Oct 29, 2007

Newsflash! KSL overcharges for work done at LANL!

This was sent in by a reader (thanks, reader, and thanks in advance for letting us "borrow" it, John). Read the DOE IG report here.

-Gus

______________________________________________________

Hi Gussie!

From John Fleck's blog: ( http://www.abqjournal.com/abqnews/content/view/5334/31/ ):

A new report out today alleges overbilling by KSL, the main support ...
... services contractor at Los Alamos National Laboratory.

The report, from the DOE's Office of Inspector General, found procedures that allowed KSL to bill $41 million in 2006 without the knowledge or approval of the Los Alamos officials who were supposed to oversee the company's work. Investigators also found a regular pattern of projects coming in substantially over budget. "Again," the IG's report pointedly notes, "the Department of Energy, directly or indirectly, paid or will pay these charges, the source being taxpayer-provided funds."

KSL is a joint venture of Shaw Group, Los Alamos Technical Associates and KBR. Its contract is worth an estimated $800 million over five years.



Imagine, KSL overbilling! And remind us again, KBR is a branch of what large, infamous company?

36 comments:

Anonymous said...

Well, ok. So LANS hasn't done much to improve efficiency around here. But hey! How about that reduction in reportable incidents!

Bonuses all around for Mikey and the LANS boys and girls!

Anonymous said...

Captain Renault: I'm shocked, shocked to find that gambling is going on in here!

- Casablanca

Anonymous said...

Newsflash? Hardly to anyone at the Lab. $3500 to move filing cabinets? $1200 to prep evaporative coolers? (Per cooler)

These are just 2 examples of many that others have. Why has it taken this long to come to the attention of people outside the Lab?
I am not sure that the answer will cast a favorable light on the Laboratory management.

Anonymous said...

Prediction: LANS will say "that happened on UC's watch. That's why we were brought in. We're evaluating the situation and will fix it. Now, give us some big bonuses for being diligent managers....."

Anonymous said...

7:26 pm - that won't fly. Mike renewed the KSL contract after he had been observing the waste, fraud and abuse. LANS wants to save money. Funny, they could save MILLIONS and not lay off a single LANL employee if they would just kill the KSL contract, but it appears from the IG report that LANS is very much a part of the KSL gravy train. I wonder how much the LANS governing board and Mike and the top 5 got paid off for renewing the KSL contract.

Anonymous said...

PARADE magazine, Intelliance report
ALBUQUEREQUE JOURNAL OCTOBER 14, 2007,
WWW. PARADE,COM/INTEL

Catching up on my reading, I read this lately:
Who Gets YOUR Money?

In the 2006 fiscal year, the U.S. government spent more than $415
Billion on contracts with 176,172 companies and entities. About
one-quarter of that total -- $100 billion -- went to only six companies.
Who were the big winners? Lockheed Martin, Boeing, Northrop Grumman,
General Dynamics, Raytheon and KBR (formerly part of Halliburton). All
Do the majority of their government business with the Department of
Defense. What's more, less than %40 of the contracts that went to these
Companies were awarded in full and open competition.

I Believe the K in KSL is for Kellogg. Who’s company name will be the on the list next?

Anonymous said...

Revised Prediction: LANS will say "we didn't know about this. These are only allegations. We will investigate thoroughly and take corrective action if necessary".........time goes by........."we didn't find any wrong-doing...in fact, KSL is doing a fine job. Now give us some big bonuses for being diligent managers..."

Anonymous said...

Wanna bet that none of you will even ask Mike about this during the next all-managers or all-hands meetings?

Anonymous said...

No bet, 9:11 PM. Been there, seen that.

Anonymous said...

LANS is corrupt to the core. We have a bunch of sleazy executives who decided to give all their buddies huge raises while screwing the rest of the workforce. They fit right in with the crooks who have been caught over at KSL (aka Halliburton KBR).

