DC Mayor Bowser sets a goal of building 36,000 new housing units by 2025

HOUSING
– At the start of her second term in office, DC’s Mayor Muriel Bowser wants to increase the production of new housing in order to meet the pressing need for housing affordability in the District. (WAMU, 1/8)

“Bowser has even set a goal for D.C.: 36,000 new housing units by 2025, the city’s portion of the estimated 235,000 housing units the Washington region will have to produce in that period to keep up with job growth. Currently, the region is expected to produce 170,000 housing units over the next six years. Housing analysts say the mayor’s goal is enthusiastic, though achievable.”

WRAG’s Vice President, Gretchen Greiner-Lott, had this to say regarding the Mayor’s announcement:

“Housing affordability is an ever-growing issue throughout our region so it is exciting to see Mayor Bowser acknowledge the issue and pledge to make it her number one priority. As she says, we all have to “think big and differently” about how to produce more housing. The Housing Leaders Group of Greater Washington’s Guidebook for Increasing Housing Affordability in the Greater Washington Region would be a great place to start.”

Alexandria lost 90% of its affordable homes in the past few decades. Is it really ‘radical’ to build more? (GGWash, 1/8)

ENVIRONMENT | In a new report, scientists say the health of the Chesapeake Bay deteriorated in 2018 after years of improvement. (WaPo, 1/8)

EQUITY/DISABILITY RIGHTS | Jennifer Laszlo Mizrahi, head of RespectAbility and the Mizrahi Family Charitable Trust, is powerfully pushing for philanthropy to focus on equality for people with disabilities. (Chronicle, 1/8)

EDUCATION | Schools tackle anxiety over food and fees as shutdown shows no sign of ending (WaPo, 1/8)

TRANSPORTATION | Lyft is offering low-cost rides to grocery stores in Wards 7 and 8. What’s a sustainable solution? (GGW, 1/7)

COMMUNITY | We were saddened to learn last month of the passing of Vicki Sant, a longtime philanthropic leader in the Greater Washington region, and the founder, along with her husband Roger Sant, of the Summit Foundation, as well as the Summit Fund. A memorial service will be held on January 16 at the Kennedy Center. Details can be found here.

NONPROFITS | The application for the 2019-2020 Catalogue for Philanthropy is now open. Click here for details.


We are on day 19 of the government shutdown – from museum visits to tours, here’s some things you can still do.

– Buffy

Bread for the City plans to open a new, larger facility in Anacostia

POVERTY/NONPROFITS | Citing an increased need for food, medical care and social services, Bread for the City is preparing to expand its operation in DC. Set to open in 2020, the new Anacostia location will serve at least 2,000 additional people monthly. (WaPo, 1/6)

George Jones, the organization’s chief executive, said the need is, in part, fueled by gentrification that has intensified the gap between wealthy and poor residents. A recent report by the D.C. Chamber of Commerce highlighted the chasm. Since 2009, it says, the city has lost more than 4,000 families with yearly incomes below $35,000, while gaining more than 10,000 families with incomes above $200,000 over the same span.

PHILANTHROPY | In her first column of 2019, WRAG’s president Tamara Lucas Copeland shares her thoughts on three important trends in philanthropy that she believes will impact the region this year. (Daily, 1/7)

HOUSING/HOMELESSNESS | Check out the Miriam’s Kitchen “Change Agent of the Month” interview with Katy Moore, Managing Director, Corporate Strategy at WRAG and Founder and Director of the Institute of Corporate Social Responsibility. She is also a member of the Leadership Council at Miriam’s Kitchen. (What’s the Dish Corporate Social Impact eNewsletter, 12/18)

CRIMINAL JUSTICE REFORM | The city of Alexandria joins the national trend of limiting the use of cash bail in misdemeanor, low-risk, nonviolent cases. (WaPo, 1/6)

EDUCATION | D.C. Council prepares for rigorous confirmation hearing on pick for schools chancellor (WaPo, 1/6)

FOOD | New Ward 8 Grocery Store Breaks Ground — And Barriers — To Fresh Food. (WAMU, 1/13)

CORPORATE SOCIAL RESPONSIBILITY | Interesting piece by Tim McClimon, head faculty member of the Institute for CSR, highlighting Five CSR Trends to Watch in 2019. (Forbes, 1/19)

GRANTS | The Jack & Jill of America Foundation is recruiting grant reviewers experienced in the areas of education, health/wellness, and strengthening black families. Details here.


It’s great to be back as Editor of the (Almost) Daily WRAG on a modified schedule for the next few months! This week we will publish on Monday, Wednesday, and Friday.

I’m looking forward to sharing important news, helpful resources, and interesting pieces, including this list of New Years resolutions for movie lovers.

