Tag: public benefits

Six policy recommendations to preserve affordable housing in the District

D.C. Mayor Muriel Bowser’s “Housing Preservation Strike Force” has released six new recommendations for preserving affordable housing units in the city to keep them accessible for lower-income residents (WCP, 6/13):

According to the mayor’s office, the strike force’s six recommendations are:

  • Establishing a preservation unit within a D.C. agency to identify specific affordable-housing opportunities, and to create a database of affordable-housing units
  • Funding a “public-private preservation fund” to “facilitate early investments in preservation deals”
  • Launching a program to renovate affordable housing in “small properties” of between five and 50 units
  • Drafting additional regulations for the District Opportunity to Purchase Act, which allows D.C. to purchase properties that risk losing their affordable-housing subsidies
  • Incentivizing residents and developers to take advantage of the Tenant Opportunity to Purchase Act through “predevelopment activities, legal services, third-party reports, acquisition bridge financing,” and data-collection
  • Creating programs designed to benefit seniors, such as “tenant-based vouchers or other rental assistance”

– The D.C. Department of Housing and Community Development has launched a new pilot program to preserve affordable housing in ward 8, as neighborhoods east-of-the river expect economic development over the next several years. (WCP, 6/10)

PUTTING RACISM ON THE TABLE | While the Putting Racism on the Table learning series has drawn to a close, the lessons learned will linger on in the minds of the attendees. In this blog post, WRAG president Tamara Lucas Copeland asks Julie Wagner of CareFirst and Terri Copeland of PNC to share their deepest insights and major takeaways from the full series. (Daily, 6/13)

– DC Fiscal Policy Institute discusses the importance of approving the Improving Access to Identity Documents Act that would allow District residents with incomes below 200 percent of poverty to obtain birth certificates, driver’s licenses, or ID cards at no charge. (DCFPI, 6/10)

– The Hell of Applying for Government Benefits (Atlantic, 6/12)

LGBT/DISCRIMINATION | In light of Sunday morning’s mass shooting in Orlando, The Atlantic takes a look at how, despite the advances in LGBT rights throughout the years, many still find themselves subject to violence at alarming rates. (Atlantic, 6/13)

– Nonprofit Quarterly presents a two-part series authored by president of the F.B. Heron Foundation, Clara Miller, in which she discusses how they’ve worked to build a foundation that continues to evolve and engage with the larger economy. Check out part 1 and part 2. (NPQ, 6/8 and 6/9)

– Funding Infrastructure: A Smart Investment for All (SSIR, 6/10)

ECONOMYWhich U.S. Cities Suffer the Most During a Recession? (City Lab, 6/9)

Tonight is Game 5 of the NBA Finals. Which team are you rooting for? Can it be the Cavs? Please!?

– Ciara

Three major new reports on arts participation and impact in America

The National Endowment for the Arts (NEA) has released three new reports (and some fun infographics) on the impact of arts and cultural industries on U.S. GDP, as well as how and why Americans participate (or don’t participate) in certain arts activities. (NEA, 1/12)

The new information will help arts providers and others more effectively understand and develop strategies to engage individuals and communities in the arts.

“The implications from this research are significant,” said NEA Chairman Jane Chu. “The findings show that there is great diversity in how people engage in the arts, and this gives us a framework to use our creativity to innovate new ways to reach these audiences.”

Related: Next month, arts funders are invited to the next meeting of the Arts & Humanities Working Group for a discussion with Americans for the Arts about advancing diversity and equity in the Greater Washington region’s cultural sector. More information is available here.

Proposal would bring museum, performing arts center and condos to U street area (WaPo, 1/13)

PHILANTHROPY | WRAG president, Tamara Copeland, speaks out to executives and trustees who may be considering closing a foundation. In her open letter, she highlights two examples of how it’s been done right. (Daily, 1/13)

POVERTY | Reforms that Will Make it Easier to Apply for Public Benefits (DCFPI, 1/13)

EQUALITY | Even the most unprejudiced minds among us can give way to biased thoughts – particularly when it comes to matters of race. Read what a team of Stanford psychologists learned about the social stereotypes many Americans grow up with, without even realizing it. (NPR, 1/9)

VETERANS | VA Data Show Disparities in Veteran Benefits Spending (WAMU,1/12)

– 3-D printed cars aren’t just something imagined for the future. A car maker that produces the unique vehicle designs is headed for National Harbor and is bringing around 100 jobs with them. (WBJ, 1/12)

– Using factors like affordability, job availability, and workforce growth, financial website NerdWallet ranked D.C. as number 17 on a list of Best Cities for Job Seekers.(DCist, 1/12)

What do the economy and the facial features of America’s favorite celebrities of the moment have to do with each other? More than we probably thought!