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Summary of Decisions - February 11, 2013 – February 15, 2013

February 15, 2013 - 10:39am

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Personnel Security Hearing (10 CFR Part 710)

On February 12, 2013, an OHA Hearing Officer issued a decision in which he concluded that access authorization should not be restored to an individual at this time.  A Local Security Office (LSO) suspended access authorization to the individual, alleging he had engaged in conduct that tended to show that he was not honest, reliable or trustworthy, based on (1) the 2008 credit report on the individual which showed one judgment ($8,690), three charged-off accounts (aggregating $5,744), and three collections accounts (aggregating $41,353); (2) the 2012 credit report on the individual which showed three judgments (aggregating $26,277), five charged-off accounts (aggregating $11,723) and eight collections accounts (aggregating $62,758); (3) the individual’s acknowledgment that he had not paid his creditors since 2007; and (4) the individual’s failure to comply with his representations to the LSO in January 2009 that he would address his outstanding indebtedness by filing for bankruptcy.  After conducting a hearing and evaluating the documentary and testimonial evidence, the Hearing Officer found that the individual, while anticipating filing for bankruptcy, had made no payments on his consumer debt since 2007.  Further, as of the date of the hearing, the individual had not filed for bankruptcy, although he began seeking legal counsel on bankruptcy in 2007 and had represented to the OPM and DOE that he would be filing for bankruptcy since 2008.  The Hearing Officer therefore found that the individual had failed to mitigate the security concerns associated with his demonstrated financial irresponsibility.  OHA Case No. PSH-12-0135 (Wade M. Boswell, H.O.)

On February 15, 2013, an OHA Hearing Officer issued a decision in which she concluded that an individual’s security clearance should not be restored.  A Local Security Office conducted a Personnel Security Interview of the individual to address concerns about his providing false information about his past drug use in security questionnaires and to DOE security personnel.  The individual’s behavior raised security concerns about his honesty, reliability and trustworthiness, as well as about his continued drug use.  After conducting a hearing and evaluating the documentary and testimonial evidence, the Hearing Officer found that the individual had presented sufficient evidence to resolve the security concerns associated with his past use of marijuana while in high school.  However, she found that the individual had not sufficiently mitigated the security concerns related to his admitted falsification of information provided to DOE in four instances, on security questionnaires and during security interviews.  OHA Case No. PSH-12-0122 (Kimberly Jenkins-Chapman, H.O.)

On February 14, 2013, an OHA Hearing Officer issued a decision in which he determined that an individual’s DOE access authorization should not be restored.  The individual had a history of two alcohol alcohol-related arrests.   In addition, A DOE psychologist diagnosed the individual with Alcohol-Related Disorder (NOS).  Based upon the documentary and testimonial evidence presented, the Hearing Officer found that the individual had not yet shown sufficient evidence of rehabilitation of reformation from his Alcohol-Related Disorder (NOS).  The Hearing Officer further concluded that until the concerns raised by his alcohol disorder are sufficiently resolved, the associated concerns about the individual’s judgment, reliability and trustworthiness raised by his criminal conduct also remain unresolved.  OHA Case No. PSH-12-0129 (Steven L. Fine, H.O.)

On February 15, 2013, an OHA Hearing Officer issued a decision in which he determined that the DOE should not restore an individual’s access authorization.  As security concerns, a Local Security Office cited the individual’s filing of a Chapter 7 bankruptcy petition in 2002, and the individual’s more recent financial difficulties, including a number of delinquent debts, the largest of which was a $132,489 mortgage balance, payments on which were over 150 days past due.  The Hearing Officer found that, while the individual had made some progress toward paying off his prior debts, significant debts remained unpaid, including his mortgage, and the individual had, in addition, incurred new debts in the past year.  Because of both the continued risk of the individual’s future financial instability, and the issues of judgment of reliability raised by his behavior related to finances, the Hearing Officer could not find that the individual had resolved the security concerns in this case related to his handling of finances. OHA Case No. PSH-12-0123 (Steven J. Goering, H.O.)

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