghjani

D.C. Voices: Summer 2021 programming to address learning loss and student well-being

For students at District of Columbia Public Schools (DCPS), and many public charter schools, the 2020-21 school year will end on or around June 24, 2021.  After the academic year ends, many students will participate in summer programs to address reduced learning and socialization over the last year. In 2017, at least…

May 5, 2021 | Tanaz Meghjani

Report: While hundreds of businesses closed their doors due to COVID, new businesses were being formed | WUSA9

On May 5, 2021, D.C. Policy Center Executive Director Yesim Sayin Taylor, was quoted by WUSA9: The D.C. Policy Center, a think-tank nonprofit, said hundreds of people like Bryan decided to open small, home-based businesses during the pandemic. In its 2020 report, it found that as hundreds of businesses were being wiped…

May 5, 2021 | D.C. Policy Center

D.C.’s adult learners during the pandemic: Results from a Fall 2020 survey

The disproportionate health and economic impacts of the COVID-19 health pandemic have been widely documented. In Washington, D.C., adult learners suddenly found themselves pivoting to virtual learning while simultaneously navigating heightened concerns about their employment, health, and housing. In May 2020, adult charter schools in D.C. conducted a survey of learners to…

May 4, 2021 | ,

Voices Of Wards 7 And 8: Violence In The Community | DCist

On May 3, 2021, the D.C. Policy Center’s article, Goodbye to Chocolate City, was cited by DCist: D.C. went by several names in the second half of the 20th century: Chocolate City for example, referred to the fact that D.C. was the country’s first majority Black city. While more white residents now call the…

May 3, 2021 | D.C. Policy Center

‘D.C.’s richest residents pay lower taxes than everyone else,’ report finds | StreetSense

On April 29, 2021, the D.C. Policy Center’s article, Tax practices that amplify racial inequities: Property tax treatment of owner-occupied housing, was cited by StreetSense: A 2018 report by the D.C. Policy Center stated that provisions such as the homestead deduction and property tax cap, which give large tax breaks to homeowners in gentrified…

April 29, 2021 | D.C. Policy Center

How Cleveland Park’s historic district cost the neighborhood 42 homes in one project | Greater Greater Washington

On April 29, 2021, the D.C. Policy Center’s article, The District’s population grows for the 14th year in a row, but at a weaker rate, was cited by Greater Greater Washington: The city’s population has grown over the last two decades, and is likely to continue to do so. Even if COVID…

April 29, 2021 | D.C. Policy Center

The case for creating a local talent pipeline in the District of Columbia

The District of Columbia and the greater Washington metropolitan area have always been great places to live and work. High wages, high quality of life, and a stable hiring environment with a depth of talent has attracted workers from all parts of the nation and all corners of the world. Data from…

April 29, 2021 | Emilia Calma,

D.C.’s explosive growth continued over the past decade, census data shows | Washington Post

On April 26, 2021, D.C. Policy Center researcher Sunaina Kathpalia was quoted by the Washington Post: Sunaina Kathpalia, a demographics researcher at the D.C. Policy Center, said that the slowed population growth in the latter half of the decade is “not a sign of some kind of doom.” “It is part of…

April 27, 2021 | D.C. Policy Center

How DC can reduce traffic deaths and make real progress on Vision Zero | Greater Greater Washington

On April 22, 2021, the D.C. Policy Center’s article, Where it’s easiest to live car-free in D.C., was cited by Greater Greater Washington: The goals of safety and equity in transportation are aligned. Private vehicles are the most deadly form of transportation. The DC Policy Center has shown that areas where car-free living is…

April 22, 2021 | D.C. Policy Center

How difficult will it be to make buildings in DC more energy efficient? It depends on the building. | Greater Greater Washington

On April 19, 2021, the D.C. Policy Center’s report, Taking Stock of the District’s Housing Stock, was cited by Greater Greater Washington: Multifamily affordable housing units are more difficult to find, as only 31% of the available housing units in the District were “potentially” affordable to families of four, according to a 2018 report…

April 19, 2021 | D.C. Policy Center

The Miles to the Grocery Store Got Longer This Year | Slate

On April 9, 2021, the D.C. Policy Center’s article, Food access in D.C is deeply connected to poverty and transportation, was cited by Slate: Researchers define a food desert in D.C. as an area where there is no full-service grocery store within a half-mile and where 40 percent of the households don’t have a…

April 9, 2021 | D.C. Policy Center

D.C. Voices: Lessons learned after a year of virtual instruction

On March 24, 2020 – exactly one year ago – D.C. public schools and many public charter schools began their first day of distance learning. The D.C. Policy Center’s State of D.C. Schools report documents how students, parents, and teachers (representing the most directly impacted groups) experienced this transition to virtual instruction.[i]…

March 25, 2021 | Tanaz Meghjani,

The establishment puzzle (and what it could mean for recovery) in the District of Columbia

The District has lost many jobs but added many businesses. Between September of 2019 and September of 2020, private sector employment in the District of Columbia declined by 12.6 percent (or 68,000 jobs lost), and wages earned in the third quarter of 2020 were 2.7 percent below where they were a year…

March 23, 2021 | Yesim Sayin

Testimony of Chelsea Coffin on pandemic distance learning at D.C. SBOE

On March 17, 2021, Chelsea Coffin, Director of the Education Policy Initiative, testified before the District’s State Board of Education (SBOE) regarding distance learning during the pandemic. You can read her testimony below, and download it as a PDF. Good evening, Members of the State Board of Education. My name is Chelsea…

March 17, 2021 | Chelsea Coffin

State of D.C. Schools, 2019-20

State of D.C. Schools, 2019-20 is an annual systemwide overview of education in the District of Columbia. Its main purpose is to give D.C. residents, parents, caregivers, and other stakeholders a snapshot of the overall performance of the District’s public schools.

March 16, 2021 | D.C. Policy Center
Media | Uncategorized

‘School Wasn’t Even Important’: For Many Local Students, The Pandemic Has Meant A Mountain Of Adult Responsibilities | WAMU

On March 9, 2021, D.C. Policy Center Wilkes Scholar Yanesia Norris was quoted and cited by WAMU: Students who live in Ward 7 and 8, majority-Black parts of the city with large concentrations of low-income families and high numbers of frontline workers, are at higher risk of contracting the coronavirus, according to an…

March 9, 2021 | D.C. Policy Center

Challenges outside of school for D.C.’s students and families during the pandemic

Health The health impacts of the pandemic have been concentrated among Black and Latino residents, likely related to unequal access to healthcare and essential work status across race and ethnicity lines, among other factors. As of February 15, 2021, residents of Wards 7 and 8 accounted for 28 percent of the District’s…

March 9, 2021 | Tanaz Meghjani,

Testimony of Chelsea Coffin regarding education agencies at the D.C. Council oversight hearing

Good morning, Chairperson Mendelson and members of the Committee of the Whole. My name is Chelsea Coffin and I am the Director of the Education Policy Initiative at the D.C. Policy Center, where our education research focuses on how schools connect to broader dynamics in the District of Columbia. The pandemic put…

March 9, 2021 | Chelsea Coffin

Progressive Lawmakers Are Considering Raising Taxes On The Rich. Should They? | DCist

On March 2, 2021, D.C. Policy Center Executive Director Dr. Yesim Sayin Taylor, was quoted by DCist: Yesim Sayin Taylor, the director of the D.C. Policy Center, another local think tank, says she understands the desire to identify new sources of revenue for social programs, calling the issues raised by Allen “terribly…

March 2, 2021 | D.C. Policy Center

RESIDENCE RESISTANCE: Zoning remains at the crux, while real estate firms tackle the need with new aid | Washington Business Journal

On February 26, 2021, D.C Policy Center Executive Director Dr. Yesim Sayin Taylor was quoted by the Washington Business Journal: The benefits of homeownership reverberate well past a domicile’s four walls. It doesn’t just produce wealth for current owners — it snowballs over time for future generations. It creates a pipeline for…

February 26, 2021 | D.C. Policy Center

D.C.’s Mayor Mourned Covid’s Unequal Toll. Her Sister Is the Latest Victim. | New York Times

On February 25, 2021, D.C. Policy Center Executive Director Dr. Yesim Sayin Taylor was quoted by the New York Times: Even if the disease strikes the overall population somewhat evenly, the risks of death are far less uniform, said Yesim Sayin Taylor, the executive director of the D.C. Policy Center, a research…

February 25, 2021 | D.C. Policy Center

An amendment 4 years in the making, with massive implications for affordable housing in DC, to be voted on in March | StreetSense Media

On February 24, 2021, the D.C. Policy Center’s article, A decade of demographic change in D.C.: Which neighborhoods have changed the most?, was cited by StreetSense: Public worries about the plan’s focus and intentions stem from the negative effects of gentrification and Black and brown displacement in the city, particularly in the…

February 24, 2021 | D.C. Policy Center

District Links: CFO Jeff DeWitt departing DC | The DC Line

On February 17, 2021, Executive Director Yesim Sayin Taylor’s interview with Washingtonian was cited by the DC Line: ► DC BUDGET – ‘DC has a surprise $552 million budget surplus despite Covid. What gives?’ Washingtonian’s Luke Mullins: “Though the covid pandemic has hammered the Washington region’s economy, the DC government finished its 2020 fiscal year…

February 18, 2021 | D.C. Policy Center
Media | Uncategorized

Who could be D.C.’s next CFO? DeWitt’s departure sets stage for debate over city’s finances. | Washington Business Journal

On February 18, 2021, D.C. Policy Center Executive Director Yesim Sayin Taylor was quoted by the Washington Business Journal: Yesim Taylor, head of the D.C. Policy Center and before that a longtime staffer in the CFO’s office, believes Mendelson’s assessment is accurate, if for no other reason than the job is an…

February 18, 2021 | D.C. Policy Center

Inequalities in health care need and demand across the District

The public health emergency caused by COVID-19 has increased scrutiny on the District of Columbia’s health care system. Does D.C. have adequate health care workforce capacity to handle the health care need and health care demand of its residents during this pandemic? If not, what supply gaps exist, and what impact do…

February 17, 2021 | Molloy Sheehan,

D.C. Faces A Startling Question: What If Office Workers Don’t Come Back? | DCist

On February 16, 2021, the D.C. Policy Center’s report, 2020 State of Business: Pivoting from Pandemic to Recovery was cited by DCist: The D.C. Policy Center, which is run by Yesim Taylor, a former staffer in the CFO’s office, summarized the risk to D.C. as follows in its 2020 State of Business Report:…

February 16, 2021 | D.C. Policy Center

DC Has a Surprise $552 Million Budget Surplus Despite Covid. What Gives? | Washingtonian

On February 16, 2021, D.C. Policy Center Executive Director Yesim Sayin Taylor was quoted by Washingtonian: Though the covid pandemic has hammered the Washington region’s economy, the DC government finished its 2020 fiscal year with a surplus of more than half a billion dollars. How is that possible? What does it say about about…

February 16, 2021 | D.C. Policy Center

Economic characteristics across D.C., students, and COVID-19

Most students in the District of Columbia have been learning from home since the COVID-19 pandemic began in March of 2020. School closures have likely been more challenging for students living in low-income households than for those in higher income households – households in Wards 7 and 8 are less likely than…

February 11, 2021 | Yanesia Norris

The pandemic hasn’t devastated local budgets in the D.C. area, but risks remain | Washington Business Journal

On February 4, 2021, D.C. Policy Center Executive Director Yesim Sayin Taylor was quoted by the Washington Business Journal: Yesim Taylor, executive director of the D.C. Policy Center and a former staffer in the CFO’s office, observed that the typical formula for appraisers involves examining a building’s capitalization rate: essentially, the ratio…

February 4, 2021 | D.C. Policy Center

D.C. Voices: School priorities for the District’s new research-practice partnership

What does a successful research-practice partnership look like? In 2018, the D.C. Council enacted legislation to create a research-practice partnership (RPP) in support of actionable, independent research for the District’s education sector. An education research-practice partnership is a collaborative engagement between researchers and education agencies that aims to identify paths for continued…

February 4, 2021 | Tanaz Meghjani,

Insulated, Not Immune | Washington Business Journal

On February 4, 2021, D.C. Policy Center Executive Director Yesim Sayin Taylor was quoted by the Washington Business Journal: Yesim Taylor, executive director of the D.C. Policy Center and a former staffer in the CFO’s office, observed that the typical formula for appraisers involves examining a building’s capitalization rate: essentially, the ratio…

February 4, 2021 | D.C. Policy Center

A potential inauguration threat showcased America’s housing crisis | Vox

On January 19, 2021, the D.C. Policy Center’s article, Single-family zoning and neighborhood characteristics in the District of Columbia, was cited by Vox: Limited supply means greater competition for the housing that is available, and that competition benefits higher- and middle-income people. And local zoning regulations, which make it more difficult for…

January 19, 2021 | D.C. Policy Center

After pandemic, inauguration was ‘make-or-break’ moment. But small businesses in D.C. fear the worst. | NBC

On January 19, 2021, the D.C. Policy Center’s report, 2020 State of Business Report: Pivoting from Pandemic to Recovery, was cited by NBC: The city has been hammered by political unrest over the last year as the pandemic closed stores and prohibited indoor dining, gutting some businesses. More than one-quarter of small…

January 19, 2021 | D.C. Policy Center

D.C. Voices: Data suggest a decline in routine vaccinations during COVID-19

In D.C., students are required to receive certain vaccines to attend school,[1] a practice that increases community protections against potentially life-threatening diseases. However, data show that routine vaccination rates among kindergarteners in D.C. are declining, and had been even before the COVID-19 pandemic began. Between the 2009-10 and 2017-18 school years, the…

January 14, 2021 | Tanaz Meghjani

The District’s tax incentive strategy is unique

The District’s strategy for targeting industries, and the dollar value of incentives offered, is unique when compared to the tax incentive strategies of neighboring Baltimore, Maryland and Virginia Beach, Virginia, as well as other large cities around the country. The District’s incentive-granting strategy relies primarily on local property tax abatements. Since D.C….

January 11, 2021 |

D.C. Statehood Is More Urgent Than Ever | The Atlantic

On January 9, 2021, the D.C. Policy Center’s article, Goodbye to Chocolate City, was cited by The Atlantic: Though the rapidly gentrifying District is now 46 percent Black and 46 percent white, many still see it as “Chocolate City.” Scaling back democratic protections for Black people has been a hallmark of this administration and…

January 9, 2021 | D.C. Policy Center

As D.C. Activists Push To Expand Rent Control, A Tool To Keep Track Of It Has Been Delayed For Years | DCist

On December 21, 2020, the D.C. Policy Center’s policy brief, How would the “Reclaim Rent Control” proposals change the District’s rental housing landscape?, was cited by DCist: In 2011, a study by the Urban Institute found that 79,145 units across 4,818 properties in D.C. were “potentially subject to rent control.” At a recent…

December 21, 2020 | D.C. Policy Center

D.C. Council Passes Bill Lowering Barriers To Employment For Residents With Criminal Records | DCist

On December 18, 2020, the D.C. Policy Center’s article, The impact of occupational licensing requirements in D.C., was cited by DCist: Earlier this year, the District’s protections for criminal-record-holding citizens seeking occupational licenses received a C- grade in a nationwide report on licensing barriers from the Institute for Justice. According to a 2019 D.C. Policy Center…

December 18, 2020 | D.C. Policy Center

Detailed data show the full picture of jobs retained by PPP loans in the District

In response to a Freedom of Information Act lawsuit, on December 1, 2020, the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) released additional details regarding the loans received through the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP), including recipient names as well as exact loan amounts. In contrast, the previous disclosure included only loan ranges for loans…

December 16, 2020 | Sunaina Bakshi Kathpalia

Spike in new business formations signals post-Covid optimism, experts say | Washington Business Journal

On December 14, 2020, D.C. Policy Center executive director Yesim Sayin Taylor was quoted by Washington Business Journal: Yesim Taylor, executive director of the D.C. Policy Center, said the trend in new business applications is the same nationwide, with a dramatic increase in the third quarter. But the D.C., Virginia and Maryland…

December 14, 2020 | D.C. Policy Center

D.C. Voices: Transitioning to postsecondary school or the workforce during the pandemic

The public health and economic crises caused by COVID-19 have created additional challenges for students who are navigating the transition from high school to postsecondary school or to the workforce. High school seniors in spring 2020 found it difficult to visit schools, complete the necessary tests, apply for financial aid, and discuss…

December 3, 2020 | Tanaz Meghjani

LTE: Nearly one half of small businesses closed in Washington, D.C. due to COVID-19 | Washington Times

On December 2, 2020, the D.C. Policy Center’s article, How COVID-19 is affecting small businesses in D.C., was referenced in a letter-to-the-editor in the Washington Times: It is small business owners, especially, that do not have the resources or means to perpetually stay open in the midst of lockdowns. In D.C., this…

