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WBA-13-0017 - In the Matter of Edward G. Gallrein, III

On August 20, 2014, the Office of Hearings and Appeals (OHA) denied an appeal of an Initial Agency Decision (IAD) that OHA issued on April 10, 2014, regarding a complaint of retaliation that Edward G. Gallrein, III (Gallrein or the Complainant) filed under the DOE’s Contractor Employee Protection Program, 10 C.F.R. Part 708, against Babcock and Wilcox Technical Services Y-12, LLC (B&W), the managing and operating (M&O) contractor for the DOE’s Y-12 National Security Complex in Oak Ridge, Tennessee, and GemTech Y-12, LLC (GemTech), a subcontractor to B&W.  In the IAD, the Administrative Judge dismissed certain of the Complainant’s disclosures on procedural grounds and, with respect to the remaining disclosures, determined that none of the alleged disclosures fell within the ambit of Part 708.   In making this determination, the Administrative Judge concluded that the alleged disclosures did not, as a matter of law, reveal information that the Complainant could have reasonably believed was “a substantial violation of a law, rule, or regulation;” “a substantial and specific danger to employees or to public health or safety;” or “fraud, gross mismanagement, gross waste of funds, or abuse of authority,” as specified at 10 C.F.R. § 708.5(a).   Therefore, having concluded that the Complainant could not meet his evidentiary burden under Part 708, the Administrative Judge granted the Respondents’ motions to dismiss the complaint.  Id.  After reviewing the Complainant’s various procedural and substantive arguments on appeal, the OHA Director affirmed the Administrative Judge’s determination that the Complainant could not establish that he made protected disclosures or engaged in protected activity covered under Part 708, and concluded that the Complainant did not identify error warranting reversal of the IAD.  Therefore, the OHA Director denied the Complainant’s appeal.