By Mike Dunn

PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — A local congressman says he’s optimistic that the US Senate will not derail funding for a Department of Energy research laboratory at the former Navy Yard in South Philadelphia.

A US Senate subcommittee chaired by Diane Feinstein of California is recommending that Congress eliminate a three-year-old research lab at the Navy Yard.   The panel’s report criticized what members say are the lab’s poor performance and failure to meet milestones.

But over in the House, Rep. Chaka Fattah (D-Pa.) says he and colleagues are battling to keep the project — dubbed the “Energy Efficient Buildings Hub” — from getting the axe.

“I think the senator is wrong to focus in on this particular hub as something that should be eliminated,” Fattah tells KYW Newsradio.  “Even though the Senate has every right to its views, many of us in the House support it, and we’re going to make sure it continues.”

The Department of Energy has other such hubs around the country, including ones in Feinstein’s home state.

The Navy Yard lab is aimed at creating a national strategy for making buildings more energy efficient (see related story), with buildings in Philadelphia and the suburbs serving as test sites.


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