No wonder LANS took no action even though it was clear to most of the general staff that KSL was robbing LANL blind with their so-called facilities maintenance work. LANS doesn't give a shit about cost controls and efficiency because they plan on milking this place, just like KSL, for every dollar they can get before the lab finally shuts down.

Anonymous said...

And a bunch of arrogant TSM's and lazy support staff who don't give a shit about cost controls and efficiency because they plan on milking this place, just like KSL, for every dollar they can get before the lab finally shuts down.

Anonymous said...

I heard that KSL is charging LANL $65 per hour for each worker who does trash pickup from offices at LANL. Of this amount, the people doing the actual work get about $12 per hour, and the rest is all pocketed as pure profit for KSL. Why does LANL stand for this highway robbery from KSL? It's outrageous!

Anonymous said...

Why would we waste our breath with a question like that? We need to check up on that daycare situation.

Anonymous said...

Kevin Roark of LANL PR was on Channel 13 tonight spouting the LANS party line of "We knew about all this and fixed it up long ago. There is no story here!".

Kevin sucks ass so well. I know it's all part of his job, put I do believe he actually enjoys the taste of it.

Anonymous said...

KSL, Johnson Controls, Pan Am, Zia, all the same, all corupt. When it was Zia you could count on a strike during hunting season and planting season. Strikes were finally forbidden by contracts, but corruption wasn't.

Anonymous said...

But you LANL bloggers never saw that privatization had larger implications than the effect on your own private jobs...

Anonymous said...

10/29/07 10:51 PM:

LOL, when I read your post, I initially thought you meant KSL was charging us for the time that LANL TSM's spend taking their own trash out!

Anonymous said...

Put down the crack pipe, Kevin. It is has not been "fixed." We still get estimates like $2500 for relamping two fixtures in a controlled area. And final bills of $11,000 to replace a sink. Or $55,000 to repair a shower, except that even after 10 tries it still isn't fixed. These jobs can drag on for years and years and years.

News flash indeed.

p.s. Don't blame this on Halliburton, the SSS contracts have been this way for as long as I can remember.

Anonymous said...

Gee, and I wonder why the Lab hates auditors so much? My internal auditors are looking into the alleged disappearance of chickens, said the fox! What a crock. Los Alamos National Lab continues to pretend it gives a damn about protecting taxpayer money, but the reality is Rich Marquez (aka Mikey’s personal attorney) and his revolving door cronies only care about covering up problems. Real auditors report problems, with hopes that the stakeholder community will demand real corrections. Now do you understand where the conflict arises? DOE and the U.S. Congress know, but through decades of in action they convey the reality that they really could care less. The objective is simply to keep the taxpayers bamboozled so that they’ll keep feeding the military-industrial monster that funds election campaigns and hires the friends and relatives of high ranking officials into high paying jobs for life. And so when the auditors reveal yet another scandal we'll just pretend, once again, that somebody actually gives a damn, and then quietly (behind the scenes) destroy those auditor SOBs that have a audacity to reporting reality. Soon enough the stakeholder community will fall back to sleep, as they always do. What then? Well it’s back to business as usual, that’s what then. That’s just the way it is. Old timers know that that’s the way it’s always been, and will likely continue to be. Because you can’t change the nature of this beast we call the Lab. Even if change is required for its own survival, the Lab just can’t change when the leadership lacks, well…leaders!

Anonymous said...

10/29/07 6:08 PM
"Why has it taken this long to come to the attention of people outside the Lab?"

Answer: We kill auditors that report factually...that's why.

10/29/07 6:08 PM
"I am not sure that the answer will cast a favorable light on the Laboratory management."

No shit Sherlock!

Anonymous said...

10/29/07 10:38 PM: "LANS doesn't give a shit about cost controls and efficiency because they plan on milking this place, just like KSL, for every dollar they can get before the lab finally shuts down."


10/29/07 10:48 PM: "And a bunch of arrogant TSM's and lazy support staff who don't give a shit about cost controls and efficiency because they plan on milking this place, just like KSL, for every dollar they can get before the lab finally shuts down."


