After firing the previous operator, Department of Energy managers today announced a new contractor to run Brookhaven National Laboratory in Upton, New York The State University of New York, Stony Brook and Battelle Memorial Research Institute will begin jointly operating the $400-million-a-year facility in January, having beaten out the only other team in the competition, ITT Research Institute of Chicago.
Energy Secretary Federico Peña said in a statement that the Stony Brook team will help Brookhaven to be both a major research facility and a good neighbor. Peña fired Associated Universities Inc.--which ran the lab for 50 years--in May after a series of environmental problems angered local residents. "We surely cannot operate a public facility without public support," said John Marburger, a former Stony Brook president and the new lab director in a press conference. He pledged to heal the rifts between Brookhaven workers and local residents: "Our first job is to establish contact with the community."