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Rep. Fattah Announces $400,000 Manufacturing Innovation Grant to Create Jobs in Philadelphia Area

WASHINGTON, Oct. 10, 2012 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- Congressman Chaka Fattah (D-PA), the senior Democratic Appropriator for the Department of Commerce and a Congressional leader for federal seed money in job-producing innovation, announced today that the Delaware Valley Industrial Resource Center (DVIRC) will receive $400,000 to advance innovation and create jobs in the transportation equipment field.

Fattah has been a fighter in Congress for resources for manufacturing innovation and technology support in Philadelphia and elsewhere, and has worked closely the DVIRC.

"The DVIRC has been an economic innovator and jump-starter for manufacturing in the Philadelphia area for almost a quarter century," Fattah said. "The Center knows how to put federal resources to best use creating jobs across our region. It is the perfect partner for these manufacturing programs I've been fighting for."     

"The Accelerator presents a great opportunity for us to work in a focused way on technology and innovation projects that will spur the business growth of advanced manufacturers. With a focus on transportation-related manufacturing, the economic development implications of this project will be far-reaching," said Joseph Houldin, DVIRC President and CEO. "On behalf of all the partners, we're obviously very pleased to have won this award for the region."

Fattah co-authored an op-ed with Philadelphia Mayor Michael Nutter in the Philadelphia Inquirer this summer that touted the Energy Efficient Buildings Hub at the Philadelphia Navy Yard, of which the DVIRC is a member. They said the "collaborative hub of scientists, researchers, and engineers has been working to promote energy efficiency and help America to adopt a more sustainable and competitive energy supply."

The Delaware Valley Industrial Resource Center will use the grant to strengthen and create jobs in the transportation equipment supply sector. The Advanced Manufacturing Jobs and Innovation Accelerator Challenge, which issued the grant as part of $20 million distributed to 10 public-private partnerships across the nation, partners the Commerce Department's Economic Development Administration (EDA) with the National Institute of Standards and Technology, the U.S. Department of Energy, the U.S. Department of Labor, the Small Business Administration and the National Science Foundation.

The Accelerator Challenge will help the Industrial Resource Center and other clusters to support local efforts to spur job creation. The clusters connect innovative small suppliers with large companies, linking research with the start-ups that can commercialize new ideas, and training workers with skills that firms need to capitalize on business opportunities. These public-private partnerships consist of small and large businesses, colleges, nonprofits, and other local stakeholders that "cluster" in a particular area.

Fattah is a leader in Congress to promote manufacturing, innovation and job creation. Twice in the past two years he has addressed the national Manufacturing for Growth convention on "The Federal Government's Role in Growing the Manufacturing Economy" and the challenges that manufacturers face.

Fattah is author of the American Discoveries American Jobs Act to spur innovation in American businesses. The bill, which is pending in the House, seeks to direct government purchases toward American developed and American-made goods. On the Appropriations Committee Fattah fought for programs including the Manufacturing Extension Partnership program which was budgeted to receive $128 million. It includes the National Innovation Marketplace to help expand the U.S. manufacturing base by connecting manufacturers, parts suppliers, purchasers and others.

Fattah is the senior Democrat on the House Appropriations Committee's Subcommittee on Commerce, Justice, Science and related agencies, which oversees spending by the Department of Commerce and the National Science Foundation. As a member of the Appropriations Committee he oversees all discretionary spending of the agencies involved in the innovation agenda.

SOURCE Office of Congressman Chaka Fattah