Substantially increasing mobility from poverty means different things to different people. Some goals for reducing poverty and increasing mobility may sound ambitious but fall well within historical experience, while others may require levels of economic growth or redistribution that are beyond all precedent. This paper considers different ways to think about mobility from poverty, shows differences in poverty and mobility over

July 21, 2016
Brief
 

Property-Assessed Clean Energy (PACE) loans have been considered senior to the claim on the first mortgage. FHFA and FHA have had reservations about insuring or guaranteeing mortgages on homes with a PACE loan, which has limited PACE product use. On July 19, 2016, FHA and VA clarified how and when it would finance a home with a PACE loan: the lien must be subordinated but could travel with the property. This note explains why

July 20, 2016
Note
 

Under the Affordable Care Act (ACA), states can expand Medicaid eligibility for nonelderly adults up to 138 percent of the federal poverty level (FPL). As of May 2016, 19 states had not expanded Medicaid. We estimate that another 4.8 million uninsured people would gain Medicaid eligibility if the remaining states were to expand Medicaid. If all of the 19 remaining states were to expand Medicaid in 2017, we project that the

July 20, 2016
Brief
 

Data play an integral role in pay for success (PFS) projects. Knowing the kinds of data needed for a successful project, how to collect them, and how they should be used may seem straightforward. But the complexity of early childhood outcome measures and data systems can create challenges.

July 20, 2016
Brief
 

Setting and pricing outcomes are important steps of every pay for success (PFS) project because they allow partners to quantify the benefits of successful programs. This report describe the types of early childhood education (ECE) outcomes that might be used to establish repayments and offers guidance on how the partners in a PFS project might select an outcome, a measure, and a definition of success that is appropriate for the

July 20, 2016
Brief
 

To understand the US Interagency Council on Homelessness’s (USICH’s) role in the nation’s efforts to end homelessness and potential effects of the agency’s planned termination in 2017, we interviewed more than 40 federal and local stakeholders across the public, private, and nonprofit sectors. Tasked with coordinating the federal response to homelessness, USICH is perceived as uniquely positioned to help federal, state, and

July 18, 2016
Brief
 

Drawing from a wide range of data and sources, the Q2 2016 Detroit Housing Tracker monitors the latest developments in Detroit housing and community development. Updated quarterly, this publication has two sections. Detroit Housing Market Trends presents comprehensive market indicators, including sales prices and volumes, rental prices, household equity level, delinquencies and foreclosures, and general labor market conditions.

July 15, 2016
Brief
 

The federally facilitated health insurance marketplace is encouraging insurers to offer standardized benefit designs in 2017. In doing so, the FFM is following the path of several state based marketplaces (SBMs) that require insurers to offer standardized health plans. Through an analysis of policy guidance, marketplace websites, and interviews with key stakeholders, this paper explores the experiences of SBMs that have required

July 14, 2016
Research Report
 

This report measures the net and accessible housing wealth of Americans with owner-occupied homes using the latest consumer credit data supplemented with data from public property records and the American Community Survey’s Public Use Microdata Sample. This report calculates geographic differences and age patterns in household wealth and how much net housing wealth is accessible. Of the $11 trillion in net housing wealth, about

July 14, 2016
Research Report
 

Linda Blumberg testified before the House Oversight and Government Reform Subcommittee on Health Care, Benefits, and Administrative Rules during a hearing titled “From Premium Increases to Failing Co-ops: An Obamacare Checkup.” Blumberg discussed the successes to-date of the Affordable Care Act and identified two policy priorities to improve the law: increasing competition in nongroup insurance markets where it is lacking and

July 13, 2016
Testimony
 

Cities are engines of economic growth that provide spaces for social transformation and political inclusion. Their ability to deliver widely accessible and efficiently functioning public services drives productivity and sustains development. We design and apply an assessment framework to 42 cities in 14 African and Asian countries to better understand the functional, administrative, and political dimensions determining the

July 13, 2016
Research Report
 

In a March 2016 letter, Senators Jeb Hensarling and Richard Shelby expressed concern that changes contemplated by the Federal Housing Finance Agency and US Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) to their nonperforming loan sales programs would reduce private sector participation. This letter quoted a January 2016 report by Laurie Goodman and Dan Magder that proposes that private sector participation in the bulk note

July 11, 2016
Note
 

Eight years after Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac were placed into conservatorship, the conversation about their future is stuck. As we inch closer to electing a new president and to the start of a new Congress, it is time for an open-minded look at the housing finance system and what role, if any, today’s government-sponsored enterprises might play in the future. To help evaluate this critical issue, the Urban Institute’s Housing

July 11, 2016
Research Report
 

By 2003, the savings and asset-building field had achieved critical research and policy successes. However, there were few organizations of color in the field and few experts of color at decisionmaking tables. Over 11 years, the Ford Foundation developed a strategy to understand the knowledge and perspective of communities of color about saving and wealth building, and to include this perspective within the asset-building field

July 7, 2016
Journal Article
 

The number of rural hospital closures has increased significantly in recent years. This trend is expected to continue, raising questions about the impact the closures will have on access to health care services in rural communities. To investigate the factors that contribute to rural hospital closures and the impact of those closures on access to health care in rural communities, the Kaiser Commission on Medicaid and the

July 7, 2016
Research Report
 

C. Eugene Steuerle testified before the House Judiciary Committee’s Task Force on Executive Overreach during a hearing titled “The Federal Government on Autopilot: Mandatory Spending and the Entitlement Crisis.” Steuerle discussed the decline of “fiscal democracy” (i.e., the percentage of current revenues that is precommitted to programs that require no vote by Congress) over the past several decades because of automatic

July 6, 2016
Testimony
 

Under the Affordable Care Act, if one family member has an employer offer of single coverage deemed to be affordable—that is, costing less than 9.66 percent of family income in 2016—then all family members are ineligible for tax credits for Marketplace coverage, even if the cost of providing coverage to the whole family is greater than 9.66 percent of income. More than six million people live in such families and as a result are

July 6, 2016
Journal Article
 

Enrollment in early childhood education programs can be an important stepping stone to higher educational achievement. The Early Childhood Education Division in the DC Public Schools (DCPS) has identified school attendance patterns and absenteeism as areas in need of improvement for meeting school-readiness goals. This report examines the extent to which attendance patterns in DCPS’s Title I school–based Head Start programs

June 30, 2016
Research Report
 

This report finds that both federal and state income taxes are generally progressive but (1) state systems are much less progressive than the federal system and (2) the degree of progressivity varies widely among the states. Federal income taxes became more progressive following 2012 legislation that increased high-income tax rates. The higher federal tax rates also increased the subsidy provided by the federal deduction for

June 30, 2016
Research Report
 

Absenteeism in prekindergarten has been linked to absenteeism and lower academic achievement in later grades. Additionally, children from low-income families are more likely to be chronically absent from prekindergarten, exacerbating later achievement gaps. Despite increased recognition of the importance of prekindergarten, few districts focus on tracking and improving prekindergarten attendance.   Over the past four years

June 30, 2016
Research Report
 

Asset limits in means-tested programs are designed to target benefits to the neediest people, but they can discourage low-income households from saving and can increase program costs when participants leave and reenter the program (i.e., churn) for administrative reasons. Using Survey of Income and Program Participation data from 1997 to 2013, we find that relaxing Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) asset limits

June 29, 2016
Research Report
 

The sharing economy offers untapped potential to alleviate urban poverty by creating jobs and reducing costs for low-income families. Unfortunately, the sharing economy has not lived up to its potential, as cities leaders have chosen to double down on regulations and penalties. This essay argues that cities would be better served leveraging the sharing economy to create new opportunities for the urban poor, and are well

June 29, 2016
Brief
 

This analysis delineates the reasons why proposals to sell nongroup health insurance coverage across state lines, outside the consumer protections provided by the Affordable Care Act, cannot solve problems with the health care system. Like other policies that would increase segmentation of health care risks, such sales would reduce premiums for those who are healthy at a given time but would increase premiums and reduce access

June 29, 2016
Brief
 

This brief uses data from the National Health Interview Survey to explore trends in health insurance coverage for parents living with dependent children between 1997 and 2014. We provide estimates of uninsurance among custodial parents overall and by income. We also explore differences in health care access, service use, and health care affordability between insured parents and the remaining uninsured as of 2014, changes in the

June 27, 2016
Brief