Lab employees vent frustrations on blogBy Betsy Mason, STAFF WRITER
A record of some of the most negative feelings circulating through Lawrence Livermore Laboratory was posted on a blog titled "LLNL: The Final Story," which has re-emerged as "LLNL: The True Story" (http://llnlthetruestory.blogspot.com).
Some employees have taken to venting their frustrations and anxiety on the blog, which is filled with venom, anxiety and accusations.
"I think there's a lot more to come, and they're just feeding you the bad news a little at a time so you don't have heart failure," one anonymous blogger wrote Nov. 27. "It's time to break out the life jackets because this ship (LLNL) is going down."
"Realistically the entire idea of taking us out from under UC was the biggest waste of money I have ever seen," said another contributor.
The blog has also become a repository for rumors, including these: There are plans to cut the workforce in half, most of the work at the lab will be outsourced, and the lab will close during the holidays to save money. One of the most persistent rumors that extends well beyond the blog has been that the director and upper-level management received raises that more than doubled their pay.
A review of the salaries of a dozen or so managers, which are still public information because they are partly paid by the University of California, shows that although upper-management employees did get raises, no salaries doubled, or even approached that.
Lab director George Miller's salary was bumped $19,600 to $410,000, director of science and technology Cherry Murray's salary stayed at $337,000 and National Ignition Facility head Ed Moses' pay rose $18,000 to $330,000. And just like the rest of the employees, those raises have not yet gone into effect.
And as for the managers who came in from Bechtel and the other managing companies, Miller said, "They are in the same salary structure as the rest of the laboratory."