Briefly Noted: NREL Layoffs/Rehires
All's Well that Ends Well: As expected, the National Renewable Laboratory (NREL) in Golden, CO was forced to lay off 32 staffers in early February to help cover a $28 million budget shortfall occasioned by Congressionally mandated earmarks (Jan., Feb. 06). But a couple of weeks later, just before Pres. Bush visited NREL, the jobs were restored after Energy Secretary Samuel W. Bodman ordered $5 million transferred from other accounts to the Midwest Research Institute, NREL's operating contractor, specifically to pay for the laid-off staffers salaries, DoE said in a Feb. 22 release. "The programs at NREL are critically important to realizing the President's vision to diversify and strengthen our nation's energy mix," Bodman said.
Contacts: DoE, Craig Stevens (media), 202/586-4940; NREL, Public Affairs, 303/275-4090.