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    D.C. Promises To Restore Solar Energy Grants

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    By Sabri Ben-Achour

    D.C.'s Department of the Environment has promised to improve it's solar energy grant program, that's the program that subsidizes solar panel installation. The pledge comes after city lawmakers received an earful from frustrated residents at a council round table.

    The complaints streamed in for hours as homeowners from Georgetown to Capitol hill complained of delays and unresponsiveness. The Renewable Energy Incentive Program fell so far behind last year that it didn't spend $1.4 million out of the $2 million it had available.

    Interim Director of the Environment Department, Keith Anderson offered 20 minutes of testimony that answered few questions and did little to satisfy Council Members. He did pledge to develop a plan of action, hire two more people, and report back in two weeks.

    "And you can hold me accountable to make sure that this program is fixed and it works," says Anderson.

    Up until a few weeks ago, the program had been staffed by one person and a private contractor. That private contractor was let go a few weeks ago - program officials said it wasn't possible to extend the contract any further.

    NPR

    Ursula K. Le Guin Steers Her Craft Into A New Century

    The famed novelist says that at 85 she no longer has the energy to write another book, but she's just released a revised and updated edition of her manual for aspiring writers, Steering the Craft.
    NPR

    #NPRreads: Middle East Air Quality, Lead Poisoning, And Jell-O

    Around the newsroom and around the world, here's what we're reading this week.
    NPR

    Of The 900 Or So People Running For President, At Least 1 Of Them Is Nuts

    A small group of presidential hopefuls get most of the media attention, but there are a lot of unknown people who also want the top job and filed the necessary paperwork. One of them is Deez Nuts.
    NPR

    No More Standing By The Spigot: Messaging App Alerts Water Availability

    A startup in India — where an aging, ad hoc system limits water availability — is using text messages to let people know when their faucets should work, so they don't waste hours awaiting the deluge.

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