Banner
ABOUT THE DISTRICT OF COLUMBIA   

For information relevant to the purchase of a specific series of District of Columbia bonds, please review the preliminary official statement and/or final official statement, as applicable, for such series of bonds.

The District of Columbia (the "District") was created in 1791 by act of the United States Congress (the “Congress”) and Presidential proclamation and has served as the capital of the United States of America since 1800. Under Article I, Section 8 of the United States Constitution, Congress has exclusive legislative authority over the District as the Nation’s Capital. Since January 2, 1975, the District has been governed in accordance with the District of Columbia Home Rule Act, Pub. L. 93-198, an Act of Congress signed by the President on December 24, 1973, as amended (the “Home Rule Act”). Under the Home Rule Act, the District is governed by an elected Mayor and an elected Council. With limited exceptions, including the payment of the principal of and interest on bonds, the District may not obligate or expend funds absent annual Congressional appropriation.

The District is a unique governmental entity, combining state, county, and municipal characteristics. Functions performed by the District government include public safety (police, fire, corrections), consumer and business regulatory affairs, public works (highways, streets and traffic control, and sanitation), human services (health, welfare, and employment assistance), community services (recreation and libraries), economic development (planning, zoning, urban renewal, and housing), public education, and general administration. The District and its instrumentalities also operate a university, a stadium and armory complex, a convention center, a water and sewer system, and a lottery.

Although the District is primarily known as the Nation’s Capital, it is also an international city, a cultural center, and the central city of the Washington metropolitan area, which encompasses 20 jurisdictions in Maryland, Virginia and West Virginia and is the sixth largest metropolitan area in the United States. The District covers approximately 61 square miles (land) and had approximately 672,228 residents as of July 1, 2015, according to the U.S. Census Bureau estimates.

As the Nation’s Capital, the District is the seat of the three branches of the federal government and headquarters for most federal departments and agencies. In addition, the District is host to nearly 200 foreign embassies and other recognized diplomatic missions. A number of international organizations, such as the International Monetary Fund, the World Bank, the World Health Organization, and the Organization of American States, have their headquarters in the District.

A copy of the District's most recent comprehensive Annual Financial Report is available here.

Top 10 Private Sector Employers in the District(1)(2)

(2015)
Employment in the District of Columbia by Industry

(Annual Average Data) (1)(2)(3)(4)
Employer Rank(3)   Industry Calendar Year 2015
Georgetown University 1   Federal Government
198,100
George Washington University 2   District Government
35,300
Children’s National Medical Center 3   Public Transportation
4,600
American University 4   Trade, Trans. & Utilities
32,200
Fannie Mae 5   Financial Activities
30,300
Catholic University of America 6   Professional & Business Services
161,600
Booz Allen & Hamilton Inc. 7   Other Private
299,700
Red Coats 8     Total Service-Providing
751,100
Allied Barton Security Services LLC 9     Total Goods-Producing
15,400
George Washington University Hospital 10     Total Non-Farm
766,400
-------------------------------------------------
(1) This data is produced through the Quarterly Covered Employment and Wage Program, a Bureau of Labor Statistics federal/state cooperative statistical program. Release of data under this program is subject to the Confidential Information Protection and Statistical Efficiency Act of 2002. The District cannot release company specific employment information without the written consent of each of the companies that are included in the release of such data. As a result, only rank information for the top ten principal employers is presented.

(2) Table 42 does not include the federal and local government as employers. With the exception of Fannie Mae, Booz Allen & Hamilton Inc., Red Coats and Allied Barton Security Services LLC, all of the employers listed above are not-for-profit entities.

(3) Ranked by size of workforce.

Source: District’s CAFR for Fiscal Year 2015, Statistical Section, Exhibit S-4B.
  -----------------------------------------------------------------
(1) Reflects place of employment, not place of residence.

(2) Not seasonally adjusted. Data may not equal totals due to independent rounding. Industry classification is based on the North American Industry Classification System (“NAICS”).

(3) Data includes all full-time and part-time employees who received pay for any part of the pay period that includes the 12th of the month.

(4) Proprietors, self-employed individuals, unpaid family and volunteer workers, military personnel, internationally stationed workers, and private household workers are excluded.

Source: U.S. Department of Labor, Bureau of Labor Statistics.
     
Demographic Statistics
 
Population Estimates (1)
Median Age
Per Capita Personal Income
Year
D.C
D.C
D.C
U.S.
Ratio of D.C. to U.S.
2011
619,020
33.4
$67,359
$42,453
158.7%
2012
632,323
33.7
$68,973
$44,266
155.8%
2013
646,449
33.8
$68,606
$44,438
154.4%
2014
658,893
33.8
$69,838
$46,049
151.7%
2015
672,228
N/A
$71,496
$47,669
150.0%

-------------------------------------------------
(1) Based on unadjusted estimates in each respective year.
Sources: U.S. Department of Commerce, U.S. Census Bureau; U.S. Department of Commerce, Bureau of Economic Analysis; District’s CAFR for Fiscal Year 2015 at page 7, Chart T-1.