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PSH-12-0047 - In the Matter of Personnel Security Hearing

On August 24, 2012, an OHA Hearing Officer issued a Decision in which she concluded that an individual should be granted DOE access authorization.  A DOE Operations Office referred an applicant for a security clearance to administrative review under 10 C.F.R. Part 710, citing as security concerns issues pertaining to the individual’s use of alcohol, including the opinion of a DOE consultant-psychiatrist that the individual was a user of alcohol habitually to excess, as well as the individual’s past arrests.  The individual requested a hearing before an OHA Hearing Officer.  After conducting a hearing and evaluating the documentary and testimonial evidence, the Hearing Officer determined that the individual mitigated the security concerns.  The Hearing Officer found that the individual acknowledged his alcohol problem and took steps to address it by becoming an active participant in Alcoholics Anonymous – attending several meetings per week, working closely with a sponsor, and working the program’s 12 steps.  In addition, the individual, having committed to abstinence from alcohol, demonstrated six months of abstinence from alcohol and both his sponsor and the DOE consultant-psychiatrist opined that he was unlikely to relapse in the future.  In addition, the Hearing Officer concluded that the concerns raised by the individual’s past arrests were mitigated by the passage of time and the individual’s increased maturity in the years since the arrests.  Consequently, the Hearing Officer determined that the individual mitigated the security concerns and the DOE should grant him a security clearance.