December 2, 2020 | D.C. Policy Center
Media | Uncategorized

District Line Daily: Derailed | Washington City Paper

On December 1, 2020, the D.C. Policy Center’s article, New D.C. education data show how school choice plays out across wards, was cited by Washington City Paper: The cuts would come when there is a vaccine. (Dr. Moncef Slaoui, the chief scientific adviser for Operation Warp Speed, tells CNN it’s possible we reach herd immunity…

December 1, 2020 | D.C. Policy Center

Metro’s Proposed Cuts Are A ‘Punch In The Gut’ For Workers And The Local Economy | DCist

On December 1, 2020, D.C. Policy Center Executive Director Yesim Sayin Taylor, was quoted by DCist: And while the pain will be felt across the Washington region, Yesim Sayin Taylor of the D.C. Policy Center says the District will feel it particularly acutely. D.C. has already seen its revenue depleted by hundreds…

December 1, 2020 | D.C. Policy Center

Omnibus legislation gets hearing with sharp divide between tenant advocates and housing providers | Street Sense

On November 23, 2020, the D.C. Policy Center’s policy brief, How would the “Reclaim Rent Control” proposals change the District’s rental housing landscape?, was cited by Street Sense: Yesim Sayin Taylor, executive director of the D.C. Policy Center, said that “there are currently 72,900 rent-controlled units in the District and if the Council enacts…

November 23, 2020 | D.C. Policy Center

D.C. Nonprofits, Already Strained, Are Bracing For Less Bountiful Holiday Season | DCist

On November 19, 2020, the D.C. Policy Center’s article, How COVID-19 is affecting nonprofits in the D.C. area, was cited by DCist: Before the pandemic, Rebuilding Together relied largely on volunteers — more than 1,000 each year — to do basic home repairs like fixing smoke alarms and installing safety grab bars…

November 19, 2020 | D.C. Policy Center

District Links: Another deal to return teachers to classrooms falls apart… | The DC Line

On November 18, 2020, the D.C. Policy Center’s report, At-risk application patterns in D.C.’s common lottery, was cited by The DC Line: Families of at-risk students are less likely to participate in the school lottery and submit applications prior to the deadline, a new report from the D.C. Policy Center found. Even so, author Chelsea Coffin says, there…

November 18, 2020 | D.C. Policy Center

At-risk application patterns in D.C.’s common lottery

The D.C. Council has passed legislation to allow (but not mandate) public charter schools to prioritize at-risk applicants in the common lottery. Charters could do so either by prioritizing an at-risk applicant pool over other student groups in the common lottery, or by reserving a certain share of their seats for at-risk…

November 18, 2020 | Chelsea Coffin

‘Keep the rent reasonable so I can pay it’ | DC tenants ask Council to strengthen rent control law | WUSA9

On November 9, 2020, the D.C. Policy Center’s report, How would the “Reclaim Rent Control” proposals change the District’s rental housing landscape?, was cited by WUSA9: According to the DC Policy Center, roughly 36% of the District’s rental units are rent controlled, which amounts to around 75,000 rent-controlled apartments in D.C. But laws…

November 12, 2020 | D.C. Policy Center

A Proposal To Expand Rent Control In D.C. Gets A Contentious Hearing | DCist

On November 10, 2020, the D.C. Policy Center’s report, How would the “Reclaim Rent Control” proposals change the District’s rental housing landscape?, was cited by DCist: If the bill passes, it would immediately subject more than 13,000 housing units to rent stabilization, most in small buildings, according to a new report from the…

November 10, 2020 | D.C. Policy Center

District Line Daily: “Reclaim Rent Control” Gets A Hearing | Washington City Paper

On November 9, 2020, the D.C. Policy Center’s policy brief, How would the “Reclaim Rent Control” proposals change the District’s rental housing landscape?, was cited by Washington City Paper: The D.C. Policy Center, a business-backed think tank, released a lengthy report on the bill ahead of hearing that could spook some councilmembers. The report…

November 9, 2020 | D.C. Policy Center

Appendix: How would the “Reclaim Rent Control” proposals change the District’s rental housing landscape?

Why are the numbers presented in the study estimates? Three sources of uncertainty make it difficult to know exactly how many units exist in multifamily buildings, and how many are subject to rent control. First, we do not have full administrative records on the number of units in multifamily apartment buildings and…

November 8, 2020 |

Part VI: What can the city do to keep rents low?

As renter incomes rise in the District, the upward pressure on rents in rental housing is becoming stronger. This could make policies proposed by the “Reclaim Rent Control” platform seem appropriate, since the immediate impact would be to put more units under rent control and slower rent increases. But the lower rents…

November 8, 2020 | Yesim Sayin

Part V: How would Bill 23-873 change the future of housing in D.C.?

The underlying tension in rent control policies is balancing the desire to stabilize rents for tenants against the need for the housing providers to a turn a reasonable profit from their operations. Unlike housing subsidies, which are paid for by public dollars, rent control laws try to split the economic value created…

November 8, 2020 |

Part IV: How would Bill 23-873 impact rents, valuations and tax revenue?

Many factors impact the trajectory of rents in a city including the increase in renter households relative to the number of available units, incomes, and the overall strength of the economy. In cities like the District, with relatively restrictive land use regulations, rent control laws could put a significant wedge between market…

November 8, 2020 |

Part III: How would Bill 23-873 impact the rent-controlled stock?

At present, the District has an estimated 113,281 rental apartment units in 4,767 taxable buildings. An estimated 72,878 units in 2,157 buildings are already subject to rent-control.[1] An estimated 31,980 units in 198 large buildings built after 1977 are currently exempt from rent control. But only 52 of these buildings are completely…

November 8, 2020 |

Part II: How would Bill 23-873 change rent control laws in D.C.?

Bill 23-873, the Rent Stabilization Program Reform and Expansion Amendment Act of 2020 would make comprehensive and sweeping changes to the current rent control laws, affecting every aspect including the universe of rent-controlled units, calculation and timing of rent increases including increases on vacant units, and various petition processes. Changes to exemptions…

November 8, 2020 |

Part I: What are the provisions of the District’s current rent control laws?

D.C.’s rent control laws, first enacted in 1985, are designed to stabilize rents for current tenants to protect them from rapid, unreasonable increases in their rents. While landlords can increase rents from year to year, these increases must be within established parameters and be predictable. Who is covered? The rent control laws…

November 8, 2020 | Yesim Sayin

Introduction: How would the “Reclaim Rent Control” proposals change the District’s rental housing landscape?

Rising rents in the District of Columbia, along with increased pressure on rental housing from higher income renters, have led to a debate on whether to expand rent control provisions in the city. In July of 2020, the D.C. Council voted to retain the city’s rent control laws (expiring at the end…

November 8, 2020 | Yesim Sayin

Testimony on B23-873, the Rent Stabilization Program Reform and Expansion Amendment Act of 2020

Good morning, Chairwoman Bonds and members of the Committee on Housing & Neighborhood Revitalization. My name is Yesim Sayin Taylor and I am the Executive Director of the D.C. Policy Center, an independent, nonpartisan think tank committed to advancing policies for a strong and vibrant economy in the District of Columbia. I…

November 8, 2020 | Yesim Sayin

Executive Summary: How would the “Reclaim Rent Control” proposals change the District’s rental housing landscape?

The D.C. Council is considering six separate bills that would amend the District’s rent control laws. Among these six, B23-873, the Rent Stabilization Program Reform and Expansion Amendment Act of 2020, which reflects the policy proposals of the “Reclaim Rent Control” platform, offers the most comprehensive and sweeping changes, affecting every aspect…

November 8, 2020 | Yesim Sayin

Policy Brief: How would the “Reclaim Rent Control” proposals change the District’s rental housing landscape?

The D.C. Council is now considering at least six separate bills that would amend its rent control law. Among those six,  Bill 23-873, the Rent Stabilization Program Reform and Expansion Amendment Act of 2020, which is based on the various policy proposals from the “Reclaim Rent Control” platform, proposes the most comprehensive…

November 8, 2020 | D.C. Policy Center

Testimony of Emilia Calma on the “Sense of the Council to Declare Racism A Public Health Crisis” (Resolution 23-0990)

Good evening, Chairman Gray and members of the Committee on Health. My name is Emilia Calma and I am the Director of Research and Policy for the D.C. Policy Center, an independent, nonpartisan think tank committed to advancing policies for a strong and vibrant economy in the District of Columbia. I thank…

November 5, 2020 | Emilia Calma

D.C. Voices: How can we safely and successfully transition to in-person learning?

As the District takes steps to identify what changes need to be made to safely and successfully transition back to in-person learning, the D.C. Policy Center reached out to school leaders, parents, teachers, and students to ask: In short term, what changes would make students, teachers, and staff feel safe attending school in person? What academic and socio-emotional supports would ensure student success? What about in the medium and long-term?

November 5, 2020 | Tanaz Meghjani,

District Links: DCPS cancels plans for in-person instruction for some students next week; 95 voting centers open for Election Day; and more | The DC Line

On November 3, 2020, the D.C. Policy Center’s article, COVID-era health care workforce capacity in Washington, D.C., was cited by The DC Line: A new report from the D.C. Policy Center examines the District’s COIVD-era health care workforce, including the geographic distribution of physicians, nurses, respiratory therapists and other health providers in the District. In…

November 3, 2020 | D.C. Policy Center

D.C. Food Banks and Nonprofits Face Dueling Crises During the Holidays | Washington City Paper

On November 3, 2020, the D.C. Policy Center’s article, Food access in D.C is deeply connected to poverty and transportation, was cited by Washington City Paper: Food insecurity in the District long predates the pandemic. In 2019, 10.6 percent of adults and 19.3 percent of children were food insecure, and according to…

November 3, 2020 | D.C. Policy Center

COVID-era health care workforce capacity in Washington, D.C.

While D.C. has been successful in keeping its COVID-19 viral reproductive number low, it has nonetheless consistently had 20-80 daily new cases since July. This low-level, ongoing crisis begs the question, what kinds of challenges does COVID-19 bring to bear on the District of Columbia? Is the District equipped with the physicians, nurses, respiratory therapists, and other providers needed to meet this public health crisis? Does D.C. have adequate health care workforce capacity to handle the health care need and demand of its residents during the pandemic? What supply gaps exist, and what impacts do those gaps have on residents?

November 2, 2020 | Molloy Sheehan,

Economic aftershocks: Even after the pandemic ends, its effects will linger across the D.C. region | Washington Business Journal

On October 30, 2020, D.C. Policy Center Executive Director Yesim Sayin Taylor, was quoted by the Washington Business Journal: “We see this especially in D.C.,” said Yesim Sayin Taylor, executive director of the D.C. Policy Center, a business-focused research and policy group, regarding the pandemic’s disproportionate blows to lower-paid workers. “The impacts…

October 30, 2020 | D.C. Policy Center

Small Landlords In D.C. Worry Pandemic Will Force Them To Sell Their Property | DCist

On October 27, 2020, the D.C. Policy Center’s report, Appraising the District’s rentals, was cited by DCist: Large, professionally managed apartment buildings are the most visible source of the city’s rental housing. But in the District, one third of rental stock exists in what’s called the “shadow” rental market, according to the…

October 27, 2020 | D.C. Policy Center

The geography of environmental toxins in the District of Columbia

Living in a toxin-free environment is essential to people’s mental and physical health. Being exposed to chemicals from pollution in soil, air, and water has wide ranging health effects including acute asthma symptoms, hormone disruption, decreased mental ability, and cancer. A U.S. national environmental quality index determined that there are over 30…

October 15, 2020 | Emilia Calma
Media | Uncategorized

D.C.’s Extended State Of Emergency Policies Adding Hurdles To Struggling Apartment Market | BisNow

On October 9, 2020, D.C. Policy Center Executive Director Yesim Sayin Taylor was quoted by BisNow: D.C. Policy Center Executive Director Yesim Sayim Taylor said the data shows the vast majority of eviction cases have involved nonpayment of rent.  “Landlords are not happy with the extension of eviction to all causes, they…

October 9, 2020 | D.C. Policy Center
Media | Uncategorized

D.C.’s speed camera revenue has dropped significantly as a result of Covid-19 | Washington Business Journal

On October 7, 2020, the D.C. Policy Center’s Executive Director, Yesim Sayin Taylor, was quoted by the Washington Business Journal: That most likely reflects the District’s assumptions about how long it will take for some people to return to work at their traditional offices, said Yesim Taylor, executive director at the D.C….

October 7, 2020 | D.C. Policy Center
Media | Uncategorized

PPP Money Abounded—but Some Got It Faster Than Others | Wall Street Journal

On October 6, 2020, the D.C. Policy Center’s Executive Director, Yesim Sayin Taylor, was quoted by the Wall Street Journal: Already, the unemployment rate in Washington’s Wards 7 and 8, the areas east of the Anacostia, surged to 14.2% and 18.4% in August, respectively, compared with 9.3% and 12.5% a year earlier, according to D.C. government data. In Ward 2, which includes the city’s central business district, the August jobless rate was 4.7%, compared with 3.8% a year earlier. “I’m very concerned about businesses closing,“ said Yesim Sayin Taylor, founding executive…

October 6, 2020 | D.C. Policy Center

Road to recovery: What we have learned from other cities’ and states’ responses to COVID-19

Introduction October marks the seventh month of closures and job losses due to COVID-19. To combat the health and economic impacts of the pandemic, many jurisdictions, including the District of Columbia, have implemented emergency measures; adopted short-term policies to cushion the initial shocks, and are now looking for longer-term policies to aid…

October 6, 2020 | Emilia Calma,
Media | Uncategorized

A lack of commuters is crippling D.C.’s economy. So the D.C. Chamber is focusing on how to bring people back | Washington Business Journal

On October 2, 2020, the D.C. Policy Center’s 2020 State of Business Report: Pivoting from Pandemic to Recovery, was cited by the Washington Business Journal: While every part of the region has been touched by the crisis, the chamber’s annual “State of Business” report documented especially dire effects in D.C. driven by…

October 2, 2020 | D.C. Policy Center

2020 State of Business Report: Pivoting from Pandemic to Recovery

The pandemic-induced recession has put an unprecedented pressure on the District’s economy. Precautions taken to slow the spread of COVID-19 have closed businesses and schools, reduced travel and mobility, and put thousands out of work. With the dramatic decline in demand from consumers, and halted business operations, the nation swiftly fell into a recession at the end of February.

October 2, 2020 | D.C. Policy Center

The impact of COVID-19 on D.C.’s adult learners: Results from a Spring 2020 survey

Washington, D.C. is one of the highest-earning, most educated cities in the country, yet almost 20 percent of families with children under 18 live below the poverty line and 45,000 adult residents do not have a high school diploma. Adult-serving public charter schools in D.C. reduce these disparities by working with adult learners to put them on a path toward economic prosperity.

September 30, 2020 |
Media | Uncategorized

Pandemic hit less than feared in 2020, but will hurt D.C. budget next year more than originally forecast | Washington Post

On September 30, 2020, D.C. Policy Center Executive Director Yesim Sayin Taylor was quoted by the Washington Post: At the more moderate D.C. Policy Center, executive director Yesim Taylor argued for across-the-board cuts that would reduce each agency’s budget by perhaps 2.5 percent, rather than tax increases. “The benefit of cutting spending…

September 30, 2020 | D.C. Policy Center
Media | Uncategorized

District Links: New bleak revenue projections to force budget changes | The DC Line

On September 30, 2020, D.C. Policy Center Executive Director Yesim Sayin Taylor was quoted by the DC Line: The new projections will force changes to the 2021 budget, either in the form of spending cuts or revenue increases. Although the surplus for 2020 is roughly equivalent to the newly identified revenue shortfall…

September 30, 2020 | D.C. Policy Center

Testimony of Yesim Sayin on the Tax Revision Commission Reestablishment Amendment Act of 2019

Good morning, Chairman Mendelson and members of the Committee of the Whole. My name is Yesim Sayin Taylor and I am the Executive Director of the D.C. Policy Center, an independent, nonpartisan think tank committed to advancing policies for a strong and vibrant economy in the District of Columbia. I thank you…

September 29, 2020 | Yesim Sayin
Media | Uncategorized

As Many Public Schools Fight to Retain Students Amid Pandemic, Washington, D.C.’s Charters Are Closer to Meeting Fall Enrollment Projections Than DCPS’s Traditional Schools | The 74 Million

On September 27, 2020, the Director of the D.C. Policy Center’s Education Policy Initiative, Chelsea Coffin, was quoted by The 74 Million: “It’s critical to find out who those students might be,“ said Chelsea Coffin, director of the Education Policy Initiative at the D.C. Policy Center, who has studied enrollment trends in the…

September 27, 2020 | D.C. Policy Center

Testimony of Yesim Sayin on rent control before the DC Council Committee on Housing & Neighborhood Revitalization

Good morning, Chairwoman Bonds and members of the Committee on Housing & Neighborhood Revitalization. My name is Yesim Sayin Taylor and I am the Executive Director of the D.C. Policy Center, an independent, nonpartisan think tank committed to advancing policies for a strong and vibrant economy in the District of Columbia. I…

September 24, 2020 | Yesim Sayin
Media | Uncategorized

If D.C. expands rent control, impacted landlords could win huge tax breaks. That’s alarming lawmakers. | Washington Business Journal

On September 23, 2020, the D.C. Policy Center’s article, Roughly 36 percent of D.C.’s rental housing units are rent-stabilized, was cited by the Washington Business Journal: The District hasn’t updated its rent control law in 35 years. It currently covers most apartments built before 1975 – about 75,000 units, or 36% of all units…

September 23, 2020 | D.C. Policy Center

D.C. Voices: Distance learning supports for students with disabilities and English learners

The shift to distance learning last spring created access and language barriers for some of D.C.’s most vulnerable students, including students with disabilities and English learners. In this installment of our D.C. Voices series, we asked, how are schools serving students with disabilities and English learners during distance learning this fall? What lessons were learned last spring?