– Buffy

Unemployment benefits increase in D.C.

EMPLOYMENT | For the first time in almost 10 years, D.C. residents are eligible for an unemployment benefits increase as of October 1.

District residents are now eligible for up to $425 in weekly unemployment insurance benefits, or $1,700 a month, for up to half a year if they lose employment due to layoffs or other factors outside their control. Although the change is under a hundred dollars more than the $359 currently allowed each week, it’s the first time D.C.’s unemployment insurance benefits have risen in roughly a decade. The increase also brings the District in line with Maryland’s and Virginia’s programs for unemployment insurance, which provide weekly maximums of $430 and $378, respectively.

As of August, approximately 6 percent of residents were unemployed. The District is also moving toward a $15-an-hour minimum wage by 2020 and is considering one of the most robust paid leave benefits in the country. (City Paper, 10/3)

RACIAL EQUITY | President of the Meyer Foundation and WRAG Board Member Nicky Goren discusses the role of the funding community as allies in moving racial equity forward and building a more equitable Washington region together.

PHILANTHROPY | Association of Black Foundation Executives leader Susan Taylor Batten helps grantmakers understand and address systemic racism, and is one of a number of leaders who want to expand the definition of philanthropy. (Chronicle, 10/4)

Related: Leader Seeks to Break Crisis-Response Pattern After Shootings by Police (Chronicle, 10/4) [Subscription Required]

Also Related: ABFE’s Susan Taylor Batten and Marcus Walton are leading two trainings on grantmaking for racial equity later this month, as part of WRAG’s ongoing Putting Racism on the Table learning and training series. These trainings are open to all grantmakers. More information can be found here and here.

EDUCATIONPr. George’s Co. council member says she wouldn’t put her kids in Head Start program (WTOP, 10/3)

HEALTH | In a county with high rates of diabetes, obesity and other chronic diseases, a new bill is up for debate that will focus on healthy food options in Prince George’s vending machines. (WaPo, 9/27)

HOUSINGLegal Fight Over Brookland Manor Redevelopment Intensifies (City Paper, 10/3)


Robots delivering our food? I think I’m game! – Buffy

D.C. looks to expand some schools to include health clinics and adult-ed classes…J.W. Marriott Jr. announces retirement…Giving teens a place in our community [News, 12.14.11]

EDUCATION/HEALTH | The D.C. Council is introducing legislation that would provide funding to transform at least five at-risk public schools into “community schools.” In addition to regular school operations, these locations would offer adult-education classes and health clinics in the evenings and on weekends. (Examiner, 12/14)

HOMELESSNESS | Little known about D.C.’s young homeless, except that numbers are growing (WaPo, 12/14) “The number of young homeless rose in Virginia and Maryland as well.”

GIVING | The Foundation Center has published a new study on foundation funding for Hispanics and Latinos over the last decade. (Foundation Center, 12/14)

PEOPLE | After 39 years, Marriott CEO J.W. Marriott Jr. has announced his retirement. In addition to building a hotel brand that employs 15,000 locally and is regarded as being “critical to seeding the region’s strength in hospitality,” Marriott and his family donate millions annually to philanthropic causes. He currently serves on the board of the J. Willard and Alice S. Marriott Foundation. (WaPo, 12/14)

YOUTH | Judith Sandalow, executive director at the Children’s Law Center, writes about Giving Teens a Place in Our Community. (HuffPo, 12/14)

LOCAL | Microsoft is considering opening a research and development center at the District’s St. Elizabeth’s Hospital campus. (Examiner, 12/14)

BUDGETS | Montgomery County Budget Outlook Mixed (WAMU, 12/14) The headline is misleading – “mixed” is actually a good thing, considering how things have been in the past few years.

FACTOID | Today marks the last Philanthropy Factoid Wednesday! We started the series to celebrate the 100th anniversary of organized philanthropy in America, and we are rounding the year out with a compilation of all of our factoids. (WG Daily, 12/14)

BONE TO PICK | The Post has a feature about Showtime’s David Nevins and how he works to “get his native D.C. right” on his shows, like the currently airing (and really entertaining) Homeland. Except in a recent episode of that show, a key scene unfolded at “Farragut Square” – and it looked like an office park in Herndon, not at all like a spot in the District, let alone the real place! (WaPo, 12/14)


I have a second bone to pick! It has been at least, uh, 24 hours since I last complained about Metro. Here is a screenshot of Metro’s NextBus application. After waiting ten minutes for the 8:34am (rush hour!) bus which never came, I decided to check and see what the deal was. The next bus wasn’t for 19 more minutes, followed by 20 and 23 minutes. All three arrived at the same time and played hop-scotch along the exact same route.