Tenants fight for affordable housing from church in DC

HOUSING | A DC resident recently passed away, leaving about 6 occupied four-unit apartment buildings located in northeast DC to the Basilica of the National Shrine of the Immaculate Conception. Now the tenants, along with affordable housing advocates, are trying to work with the church to stay in their homes. (WCP, 10/11)

On Feb. 20, the executor of Doyle’s estate transferred the deeds of these properties to the basilica for a sum of zero dollars. The tenants found themselves in an unusual bind, caught in legal limbo by both District rental laws and those applying to religious institutions. Though D.C.’s Tenant Opportunity to Purchase Act gives tenants a first right of refusal to purchase their buildings when they go up for sale, TOPA doesn’t apply when the building changes hands through a deed transfer from a decedent to a charity.

And as the Roman Catholic Church, the basilica “is not permitted to manage or own rental properties as a trade or business,” according to a letter that Kevin Kavanaugh, treasurer of basilica subsidiary BNSIC Title Holding Corporation, sent to 636 Girard Street NE resident Heather Benno this summer. Kavanaugh is also the comptroller of the basilica.

LGBTQIA RIGHTS‘Proud And Relieved’: Matthew Shepard’s Remains To Be Interred At National Cathedral (NPR, 10/11)

PHILANTHROPY | The Chronicle of Philanthropy explores why immigrant philanthropists are often overlooked. (Chronicle, 10/2)

PUBLIC SAFETY | Hurricane Michael is gone, but it left five deaths in Virginia. (WaPo, 10/12)

HOMELESSNESS | As the city continues the demolition of DC General, thirty-four families still remain at the shelter. (DCist, 10/11)

RACIAL EQUITYOf Protest And Patriotism: A 1968 Gold Medalist Remembers The Games (NPR, 10/12)

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Another quiz for Disney fans – this time with song lyrics.

– Kendra