September 23, 2020 | Tanaz Meghjani
Media | Uncategorized

Advocates Make Final Push To Involve Hard-To-Count D.C. Areas In The Census | WAMU

On September 22, 2020, the D.C. Policy Center’s article, D.C. is hard to count. Here’s where officials could target efforts for the 2020 Census, was cited by WAMU: D.C. Policy Center fellow Mike Maciag says D.C. has some specific challenges. “In D.C., we have a very transient population,” Maciag says. “Members of the military,…

September 22, 2020 | D.C. Policy Center
Media | Uncategorized

Giving At-Risk Kids Priority in Lottery for D.C. Charter Schools Can Help Integration and Right a Historic Wrong | The 74 Million

On September 21, 2020, the D.C. Policy Center’s report, At-risk priority in D.C.’s common lottery, was cited in The 74 Million: These measures work. As noted by the D.C. Policy Center, at-risk students tend to be excluded from schools already serving lower percentages of such children, largely because existing preferences in D.C.’s common lottery…

September 21, 2020 | D.C. Policy Center

District residents are beginning to rejoin the labor force

New data released by the District of Columbia Department of Employment Services (DOES) show that between May and July, D.C. saw a slight growth in its labor force and employment, as well as a marginal decrease in unemployment. Between May and July, labor force participation increased by 5,300 workers over age 16…

September 8, 2020 | Sunaina Bakshi Kathpalia
Media | Uncategorized

How has privatization of public housing fared in DC? | Greater Greater Washington

On September 4, 2020, the D.C. Policy Center’s publication, The history and evolution of Anacostia’s Barry Farm, was cited by Greater Greater Washington: For example, two miles from Greenleaf Gardens, the historic Barry Farms is in the 14th year since NCI redevelopment was approved. Although residents were eventually able to assert their rights and…

September 4, 2020 | D.C. Policy Center

D.C. Voices: Rebooting distance learning

On July 30, 2020, Mayor Bowser announced that D.C. Public Schools (DCPS) would begin the 2020-21 school year entirely virtually. Most public charter schools have made similar decisions, including the city’s two largest charter networks: KIPP DC PCS and Friendship PCS. This virtual start will follow a shortened 2019-2020 school year that…

August 27, 2020 | Tanaz Meghjani
Media | Uncategorized

District Links: DC residents can’t register to vote online anymore; COVID-19 cases dip in area; and more | The DC Line

On August 19, 2020, the D.C. Policy Center’s article, Paycheck Protection Program in the District: Hard-hit industries receive a smaller share of loans, was cited by The DC Line: ► REPORT – ‘Paycheck Protection Program in the District: Hard-hit industries receive a smaller share of loans.’ DC Policy Center’s Sunaina Kathpalia and Yesim Sayin Taylor: “Establishments with 20-49…

August 25, 2020 | D.C. Policy Center
Media | Uncategorized

D.C.’s mayor and council agree on one thing: Local businesses need help | Washington Post

On August 21, 2020, the D.C. Policy Center’s article, How COVID-19 is affecting small businesses in D.C., was cited in an opinion piece in the Washington Post: As a local business owner who has lived and worked in the D.C. area for 35 years, I’ve seen the incredible growth of this city. Local…

August 21, 2020 | D.C. Policy Center
Media | Uncategorized

DC Mayor Bowser dismisses Tucker Carlson comments: ‘People aren’t leaving DC in droves’ | The Hill

On August 20, 2020, the D.C. Policy Center’s article, The District’s population grows for the 14th year in a row, but at a weaker rate, was cited by The Hill: The most recent census numbers put D.C.’s population at 705,749 as of July 1, 2019, up 4,202 people from 2018. This equates to a growth rate of 0.6…

August 20, 2020 | D.C. Policy Center
Media | Uncategorized

The Urban Trail: It’s time to use zoning, regulatory tools to create more equitable neighborhoods | Washington Business Journal

On August 20, 2020, the D.C. Policy Center’s work and map were cited by the Washington Business Journal: While many today are not aware of the racist roots of these policies, and would strongly oppose perpetuating racial inequity, the results are hard to argue: Our region and many others remain as segregated…

August 20, 2020 | D.C. Policy Center

Paycheck Protection Program in D.C.: Hard-hit industries receive a smaller share of loans

From its conception, the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) attracted a lot of attention. The PPP loans were thought of as lifelines for small businesses that have taken large losses from the pandemic-induced economic shocks. By providing sums of money to cash-strapped businesses, PPP loans were intended to allow small businesses to keep their employees on the payroll. Importantly, it was advertised that businesses that could demonstrate need and spend the loans mainly on preserving they employees would be able to convert these loans into grants.

August 19, 2020 | Sunaina Bakshi Kathpalia,
Media | Uncategorized

Opinion: UDC is focused on the wrong students | Forest Hills Connection

On August 12, 2020, the D.C. Policy Center’s article, State of D.C. Schools 2018-19, was cited by Forest Hills Connection: In 2018, as UDC was rolling out its four-year strategic plan, 3,359 students graduated from DC public schools and charter schools. According to the DC Policy Center, 56% of those students went on to pursue…

August 12, 2020 | D.C. Policy Center

D.C. Voices: What factors are parents weighing as they make enrollment decisions for their children?

On July 30, 2020, D.C. Mayor Muriel Bowser announced that public schools in the District would start the academic year virtually and remain that way until November 6, 2020. This announcement does not apply to the city’s public charter schools, which educate nearly half of the city’s public school students. While a…

August 11, 2020 | Tanaz Meghjani

Racial Equity Evaluation of Residential Property Assessments in the District of Columbia

A recent working paper released by the Washington Center for Equitable Growth (WCEG) —and covered by the Washington Post on July 2—found that Black and Hispanic homeowners pay a higher effective tax on their homes when compared to what white homeowners pay on comparable homes, because Black- and Hispanic-owned homes are assessed…

August 11, 2020 | Yesim Sayin,
Media | Uncategorized

DC driving citations spike during the early stages of COVID-19 | Greater Greater Washington

On August 5, 2020, the D.C. Policy Center’s article, Speed cameras in D.C., was cited by Greater Greater Washington: By looking at the locations where most violations occurred, it’s clear that DC drivers’ habits began changing in March. The most frequent location of moving violation citations in February through April 2019, as…

August 5, 2020 | D.C. Policy Center
Media | Uncategorized

Let’s show Black lives matter in education | The DC Line

On August 5, 2020, the D.C. Policy Center’s article, Student achievement is on the rise, but critical gaps persist, was cited by The DC Line: After a quarter-century of education reform in the District — including a 1995 law authorizing public charter schools as well as mayoral control of the city-run school…

August 5, 2020 | D.C. Policy Center
Media | Uncategorized

D.C. debates whether low-income students should get preference in the school lottery system | Washington Post

On August 4, 2020, the D.C. Policy Center’s article, At-risk priority in D.C.’s common lottery: Potential implications for access and diversity, was cited by the Washington Post: The D.C. Policy Center, a local think tank, released a study last month examining the impact that adding an at-risk preference would have on lottery results. The…

August 4, 2020 | D.C. Policy Center

Testimony from Chelsea Coffin on the Expanding Equitable Access to Great Schools Act of 2020

On July 31, 2020, D.C. Policy Center Director of the Education Policy Initiative Chelsea Coffin testified before the Committee of the Whole and the Committee on Education on B23-0717, the Expanding Equitable Access to Great Schools Act of 2020. Download this testimony.

July 31, 2020 |

Update: Diversity in D.C.’s public schools, 2018-19

Within schools, student diversity is low in the District of Columbia. The 2018 D.C. Policy Center report, Landscape of Diversity in D.C.’s Public Schools, looked at data from the 2016-17 school year and found that there was less racial, ethnic, and socioeconomic diversity in District of Columbia Public Schools (DCPS) and public…

July 30, 2020 | Chelsea Coffin

At-risk priority in D.C.’s common lottery: Potential implications for access and diversity

The “At-risk priority in D.C.’s common lottery: Potential implications for access and diversity” report explores the implications of implementing a preference for at-risk students in Washington, D.C.’s common lottery, and what such a preference could mean for public charter schools in the city. Below is the full report. You can also read…

July 21, 2020 | Chelsea Coffin
Media | Uncategorized

Six big obstacles to economic recovery, from child-care shortages to displaced workers | Washington Post

On July 20, 2020, D.C. Policy Center Executive Director Yesim Sayin Taylor, was quoted in the Washington Post: Meanwhile, day-care centers are losing slots or going under. Few have enough space to serve as many children as in the past, given the need for physical distancing. Many can’t afford to reopen. “Their financial…

July 20, 2020 | D.C. Policy Center
Media | Uncategorized

Map of the Week: D.C. Food Deserts | American Geographical Society

On July 16, 2020, the D.C. Policy Center’s article, Food access in D.C is deeply connected to poverty and transportation, was cited by the American Geographical Society: In Washington D.C., food insecurity is no new phenomenon. D.C. is broken down into eight wards, shown on the map to the right. D.C. Policy Center…

July 16, 2020 | D.C. Policy Center

D.C. Voices: Sustainability of D.C. child care facilities during the pandemic

During the COVID-19 pandemic, households with children are more likely to face loss of employment income than households without children nationwide. This is likely due to parents having to give up jobs or reduce their hours to shoulder the additional responsibilities of educating and caring for their children without outside help. Until…

July 15, 2020 | Chelsea Coffin
Media | Uncategorized

District Links: Coronavirus cases rise in DC and region; Bowser plugs statehood on Tax Day; and more | The DC Line

On July 15, 2020, the D.C. Policy Center’s article, D.C. Voices: Sustainability of D.C. child care facilities during the pandemic, was cited by The DC Line: Amid concerns about the state of the child care sector now and in the future, the D.C. Policy Center’s Chelsea Coffin and Amanda Chu write that pandemic-related financial…

July 15, 2020 | D.C. Policy Center

Labor force participation continues to decline in the District

According to preliminary data released by the D.C. Department Employment Services, the District’s labor force declined by 15,000 between April and May, in addition to a 18,000 decline between March and April, and now stands at 387,500. Between April and May, 2,300 residents lost their jobs, and employment fell to 353,200. The…

July 14, 2020 | Sunaina Bakshi Kathpalia
Media | Uncategorized

What we’re reading: D.C. Voices: Teacher retention and recruitment during the pandemic | National Council on Teacher Quality

On July 14, 2020, the D.C. Policy Center’s article, D.C. Voices: Teacher retention and recruitment during the pandemic, was featured on the blog of the National Council on Teacher Quality: The COVID-19 pandemic has introduced new challenges to retaining teachers and the traditional teacher hiring process. New analysis from Chelsea Coffin and Tanaz…

July 14, 2020 | D.C. Policy Center
Media | Uncategorized

Letter: Here are some reasons for DC statehood | Chico Enterprise-Record

On July 12, 2020, the D.C. Policy Center’s work was cited in the Chico Enterprise-Record: If DC were a state this would lead to the Federal government being “coerced” by being part of a state. In fact, the vast majority of DC residents do not work for the federal government: according to…

July 12, 2020 | D.C. Policy Center

Where D.C.’s former students attend postsecondary

The D.C. Policy Center’s recent report, Transition to College or Career for the District’s High School Students, examined what we do and don’t know about outcomes for D.C.’s high schoolers. Fifty-six percent of D.C.’s high school graduates continue to postsecondary within six months of completing high school, but we don’t know much…

July 7, 2020 | Chelsea Coffin
Media | Uncategorized

Why Black activists are fighting for D.C. statehood | Mashable

On July 3, 2020, the D.C. Policy Center’s article, D.C. is hard to count. Here’s where officials could target efforts for the 2020 Census, was cited by Mashable: D.C. is “becoming more and more white… It’s pretty hard to see race as a factor in the denial [of statehood]. I think it’s…

July 3, 2020 | D.C. Policy Center
Media | Uncategorized

Timeline of COVID-19 policies, cases, and deaths in your state | Johns Hopkins Coronavirus Resource Center

In summer 2020, the D.C. Policy Center article A timeline of the D.C. region’s COVID-19 pandemic was cited by the Johns Hopkins Coronavirus Resource Center. Read more: Timeline of COVID-19 policies, cases, and deaths in your state | Johns Hopkins Coronavirus Resource Center Related: A timeline of the D.C. region’s COVID-19 pandemic…

July 2, 2020 | D.C. Policy Center

Transition to college or career for the District’s high school students

“Transition to college or career for the District’s high school students” explores outcomes for D.C.’s students at the close of high school and as they become young adults transitioning into postsecondary or entering jobs. Below is the full report. You can also read the summary – available in both English and Spanish…

June 30, 2020 | Chelsea Coffin,
Media | Uncategorized

Let’s Talk About Urban Heat Island Effect | Casey Trees

On June 22, 2020, the D.C. Policy Center’s article, D.C.’s heat islands, was cited by Casey Trees: In 2017 the D.C. Policy Center published a report that added more detail to how heat affects Washington residents. It overlaid temperature with social, economic and health-related factors, as well as vegetation variability, to yield what is…

June 22, 2020 | D.C. Policy Center
Media | Uncategorized

What happened to Chocolate City? Gentrification. | Washington Post

On June 19, 2020, the D.C. Policy Center’s article, Goodbye to Chocolate City, was cited in an opinion piece at the Washington Post:  In 1970, our city was more than 70 percent African American, but what became of Chocolate City? In 2015, the city dropped to below 50 percent African American. It is conservatively estimated that…

June 19, 2020 | D.C. Policy Center

Tax policy under the District’s new “fiscal normal”

COVID-19 has dramatically altered the District of Columbia’s fiscal picture. The CFO’s updated revenue estimates tell us that it will take the city at least two years to gain back the deep losses incurred in a matter of two months. When these numbers are adjusted for inflation, we see that recovery will take even…

June 16, 2020 | Yesim Sayin
Media | Uncategorized

Op-Ed: Transportation and the Police: Reconsidering Traffic Enforcement | Eno Center for Transportation

On June 11, 2020, the D.C. Policy Center’s article, Predominately black neighborhoods in D.C. bear the brunt of automated traffic enforcement, was cited in an op-ed at the Eno Center for Transportation: While Washington, D.C. relies heavily on automated traffic enforcement cameras, a report by the DC Policy Center found that drivers in predominantly…

June 11, 2020 | D.C. Policy Center

D.C. Voices: How will facilities and operations adapt when schools reopen?

