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This BLOG is for LLNL present and past employees, friends of LLNL and anyone impacted by the privatization of the Lab to express their opinions and expose the waste, wrongdoing and any kind of injustice against employees and taxpayers by LLNS/DOE/NNSA. The opinions stated are personal opinions. Therefore, The BLOG author may or may not agree with them before making the decision to post them. Comments not conforming to BLOG rules are deleted. Blog authors serve as moderators. For new topics or suggestions, email jlscoob5@gmail.com

Monday, May 21, 2012

Restructuring of NNSA in the FY13 budget

Anonymously contributed: Looks like there will be a fight between the Republican controlled House and White House over the restructuring of NNSA in the FY13 budget. From the WH Statement late last week on H.R. 4310 – National Defense Authorization Act for FY 2013... "Department of Energy (DOE) and Contractor Management Relationships: The Administration strongly objects to elements of sections 1061 and 1062 and certain provisions of Title 31 that change the responsibilities, authorities, and reporting requirements between and among DOE, the National Nuclear Security Administration (NNSA), contractors managing and operating the national laboratories, the President, and the Congress. Some of these changes fundamentally alter the relationship between DOE and NNSA by restricting the authority of the Secretary of Energy and transferring responsibilities from DOE to NNSA. The bill also: (1) legislates the establishment of a council of the national laboratory contractors with the authority to make unrestricted recommendations to NNSA, which then mandate a response by NNSA; (2) takes authority for final approval of the NNSA budget submission away from the President; (3) requires NNSA to submit a cost-benefit analysis to the Congress before competing a management and operating contract, which would undermine a long-standing and bipartisan effort to increase competition in government contracting; and (4) authorizes unrestricted access for the contractors to report to the Congress on Administration activities. Health and Safety at DOE and NNSA: The Administration strongly opposes sections 3202, 3115, 3113, and 3151. These provisions severely hamper external, independent oversight by the Defense Nuclear Facilities Safety Board; move regulatory authority from independent offices and agencies to the NNSA Administrator; require a weaker standard of contractor governance, management, and oversight; and eliminate DOE's flexibility to determine the appropriate means of assessing the unique risks that it confronts in its facilities. By lowering safety standards for the nuclear weapons complex and reducing requested funding for health, safety, and security, these provisions would weaken protections for workers and the general public. NNSA Staffing: Section 3111 would direct the Administration to make large reductions within the NNSA in its number of Federal employees. The NNSA is undertaking major, complex efforts to move to a more efficient and effective management of the nuclear security complex while maintaining the safety, security, and effectiveness of our nuclear arsenal. The Administration believes that the NNSA is best positioned to prescribe the proper level of staffing to fulfill those missions effectively within the budget appropriated by the Congress."

22 comments:

Anonymous said...

Interesting for WH to comment about a proposed Congressional action before it makes it through the process. Back in the Cold War, the Labs acted as partners with the Feds, and you could see one of the former Directors active in leadership of the enterprise on a national scale. It is hard to see the current situation for a contractor to be actively involved in making decisions that are reserved by law for the government.

Story also came out this week in Chronicle of Higher Education about the salary of public university presidents. Except for Gee at Ohio State, no current salary is over 850K. A couple made more as parting gifts in their final year of a long term deal, and Gee has been at the job for over 30 years. Why does this matter in regards to NNSA and Congress? Recall the recent press release that first year Lab Directors are not over paid at more than 1M per year, but are kinda, sorta like a university president?

Can't have it both ways. Either you are a contractor, and make a contractor's large salary. Or, you are a trusted advisor to the government on complex technical issues and actively involved in making decisions that are reserved in law for the government. To continue to maintain both makes for a losing case.

Anonymous said...

No lab director makes anything close to $800k. Press reports typically include present values of future pensions, which is not relevant to the current LLNL director, and overstates by x2 at least the LANL director compensation. The mythology that senior lab management makes huge salaries is simply false.

Anonymous said...

"a year" !!!!!


Director Makes $1M *** ----------------------------- By ABQ Journal Staff on Thu, Apr 19, 2012 The director of Los Alamos National Laboratory now makes more than $1 million a year — about three times what the position paid before the lab’s management was privatized in 2006. LANL director Charles McMillan’s compensation was $1,081,059 in 2011. The amount, which apparently includes health insurance, pension costs and other benefits, is public because the lab has to provide what’s paid to top officials as a condition of accepting money under the federal stimulus program. That’s up from the $800,348 for McMillan’s predecessor Michael Anastasio in 2009, the federal reports show. The Nuclear Watch New Mexico group called attention to the latest salary figures Wednesday. “We specifically call upon Los Alamos lab to fully explain to northern New Mexicans why it needs to cut some 600 jobs while at the same time the for-profit management corporation is enjoying record profits and the director’s salary has nearly tripled in six years,” said Nuclear Watch director Jay Coghlan. The lab, citing flat or reduced budgets, recently cut its payroll by about 560 jobs with a voluntary buyout plan. LANL’s budget is about $2.2 billion this year, about $300 million less than the previous year. Coghlan’s press release noted that in 2005 — when the lab was still operated as nonprofit entity by the University of California — the director’s job paid $348,000. In 2006, the lab’s management contract was awarded to the for-profit Los Alamos National Security LLC, a consortium that includes the university, Bechtel Corp. and other companies. The federal reports still show Sandia National Laboratories, run by Lockheed Martin, paying its director $1.7 million, the same as in 2009. But it’s possible the compensation rate may actually be different now. Paul Hommert replaced Tom Hunter in 2010, but the online stimulus money reports continue to list Hunter as the top executive making $1.7 million. No comment was available from LANL officials Wednesday. A Los Alamos lab spokesman said in 2009, when the stimulus money reports first showed the lab directors’ salaries, that not all of their compensation comes directly from taxpayer money, with a portion coming from the private corporations that manage the labs. -- www.abqjournal.com/main/2012/04/19/north/ lanl-director-makes-1m.html

Anonymous said...

The beauty of this discussion is that we (the public) will never know the actual salary of the Laboratory Directors because it is now proprietary information under the veil of the Limited Liability Corporation (LLC). Some limited and probably "disguised" information was released as a result of accepting "stimulus money". This was an outcome of forming the LLCs and Becthel and crew and "milking" it for everything it's worth!!

Anonymous said...

You seem to forget that the day job of McMillan and Parney is the Presidency of LANS, LLC and LLNL,LLC respectively. That is where their big (undisclosed) salary comes from. Also being the Director of a national laboratory is just a sideline for these guys.

Anonymous said...

Neither lab director gets any supplementary salary because of their llc positions. And the quote on McMillan says it all---it includes health, pension costs, etc. I suspect that a look at his paycheck would show salary at less than half the $1M

Anonymous said...

Good grief
I could care less if McMillan makes 1M$ or .8M$ That is really not the point here. What I find much more problematic is that the NAS came out with a report that NNSA and the Labs have a dysfunctional relationship and that most of the blame should go to NNSA (I agree only partially with that; the LLCs are as much of a problem). And congress wants to ive NNSA and the LLC's even more power. That is the real problem.
Not the level of the salaries. Once we have real oversight and openess again, also the salaries will be on the table, and people can have an educated discussion if they are right, too high or too low.

Anonymous said...

Once we have real oversight and openess again, also the salaries will be on the table...

May 24, 2012 5:14 AM

Get real. That will not happen with private, for-profit contractors. And we won't be going back to UC.

Anonymous said...

May 24, 2012 10:51 AM:
Get real. That will not happen....


Did I say in my statement that this is going to happen? Don't put words in my mouth or better keyboard just because you are frustrated. How about just discussing the points?

Anonymous said...

Need a change. Romney

Anonymous said...

"Neither lab director gets any supplementary salary because of their llc positions."

May 23, 2012 8:43 PM

What a deceptive comment, probably from Charlie or Parney. Of course they are compensated for their positions as president of the LLC. You'll never be able to find out how much because of secrecy of LLCs.

Anonymous said...

Did I say in my statement that this is going to happen? Don't put words in my mouth or better keyboard just because you are frustrated. How about just discussing the points?

May 24, 2012 5:41 PM

A little thin-skinned, huh? If you start from a basis of reality, there might be something to discuss. Wishful thinking is part of what got us where we are.

Anonymous said...

You'll never be able to find out how much because of secrecy of LLCs.

May 24, 2012 8:06 PM

Actually, it's called "privacy."

Anonymous said...

Thanks for the clarification, Charlie. And then, what were your other two points?

Anonymous said...

It's called piracy.

Anonymous said...

It's called piracy.

May 26, 2012 3:17 PM

It's the LLNL blog - it's called "idiocy."

Anonymous said...

It's the LLNL blog - it's called "idiocy."

May 26, 2012 9:59 PM

This isn't the LLNL blog it's the LANL blog. It's the only thing LANL owns after LLNL took over LANL.

Anonymous said...

Is it time for another official report to be done and then quickly forgotten about the decline of the NNSA labs?

It must be by now.

Anonymous said...

Here is our report: We find that both LANL and LLNL are clearly in decline as shown by the quality of postings on this blog. Therefore, we recommend that both of these travesties be shut down ASAP, and the annual certification letters be faked (as they have been for years). We also recommend that all employees be given 39 weeks of severance and told not to let the door hit them in the ass. (If the taxpayers can afford missions to asteriods, they can afford this). Signed, the Panel (solar not)

Anonymous said...

Some people apparently think that exploration of the universe outside Earth is less important than maintaining weapons that can destroy all life on Earth. Go figure.

Anonymous said...

I think here n=1.

Anonymous said...

I think N=6.02x10^23. We are talking about Avogadro's Number, right?

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