Energy Department IG Pushes for Cost-Saving Moves at National Labs
Global Security Newswire
March 28, 2013
Energy Department's top auditor this month said the Obama
administration should look to shrink, close or take other steps to
reduce costs at the 16 DOE national laboratories, the Center for Public
Integrity reported on Wednesday.
No particular facility became a
target for potential shutdown in the advice issued by DOE Inspector
General Gregory Friedman. The national laboratories include the
country's three nuclear-weapon research sites: the Los Alamos and Sandia
national laboratories in New Mexico and the Lawrence Livermore National
Laboratory in California.
The 16 facilities together cost $10
billion each year and employ 110,000 people, Friedman told the House
Science Oversight Subcommittee as it mulled federal funding reductions
mandated by the 2011 Budget Control Act. “The operative question going
forward from our perspective may well be, what can the department afford
in this environment?” he asked.
Friedman initially pushed for cost-cutting steps at the national laboratories in 2011.
recommendation has not been adopted, and I must say that there are a
number of members of Congress who have said it was dead on arrival,” he
told lawmakers. “We thought it was the right thing to do and the time
has come for a re-evaluation, but it has not (been) received with a
great deal of acceptance.”
Friedman also suggested cutting
certain managerial positions at the National Nuclear Security
Administration, the semi-independent DOE branch responsible for
oversight of the U.S. nuclear weapons complex.
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