On May 22, 2020, Mayor Muriel Bowser announced that D.C. Public Schools would begin its next school year on August 31. Public charter schools are determining their start dates independently, but it’s likely that some will align their calendars with DCPS. It remains uncertain whether students will attend school in-person, learn virtually,…

June 11, 2020 | Tanaz Meghjani,
Media | Uncategorized

District Links: Schools chancellor defends cops in schools; Bowser lands late-night TV gigs; Norton bill labels mayor as ‘governor’; and more | The DC Line

On June 11, 2020, the D.C. Policy Center’s article, ARTICLE, was cited by The DC Line: A new publication from the D.C. Policy Center explores how school facilities and operations will need to adapt for DC schools to reopen. Authors Tanaz Meghjani and Chelsea Coffin posed a key question to several school leaders: “What is top of mind for you in…

June 11, 2020 | D.C. Policy Center
Media | Uncategorized

We Don’t Need Cops to Enforce Traffic Laws | Vice

On June 11, 2020, the D.C. Policy Center’s article, Predominately black neighborhoods in D.C. bear the brunt of automated traffic enforcement, was cited by Vice: Speed and red light cameras are a proven, functional technology that make roads safer by slowing drivers down. They’re widely used in other countries and can also enforce parking…

June 11, 2020 | D.C. Policy Center
Media | Uncategorized

Here’s What Black Lives Matter D.C. Is Calling For, And Where The City Stands | NPR

On June 9, 2020, the D.C. Policy Center’s article, Implementing the NEAR Act to reduce violence in D.C., was cited by NPR: Ward 5 Councilmember Kenyan McDuffie thinks there’s a middle ground. “I want community policing in my neighborhood, but I do not and do not condone over-policing in any neighborhood, particularly…

June 9, 2020 | D.C. Policy Center
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D.C. Public Schools Chancellor Lewis Ferebee Talks COVID-19 Recovery Plans, With an Eye Toward Returning to In-Person Instruction | The 74 Million

On June 7, 2020, the D.C. Policy Center’s article, D.C. Voices: Mental health supports during school closures, was cited by The 74 Million: And that’s just one part of the equation. As with many districts nationwide, DCPS is still determining the best way to “creatively assess” students as the new academic year…

June 7, 2020 | D.C. Policy Center
Media | Uncategorized

From the White House to the Lincoln Memorial, Thousands March for Black Lives | Courthouse News Service

On June 7 , 2020, the D.C. Policy Center’s article, What is the impact of fare evasion in D.C.?, was cited by Courthouse News Service: According to the D.C. Policy Center, the Washington Metropolitan Area Transit Authority expanded funding for fare enforcement in recent years though the D.C. council only recently decriminalized fare evasion….

June 7, 2020 | D.C. Policy Center

Testimony from Chelsea Coffin at the Joint Budget Oversight Hearing for Public Education

On June 4, 2020, D.C. Policy Center Director of the Education Policy Initiative Chelsea Coffin testified before the Committee of the Whole and the Committee on Education at the Joint Budget Oversight Hearing for FY21. Download this testimony.

June 4, 2020 | Chelsea Coffin
Media | Uncategorized

D.C. Schools Avoided the Draconian Budget Cuts Many U.S. Districts Are Facing: How the City Did It — and What Advocates Say Still Needs to Be Done | The 74 Million

On May 27, 2020, the D.C. Policy Center’s Education Policy Initiative Director Chelsea Coffin was cited by The 74 Million: These students’ “lived experience are going to look quite different in the coming months, perhaps from income shock or doubling up on housing, stress in the household, and other ways,” said Chelsea…

May 27, 2020 | D.C. Policy Center
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As a Federal Coronavirus Expert Frets, the Capital Moves to Reopen | New York Times

On May 27, 2020, D.C. Policy Center Executive Director Yesim Sayin Taylor was quoted by the New York Times: “I would add to the resource issue the black population’s historically complex relationship with health care,” said Yesim Sayin Taylor, the executive director of the D.C. Policy Center, a research organization. Ward 8 has…

May 27, 2020 | D.C. Policy Center
Media | Uncategorized

D.C. Schools Avoided the Draconian Budget Cuts Many U.S. Districts Are Facing: How the City Did It — and What Advocates Say Still Needs to Be Done | The 74 Million

On May 27, 2020, D.C. Policy Center Education Policy Initiative Director Chelsea Coffin was quoted by The 74 Million: These students’ “lived experience are going to look quite different in the coming months, perhaps from income shock or doubling up on housing, stress in the household, and other ways,” said Chelsea Coffin,…

May 27, 2020 | D.C. Policy Center
Media | Uncategorized

John Wall on helping Washington residents with rent assistance: ‘I come from that type of environment’ | The Undefeated

On May 26, 2020, the D.C. Policy Center’s article, Pandemic-induced unemployment has hit the District’s Hispanic, Latino, and younger workers more intensely, was cited by The Undefeated: Washington is one of a few areas, and NBA markets, that has yet to fully reopen businesses and public spaces since President Donald Trump declared…

May 26, 2020 | D.C. Policy Center

Pandemic-induced unemployment has hit the District’s Hispanic, Latino, and younger workers more intensely

On Friday, May 22, the Bureau of Labor Statistics released its monthly data on employment and unemployment for states and metropolitan areas. These data show that unemployment rate in the District of Columbia now stands at 11.1 percent—the highest rate seen in recent history. The city reached this level of unemployment with…

May 26, 2020 | Yesim Sayin

Reopening and recovery will look different across the District of Columbia

Both during and after, the COVID-19 pandemic is going to widen existing inequities in Washington, D.C. Despite the heavily repeated mantra that pandemics are “a great equalizer” that we all must face together, mounting evidence confirms that infection and death rates are anything but equal. Per capita, the number of COVID-19 cases…

May 20, 2020 | Evan Bennett
Media | Uncategorized

Activists push for tax increases, more child care spending in D.C. budget | Washington Post

On May 19, 2020, the D.C. Policy Center’s executive director, Yesim Sayin Taylor, was quoted by the Washington Post: But Yesim Taylor of the D.C. Policy Center, a more centrist think tank, said the mayor was smart not to balance the budget with higher taxes. “It’s easy to say, ‘Well, cut, cut,…

May 19, 2020 | D.C. Policy Center

D.C. Voices: Teacher retention and recruitment during the pandemic

Teacher quality is the most influential school-level contributor to student achievement,[i] which means retaining effective teachers is an essential component of improving student learning. Amid the challenges of distance learning during COVID-19, retaining teachers might also provide students with much-needed stability as teachers can build on their pre-existing relationships with students to…

May 19, 2020 | Chelsea Coffin,

2020 Census self-response rates in the Washington, D.C. region

About 95 percent of U.S. households will fill out their 2020 Census information using forms mailed to their house that they will reply to via the internet, phone or mail. In the Washington D.C. region, the self-response rate from these forms varies greatly depending on location, density, race, population and income. What…

May 18, 2020 |
Media | Uncategorized

Small businesses in high-rent cities face disaster. If they go under, urban life will change. | Washington Post

On May 16, 2020, the D.C. Policy Center’s article, How many small businesses are in D.C.?, was cited by the Washington Post: The pandemic is threatening the survival of independently operated stores, restaurants, bars and other enterprises in cities with vibrant, walkable neighborhoods and soaring commercial rents. In the District alone, there…

May 16, 2020 | D.C. Policy Center

How COVID-19 is affecting nonprofits in the D.C. area

The nonprofit and advocacy sector in the District of Columbia employs over 70,000 employees.[1] While some of these organizations are focused on national policy, local nonprofits play an important role in service delivery—from out-of-school time programs, to community collectives providing services to the most vulnerable residents. The D.C. Policy Center implemented a…

May 7, 2020 | Yesim Sayin

How many small businesses are in D.C.?

Recently, many people were surprised that much of the “small business relief” in the federal CARES Act was received by large publicly owned companies. While later guidance from the U.S. Treasury clarified that these types of businesses were not the intended target of the program, and many national chains have returned their…

May 5, 2020 | Sunaina Bakshi Kathpalia

D.C. Voices: Mental health supports during school closures

After declaring a public health emergency for the District of Columbia on March 11th, 2020, Mayor Bowser closed non-essential businesses and issued a stay at home order, requiring residents to socially distance from those outside their households. Schools closed two days later. The COVID-19 pandemic has introduced new health concerns for many,…

May 4, 2020 | Chelsea Coffin,

How COVID-19 is affecting small businesses in D.C.

The economic effects of the coronavirus pandemic have been dramatic and unprecedented, as cities and countries shut down large swaths of their economies to control the spread of the virus, and consumer demand has fallen due to stay-at-home orders, rising unemployment, and general economic uncertainty. As previous recessions and other economic shocks…

April 30, 2020 | Kathryn Zickuhr
Media | Uncategorized

After Six Decades, Ben’s Chili Bowl Faces Its Greatest Challenge Yet: Coronavirus | WAMU

On April 28, 2020, the D.C. Policy Center’s article, Goodbye to Chocolate City, was cited by WAMU: In 1970, the African-American population in the city stood at 71%. Five decades later, it’s less than half. Read more: After Six Decades, Ben’s Chili Bowl Faces Its Greatest Challenge Yet: Coronavirus | WAMU Related:…

April 28, 2020 | D.C. Policy Center

COVID-19: At-risk populations in the District

With the  novel coronavirus continuing to spread across the nation, the impacts have been uneven, both in terms of who is more likely to be exposed to the virus, and in terms of who is most likely to experience serious complications. These high-risk groups include adults over 65 years of age, as…

April 27, 2020 | Sunaina Bakshi Kathpalia,

How D.C. is responding to COVID-19 (Updated)

Note: D.C. updates on the spread of the coronavirus and COVID-19 are available at coronavirus.dc.gov. This article was originally published on March 25, 2020. We will continue to update it as needed as the District’s response to the situation evolves. For more, see our frequently updated timeline of the COVID-19 pandemic and…

April 23, 2020 | D.C. Policy Center
Media | Uncategorized

The intersection of COVID-19, race and class | The DC Line

On April 23, 2020, D.C. Policy Center Executive Director Yesim Sayin Taylor was quoted in The DC Line: No one with whom I spoke was surprised by the data. The numbers amplify weaknesses and inequities in the nation’s health care system. They also underscore historic discrimination experienced by people of color, especially…

April 23, 2020 | D.C. Policy Center

D.C. Voices: The challenges of distance learning

In response to COVID-19 social distancing protocols, educators in D.C. have had to confront the daunting task of virtually teaching almost a hundred thousand students. It’s crucial to continue supporting schools in navigating this transition, but it’s also important to recognize that distance learning cannot provide the same experience as traditional schooling….

April 21, 2020 | Tanaz Meghjani
Media | Uncategorized

D.C. Coalition Wants Massive Tax Breaks To Help Businesses Rebound From Coronavirus | WAMU

On April 20, 2020, D.C. Policy Center Executive Director Yesim Sayin Taylor was quoted by WAMU: But the coalition’s requests come amid a wider financial crisis for the city. The District is already expecting to have to trim the current year’s $9 billion budget by more than $600 million, and maybe as much…

April 20, 2020 | D.C. Policy Center
Media | Uncategorized

Business tax relief proposal inspired by coronavirus raises questions from D.C. Council | Washington Business Journal

On April 20, 2020, the D.C. Policy Center’s executive director, Yesim Sayin Taylor, was quoted by the Washington Business Journal: Yesim Taylor, executive director of the D.C. Policy Center, said this sort of tax relief has merit specifically because it is more broad-based, targeting an industry over specific businesses that would need…

April 20, 2020 | D.C. Policy Center
Media | Uncategorized

Business tax relief proposal inspired by coronavirus raises questions from D.C. Council | Washington Business Journal

On April 20, 2020, D.C. Policy Center’s Executive Director Yesim Sayin Taylor, was quoted by the Washington Business Journal: Hoffman is confident the council could structure the program stringently, building in provisions that ensure that a commercial tenant has to remain open and employ a certain number of District residents to score…

April 20, 2020 | D.C. Policy Center

The District’s population grows for the 14th year in a row, but at a weaker rate

According to the latest population estimates released by the Census Bureau, D.C.’s population grew by just 4,202 residents last year, which is only 37 percent of the average annual growth since 2010. Almost all of this net growth—91 percent—is due to natural growth, or the number of births minus the number of…

April 15, 2020 | Sunaina Bakshi Kathpalia
Media | Uncategorized

Black D.C. Residents Have Been Diagnosed With COVID-19 At Twice The Rate Of Their White Peers | DCist

On April 8, 2020, the D.C. Policy Center’s article, Pushing through complacency to fight health disparities in D.C.’s African American communities, was cited by DCist: In the District, black residents compose about 46 percent of the population, with white residents representing about 1 percentage point less than that, per recent U.S. Census…

April 8, 2020 | D.C. Policy Center
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‘It Would Be Ruinous’: How Coronavirus Could Put Trump Allies In Charge Of D.C. | WAMU

On April 8, 2020, the D.C. Policy Center’s article, COVID-19 pandemic and the District of Columbia: What to expect?, was cited by WAMU: But even furloughs and two consecutive years of $600 million cuts might not be enough, according to an analysis by the D.C. Policy Center think tank. In the wake of…

April 8, 2020 | D.C. Policy Center
Media | Uncategorized

The Great Replacement: Washington, DC | American Renaissance

On April 6, 2020, the D.C. Policy Center’s article, Goodbye to Chocolate City, was cited by American Renaissance: By the time he died, Marion Barry was a relic, because after 2000, the city began gentrifying. Whites returned. Crime dropped. Property values rose. Journalists, of course, mourned: “D.C., Long ‘Chocolate City,’ Becoming More…

April 6, 2020 | D.C. Policy Center
Media | Uncategorized

The DC Rental Affordability Mismatch | Urban Turf

On April 3, 2020, the D.C. Policy Center’s report, Appraising the District’s rentals, was cited by Urban Turf: DC Policy Center’s latest rental report builds on prior analysis of the city’s mismatched housing market. Read more: The DC Rental Affordability Mismatch | Urban Turf Related: Appraising the District’s rentals | D.C. Policy Center

April 3, 2020 | D.C. Policy Center
Media | Uncategorized

Rent controlled apartments may slow displacement for people of color, a report finds | Greater Greater Washington

On April 2, 2020, chapter four of the D.C. Policy Center’s report, Appraising the District’s rentals, was excerpted by Greater Greater Washington: The DC Policy Center has published a new report, Appraising the District’s rentals, on rental housing in the District, and how rentals can help keep housing affordable provide more economically inclusive. We…

April 2, 2020 | D.C. Policy Center
Media | Uncategorized

34,000 Units in 20 Years: DC’s Rental Market, by the Numbers | Urban Turf

On April 2, 2020, the D.C. Policy Center’s report, Appraising the District’s rentals, was cited by Urban Turf: In addition to exploring how the concept of Inclusionary Conversions could work in DC, DC Policy Center’s latest report gives a comprehensive snapshot of the city’s rental market. Read more: 34,000 Units in 20 Years: DC’s Rental Market, by…

April 2, 2020 | D.C. Policy Center
Media | Uncategorized

Should DC Use Inclusionary Conversions to Meet Affordable Housing Goals? | Urban Turf

On April 1, 2020, the D.C. Policy Center’s report, Appraising the District’s rentals, was featured by Urban Turf: A new report by the DC Policy Center suggests there may only be one way to reach DC’s affordable housing production targets. Released Wednesday, the extensive report takes stock of the city’s rental housing, putting forth the…

April 1, 2020 | D.C. Policy Center

Appraising the District’s rentals

This report provides a comprehensive picture of the District’s rental housing to evaluate its capacity to create economically inclusive neighborhoods in the District of Columbia. It estimates the number and type of rental units and the buildings that hold them, and the rents that prevail. It also provides extensive data on rental apartment buildings including the rent-controlled stock as well as rental units outside the rental apartment buildings including condominiums, single-family homes, and flats.

