KEY TRENDS IN LAW AND POLICY REGARDING
NUCLEAR ENERGY AND MATERIALS
In late September, the US Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) made public a White Paper that it had initially issued internally to the Office of Nuclear Reactor Regulation (NRR) in March 2012.
The National Labor Relations Board (Board) published a Notice of Proposed Rulemaking and Request for Comments in the Federal Register on September 14. The proposed rule seeks to reestablish the standard for determining joint-employer status that existed before the Board’s 2015 Browning-Ferris Industries of California decision.
The NRC recently published an updated brochure on its “Pre-Investigation Alternative Dispute Resolution Program,” which affords licensees the opportunity to engage in Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR) to resolve an individual’s allegation of discrimination for raising nuclear safety concerns prior to the start of an NRC Office of Investigations (OI) investigation. There are two types of Pre-Investigation ADR: (1) NRC-sponsored “Early ADR”; and (2) licensee-sponsored ADR. The brochure does not reveal any changes to the NRC’s Pre-Investigation ADR Program, which does not encompass technical safety concerns. Nonetheless, the program offers licensees and their contractors an opportunity to avoid an investigation into a discrimination allegation and other possible benefits, so it worth reviewing how the program works.
The US Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) Office of Investigations (OI) recently published its Office of Investigations Annual Report FY 2017, which provides an overview of OI’s activities during the past fiscal year.
The recently published US Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) Office of Investigations (OI) Annual Report noted a 28% increase in the number of discrimination investigations in FY 2016 as compared to FY 2015.
On September 26, Senators Ron Wyden (D-OR), Edward Markey (D-MA), and Claire McCaskill (D-MO) introduced bill S.3394 to amend the Energy Reorganization Act of 1974 (ERA) to modify provisions regarding the protection of employees of the US Department of Energy (DOE) and Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC).