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Testimony of Executive Director Yesim Sayin on the Department of Consumer and Regulatory Affairs

February 06, 2019
  • Yesim Sayin

On February 6, 2019, D.C. Policy Center Executive Director Yesim Sayin Taylor testified before the Committee of the Whole on “The Department of Consumer and Regulatory Affairs: What Issues Should the Committee Pursue?

On January 22, Chairman Mendelson, together with nine other members of the D.C. Council, reintroduced the Department of Buildings Establishment Act that would split the Department of Consumer Affairs into two entities—one called “the Department of Buildings” that would oversee buildings inspections and permitting, and another that would assume the remaining duties under of DCRA.

Much of the attention regarding this proposal has focused on the proposed Department of Buildings and whether splitting DCRA could improve the permitting and inspection processes. But the bill—whether one agrees with its approach or not—is important because it also shines a light on the regulatory and licensing practices at DCRA and what they could mean for the District’s economy, its small businesses, and its low-skilled residents.

Read her testimony here.


Yesim Sayin

Executive Director
D.C. Policy Center

Yesim Sayin is the founding Executive Director of the D.C. Policy Center.

With over twenty years of public policy experience in the District of Columbia, Dr. Sayin is recognized by policymakers, advocates and the media as a source of reliable, balanced analyses on the District’s economy and demography.  Yesim’s research interests include economic and fiscal policy, urban economic development, housing, and education. She is especially focused on how COVID-19 pandemic is changing regional and interregional economic interdependencies and what this means for urban policy. Her work is frequently covered in the media, including the Washington Post, the Washington Business Journal, the New York Times, the Wall Street Journal, WAMU, and the Washington City Paper, among others.

Before joining the D.C. Policy Center, Dr. Sayin worked at the District of Columbia Office of the Chief Financial Officer leading the team that scored the fiscal impact of all legislation the District considered. She frequently testified on high profile legislation and worked closely with the executive and Council staff to ensure that policymakers fully understand the fiscal implications of their proposed legislation. Yesim also has worked in the private sector, and consulted with international organization on a large portfolio of public finance topics.

Yesim holds a Ph.D. in economics from George Mason University in Fairfax, Virginia, and a bachelor’s degree in Political Science and International Relations from Bogazici University, located in Istanbul, Turkey.