U.S. Rep. Chuck Fleischmann said today he's hopeful the U.S. House can pass a bill this year that will fund restarting the replacement of Chickamauga Lock.

However, Fleischmann, R-TN, said it's vital that the new lock keep its place among the top projects in line for funding.

"The key is keeping the Chickamauga Lock in the priority system," he said at a Chattanooga Area Chamber of Commerce meeting.

Fleischmann said a Senate bill passed earlier this year is a step in the right direction. He said that by removing a Kentucky lock project that is currently taking up 90 percent of such funding along with others less than $100 million, there will be enough money to restart the new Chickamauga Lock.

Read more from our news partners at the Chattanooga Times Free Press.