April 1, 2020 | Yesim Sayin

Appraising the District’s rentals – Executive Summary

In the District of Columbia, where housing is prohibitively expensive and neighborhoods are economically segregated, rental housing—with its lower costs, variety of units, and a more egalitarian distribution across the city’s eight wards and many neighborhoods—offers one avenue for reducing housing burdens and mixing incomes to create affordable and inclusive neighborhoods. Rental…

April 1, 2020 | Yesim Sayin

Appraising the District’s rentals – Introduction

ONE  | THE ROLE OF DISTRICT’S RENTAL HOUSING IN CREATING AFFORDABILITY AND INCLUSION The high cost of housing in the District of Columbia is a significant challenge. The city’s zoning laws and poorly run regulatory regime, sometimes combined with resistance to growth, restrict the amount, type, and location of housing that can…

April 1, 2020 |

Appraising the District’s rentals – Landscape of Rental Housing

TWO | THE LANDSCAPE OF RENTAL HOUSING IN THE DISTRICT OF COLUMBIA The District of Columbia is largely a city of rentals. Of the estimated 322,000 housing units (excluding those owned by the federal government, foreign governments, universities, or charitable or religious organizations),[1] 114,550 are occupied by their owners.[2] The remainder—207,400 units,…

April 1, 2020 |

Appraising the District’s rentals – Rental housing affordability

THREE | HOW AFFORDABLE IS THE DISTRICT OF COLUMBIA’S RENTAL HOUSING? This chapter compares prevailing rents to the income profiles of District households to examine the extent to which rental housing can meet renter demand at different income levels. This analysis shows that rent-controlled housing offers a significant discount over the uncontrolled…

April 1, 2020 |

Appraising the District’s rentals – Economic inclusion

FOUR | HOW MUCH DOES THE DISTRICT OF COLUMBIA’S RENTAL HOUSING ADVANCE ECONOMIC DIVERSITY AND INCLUSION? The District of Columbia is an economically segregated city where higher-income households and lower-income households typically live far away from each other. In previous research, the D.C. Policy Center linked the city’s economic segregation to its…

April 1, 2020 |

Appraising the District’s rentals – Inclusionary conversions

FIVE | HOW CAN THE DISTRICT USE ITS EXISTING RENTAL HOUSING TO CREATE INCLUSIVE NEIGHBORHOODS? Up to this point, this report has provided extensive information on the District’s rental housing. It has shown that there are too few rental apartment units to house all renters, and the paucity of units is squeezing…

April 1, 2020 |

Appraising the District’s rentals – Conclusions

SIX | CONCLUSIONS As renter incomes rise in the District, the pressures on rental housing are becoming stronger. As this report has shown, there are not enough rental apartments to serve all renter households. And this pressure comes both from the bottom and from the top: for every household that would need…

April 1, 2020 |

History of rent control in the District of Columbia

APPENDIX I – THE HISTORY OF RENT CONTROL LAWS IN THE DISTRICT OF COLUMBIA The District of Columbia’s rent control laws date back to 1973, following the end of the federal price controls. That year, the federal government authorized the city to enact rent control policies if, after a series of public…

April 1, 2020 |

Rent control literature review

APPENDIX II – REVIEW OF LITERATURE ON THE IMPACT OF RENT CONTROL ON HOUSING QUALITY AND QUANTITY, DISPLACEMENT, AND INCLUSION Evidence suggests that rent control measures can have various impacts on a city’s housing stock and affordability, which are in turn related to the type and extent of the city’s rent control…

April 1, 2020 |

Appraising District’s rentals – Methodology and data sources

APPENDIX III – METHODOLOGY AND DATA SOURCES The analysis presented in this study relies on a combination of data sources, including administrative data from the District of Columbia government, data from private sources, and other publicly available data from the U.S. Census. The basic information on the rental stock is gleaned from…

April 1, 2020 |

Appraising the District’s rentals: References

Works referenced in the report Albon, Robert P., and David C. Stafford. “Rent Control and Housing Maintenance.” Urban Studies. Sage Publications, Ltd., 1990. Ambrosius, Joshua D., John I. Gilderbloom, William J. Steele, Wesley L. Meares, and Dennis Keating. “Forty Years of Rent Control: Reexamining New Jersey’s Moderate Local Policies after the Great…

April 1, 2020 |

Appraising the District’s rentals – About this report

This report has been prepared with support from Apartment and Office Buildings Association. The Urban Capital Impact Fund has provided generous support for the development of the Inclusionary Conversion model. Funders do not determine research findings or the insights and recommendations of the D.C. Policy Center employees and experts. The views expressed are…

April 1, 2020 | D.C. Policy Center

Initial national and state education policy changes in response to COVID-19

Across the country 46 states[1], including the District of Columbia, have closed schools. Beginning on March 16th, District of Columbia Public Schools (DCPS) closed to slow the spread of COVID-19 and will remain closed through at least April 24th, following the Mayor’s declaration of a public health emergency. Public charter schools in…

March 30, 2020 | Chelsea Coffin,
Media | Uncategorized

The coronavirus — taking lives, destroying the economy | The DC Line

On March 26, 2020, the D.C. Policy Center’s article, COVID-19 pandemic and the District of Columbia: What to expect?, was cited by the DC Line: Thus far, the long-term budget impact has drawn minimal attention. The hue and cry has been for economic relief and public health protections. Echoing the view of…

March 26, 2020 | D.C. Policy Center

These provisions of the federal COVID-19 legislation support and supplement state unemployment programs

The CARES Act (Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security Act) is the latest round of federal relief packages to address the COVID-19 pandemic. Following on the Families First Coronavirus Response Act, which provided sick leave and expanded FMLA for those affected by COVID-19, the CARES Act was passed by the Senate late…

March 26, 2020 | Yesim Sayin,
Media | Uncategorized

A D.C. Chef’s Ambitious System to Put Restaurant Workers Back on the Job | Eater DC

On March 26, 2020, the D.C. Policy Center’s article, Food access in D.C is deeply connected to poverty and transportation, was cited by Eater DC: While Maketto’s efforts will be focused on Ward 6 residents, Bruner-Yang says the model could be applied to help out areas with more dire needs, too. Data…

March 26, 2020 | D.C. Policy Center
Media | Uncategorized

How Well is DC Doing at Social Distancing? | Urban Turf

On March 25, 2020, the D.C. Policy Center’s article, A timeline of the D.C. region’s COVID-19 pandemic, was cited by Urban Turf: DC proper’s A-grade reflects a 60% decrease in the average distance travelled by city residents. This data is as of March 21st, by which time the city was under a state of…

March 25, 2020 | D.C. Policy Center

COVID-19 pandemic and the District of Columbia: What to expect?

For two weeks, we have been watching our lives, our economy, and our government dramatically change with the actions we need to take to limit the spread of the COVID-19 pandemic. There is increasing consensus on the possibility of a deep global recession as the reduced economic activity in the service sector…

March 24, 2020 |

A timeline of the D.C. region’s COVID-19 pandemic

This article was originally published on March 24, 2019. It was last updated April 22, 2020. The outbreak of the new coronavirus disease 2019 (abbreviated COVID-19) has made tens of thousands of people worldwide (and counting) sick, with thousands dead and the crisis deepening daily. Officials have declared the disease a worldwide…

March 24, 2020 | Aimee Custis
Media | Uncategorized

A bind for area governments: Virus shrinks their budgets just as public need soars | Washington Post

On March 20, 2020, the D.C. Policy Center’s Executive Director, Yesim Sayin Taylor, was quoted by the Washington Post: Officials and analysts said state and local governments should move quickly to provide small businesses with grants, loans and relaxed regulations to prevent layoffs. “The most important thing that government can do right…

March 20, 2020 | D.C. Policy Center

Resources for the D.C. student and education community to stay informed and safe as COVID-19 spreads

Everyday life in Washington D.C. metropolitan area and beyond is on hold, including for students, educators, and their families and caregivers. Many are sharing guidance on how we can best adjust to the new normal. Below are resources compiled by our Education Policy Initiative that may be useful. The D.C. Policy Center…

March 18, 2020 | Chelsea Coffin,

D.C. Council members have big spending plans. Could a coronavirus slowdown ruin things? | Washington Business Journal

On March 12, 2020, D.C. Policy Center Executive Director Yesim Sayin Taylor was quoted by the Washington Business Journal: With organizers canceling a slew of conventions, sporting events and concerts, and workers increasingly urged to stay home, there’s no telling yet what sort of impact the pandemic will have on the District’s coffers. And…

March 12, 2020 | D.C. Policy Center

New business formation and survival across the Washington metropolitan region

The Washington metropolitan area is one of the top regions in the country for entrepreneurship, but within the metropolitan area, jurisdictions experience different outcomes. The decisions they make affect the flow of businesses, workers, and residents across their borders, and these forces are constantly shifting: The District has seen significant economic and…

March 11, 2020 | Yesim Sayin
Media | Uncategorized

Affirmatively furthering fair housing: Proposed rule fails to address discrimination and segregation | Equal Rights Center

On March 10, 2020, the D.C. Policy Center’s articles, Mapping segregation in D.C. and The rise and demise of racially restrictive covenants in Bloomingdale, were cited by the Equal Rights Center: DC’s geographic racial divide and corresponding disparities did not happen by chance but are the result of a long history of discrimination against…

March 10, 2020 | D.C. Policy Center

Testimony from Chelsea Coffin on the Critical Risk Rate School Funding Designation Act of 2019

On March 10, 2020, D.C. Policy Center Director of the Education Policy Initiative Chelsea Coffin testified before the Committee of the Whole and the Committee on Education on the Critical Risk Rate School Funding Designation Act of 2019. Download this testimony.

March 10, 2020 | Chelsea Coffin
Media | Uncategorized

Give D.C. public charter schools a chance to serve at-risk students | Washington Post

On March 9, 2020, the D.C. Policy Center’s report, 2018-19 State of D.C. Schools was cited in the Washington Post: School quality is on the rise in the District. The recent D.C. Policy Center report on the State of D.C. Schools makes plain that our traditional public and public charter schools alike have outpaced other cities…

March 9, 2020 | D.C. Policy Center

Student achievement is on the rise, but critical gaps persist

The D.C. Policy Center’s State of D.C. Schools, 2018-19 report highlighted where D.C.’s traditional public and public charter schools have made progress as well as where targeted improvements are still necessary. Learning outcomes can be examined in the same way – student achievement on D.C.’s state assessment is on the rise, but large…

March 5, 2020 | Tanaz Meghjani
Media | Uncategorized

Anatomy of a rental marketplace | City Observatory

On March 4, 2020, the D.C. Policy Center’s article, Appraising the District’s rentals, was cited by City Observatory: Too often, our debates about housing policy are shaped by inaccurate pictures of how the housing market really works. A new report from the D.C. Policy Center provides a remarkably clear and detailed picture of the…

March 4, 2020 | D.C. Policy Center
Media | Uncategorized

‘Luxury’ Amenities Aren’t Why Housing Is So Expensive In The D.C. Area | WAMU

On March 3, 2020, the D.C. Policy Center’s article, Single-family zoning and neighborhood characteristics in the District of Columbia, was cited by WAMU: In the D.C. region, vast swaths of residential areas are zoned exclusively for single-family homes, the most space-intensive and costly form of housing. For example, almost 90% of residential land in…

March 3, 2020 | D.C. Policy Center

When students don’t feel safe in the neighborhood: How can schools help?

In D.C., a large share of children and youth up to age 17 are likely to be exposed to traumatic events: 21.3 percent have been exposed to an adverse childhood experience, including an estimated 9 percent who have been a victim or witness to neighborhood violence. Community violence often happens without warning, which can cause feelings of sudden, horrifying shock and loss of control and safety. It involves intentional acts to harm others, which can lead to feelings of extreme mistrust of others and powerlessness.

March 3, 2020 | Yunsoo Park
Media | Uncategorized

“Excessive” Regulation Causes 80% Home Price Premium in the DC Area, Per Trump Administration

On February 28, 2020, the D.C. Policy Center’s article, The economic costs of land use regulations, was cited by Urban Turf: Other reportage (and some Democratic presidential candidates) have also suggested that dismantling some regulations could create housing price relief by adding to supply. DC Mayor Muriel Bowser has tied current efforts to amend the Comprehensive Plan to ambitious housing…

February 28, 2020 | D.C. Policy Center
Media | Uncategorized

Foggy Bottom top D.C. neighborhood for walking accessibility, report finds | GW Hatchet

On February 27, 2020, the D.C. Policy Center’s article, Where the Washington region achieves walkable density, was cited by the GW Hatchet: GW sits in an area of the city with some of the best roadways to walk to and from nearby amenities, a study from the D.C. Policy Center released last…

February 27, 2020 | D.C. Policy Center

Testimony of Chelsea Coffin, D.C. SBOE Public Meeting

On February 26, 2020, D.C. Policy Center Director of the Education Policy Initiative Chelsea Coffin testified before the D.C. State Board of Education at a public meeting. You can read her testimony below, and download it as a PDF. Good evening, members of the State Board of Education. My name is Chelsea…

February 27, 2020 | Chelsea Coffin
Media | Uncategorized

D.C. Public Schools Have Seen a Remarkable Turnaround in the Past Two Decades. Here Are 4 Ways to Keep the Progress Going | The 74 Million

On February 26, 2020, the D.C. Policy Center’s report, 2018-19 State of D.C. Schools, was cited in The 74 Million: The District’s public education system is now a national model, and a recent report outlines how far the city’s schools have come. The “State of D.C. Schools,” released by the D.C. Policy…

February 26, 2020 | D.C. Policy Center

WMATA can’t measure fare evasion, but still says it’s a big problem | Greater Greater Washington

On February 24, 2020, the D.C. Policy Center’s article, What is the impact of fare evasion in D.C.?, was cited by Greater Greater Washington: Metro officials say fare evasion is a big problem, and have pushed back hard against a recent DC move to decriminalize fare evasion. But a new study from the DC…

February 24, 2020 | D.C. Policy Center
Media | Uncategorized

DC Teachers Standing in the Gap | The Uptake

On February 24, 2020, the D.C. Policy Center’s report, 2018-2019 State of D.C. Schools, was cited by The Uptake: Specifically, in Washington, D.C this divide has presented itself in males of color. In 2015 Black and Hispanic boys made up 43% of the student enrollment, yet their test scores and graduation rates…

February 24, 2020 | D.C. Policy Center

The regional transit proposals that predated Metro, from express buses to monorails

The Washington region today seems unimaginable without Metro, but the system we have today was hardly inevitable. Initial proposals for a subway system date back to the FDR administration, when the federal government’s expansion during the New Deal and World War II led to an increase in the District’s population. It still…

February 24, 2020 |
Media | Uncategorized

Viewpoint: D.C. can help developers overcome cost barriers to housing affordability | Washington Business Journal

On February 21, 2020, the D.C. Policy Center was quoted in an opinion piece published by the Washington Business Journal: Collectively, these initiatives have the potential to create a perfect storm of good individual intentions that have the opposite effect — a halt to housing development. In fact, the warning signs are…

February 21, 2020 | D.C. Policy Center
Media | Uncategorized

Barry Farm’s historic landmark designation was pitted against affordable housing | Washington Post

On February 21, 2020, the D.C. Policy Center’s article, The history and evolution of Anacostia’s Barry Farm, was cited in an op-ed in the Washington Post: In 1941, D.C.’s nascent housing authority used eminent domain to force 23 remaining land owners from their homes for the construction of Barry Farm Dwellings; as is commonly…

February 21, 2020 | D.C. Policy Center
Media | Uncategorized

The Week Observed | City Observatory

On February 21, 2020, the D.C. Policy Center’s articles, Where the Washington region achieves walkable density and Roughly 36 percent of D.C.’s rental housing units are rent-stabilized, were featured by City Observatory: 4. Mapping Walkable Density.  DW Rowlands has mapped walkable density in 17 of the nation’s largest metropolitan areas.  Her maps compare…

February 21, 2020 | D.C. Policy Center
Media | Uncategorized

District Line Daily: Jumpin’, Jumpin’ | Washington City Paper

On February 21, 2020, the D.C. Policy Center’s article, What is the impact of fare evasion in D.C.?, was cited by Washington City Paper: The Washington Metropolitan Area Transit Authority has suggested that more people are piggy-backing or tailgating since the D.C. Council decriminalized fare evasion in July 2019. (It should be noted that…

February 21, 2020 | D.C. Policy Center

What is the impact of fare evasion in D.C.?

WMATA has estimated a consistent fare evasion rate of 5 percent on Metrorail based on peer systems and industry averages. Its estimates of fare evasion on Metrobuses, as reported by operators’ farebox reports, has risen sharply over the past four years. However, it is unclear if the increase in fare evasion reports on Metrobus reflects a rising number of unpaid trips, or is related to increasing implementation of fare evasion measurement methods or other issues.

February 20, 2020 | Kathryn Zickuhr
Media | Uncategorized

As The D.C. Area Grows Pricier, Can Picking Up A Side Hustle (Or Three) Make A Difference? | WAMU

On February 19, 2020, D.C. Policy Center Policy Director Kathryn Zickuhr was quoted by WAMU: Not all app-based gigging opportunities are created equal, either. In a study that looked at the activity millions of Chase checking accounts from 2012 to 2018, the web-platform economy showed growth overall. Yet earnings for jobs in transportation (like…

February 20, 2020 | D.C. Policy Center
Media | Uncategorized

These maps show where the Washington region achieves walkable density | Greater Greater Washington

On February 19, 2020, D.C. Policy Center Fellow D.W. Rowlands’ article, Where the Washington region achieves walkable density, was crossposted at Greater Greater Washington. Read more: These maps show where the Washington region achieves walkable density | Greater Greater Washington

February 19, 2020 | D.C. Policy Center

Where the Washington region achieves walkable density

Population density can say a lot about an urban environment, and it’s often used as a signal of how walkable a place is. But common density measures don’t truly capture how easy it is to walk from one location to another. Transit planners often approximate “walking distance” as half a mile. If…

February 19, 2020 |

What D.C. schools need to do to tackle chronic absenteeism

In the two years since a graduation controversy at Ballou High School exposed a serious student absenteeism problem across the city, D.C.’s traditional public schools and many of its public charter schools have deployed  numerous interventions to improve attendance. Extensive evidence suggests that absenteeism undermines learning, beginning in very early grades. National…

February 13, 2020 | Phyllis Jordan
Media | Uncategorized

D.C. Has More High-Income Residents Than Ever Before, Audit Suggests | WAMU

On February 4, 2020, the D.C. Policy Center’s report, Taking Stock of the District’s Housing Stock, was cited by WAMU: But while the revenue bump is good news for D.C.’s coffers, the influx of high earners is making it harder for lower-earning families to find homes, according to the D.C. Policy Center….

February 4, 2020 | D.C. Policy Center
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Barry Farm Is Officially A Historic Landmark | WPGC

On February 3, 2020, the D.C. Policy Center’s article, The history and evolution of Anacostia’s Barry Farm, was cited by WPGC: Barry Farm Dwellings has existed since the 1940s, and the neighborhood includes the rich history as a home to African Americans after the Civil War, and a place that helped birth go-go. Read more: Barry Farm Is…

February 3, 2020 | D.C. Policy Center
Media | Uncategorized

To support at-risk students, DC must invest | The DC Line

On January 31, 2020, the D.C. Policy Center’s report, 2018-19 State of D.C. Schools, was highlighted in an op-ed in The DC Line: Mayor Bowser’s administration has made historic investments in our education system designed to better serve students across the city. A recent report from the D.C. Policy Center suggests that those investments…

January 31, 2020 | D.C. Policy Center
Media | Uncategorized

All D.C. students deserve high-performing schools | Washington Post

On January 31, 2020, the D.C. Policy Center’s report, 2018-19 State of D.C. Schools, was highlighted in an op-ed in the Washington Post: Our once-struggling public schools now are beacons of innovation and improvement for the nation. A new report by the D.C. Policy Center shows how far we have come. As…

January 31, 2020 | D.C. Policy Center

Testimony on the “Removing Barriers to Occupational Licensing for Returning Citizens Amendment Act of 2019”

Good morning, Chairman Allen and members of the Committee on the Judiciary & Public Safety. My name is Yesim Sayin Taylor and I am the Executive Director of the D.C. Policy Center, an independent, non-partisan think tank committed to advancing policies for a strong and vibrant economy in the District of Columbia….

January 29, 2020 | Yesim Sayin
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D.C. law requiring identification of individuals behind LLCs takes effect | Washington Business Journal

On January 28, 2020, D.C. Policy Center Executive Director Dr. Yesim Sayin Taylor was quoted by the Washington Business Journal: Local real estate attorneys previously dubbed such a change “an administrative nightmare,” and it drew opposition from the D.C. Building Industry Association. Developers frequently rely on LLCs in acquiring and managing properties. Some worried…

January 28, 2020 | D.C. Policy Center
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D.C. Gains Momentum in Boosting Opportunities for Students | Education Week

On January 21, 2020, the D.C. Policy Center Education Policy Initiative Director, Chelsea Coffin, was quoted by Education Week: “I think [the expansion of pre-K] got a lot of momentum for families to stay,” said Chelsea Coffin, the director of the education policy initiative at the D.C. Policy Center, a nonpartisan think…

January 21, 2020 | D.C. Policy Center
Media | Uncategorized

D.C. Gains Momentum in Boosting Opportunities for Students | Education Week

On January 21, 2020, the Director of the D.C. Policy Center Education Policy Initiative, Chelsea Coffin, was quoted by Education Week: “I think [the expansion of pre-K] got a lot of momentum for families to stay,” said Chelsea Coffin, the director of the education policy initiative at the D.C. Policy Center, a…

January 21, 2020 | D.C. Policy Center
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Report: DC schools’ enrollment, test scores increase | Education Dive

On January 17, 2020, the D.C. Policy Center’s report, 2018-19 State of D.C. Schools, was cited by Education Dive: A report on Washington D.C. public schools by the D.C. Policy Center finds enrollment has increased steadily since 2010, after decades of decline. Between school years 2014-2015 and 2018-2019, enrollment for pre-K through 12th grade…

January 17, 2020 | D.C. Policy Center
Media | Uncategorized

Not all speed cameras are created equal | The Philadelphia Citizen

On January 17, 2020, the D.C. Policy Center’s article, Predominately black neighborhoods in D.C. bear the brunt of automated traffic enforcement, was cited by The Philadelphia Citizen: My analysis of moving violation citations and crash data suggests that the racial geography of D.C. does play into the enforcement of traffic violations,” wrote…

January 17, 2020 | D.C. Policy Center
Media | Uncategorized

Morning Education | Politico

On January 17, 2020, the D.C. Policy Center’s report, 2018-19 State of D.C. Schools, was cited by Politico: More parents choose D.C.’s public schools over other alternatives, though achievement gaps persist for students of color, according to a new analysis from the D.C. Policy Center. Read more: Morning Education | Politico Related:…

January 17, 2020 | D.C. Policy Center
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How difficult will it be to make buildings in DC more energy efficient? It depends on the building. | Greater Greater Washington

On January 16, 2020, the D.C. Policy Center’s report, Taking Stock of the District’s Housing Stock, was cited by Greater Greater Washington: Multifamily affordable housing units are more difficult to find, as only 31% of the available housing units in the District were “potentially” affordable to families of four, according to a 2018 report…

January 16, 2020 | D.C. Policy Center
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D.C. Schools Show Improvement — But Also Persistent Challenges, Report Says | WAMU

On January 16, 2020, the D.C. Policy Center’s report, 2018-19 State of D.C. Schools, was cited by WAMU: Enrollment is growing in D.C. public schools and students are scoring higher on standardized tests, but the city school system remains deeply segregated and achievement gaps between student groups persist, according to a report…

January 16, 2020 | D.C. Policy Center

State of D.C. Schools, 2018-19

ABOUT THIS REPORT This State of D.C. Schools report is a systemwide overview of education in D.C. meant to help local residents, and especially parents of current and future D.C. public school children, better understand where D.C.’s traditional public and public charter schools have made progress. The report also addresses where targeted…

January 16, 2020 | Chelsea Coffin
Media | Uncategorized

This GIF Shows How The D.C. Area’s Demographics Have Changed Since 1970 | DCist

On January 14, 2020, the D.C. Policy Center’s article, How the region’s racial and ethnic demographics have changed since 1970, was cited by DCist: A new analysis published by the D.C. Policy Center visualizes just how the broader area’s demographics have changed over the past half-century or so. “In 1970, almost everyone lived in…

January 14, 2020 | D.C. Policy Center
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We’re #1 | 730 DC

On January 14, 2020, the D.C. Policy Center’s article, How the region’s racial and ethnic demographics have changed since 1970, was cited by 730 DC: The gentrification #DontMuteDC fights is connected with the diversification of DC’s suburbs, a long process visualized and historicized by DC Policy Center. Read more: We’re #1 | 730 DC Related:…

January 14, 2020 | D.C. Policy Center

How the spatial distribution of education levels in the region has changed since 1970

Previously: How the D.C. area’s population density has changed since 1970; How household incomes in the D.C. area have changed since 1980; How the region’s racial and ethnic demographics have changed since 1970 In November, I found that the spatial distribution of wealth in the D.C. area has remained relatively constant over…

January 14, 2020 |
Media | Uncategorized

These maps show how racial demographics have changed in the region since 1970 | Greater Greater Washington

On January 13, 2020, D.C. Policy Center Fellow D.W. Rowlands’ article, How the region’s racial and ethnic demographics have changed since 1970, was crossposted at Greater Greater Washington. Read more: These maps show how racial demographics have changed in the region since 1970 | Greater Greater Washington

January 13, 2020 | D.C. Policy Center

How the region’s racial and ethnic demographics have changed since 1970

Previously: How the D.C. area’s population density has changed since 1970; How household incomes in the D.C. area have changed since 1980 Today, the Washington region is known for having very diverse suburbs, including Prince George’s County, the largest suburban county with a majority of Black residents in the country. However, 50…

January 13, 2020 |
Media | Uncategorized

Is Exercise Now A Luxury Item In D.C.? | WAMU

On January 6, 2020, the D.C. Policy Center’s article, Physical activity and gym access by neighborhood in D.C., was cited by WAMU: Physical activity levels tend to vary widely throughout the city, with the lowest rates in Wards 7 and 8. In those two wards — which also have the most residents living below…

January 6, 2020 | D.C. Policy Center
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NoVa Kicked Maryland Butt in Job Growth Last Year | Bacon’s Rebellion

On January 6, 2020, D.C. Policy Center Executive Director Yesim Sayin Taylor was quoted by Bacon’s Rebellion: Thus, Northern Virginia has experienced an influx of corporate headquarters with no connection whatsoever to defense, intelligence or IT — Hilton Hotels, Volkswagen USA, and Nestle USA. Meanwhile, Maryland lost Discovery and had to fight…

January 6, 2020 | D.C. Policy Center
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Northern Virginia’s economic growth risks leaving Maryland suburbs behind | Washington Post

On January 4, 2020, D.C. Policy Center Executive Director Yesim Sayin Taylor was quoted by the Washington Post: “When large headquarters move to the metropolitan area, they almost never consider Maryland and D.C.,” said Yesim Sayin Taylor, executive director of the D.C. Policy Center. “They invariably locate in Northern Virginia, and that’s…

January 4, 2020 | D.C. Policy Center
Media | Uncategorized

Here’s the best way to build a Purple Line link between Bethesda and Tysons | Greater Greater Washington

On December 27, 2019, the D.C. Policy Center’s article, The best way to build a Purple Line link between Bethesda and Tysons, was cross-posted by Greater Greater Washington. Read more: Here’s the best way to build a Purple Line link between Bethesda and Tysons | Greater Greater Washington Related: The best way…

December 27, 2019 | D.C. Policy Center

New database of D.C. Planned Unit Developments (PUDs)

D.C.’s Planned Unit Development (PUD) process allows developers to gain additional height and density for a project (beyond what they could build matter of right) in exchange for delivering additional public benefits back to the community. The specific level and types of benefits are driven by a conversation with the community, generally…

December 19, 2019 | Nick Sementelli
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D.C. Ranks Among The Country’s Fittest Cities, Yet There’s A Dearth Of Gyms In Wards 7 And 8 | DCist

On December 18, 2019, the D.C. Policy Center’s article, Physical activity and gym access by neighborhood in D.C., was cited by DCist: The divide between the District’s most active and least active neighborhoods is stark, as illustrated by data from the 500 Cities Project and analyzed by the D.C. Policy Center in 2017. The…

December 18, 2019 | D.C. Policy Center
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Liberal Guilt Is Officials’ Latest Tool To Build More Affordable Housing In D.C.’s Wealthiest Ward | DCist

On December 10, 2019, the D.C. Policy Center’s article, Single-family zoning and neighborhood characteristics in the District of Columbia, was cited by DCist: Bowser has not proposed banning single-family zoning, which takes up three-quarters of all tax lots in the city, according to the D.C. Policy Center. “It would not be popular” in…

December 10, 2019 | D.C. Policy Center

Roughly 36 percent of D.C.’s rental housing units are rent-stabilized

Over 35 years after the enactment of the Rental Housing Act of 1985, the number of rent-stabilized units in D.C. has held up relatively well. According to D.C. Policy Center estimates based on publicly available tax data and proprietary data from CoStar, D.C. currently has close to 75,000 rent-stabilized housing units spread…

December 4, 2019 | Yesim Sayin
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DC students face violence and transit delays on their commute to school | Greater Greater Washington

On November 25, 2019, the D.C. Policy Center’s report, Access to schools that level the playing field for D.C.’s at-risk students, was cited by Greater Greater Washington: On July 9, 2019 At-Large Councilmember David Grosso introduced the Safe Passage to School Expansion Act, which would create an Office of Safe Passage and provide shuttle buses…

November 25, 2019 | D.C. Policy Center
Testimony | Uncategorized

Testimony from Chelsea Coffin on schools that level the playing field for at-risk students

On November 22, 2019, D.C. Policy Center Director of the Education Policy Initiative Chelsea Coffin testified before the Committee of the Whole and the Committee on Education. Download this testimony. Read the underlying D.C. Policy Center article, “Access to schools that level the playing field for D.C.’s at-risk students”

November 22, 2019 | Chelsea Coffin

The economic costs of land use regulations

Land is among the most valuable assets in the United States, and its value is a function of how we use land and what we build on it. According to one study, the value of all land in the lower 48 states is estimated at about 1.4 times the nation’s Gross Domestic…

November 22, 2019 | Yesim Sayin
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District Links: AG Karl Racine hires recent defense atty for Rayful Edmond III | The DC Line

On November 15, 2019, the D.C. Policy Center’s article, The impact of occupational licensing requirements in D.C., was cited by The DC Line’s District Links newsletter: REPORT – ‘The impact of occupational licensing requirements in D.C.’ D.C. Policy Center’s Yesim Sayin Taylor: “The District of Columbia has many factors in its favor making it…

November 15, 2019 | D.C. Policy Center

Testimony from Executive Director Yesim Sayin on the Rental Housing Act Extension Amendment Act of 2019

On November 13, 2019, D.C. Policy Center Executive Director Yesim Sayin Taylor testified on B23-433: the “Rental Housing Act Extension Amendment Act of 2019” before the D.C. Council Committee on Housing & Neighborhood Revitalization. Download this testimony.

November 13, 2019 | Yesim Sayin
Media | Uncategorized

These maps show how incomes have changed in the region since 1980 | Greater Greater Washington

On November 13, 2019, Fellow D.W. Rowlands’ article on the region’s changing incomes was cross-posted on Greater Greater Washington. Read more: These maps show how incomes have changed in the region since 1980 | Greater Greater Washington

November 13, 2019 | D.C. Policy Center

How household incomes in the D.C. area have changed since 1980

Although the spatial distribution of wealth in the D.C. area has remained relatively constant over the past 40 years, with the richest neighborhoods stretching to the northwest on both banks of the Potomac and the poorest neighborhoods inside the Beltway east of 16th Street NW, the number of very rich and very…

November 13, 2019 |
Media | Uncategorized

Tuesday Morning Notes | Tysons Reporter

On November 12, 2019, the D.C. Policy Center’s article, D.C. is behind the rest of metropolitan area in business ownership rates for women, was cited in the Tysons Reporter links roundup, Tuesday Morning Notes: Women-Owned Businesses Booming in Falls Church — “Across the Washington metropolitan area, the highest rates of business ownership for…

November 12, 2019 | D.C. Policy Center

The impact of occupational licensing requirements in D.C.

The District of Columbia has many factors in its favor making it attractive to workers: high average wages, a variety of employer benefits, strong worker protections, and relatively short commute times. At the same time, the concentration of D.C.’s employment opportunities in high-skill, high-paying jobs means that there are few opportunities for…

November 12, 2019 | Yesim Sayin
Media | Uncategorized

D.C. battle looms on spending, taxes | Washington Blade

On November 8, 2019, the D.C. Policy Center’s 2019 State of Business Report was cited by the Washington Blade: While the D.C. economy is stable and remains a strong employment center in the region, the city is struggling to retain the small and moderate size businesses generated during recent boom years. In…

November 8, 2019 | D.C. Policy Center
Media | Uncategorized

Should you move to Washington, D.C.? | Curbed DC

On November 8, 2019, the D.C. Policy Center’s article, Growing labor demand in D.C. is driving up wages, was cited by Curbed DC: If you’re thinking about moving to D.C., think hard. Employment opportunities abound, but living costs are high. The weather can get brutally hot in the summer (don’t even get us started on…

November 8, 2019 | D.C. Policy Center
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The Barras Report: DC Policy Center

On November 7, 2019, D.C. Policy Center executive director Yesim Sayin Taylor was interviewed on The Barras Report: See more: The Barras Report: DC Policy Center

November 7, 2019 | D.C. Policy Center
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Small Business Owners Press D.C. Lawmakers For Financial Relief

On November 7, 2019, D.C. Policy Center executive director Yesim Sayin Taylor’s testimony to the D.C. Council was cited by WAMU: At one point during the hearing, economist Yesim Sayin Taylor contended that McDuffie and Allen’s bills would amount to little more than bandage solutions if larger changes aren’t made to the city’s business…

November 7, 2019 | D.C. Policy Center

Testimony from Executive Director Yesim Sayin on the Small and Local Business Assistance Amendment Act of 2019

On November 6, 2019, D.C. Policy Center Executive Director Yesim Sayin Taylor testified on B23-404, B23-439, B23-438, and B23-432: the “Small and Local Business Assistance Amendment Act of 2019” (and related bills) before the D.C. Council Committee on Business & Economic Development. Download this testimony. Read the underlying D.C. Policy Center publication, 2019…

November 6, 2019 | Yesim Sayin

Hate Crimes in D.C.

2018 was a record setting year for hate crimes in the District of Columbia, and the number reported continues to rise this year: 108 hate crimes were reported to the Metropolitan Police Department (MPD) during the first half of 2019, 30 percent more than the same period for last year.[1] About half…

November 6, 2019 | Shirin Arslan
Media | Uncategorized

District Links: New report on deadly row house fire; NYT article on inaccurate breathalyzers mentions DC police; and more | The DC Line

On November 4, 2019, the D.C. Policy Center’s article, D.C. is hard to count. Here’s where officials could target efforts for the 2020 Census., was cited in The DC Line’s District Links newsletter: REPORT – ‘D.C. is hard to count. Here’s where officials could target efforts for the 2020 Census.’ D.C. Policy Center’s Mike…

November 4, 2019 | D.C. Policy Center

D.C. is hard to count. Here’s where officials could target efforts for the 2020 Census.

