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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. Opinions not conforming to BLOG rules are deleted. Blog author serves as a moderator. For new topics or suggestions, email

Saturday, August 17, 2013

If the rumors of a FY14 RIF are true...

If the rumors of a FY14 RIF are true,

What about a no excuse - no exclusion (from bottom to AD level) "last hired first fired" policy?

Might be tough but if we didn't need you last month, you can't be that critical this month.

Not being a hater, but what's the fair way. Current criteria are too vague and open to manipulation.


Anonymous said...

I'm not seeing it. If you've just been hired (in a non support position...face it we're a dime a dozen) you probably have skills that the institution needs now.

If you want to reduce head count sweeten the buyout...or have an involuntary and let the attorneys feast on the inevitable mistakes that will be made during the process.

Anonymous said...

What is it, a union shop where skills and performance aren't important, just seniority? Sheesh. That's just a great way to entrench the retired-in-place and lazy, incompetent managers.

Get rid of the poorest performers in management first. They're the highest paid and are often paid out of the bloated overhead rates that tax programs, so each reduction there will make a bigger contribution to the needed reductions.

Then get rid of the poorest performing workers in order of highest paid to lower paid until reaching the target.

Then prepare for LLNL's funeral, because there won't be any morale left, or sufficient workers left, to get the work done and cover the remaining bloated overhead.

Anonymous said...

The RIFs of the future are just as likely to be retail, a handful here, a handful there, than wholesale. The policies have been transformed to give management the flexibility associated with employees being 'at will'. There's no going back.

Anonymous said...

We are not a union. If someone was just hired they where brought in because there is money and a need, well at least that is usually the case. I am not against Unions but this kind of policy is a bad idea in general.

By the way what makes you think there will be a FY14 RIF?

Anonymous said...

LLNS will lay off EBAs first and flip EITs to EBA status to refill the pipeline if greater numbers are needed.

The EIT and EBA guidelines and identified management support structure are largely designed for 30,000 ft. NNSA consumption. "Load test" these purported employment oriented guidelines and find out for yourself. Caution, to do so as an individual, may simply speed up your conveyor belt to unemployment status.

If lay offs do occur in FY14, it will not be based on "skills mix" need, but LLNS will use this as justification. Most programmatic assignments over the last ~12 months have been acquired under the radar (not posted) for buddies or for unspoken allegiance to the work division.

Don't believe it is true? Ask your friends in DTED how the entire division was instructed to fill any and all new assignments. Protect DTED employees first and to hell with the actual programmatic SKAs needed to successfully do a job. Don't bother to look for the memo. This was a structured top-down word of mouth communication.

Bottom line: if you don't have an assignment (chair) "when the music stops", good luck. You are on your own.

LLNS will continue to "Etch A Sketch" retroactive employment policy faster than you can say breach of contract or failure of good faith interactions.

Anonymous said...

The employment policy was changed this year that allows individual department to lay off any employees they don't want on the basis of lack of funding or lack of skills set. Each directorate can lay off up to 50 employees without the required WARN Act letter. So, there is no need for the Director to issue any lay off letter to DOE or employees.

If your boss does not like you for whatever reasons, watch out. You can be dismissed based on lack of skills or lack of funding. All their buddies would be safe and fully employed. But for you, they can make all kind of excuses and reasons why you are not a good fit.

The only recourse is to find the best lawyer to represent you when it happens!

Anonymous said...

You people need to understand this. Until the $17T Obama and his socialist pigs have acquired in "paid in full" the layoffs will continue. Worse than that is the party doesn't start until 2018 when Sheeeet hits the fan and all goes to hell worse than it ever has in the last eight years. So tighen your seat belt the ride is only beginning.

Anonymous said...

It is nice to see people waking up to the disaster that the new contract has brought. If you have a funded project, and your skills are up to par, you can still be replaced. A manager can argue without proof that someone else has better skills and out of budget support elsewhere and bump you. They have allowed for both budget and skills to be appealed to. Many employees who seem unworried by this, resort to "get rid of the dead wood, arguement." However without controls, reviews and some objective measures, this system is totally subjective. A very good employee can be replaced by "a friend of the manager" very easily without any way to prove the decisions was arbirtrary. The courts will sort this out in the favor of employees let go. That takes years, and management does not get punished by losing law suits as they should. In fact, throughout this lab has been rated very well by LSO and getting their tidy fees, for essentially doing nothing meritorious. SHAME on the whole system. Talented employees who believe they are favored may have a rude awakening. Many will leave if the market warms up because their is littel to hold employees loyal. Pension gone or threatened, real income going down, no equity as in private industry, and overall declining budget in the DOE, and everyone knows the US government will have to curtail spending even more.

Anonymous said...

It is ok....I didn't vote for Obama or Jerry Brown.

If you voted for him you will get what you deserve (and shame on you for our country being run down).
Look at Detroit....that is all Democrats and Unions working together to destroy a great city.

Romney could be President (and Meg Governor) and all of our families would be working by now.

Anonymous said...

I agree LLNS is a colossal failure that earns a generous fee every year. Morale is at an all time low. All post September 2007 new hires are TCP2, which is a 401k based portable retirement instrument. No compelling pension anchor for ~3,000 TCP2 employees.

With back to back pay freezes, perpetual FY__ budget uncertainty, and the "us vs. them" earned climate, how far away is the employee exodus tipping point? Probably just one more botched involuntary RIF away.

