Category Archives: Reports

New Report: How Marriott’s Corporate Practices Fuel Growing Racial Inequality in America

New Report: Amy Traub & Julia Gunn, How Marriott’s Corporate Practices Fuel Growing Racial Inequality in America (Demos 2018).

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New Report: Balancing Priorities: Preservation and Neighborhood Opportunity in the Low-Income Housing Tax Credit Program Beyond Year 30

Balancing-Priorities_255New Report: National Low Income Housing Coalition, Balancing Priorities: Preservation and Neighborhood Opportunity in the Low-Income Housing Tax Credit Program Beyond Year 30 (2018) [the page has both an interactive and a standard PDF version].

New Report: The Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC): A Brief Legislative History

New Report: Margot L. Crandall-Hollick, Congressional Research Services, The Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC): A Brief Legislative History (2018).

New Report: Homeless Exclusion Districts: How California Business Improvement Districts Use Policy Advocacy and Policing Practices to Exclude Homeless People from Public Space

New Report: Berkeley Law Policy Advocacy Clinic (Jeffrey Selbin, Stephanie Campos-Bui, Joshua Epstein, Laura Lim, Shelby Nacino, Paula Wilhlem & Hannah Stommel), Homeless Exclusion Districts: How California Business Improvement Districts Use Policy Advocacy and Policing Practices to Exclude Homeless People from Public Space (2018). Abstract below:

Business improvement districts (“BIDs”) are private entities funded by local property assessments that play an increasingly large role in managing public space in California cities. First authorized by state law in the 1960s to help revitalize struggling urban areas, BIDs have grown considerably in number and influence, especially since 1994 when the State Legislature reduced public oversight of BIDs and expanded their assessment and spending authority. Today, approximately 200 California BIDs collect hundreds of millions of dollars annually in compulsory property assessment revenue, which they spend on a wide range of activities. Researchers and policymakers have paid little attention to the rise of BIDs and their growing influence on municipal and state affairs. BIDs typically are located in downtown areas where businesses are concentrated. These same areas, especially in California, often have a high concentration of homeless people, including many people who are unsheltered. The interests and activities of BIDs and homeless people intersect and conflict in several important ways, including in the areas of public policy, policing practices, and social services. In this report, we share research findings about the relationship between California BIDs and homelessness. We conducted a literature review, studied municipal laws that target or disproportionately impact homeless people, researched the legal framework authorizing BIDs, and surveyed BIDs in California’s 69 largest cities. To help interpret the data from these sources, we conducted in-depth case studies of eleven BIDs in the cities of Berkeley, Chico, Los Angeles, Oakland, Sacramento, San Diego, and San Francisco, including analysis of public records, interviews with BID officials, and surveys and interviews of homeless people. Our key finding is that BIDs exclude homeless people from public spaces in their districts through policy advocacy and policing practices. BID involvement in social services is experienced by homeless people as an additional form of policing, surveillance, and harassment. Our findings raise several legal concerns. When BIDs spend property assessment revenue on local and statewide policy advocacy, they may violate California law. BID spending on policy advocacy with revenue from assessments of publicly owned properties raises special statutory and constitutional concerns. Further, BID policing practices may violate the legal rights of people experiencing homelessness and expose BIDs to criminal liability. The findings and legal concerns inform several key recommendations, spelled out in more detail in the report. First, the State Legislature should amend state laws that grant BIDs broad authority to collect and spend property assessment revenue and to operate largely independent of government oversight. Second, city governments should provide more careful scrutiny and regulation of BID activities within their jurisdictions. Finally, BIDs should assume greater accountability to all district residents and visitors.

News Coverage of Poverty: One of Obamacare’s big experiments to lower costs is working surprisingly well

News Coverage of the ACA: One of Obamacare’s big experiments to lower costs is working surprisingly well, Vox.com, Sept. 4, 2018.

“[I]t’s easy for hospitals to figure out how to do one procedure more cost-effectively. Figuring out how to treat an entire patient more cheaply is much harder.”

 

News Coverage of Poverty: Teacher pay drops 5% in last decade – despite better qualified staff

News Coverage: Erin Durkin, Teacher pay drops 5% in last decade – despite better qualified staff, TheGuardian.com, Sept. 5, 2018.

From the archives: The past year of research has made it very clear: Trump won because of racial resentment

From the archives: German Lopez, The past year of research has made it very clear: Trump won because of racial resentment, Vox.com, Dec. 15, 2017.

New Report: Examining Extreme and Deep Poverty in the United States

New Report: Jamie Hall & Robert Rector, Examining Extreme and Deep Poverty in the United States, Heritage.org, February 20, 2018.

New Report: Women’s Student Debt Crisis in the United States

New Report: Women’s Student Debt Crisis in the United States, American Association of University Women, Updated May 2018.

New Report: Out of Reach: The High Cost of Housing

NLIHC

New Report: National Low Income Housing Coalition, Out of Reach: The High Cost of Housing, 2018.

This is the newest annual edition of NLIHC’s report, a vital piece advancing understanding of the affordable housing crisis across the nation.