There’s a lot riding on the 2020 Census. The federal government uses census data to allocate more than $6 billion in annual funding to the District of Columbia for Medicaid, schools, food assistance and dozens of other programs. Across the Washington metropolitan area, the same population totals and decennial count results further…

November 4, 2019 | Mike Maciag
Media | Uncategorized

Is Barry Farm a historic landmark? An upcoming ruling will shape the fate of redevelopment plans. | Washington Business Journal

On October 29, 2019, fellow Sarah Shoenfeld’s article, The history and evolution of Anacostia’s Barry Farm was linked by the Washington Business Journal: For the activists pressing for the historic designation, a vote in their favor would represent a major victory in forcing the developers to better honor the property’s history — in 1867,…

November 1, 2019 | D.C. Policy Center
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D.C. officials order changes to Barry Farm redevelopment plans to better honor the property’s history | Washington Business Journal

On October 31, 2019, fellow Sarah Shoenfeld’s article, The history and evolution of Anacostia’s Barry Farm was linked by the Washington Business Journal: However, a majority of the nine-member board did signal that they’d be willing to approve that request, if the developers can’t rearrange their plans to better honor the property’s…

October 31, 2019 | D.C. Policy Center
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GAME-CHANGER: The Nationals won it all. D.C. achieved sports town status. What does it mean for business? | Washington Business Journal

On October 31, 2019, the D.C. Policy Center executive director Yesim Sayin Taylor was quoted by Washington Business Journal: D.C. collects anywhere from $40 million to $65 million per year for its “ballpark fund” to afford those payments, budget documents show. Taxes on Nats tickets and concessions generate anywhere from $15 million…

October 31, 2019 | D.C. Policy Center
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The Comp Plan guides DC’s growth. Here’s what proposed updates say about housing. | Greater Greater Washington

On October 31, 2019, the D.C. Policy Center’s report, Taking Stock of the District’s Housing Stock, was cited by Greater Greater Washington: Other worthwhile additions include: A strong acknowledgement that new construction has favored one-bedroom units over multifamily units (though it’s necessary to build more smaller units as well to free up family-sized…

October 31, 2019 | D.C. Policy Center

D.C. is behind the rest of metropolitan area in business ownership rates for women

October is National Women’s Small Business Month. Only 8 percent of business establishments in the District of Columbia with five or more employees are owned by women, as we wrote in the 2019 State of Business report. D.C. has lower shares of businesses owned by women than almost any other jurisdiction in…

October 30, 2019 | Kathryn Zickuhr,
Media | Uncategorized

Hill Buzz 488 | The Hill is Home

On October 29, 2019, Executive Director Yesim Sayin Taylor’s article, Land Value Tax: Can it work in the District? was cited in a link roundup on The Hill is Home: An interesting blog post from the DC Policy Center on Land Value Tax and what difference it could make. Read more: Hill Buzz | The Hill…

October 29, 2019 | D.C. Policy Center
Media | Uncategorized

It isn’t baseball that unites Washington. It’s the chant: ‘Lock him up!’ | Washington Post

On October 28, 2019, the D.C. Policy Center’s article, Made in D.C.: Which areas have the highest share of D.C.-born residents, was cited by the Washington Post: To be fair, recent census data shows that the majority of current D.C. residents are, indeed, transplants. Only about 28 percent of adults living in D.C….

October 28, 2019 | D.C. Policy Center

New D.C. education data show how school choice plays out across wards

This post originally appeared on the Urban Institute’s Greater DC blog.   D.C.’s school choice policies allow families to send their children to schools outside their neighborhood boundaries, and more than three-quarters of D.C. students attend a school that isn’t their in-boundary or neighborhood school. Some of those students go to school…

October 25, 2019 | Megan Gallagher,
Media | Uncategorized

Changes to D.C.’s comp plan could help Bowser approach her big housing goals. Here’s how. | Washington Business Journal

On October 22, 2019, D.C. Policy Center executive Director Yesim Sayin Taylor was quoted by the Washington Business Journal: “Lots of people are saying ‘where’s the money to build it?’ But that’s far less important … because the resources are in the land,” said Yesim Taylor, executive director of business-backed think tank…

October 22, 2019 | D.C. Policy Center
Media | Uncategorized

Tuesday’s Must Reads | UrbanTurf

On October 22, 2019, the D.C. Policy Center’s article, Land Value Tax: Can it Work in the District?, was featured by Urban Turf’s links roundup: A DC land value tax would accelerate density where it exists, not where it doesn’t. — (Y.S. Taylor/DCPC) Read more: Tuesday’s Must Reads | UrbanTurf Related: Land Value Tax:…

October 22, 2019 | D.C. Policy Center

Land Value Tax – Appendix

How did we use the zoning standards to determine where zoning is restrictive or permissive? D.C.’s zoning standards are complicated. Each zone under the standards allow for multiple types of buildings. Some of the distinctions in building type have to do with use (is it a church or a house?), some with…

October 21, 2019 | Yesim Sayin

Land Value Tax: Can it Work in the District?

The idea of imposing a “land value tax” in the District pops up from time to time. Rick Rybeck at Just Economics has been promoting land value taxes for as far as I could remember. Both the 2013 Tax Revision Commission (here) and the 1997 Tax Revision Commission (here) gave consideration to…

October 21, 2019 | Yesim Sayin

More difficult to get a spot at D.C.’s leveler schools

The recent D.C. Policy Center report, Access to schools that level the playing field for D.C.’s at-risk students, examined where in the city at-risk students have the shortest commutes to “leveler schools”—schools with the very highest growth for at-risk students.[1] About a third of the population under 18 lives within a typical…

October 17, 2019 | Chelsea Coffin
Media | Uncategorized

Here’s where D.C. — and a N. Va. city — rank among U.S. cities for tax rates, ease of doing business | Washington Business Journal

On October 15, 2019, the D.C. Policy Center’s report, State of Business 2019: Building a Competitive City, was cited by the Washington Business Journal: In D.C., the tax burden on businesses has long been a subject of consternation, playing a role in driving businesses to flee to the Northern Virginia suburbs in…

October 15, 2019 | D.C. Policy Center
Media | Uncategorized

Can Land Trusts Keep D.C. Living Accessible? | Kojo Nnamdi Show

On October 10, 2019, Executive Director Yesim Sayin Taylor discussed community land trusts as a guest on the Kojo Nnamdi Show: The cost of living in Washington, D.C. is on the rise and longtime residents are getting priced out of their homes and neighborhoods. The Douglass Community Land Trust recently made its first property…

October 10, 2019 | D.C. Policy Center
Media | Uncategorized

District Links | The DC Line

On October 4, 2019 the D.C. Policy Center-produced report, 2019 State of Business: Building a Competitive City, was cited by The DC Line’s District Links roundup: NEW – The DC Chamber of Commerce’s 2019 State of Business Report is out, produced by the D.C. Policy Center. The full 56-page report focuses on how the District…

October 4, 2019 | D.C. Policy Center
Media | Uncategorized

D.C. remains a strong jobs center, but business leaders warn that companies are still fleeing at an alarming rate | Washington Business Journal

On October 4, 2019, the 2019 State of Business Report written by the D.C. Policy Center was featured by the Washington Business Journal: According to a report prepared for the event by the business-backed D.C. Policy Center, the District added more than 5,000 new companies between 2010 and 2018, a 15% increase. But…

October 4, 2019 | D.C. Policy Center

How can D.C. become more competitive within the Washington metropolitan area?

This article is adapted from the 2019 State of the Business Report, “Building a Competitive City: Strengths, weaknesses, and potential paths of growth for the District of Columbia,” prepared by the D.C. Policy Center for the DC Chamber of Commerce.     INTRODUCTION: INTRA-REGIONAL DYNAMICS IN THE WASHINGTON METROPOLITAN AREA The Washington-Arlington-Alexandria,…

October 4, 2019 | D.C. Policy Center

2019 State of Business Report: Building a Competitive City

ABSTRACT The Washington metropolitan area is one of the top regions in the country for economic innovation, entrepreneurship, and high-growth firms. Within the metropolitan area, however, jurisdictions experience different economic outcomes because of the decisions they make that affect the flow of businesses, workers, and residents across their borders. These forces are…

October 4, 2019 | D.C. Policy Center
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Women Who Mean Business: Yesim Sayin Taylor (Video) | Washington Business Journal

On October 3, 2019, Executive Director Yesim Sayin Taylor was featured as a member of the 2019 class of Women Who Mean Business by Washington Business Journal: Back in her days working for the D.C. government, Yesim Sayin Taylor remembers thinking that the business community all too often came forward with the same repetitive…

October 3, 2019 | D.C. Policy Center
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News from around the 50 states | USA Today

On October 2, 2019, the the D.C. Policy Center’s report, Access to schools that level the playing field for D.C.’s at-risk students,  was cited by USA Today: A new report on school access by the D.C. Policy Center shows hundreds of students can’t physically get to the school that would best suit…

October 2, 2019 | D.C. Policy Center
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Making Black history matter in public space | Brookings

On October 2, 2019, two D.C. Policy Center articles were cited by the Brookings Institution: The demolition of a public housing complex in the nation’s capital has sparked a fight over something more than displacement and gentrification: It has come to represent a larger struggle over the preservation of Black history, culture,…

October 2, 2019 | D.C. Policy Center
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Where The D.C. Schools That Help At-Risk Kids Are — And Aren’t | Kojo Nnamdi Show

On October 2, 2019, Education Policy Initiative Director Chelsea Coffin discussed the D.C. Policy Center report Access to schools that level the playing field for D.C.’s at-risk students, as a guest on the Kojo Nnamdi Show: About half of students in D.C. charter and traditional public schools are labeled “at-risk,” meaning they…

October 2, 2019 | D.C. Policy Center
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Breakfast links: Convert vacant offices into housing? A new report throws a damper on the idea | Greater Greater Washington

On October 1, 2019, coverage of the D.C. Policy Center’s report, Access to schools that level the playing field for D.C.’s at-risk students, was featured in Greater Greater Washington’s Breakfast Links roundup: Many at-risk DC students live far from help: Many DC neighborhoods with the highest concentration of at-risk students are without easy…

October 1, 2019 | D.C. Policy Center
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District Line Daily: “Kids Know It’s Not Right.” | Washington City Paper

On September 30, 2019, the D.C. Policy Center’s report, Access to schools that level the playing field for D.C.’s at-risk students, was cited by Washington City Paper: New study explores how hard it is to travel to schools that help close the achievement gap for at-risk students. [D.C. Policy Center] Read more:…

September 30, 2019 |
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At-risk students in DC don’t have access to the schools they need, according to new study | WUSA 9

On September 30, 2019, the D.C. Policy Center’s article, Access to schools that level the playing field for D.C.’s at-risk students, was covered by WUSA 9: Now, a new report by the D.C. Policy Center on school access shows hundreds of students can’t even get to the school that would best suit…

September 30, 2019 | D.C. Policy Center
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Many Of D.C.’s At-Risk Students Are Too Far Away From The Schools Most Likely To Help Them | DCist

On September 30, 2019, the D.C. Policy Center’s report, Access to schools that level the playing field for D.C.’s at-risk students, was covered by DCist: Several public elementary and middle schools in D.C. have a strong track record of helping students classified as at-risk improve their learning outcomes—but many neighborhoods with the…

September 30, 2019 | D.C. Policy Center

Access to schools that level the playing field for D.C.’s at-risk students

Test scores have improved for D.C. students in recent years, even taking into account demographic shifts in the city’s public school students.[1] However, achievement gaps persist by race and ethnicity, special education and English learner needs, and at-risk status. Access to high-quality schools—schools with strong academic outcomes and the student support systems…

September 30, 2019 | Chelsea Coffin

Even for early grades, there is a weak link between where families live and where students attend school

Since the mid-2000s, the District of Columbia has experienced a population boom accompanied by rising housing values—and, in recent years, more students in public schools. In most cities with similar population growth, housing prices rise in tandem with the number of school-age children in neighborhoods with schools that are perceived as high-quality….

September 26, 2019 | Chelsea Coffin
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With costs ever rising, D.C. lawmakers introduce rent and tax bills to help small businesses stay put | Washington Business Journal

On September 18, 2019, the D.C. Policy Center Executive Director Yesim Sayin Taylor was quoted by the Washington Business Journal: Yesim Taylor, the executive director of the business-backed D.C. Policy Center, is similarly bullish on the legislation’s potential to help companies “facing ever-thinning margins and steep competition from electronic commerce.” But she…

September 18, 2019 | D.C. Policy Center
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The Past, Present, And (Potential) Future Of D.C. Statehood, Explained | DCist

On September 18, 2019, the D.C. Policy Center’s article, Twenty years after the Revitalization Act, the District of Columbia is a different city, was cited by DCist: But there is one other element of the court system that does have a connection to statehood: D.C. is the only jurisdiction where a U.S….

September 18, 2019 | D.C. Policy Center
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Letter to the Editor: Dress codes are worth it in the long run | Tulsa World

On September 18, 2019, the D.C. Policy Center’s report, Landscape of Diversity in D.C. Public Schools, was cited by Tulsa World: Columnist Ginnie Graham’s piece used a report issued by the National Women’s Law Center that analyzed dress codes and violations among 21 Washington, D.C. public schools and charter schools. A D.C. Policy Center report in…

September 18, 2019 | D.C. Policy Center
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1,100 Units, Retail and a Two Acre Park: The Latest Plans for Barry Farm | Urban Turf

On September 6, 2019, the D.C. Policy Center’s article, The history and evolution of Anacostia’s Barry Farm, was cited by Urban Turf: The Historic Preservation Review Board is expected to rule later this month on whether to grant landmark status to the remaining units at Barry Farm. Earlier this week, development partner…

September 6, 2019 | D.C. Policy Center
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District Links | The DC Line

On September 6, 2019 the D.C. Policy Center’s article, Building the ecosystem for Black women entrepreneurs in D.C., was cited by The DC Line’s District Links roundup: “Just 18 percent of all business establishments in D.C. are reported to be owned solely by women, and only 27 percent are owned by people…

September 6, 2019 | D.C. Policy Center
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Cities Are Changing As Young People Stay For Longer | Newsy

On September 5, 2019, D.C. Policy Center Education Policy Initiative Director Chelsea Coffin was interviewed by Newsy: “I see it the most in housing developments that are ongoing in the pipeline. We really are seeing a lot more one- and two-bedroom units being built and not as much family housing.” Coffin said….

September 5, 2019 | D.C. Policy Center

Building the ecosystem for Black women entrepreneurs in D.C.