With retention lost, LLNL will become a temporary career "stop over" for young new hires. A paragraph added to the resume before moving on to "greener employment pastures".

Anonymous said...

"Romney could be President (and Meg Governor) and all of our families would be working by now.

August 19, 2013 at 4:15 PM"

Maybe it would be bit better with Meg. Mittens would be about the same. Of course if you wanted real change we could have had Ron Paul but then again wanted to get rid of the DOE.

Anonymous said...

Parney will speak to these "ugly rumors" at his wednesday all-hands...

Anonymous said...

Perhaps a 10% furlough/ pay cut will be the tipping point. The exodus would not be instant. It would occur over the 12 months following the 10% pay cut. It takes time to network for a new job, sell house, find new schools for the kids, etc.

Anonymous said...

Consider our budget is messed up because someone voted in a community organizer to run the locomotive.

It is a shame and a sham.

Our great veterans gave their blood for this country and in return we get a Chicago state senator who gave four speeches on the merits of letting an abortionist have his way with a baby born on the table.

The same pigs will vote Hillary in also and then it is time to head for the hills my friends.

Anonymous said...

I think it's a joke that LLNL and DOE can back a system that contains an overload of managers that TRY to justify what they do, when if fact, they chase their tail like a dumb dog

Anonymous said...

"The same pigs will vote Hillary in also"

I feel like Charlton Heston in the movie Planet of the Apes.
When he is on the ground and a monkey is on the horse looking down on him and talking.

In other words my friends
our country is upside down.

Our budget at our beloved Laboratory may be the least of our worries in the next few years with Liberals collapsing our once great country.

Anonymous said...

You're right, the country is collapsing. Please get out as soon as you can to save yourself and loved ones. There are innumerable better places on earth to live. The country clubs are launching escape pods every day.

Anonymous said...

Yes nice sarcastic answer.

A better answer might be to live with blinders on (as your comment suggests you might be doing)
and pretend everything is just fine.

Good luck with that as you pull the handle for Hillary.

Anonymous said...

No one saw the rapid collapse of the Soviet Union coming, either. However, much like today, the signs were there for those with eyes to see and ears to hear.

Anonymous said...

Back to the original topic - Did Parney have an all hands meeting to discuss FY14 and if so, what was said?

Anonymous said...

May 2013 "all hands":

1. Much FY 2014 budget uncertainty
2. SSVSP announced
3. If 300-400 LLNS employees (600 max) take SSVSP, it
would reduce the probability of an involuntary lay off in
FY 2014

August 2013 "all hands":

1. Much FY 2014 budget uncertainty
2. 400 employees took the SSVSP
3. Probability of an involuntary lay off in FY 2014 not

Anonymous said...

You forgot:

Explanation of why lab didn't pay $88m in to pension as they had promised in a previous all-hands. (lobbyists got a change in the pension pay-in formula snuck into the MAP21 transportation bill), so lab no longer "legally" had to do it.

Employees, however, had to go to a 7% pension pay-in because we need to maintain "substantial equivalence" with UC pension.

(No mention that that is an apples and oranges comparison, because the UC employee pension pay-in is pre-tax and LLNL is post-tax.)

Mention that UC is going to 8% employee pay-in July 2014.

Anonymous said...

Parney has never said there would be an $88M contribution to the pension. He did say that was what the actuaries want him to do, based on a constant low discount rate. He briefed at the last all hands that he would take a stepped approach, contributing $40M in 2013, and possibly $60M in 2014, while keeping an eye on the discount rate. He repeated at the all hands what he said before.

Anonymous said...

I don't know why you keep repeating this lie, when the evidence against it crystal clear and on the slides.

LLNS Defined Benefit Plan Contribution Briefing
May 2 & 3 2012

Slide 26: "Will employer contributions increase?

LLNS will be requesting DOE approval to increase employer contributions to $88 million"

Anonymous said...

August 27, 2013 at 10:48 AM

I suspect if Parney would have put the $88+ million into TCP-1 instead of spending it on his pet project NIF, you people wouldn't have had to contribute a dime to stay afloat. Any good lawyer should be able to acquire this information for you folks.

Anonymous said...

August 27, 2013 at 10:48 AM

I suspect if Parney would have put the $88+ million into TCP-1 instead of spending it on his pet project NIF, you people wouldn't have had to contribute a dime to stay afloat. Any good lawyer should be able to acquire this information for you folks and make it public.

Anonymous said...

Is that right? NIF raided the pension fund to stay afloat?

Anonymous said...

It is about time for a company, with pensioners, to make a pension contribution.

LLNS knew it was their responsibility when they bid for the contract.

Anonymous said...

In the October 2012 all hands Parney stated that the 2013 contribution would be $40M. Chart #3. He also laid out the case for early contribution vs required contribution. Also, llns makes no pension contribution, DOE does. They do it through an overhead tax. This has nothing to do with llns. DOE guarantees the pension. The only issue is whether to make early contributions at a manageable overhead, or wait until legal requirements force a sudden and large overhead tax. The smart thing is to do the first, and pay attention to long term interest rates going up, to mitigate the effect on overhead and on the Lab.

Anonymous said...

Where is the fact that "DOE guarantees the pension" spelled out in writing?

I asked this direct question and HR ducked it, then said something about PBGC, and then ignored. So, based on that exchange, I don't have a good feeling. I'd like to see something in writing. Before, the state stood behind our pension via UC.

Anonymous said...

What happened to the last overhead surplus.

This is a good indication of what will happen to dollars from the current overhead increase.

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