Saturday, May 06, 2006

DOE Directive, N. 351.1

Hi Doug~

Please post this to the Blog.

One question to ask, "where are the so called Republican leaders of NM?" and mind you there are many, many more questions.

LANL employees are being sold down the river and I ask another question, How many are going to send letters and make phone calls to our illustrious leaders of NM including our Governor to stop Secretary Bodman from imposing

DOE Directive, N. 351.1?

Manny Trujillo

Sec. Bodman has turned out to be an incompetent Secretary. But, then,
so are most of the people Bush has picked for high level positions.
Goss just left the CIA in disgrace. Chertoff is a bumbling fool who
has run the DHS efforts into the ground. Rumsfeld has shown himself
to be a man who is consistently wrong, but is kept on the job because
of his loyalty to the Whitehouse. No wonder this President is
beginning to show poll numbers that are approaching those of Nixon
in his final days!

I don't care much for most of the Senators who signed this letter,
but at least they are paying attention to what is happening within
the DOE. All the Republicans seem to care about these days is how
much loot they can run off with before they get caught. I hope the
GOP can turn the party around to what it once was, but as of now,
it is a pathetic party supported by a small but increasingly loony
segment of the American public.

Yes, Manny, I will be writing some letters to Congress. And so
should everyone else who is on the staff at Los Alamos. Time is
quickly running out, and something wicked this way comes.
Just remember to tell them how bad you have it and how you guys are being mistreated:

023 (Posted 3/20/06)
Q: Is it possible to transfer to LANS inactive vested under LANS' TCP2, then after a couple of months, retiring from UCRP and begin receiving a pension check while still working for LANS, enabling someone to receive a full paycheck from LANS and a pension check from UCRP?

A: Yes, if you are eligible to retire and transfer to LANS under TCP2, and decide to retire under UCRP, you could receive your UCRP pension check and a paycheck from LANS.

I see a $2-$5K a month pay raise for everyone of you if this is not caught before May 15th. I know of no employer where you could get a deal like this anywhere in the world. I will tell you though that I did get an e-mail from a friend that has noted this and it has been brought to DOE/ NNSA/ DC and LANS attention, so I guess we'll see what they do with this in the next few days.

Good luck people. I sure wish I had this option, my lifestyle would be wonderful
This "double dipping" described by b-ohica has long been practiced at LANL, mostly by TSMs and their management. They would retire from LANL and come back to work, as a contractor. Part of the "good old boy" scheme of things.

What makes this different is that everyone, not just TSMs and management, who is close to retirement will get a shot at double dipping, and it will be the norm. And, LANS must hire them, as part of the switch. This means a lot less retirements than expected, a higher LANS headcount, budget problems, and a RIF. Exactly what the DOE, and LANS, didn't want. Ahhh, the smell of incompetent management.
This represents the worst of both worlds: the "corporatization" of the labs, with the resultant new "at will" status of its employees, coupled with sub-standard benefits, by corporate standards.

Congratulations, everybody! In true form the parties involved managed to arrive at the worst possible solution.

On the other hand, I'm sure the Bechtel, BWXT, and UC top-level managers are toasting their new good fortune.

Our new, improved mediocre work environment at LANL will guarantee that mediocre staff will work there. However, given the new mission at LANL (pit production, in case you had forgotten), perhaps luke warm mediocre is the best that could have been hoped for. DOE has finally achieved a long-sought after goal: to bring the labs down to their level.
There is a LANS response to this directive at

This might help on evaluating the immediate impact, but probably not the long term effect which clearly is detrimental to DOE FFRDC's.
The LANS PDF that David mentions makes for interesting reading.

According to Question 2 in this LANS PDF, TCP2 is ALREADY over the
105% market comparative. This is clearly not allowed according to
the RFP and DOE's new Directive N 351.1. Therefore, those who turn
in benefits paperwork and select the TCP2 option should be prepared
to see LANS contribution head downward. Market-driven events of
the last 12 months will demand it. Have fun on the ride down to the
bottom. You might want to re-visit those spreadsheet calculations.
LANS answer to Question 2 seems a bit odd. It sounds as if they feel
adjustments will only be required for new hires, but both the RFP
and N 351.1 seem very clear on this matter. TCP2 is forever hooked
to market-driven fundamentals.

Question 3 in this PDF deals with COLAs for TCP1. LANS seems to
think they won't need DOE's approval to hand out a COLA. Again,
this doesn't seem to fit my understanding of DOE Directive N 351.1.

Looks like LANS is trying to do "damage control" after the sudden
issuance of this DOE Directive, but I don't think I fully trust
their answers. DOE will probably have the final word in all these
interpretations. May 15th is quickly approaching, yet this new DOE
Directive makes the whole situation of arriving at a choice even
more complex and risky. DOE seems to win the prize for having some
of the biggest "evil bastards" I've ever come across in government.
It's hard not to come to the conclusion that they seem to actually
enjoy screwing their contractors to the wall. DOD contractors
are not held to these types of benefit and pension limitations.
As good2go points out, this is not the policy for DOD contractors (Lincoln Lab run by MIT) or NASA contractors (JPL run by Caltech)... DOE contractor's will definitely not be able to compete with the private sector R&D and high tech companies, so this policy is going to do irreparable damage to the national labs overseen by DOE and publicly financed science/technology in this country... DOE is suppose to the steward of the national labs, not their destroyer.

Based on DOE's recent pathetic performance and ineffective micromanagement overseeing the "Crown Jewels" of national science, Congress needs create a new cabinet level "Department of Science, Engineering and Technology" - headed by civil servants who know something about scientific research and not just bean counting - and strip DOE of its national labs.
Good point, Larry Livermore. I have no doubt that St. Pete is now
probably thinking along the same lines. Perhaps we'll soon see
the good Senator at least issue a proposal to strip NNSA away from
DOE and place it under a completely different operation. St. Pete
doesn't want to move NNSA to DOD, as he chairs the Senate's Energy
Committee. However, there are other options, and I have no doubt
they he may be considering them. The DOE's FFRDC labs are going
to be completely destroyed by DOE if this crap keeps up much longer,
and St. Pete probably knows this. Keep your eyes on the news.
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