Ouch! The truth hurts!

Anonymous said...

"I heard that KSL is charging LANL $65 per hour for each worker who does trash pickup from offices at LANL."

Damn! Where do I sign up?! Screw college! I want to pickup trash at Los Alamos!

Anonymous said...

Easy people! I know how to solve this problem. The Lab will "fire" KSL to "prove" that they have solved the problem Then KSL will rename itself ... maybe something like KSL-R (KSL replacement). The Lab will perform an EHAUSTIVE NATIONAL SEARCH. And low and behold they will discover that the best company for the job is KSL-R, located right here in Northern New Mexico all the time. And then the raping and pillaging will continue and LANS management will get some sort of pay-off for giving their buddies a new contract with LANL.

Anonymous said...

10:48, "And a bunch of arrogant TSM's and lazy support staff who don't give a shit about cost controls and efficiency because they plan on milking this place, just like KSL, for every dollar they can get before the lab finally shuts down."

Monkey see, monkey do. You forgot LANS management, NM pols and other contractors on your list.

Anonymous said...

I concur with 7:11 AM. Why is it that I had to shell out $3K to change a couple of light bulbs in a lab or $500 to change ONE light bulb in a restroom. I don't see how the problem has been fixed - please explain Kevin!!

Anonymous said...

What about the gross time fraud on the part of the KSL employee's?

Anonymous said...

> ... $500 to change ONE light bulb in a restroom.

Well, you could change the lightbulb yourself.

But first you need:

1) Electrical Hazard Training (so you don't get shocked).
2) Lockout-Tagout training (putting a padlock on the breaker box is tricky).
3) CPR/AED (in case someone does get shocked -- buttheads/cowboys that don't follow procedures, you know).
4) Hazmat Training (there's dangerous stuff inside those bulbs -- you might drop one and break it).
5) RCRA training (don't throw the old lightbulb in the trash!).
6) Ladder training (you're too stupid to know not to stand on a bunch of boxes stacked on a swivel chair).
7) Procurement system training (gotta buy a new bulb!).
8) Driving in the presence of a material transfer training (you might have to go to Metzger's to pick up a new bulb).

Anonymous said...

Just the other day one of the bulbs in my office went out. If I had asked for it to be fixed by KSL the cost would have been enormous and the wait far too long. I saw a fixture destined for salvage, took out the bulb, and used it in my office.

Problem solved and it cost me nothing. And, frankly, I don't give a damn if doing this violated any LANL rules. If you see a problem you can easily fix, then fix it. LANL is too dysfunctional these days to depend on for much of anything.

Anonymous said...

Several years ago the latch on my office door became lose. I ask the group office to please request that it be fixed.

KSL showed up and determined that (1) nothing less than a whole new door would do, and (2) this door would have to be custom built. Total cost for this nonsense came to about $4000!

Sadly, stuff like this happens all the time at LANL.

Anonymous said...

Yeah, I even brought in some light bulbs to replace the ones in my office when they went out. And then I took the spent lights home and threw them away in a trash can. I saved thousands of dollars.

Anonymous said...

...
And did we tell you the name of the game, boy;
we call it riding the Gravy train.

Anonymous said...

Gee 9:01 PM, $4K is bargain! I am surprised that KSL did not triple the cost claiming that they had to get an engineer to write and approve a design and then add more cost to the project by saying that they had to spend several weeks writing an IWD to pull the pins out of the door hinges.

Anonymous said...

The exploits of 8:53 and 9:39 should be included in the next edition of "Surely you're joking, Mr. Feynman"

Pinky and The Brain said...

Remind me to tell you the paper clip story one day, Gussie.

Gussie Fink-Nottle said...

Can't wait to hear it, Pinky. How about sharing it with all of us?

Anonymous said...

10/30/07 9:30 AM said: "What about the gross time fraud"

Fraud? We don't have no stink'n fraud in Los Alamos!