DOD’s program for supporting communities coping with the cancellation of a defense contract or a major reduction in defense spending would not be eliminated under the conference report for the fiscal 2016 defense authorization bill released Tuesday.The Senate version of the measure called for stripping out $33.1 million from DOD’s $110.6 million FY 2016 budget request for the Office of Economic Adjustment (OEA) that would fund the agency’s defense industry adjustment program. The House version of the authorization bill, however, left the $110.6 million request for OEA intact, requiring House and Senate conferees to resolve the dispute.The Senate Armed Services Committee had recommended slashing OEA funding by a total of $53.1 million, as it also had called for stripping out $20.0 million from the agency’s request for civilian water and wastewater infrastructure improvements needed on Guam to accommodate an influx of Marines. Ultimately, conferees left OEA’s $110.6 million request intact, retaining the funding for the defense industry adjustment program and for civilian water and wastewater infrastructure improvements on Guam.An attempt on the House side to augment OEA funding to benefit defense communities still coping with mission growth stemming from BRAC 2005 was overturned in House-Senate negotiations. Conferees stripped out an amendment added to the House version that would have authorized an additional $25 million for transportation infrastructure improvements in mission growth communities.That amendment, sponsored by Democratic Reps. Denny Heck (Wash.) and Don Beyer (Va.), would have allowed OEA to award grants through a competitive process for transportation upgrades “associated with congestion mitigation in urban areas” related to the last BRAC round.“The Defense Access Road program provides such funds around military installations where warranted,” the conferees wrote in the joint explanatory statement accompanying the conference report. The text of the conference report and a summary are available on the House Armed Services Committee website. Dan Cohen AUTHOR
Now playing: Watch this: 2020 Hyundai Palisade review: Posh enough to make Genesis jealous Honda E Prototype is a too-cute EV for Europe Honda 1:54 Post a comment 0 Review • 2019 Honda Insight review: Third time’s a charm Preview • 2019 Honda Insight: The 55-mpg Civic Honda’s adorable E Prototype looks ready to hit the road More From Roadshow 35 Photos Electric Cars Future Cars Hatchbacks Share your voice Enlarge ImageIt’s nice to see the E in something other than white paint, for a change. Honda The Honda E electric hatchback looks awfully promising, even though it’s not coming to the US. The automaker hasn’t exactly been forthright with specifications thus far, but on the eve of its Goodwood Festival of Speed debut, we finally have an idea of how much power the darn thing makes.Honda on Tuesday unveiled a few more tidbits of information about the E. Its single electric motor on the rear axle produces about 148 horsepower and torque “in excess of” 221 pound-feet of torque. Given its diminutive dimensions and 50/50 weight distribution, that means it should rock just about any autocross course it comes across. The automaker also said that, because the rear wheels deliver the power, it was able to add extra steering articulation on the front axle. Its turning diameter is pretty small as a result, requiring a little over 28 feet to complete a full circle. Its four-corner McPherson strut layout means it should be both comfortable yet solid.Honda also said that the E will sport a one-pedal driving mode. Single Pedal Control, as Honda calls it, will allow the vehicle to accelerate and decelerate with just a single pedal, using regenerative braking to slow the vehicle, presumably to a stop. It’s unclear if this will be a default mode, or if it will require a button press to activate. Other EVs have similar systems that can be bypassed if a driver prefers it.Preorders for the Honda E are already open in Europe. It will sport standard camera side mirrors, further distancing it from the US market, where such tech remains illegal. We’ll get a good look at it this week at the Goodwood Festival of Speed, where we hope it will take a run up the famed hill climb course. Honda More about 2019 Honda Insight 2020 BMW M340i review: A dash of M makes everything better Tags 2020 Kia Telluride review: Kia’s new SUV has big style and bigger value
Enrollment among students in the District of Columbia’s public and public charter schools spiked for the eighth consecutive year to 90,061 students for the 2016-17 academic year. Officials primarily attribute this increase to robust growth in the city’s charter schools.Public Schools in D.C. have experienced an enrollment hike for the eighth year. (Courtesy image/logo)Audited numbers for the 2016-17 school year released by the Office of the State Superintendent of Education March 7, show enrollment in the District’s public charter schools shot up to 41,506 students, a gain of 2,601 students from the previous year.Charter school growth was acutely felt in the fourth and ninth grades, Tomeika Bowden, director of communications for the Public Charter School Board told the AFRO. Both Bridges Public Charter School (PCS) and KIPP DC Spring Academy PCS added a fourth grade this school year, while Washington Leadership Academy and Goodwill Center PCS opened and added freshmen.That meant fourth grade growth increased by 11.2 percent, while ninth grade saw 11.1 percent gains. Data from the District of Columbia Charter School Board shows 75.7 percent of its charter school students are Black and nearly 78 percent are low income.Meanwhile, enrollment in traditional D.C. public schools gained 116 students, for a total of 48,555 students for the 2016-17 school year, per the data.In response to the growth, District of Columbia Public Schools will add additional grades to MacFarland Middle School and Ron Brown College Prep High School next year, Janae Hinson, deputy press secretary for DCPS told the AFRO. In past few years, DCPS responded to the demand by adding about a half-dozen schools, she noted. “One of DCPS’ top priorities is ensuring that students have an opportunity to attend a great school that they love,” Hinson said via email. “Our student satisfaction rate is 82 percent because of the incredible learning opportunities we provide.”Public school enrollment numbers are up nearly 3 percent from the previous school year, with the charter and traditional public school systems adding a total of 2,717 new students. The school system’s enrollment reached a high of roughly 146,000 students in 1967, before dropping precipitously over the next decades, according to The Washington Post.School officials said the continued upward swing proves the city’s investment in improving public education has paid off, and families recognize it as a new day for public education in the District.“The District is becoming an attractive place to live and people from across the country are moving here and sometimes they start families and they begin looking for educational options,” Fred Lewis, a spokesman for the Office of the State Superintendent of Education, told the AFRO. “And through the diligent work of both the school sectors — the DCPS and the public charter schools — they are seeing that the quality of education is improving, they want to be part of that movement and they also want to become involved.”David Pickens, executive director of D.C. School Reform Now, told the AFRO that multipronged levers have fueled the growth in both systems over the years. For one, the D.C. Public Charter School Board has added schools with existing track records of success and jettisoned those that are low performing, Pickens said. Existing charter schools also offer students a wealth of educational options and choice, which generates excitement as well.Moreover, the District’s streamlined application process that lets students apply online to 12 schools in one swoop has helped bring more kids to public and charter schools, he said. “The city’s done a very good job in just instilling confidence in the public sector,” Pickens said.