Black women across the U.S. are starting businesses at six times the national average. According to a 2018 report commissioned by American Express, there are 2.4 million businesses owned by Black women nationally, and Black women actually have higher shares of business ownership than Black men.[1] Yet at the same time, Black…

September 5, 2019 | Shelly Bell
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With more choice, DC families are unlinking their housing and school decisions | Greater Greater Washington

On September 4, 2019 the D.C. Policy Center’s article, D.C.’s disconnect between citywide enrollment growth and neighborhood change, was covered by Greater Greater Washington: A new report from the DC Policy Center shows that school-aged populations and school enrollment in the District’s neighborhoods are “decoupling.” While demand for high-quality schools has historically driven…

September 4, 2019 | D.C. Policy Center
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DC residents launch a city-wide tenant union in hopes to foster solidarity across the District | Streetsense

On August 29, 2019, the D.C. Policy Center’s article, Made in D.C.: Which areas have the highest share of D.C.-born residents, was cited by Streetsense: In the 1950s, the Southwest part of D.C. underwent huge gentrification that forced 23,000 people to be relocated into public housing east of the Anacostia River, said…

August 29, 2019 | D.C. Policy Center
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‘Going to bed hungry’: the harrowing reality of poor children living in DC | the Guardian

On August 29, 2019, the D.C. Policy Center’s article, Income inequality and economic mobility in D.C., was cited by the Guardian: Muthiah’s organization serves roughly 400,000 individuals in the DC region, about a third of whom are children, and she said her group has witnessed the effects of growing inequity in the…

August 29, 2019 | D.C. Policy Center
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Citywide enrollment growth is strong but disconnected from neighborhood change | The DC Line

On August 28, 2019, the D.C. Policy Center’s Chelsea Coffin authored a commentary published by The DC Line: The 2019-20 school year will mark the 12th enrollment increase in a row for DC’s traditional public and public charter schools. This year, the city’s schools are expected to add 2,800 students to classes…

August 28, 2019 | D.C. Policy Center

D.C.’s disconnect between enrollment growth and neighborhood change

The D.C. Policy Center report “D.C.’s disconnect between citywide enrollment growth and neighborhood change” examines changes in enrollment, school-age population, and housing values, finding that although these three are growing in parallel for the city, they are not linked neighborhood by neighborhood. Download the report as a PDF here. The District of…

August 26, 2019 | Chelsea Coffin
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D.C. Attorney General Settles With Company That Wouldn’t Install Windows East Of The River | DCist

On August 21, 2019, the D.C. Policy Center’s article, Discriminatory housing practices in the District: A brief history, was cited by DCist: She asked a friend to call the company back with a Capitol Hill zip code instead. When the customer service representative approved the request for service, Morgan decided to alert…

August 21, 2019 | D.C. Policy Center
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New D.C. Development Guidelines Require More Consideration of Walkability | Planetizen

On August 17, 2019, the D.C. Policy Center’s article, Transportation is more than traffic: Measuring the impact of development on walkability, was cited by Planetizen: “In June, the D.C. Department of Transportation published new guidelines for reviewing the transportation impacts of major real estate developments,” according to an article by D. Taylor Reich. “These new guidelines…

August 17, 2019 | D.C. Policy Center
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Today’s Headlines | Streetsblog CAL

On August 15, 2019, the D.C. Policy Center’s article, Transportation is more than traffic: Measuring the impact of development on walkability, was cited by Streetsblog CAL’s links roundup: Transportation is more than traffic: Measuring walkability (D.C. Policy Center) Read more: Today’s Headlines | Streetsblog CAL Related: Transportation is more than traffic: Measuring…

August 15, 2019 | D.C. Policy Center
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These new development rules are made for walking | Greater Greater Washington

On August 15, 2019, a version of the D.C. Policy Center’s article, Transportation is more than traffic: Measuring the impact of development on walkability, was crossposted at Greater Greater Washington. Read more: These new development rules are made for walking | Greater Greater Washington Related: Transportation is more than traffic: Measuring the impact…

August 15, 2019 | D.C. Policy Center

Transportation is more than traffic: Measuring the impact of development on walkability

D.C. has expanded the way it evaluates developments’ impact on walkability. What does that mean, why does it matter, and how could the evaluation be even more nuanced?   Major real estate developments change the walkability of a neighborhood. Not only do new developments create new destinations that people walk to, they…

August 15, 2019 | D. Taylor Reich
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Suburban sprawl has increased in the D.C. area since 1970: study | Curbed DC

On August 13, 2019, the D.C. Policy Center’s article, How the D.C. area’s population density has changed since 1970, was cited by Curbed DC: The population density of the D.C. region has gone up but also spread farther out during the past half-century, according to a recent analysis of U.S. Census Bureau data by…

August 13, 2019 | D.C. Policy Center
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Grassroots groups and growers east of the Anacostia defy the ‘food desert’ label | Greater Greater Washington

On August 13 2019, a map from the D.C. Policy Center’s article, The history of Deanwood’s local foodscape, was cited by Greater Greater Washington: Map reprinted from DC Policy Center: “Grocery stores operating in Deanwood between 1925 and 1960. This map was created based on stores that were reported in the Overbeck oral history interviews…

August 13, 2019 | D.C. Policy Center
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Monday’s Must Reads | UrbanTurf

On August 12, 2019, Executive Director Yesim Sayin Taylor’s visualization of housing types and density in Ward 3 vs Ward 6 was cited in a link roundup on UrbanTurf. Read more: Monday’s Must Reads | UrbanTurf Related: D.C. single family neighborhood density: Ward 3 versus Ward 6 | D.C. Policy Center

August 12, 2019 | D.C. Policy Center
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A tool meant to help minorities buy homes is instead speeding up gentrification in D.C. | Washington Post

On August 9, 2019, the D.C. Policy Center’s article, A decade of demographic change in D.C.: Which neighborhoods have changed the most?, was cited in the Washington Post: Yet Washington is also the most rapidly gentrifying metropolitan area in the United States. Since 2000, 22 percent of D.C. census tracts have seen a large…

August 9, 2019 | D.C. Policy Center
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See the difference density makes in these two parts of the District | Greater Greater Washington

On August 8, 2019, the D.C. Policy Center’s article, D.C. single family neighborhood density: Ward 3 versus Ward 6, was crossposted by Greater Greater Washington. Read more: See the difference density makes in these two parts of the District | Greater Greater Washington Related: D.C. single family neighborhood density: Ward 3 versus Ward 6…

August 8, 2019 | D.C. Policy Center
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Systemic Inequality: Displacement, Exclusion, and Segregation | Center for American Progress

On August 8 2019, the D.C. Policy Center’s article, Goodbye to Chocolate City, was cited by a Center for American Progress report, Systemic Inequality: Displacement, Exclusion, and Segregation: Nowhere are the effects of gentrification more noticeable than the nation’s capital, Washington, D.C. Between 1970 and 2015, Black residents declined from 71 percent of…

August 8, 2019 | D.C. Policy Center
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How DC can build more homes in exclusive neighborhoods around Rock Creek Park | Greater Greater Washington

On August 1, 2019, the D.C. Policy Center’s article, Single-family zoning and neighborhood characteristics in the District of Columbia, was cited in Greater Greater Washington: Conveniently, where the framework element says you should build, and where it says you should conserve character, roughly tracks with where in the city you are legally…

August 1, 2019 | D.C. Policy Center
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These beautiful maps show how the region’s population density changed since 1970 | Greater Greater Washington

On July 26, 2019, Fellow D.W. Rowlands’ article on the region’s changing population density was cross-posted on Greater Greater Washington. Read more: These beautiful maps show how the region’s population density changed since 1970 | Greater Greater Washington

July 31, 2019 | D.C. Policy Center

D.C. single family neighborhood density: Ward 3 versus Ward 6

Ward 3 and Ward 6 both include some of the most highly-valued residential neighborhoods in the District. Both are predominately composed of single-family homes, as shown in the maps above, yet the look and feel of each ward is strikingly different. Most of Ward 3 (shown in blue in the chart below)…

July 29, 2019 | Yesim Sayin

How the D.C. area’s population density has changed since 1970

Historical distributions of population in the D.C. metro area   D.C.’s population growth has slowed since the 2009 boom ten years ago, but the population still continues to climb. In December, the U.S. Census Bureau announced that D.C.’s population reached 702,455, officially passing the 700,000 mark. As District Measured has noted, D.C.’s…

July 24, 2019 |

Single-family zoning and neighborhood characteristics in the District of Columbia

Last December, Minneapolis did away with single-family zoning, permitting three-family homes in each lot, abolishing parking minimums, and allowing high-density buildings along transit corridors. In March, Seattle upzoned many of its neighborhoods, including eliminating single-family zoning in some areas. Then came Oregon, which, in late June, passed legislation to eliminate single-family zoning…

July 17, 2019 | Yesim Sayin

The history and evolution of Anacostia’s Barry Farm

In 1867, the federal government purchased a 375-acre site in Anacostia, later known as Hillsdale, and as Barry’s or Barry Farm (more recently as Barry Farms) for the settlement of African Americans after the Civil War. The isolated community was self-contained by design, requiring residents not only to demand the installation of…

July 9, 2019 | Sarah Shoenfeld

D.C. Policy Center Announces Major Initiative: “Competitiveness and Business Dynamics: A Study of the Changing Role of the District in the Washington Metropolitan Area”

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE CONTACT: Aimee Custis Director of External Relations aimee@dcpolicycenter.org (202) 223-2233 ext. 306 July 8, 2019 WASHINGTON, D.C. — The D.C. Policy Center announced today that it is embarking on a major research project on regional business patterns and overarching competitive dynamics in the Washington metropolitan area. The research, a…

July 8, 2019 | D.C. Policy Center

New survey data show D.C. employment is underperforming compared to the region

Last week, we published an analysis of employment trends in the region based on administrative data firms file with the Unemployment Insurance program, known as the Quarterly Survey of Employment and Wages (QSEW). This analysis showed that in 2018, the District outperformed the surrounding jurisdictions in employment. On June 21, the Bureau of…

June 28, 2019 | Yesim Sayin

Growing labor demand in D.C. is driving up wages

Recent reports increasingly point to a slowdown in the Washington regional economy, slower hiring in the District, and stronger private sector employment in the city. A deeper dive into jurisdictional differences across the metropolitan Washington area show that the District’s role in the region as an employment center is indeed growing. When…

June 19, 2019 | Yesim Sayin

Testimony from Chelsea Coffin on the Master Facilities Plan Approval Resolution of 2019

On June 5, 2019, D.C. Policy Center Director of the Education Policy Initiative Chelsea Coffin testified on PR23-0193, The “Master Facilities Plan Approval Resolution of 2019” before the Committee of the Whole and the Committee on Education. Download this testimony. Read the underlying D.C. Policy Center essay “Enrollment still expected to increase…

June 6, 2019 | Chelsea Coffin

Pharmacy access varies greatly across D.C.

The D.C. Council spent a significant amount of time discussing health access, especially access to hospitals, during budget deliberations this past month. We wondered: how does access to pharmacies—one of the simplest and most basic form of health care—vary across the city?   Pharmacies are an important link between hospitals, doctors, and patients. Pharmacies can expand the reach of preventative services in communities with less access to…

June 3, 2019 | Yesim Sayin,

Updated data suggests despite D.C.’s slowing population growth, school enrollment still expected to increase­

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE May 20, 2019 CONTACT: Chelsea Coffin, Director, Education Policy Initiative (202) 223-2233 chelsea@dcpolicycenter.org   WASHINGTON, D.C. – Released today, an updated report using new data from 2018 indicates that despite the District of Columbia’s slowdown in population growth, enrollment is expected to continue to increase, as births have stabilized…

May 20, 2019 | D.C. Policy Center

Enrollment still expected to increase despite slower population growth in D.C.

Population growth in the District of Columbia is slowing and migration patterns are changing. Population growth in 2018 was 2,400 lower than the previous year (growth of 6,764 in 2018 compared to 9,116 in 2017).[1] While D.C.’s growth used to be driven in part by domestic migration, the District’s current population gains…

May 20, 2019 | Chelsea Coffin

The history of Deanwood’s local foodscape

In an excerpt from her new book Black Food Geographies: Race, Self-Reliance, and Food Access in Washington, D.C., Dr. Ashanté M. Reese examines the history of the majority-Black Deanwood neighborhood of Washington, D.C. to unpack the structural forces that determine food access in urban areas. Based on extensive ethnographic fieldwork, Reese not only documents racism and residential segregation in the nation’s capital but also tracks the ways transnational food corporations have shaped food availability.

May 20, 2019 |

Testimony from Executive Director Yesim Sayin Taylor on the Fiscal Year 2020 Budget Proposal

On April 26, 2019, D.C. Policy Center Executive Director Yesim Sayin Taylor testified on the proposed Fiscal Year 2020 budget for the District of Columbia before the Committee of the Whole. Download this testimony. Read the underlying D.C. Policy Center essay “The District’s Proposed Fiscal Year 2020 Budget is a Harbinger of…

April 26, 2019 | Yesim Sayin

Testimony on the “Racial Equity Achieves Results Amendment Act of 2019”

On April 25, 2019, D.C. Policy Center Deputy Director of Policy Kathryn Zickuhr testified on B23-0038, “Racial Equity Achieves Results Amendment Act of 2019,” before the Committee on Government Operations. BILL SUMMARY – As introduced it requires the Office of Human Rights and the Department of Human Resources to develop and provide…

April 25, 2019 | Kathryn Zickuhr

Testimony on the “Access to Public Benefits Amendment Act of 2019”

On April 24, 2019, D.C. Policy Center Deputy Director of Policy Kathryn Zickuhr testified on B23-0097, “Access to Public Benefits Amendment Act of 2019,” before the Committee on Human Services. BILL SUMMARY – As introduced it extends the opt out from denying TANF benefits to certain drug felons to other locally-funded public…

April 24, 2019 | Kathryn Zickuhr

The District’s Proposed Fiscal Year 2020 Budget is a Harbinger of Great Fiscal Reckoning

The headlines from the proposed Fiscal Year 2020 Budget for the District of Columbia include $127.9 million in net new revenue, largely—but not entirely—raised from commercial real property. The administration rationalized these new taxes as asking the real estate sector to share the “upside,” and pay for investments in housing affordability in…

April 24, 2019 | Yesim Sayin

Mapping segregation in D.C.

For the past several years, Mapping Segregation in Washington DC has been documenting the historic role of real estate developers, citizens associations (white homeowner groups), and the courts in segregating the city. Our work has been focused on documenting properties subject to racially restrictive deed covenants, which barred the sale or rental…

April 23, 2019 | Sarah Shoenfeld

Applying a racial equity lens to fines and fees in the District of Columbia

In recent years, jurisdictions across the country have increasingly turned to fines and fees[1] both as a policy mechanism and as a way to generate much-needed revenue, especially after the budget crunch from the Great Recession.[2] However, unlike taxes, fines and fees are usually the same for everyone, regardless of their income…

April 22, 2019 | Kathryn Zickuhr

Race and real estate in mid-century D.C.

This article is adapted from “Teachable Moment: ‘Blockbusting’ and Racial Turnover in Mid-Century D.C.,” which originally appeared in Washington History, Vol. 30, No. 2 (Fall 2018), published by the Historical Society of Washington, D.C., and is reprinted and adapted with permission. Many of the documents discussed in this article can be viewed…

April 16, 2019 | Sarah Shoenfeld

The rise and demise of racially restrictive covenants in Bloomingdale

This article is adapted from “‘A Strictly White Residential Section’: The Rise and Demise of Racially Restrictive Covenants in Bloomingdale,” which originally appeared in Vol. 29, No. 1 (Spring 2017) of Washington History: Magazine of the Historical Society of Washington, D.C., and is reprinted and adapted here with permission. You can also…

April 3, 2019 | Sarah Shoenfeld,

Commentary: D.C.’s budget is growing at a faster pace than economic fundamentals can support

Relying on short-term revenue fixes to pay for spending increases doesn’t bode well for fair and competitive tax policy. Yet this is one of several troubling aspects of Mayor Muriel Bowser’s budget proposals now under review by the DC Council. The expenditure projections tell us a lot about the future shape of…

April 2, 2019 | Yesim Sayin

Funding sources and expenditure patterns of out-of-school time programs in D.C.

Out-of-school time programs in D.C. In 2016, an estimated 33,400 children and youth attended subsidized afterschool programs in the District of Columbia, and at least 15,000 children and youth participated in subsidized summer programs. These estimates are from a report the D.C. Policy Center published in October 2017, “Needs Assessment of Out-of-School Time…

March 29, 2019 | Yesim Sayin,

The Funding Landscape of Out-of-School Time Programs in the District of Columbia: Full Report

This report describes the current funding landscape of out-of-school time (OST) programs in the District of Columbia. It explores where funding for OST programs comes from, where funds are distributed, and how these funds are used. The report also explores the potential fiscal needs of expanding OST programs, opportunities that are available to expand and better use existing funds, and bottlenecks that might impair expansion efforts.

March 29, 2019 | Yesim Sayin,

Trends in federal employment in D.C.

The evolving federal workforce and its changing role in the D.C. economy   It’s no secret that the federal government is a major employer in the Washington, D.C. area, and it likewise has an outsized effect on the District’s economy. The five-week partial federal government shutdown that ended earlier this year cost…

March 28, 2019 | Mike Maciag

Chart: Deed tax revenue in D.C.

Last night, Mayor Bowser announced that her budget proposal would increase deed recordation and transfer taxes on commercial property valued at $2 million or more, in order to generate an estimated $80 million for affordable housing in the District. The chart below shows the history of deed tax revenue in D.C. since…

March 19, 2019 | Yesim Sayin

For circumferential transit in the District, try crosstown bus lanes

This article is the seventh and final post in a series focusing on circumferential transit in the Washington, D.C. region. Read part one, part two, part three, part four, part five, and part six. While extensions to the Purple Line and rail transit along the Beltway are popular ideas for improving transit within and across the D.C….

March 19, 2019 |

Here’s where rapid bus service could best connect Maryland’s suburbs

This article is part six in a series focusing on circumferential transit in the Washington, D.C. region. Read part one, part two, part three, part four, and part five. Maryland’s suburban areas have a dearth of transit connections, but better rapid bus service could help link many parts of Prince George’s and Montgomery counties. As I discussed in…

March 15, 2019 |

Northern Virginia needs better suburb-to-suburb transit. Here’s where rapid bus service could help.

This article is part four in a series focusing on circumferential transit in the Washington, D.C. region. Read part one, part two, part three, and part four. While Maryland’s Purple Line is the biggest suburb-to-suburb transit project in the region, Virginia also has a number of corridors that are good candidates for this kind of connection. Northern Virginia…

March 8, 2019 |