RICHLAND -- Battelle received good grades on its Department of Energy report card and earned 94 percent of the maximum performance-based pay, officials said Friday.
Battelle will receive about $8.5 million out of a possible $9 million for managing and operating Pacific Northwest National Laboratory in Richland under a DOE contract for the fiscal year that ended Sept. 30.
PNNL is the community's top local employer with almost 4,500 employees in Richland.
"I'm extremely proud of our staff and pleased with our accomplishments this year," said PNNL Director Mike Kluse. "The high marks we received demonstrate that we are among the top performing laboratories within the Department of Energy's Office of Science.
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"We've been recognized for our strong leadership, delivering high-quality and impactful science through partnership and collaboration, and fostering a research environment based on a sound safety and operational culture," Kluse said. "Add to that the impressive and talented workforce that we've been able to attract and retain, and I couldn't be more pleased."
PNNL spokesman Geoff Harvey said the $8.5 million fee is used for upkeep of the lab's facilities and equipment, charitable giving and business expenses not reimbursed by the government.
The lab received grades of "A," "A-minus" or "B-plus" in every category, and an overall "A-minus" for meeting its science and technology goals, including A-minuses in mission accomplishments and science and technology project and program management, and a B-plus in construction and operation of research facilities.
PNNL rated an "A" for contractor leadership and stewardship under its management and operations goals and grades, and A-minuses for facilities maintenance and infrastructure and security and emergency management.
The lab scored B-pluses for environment, safety and health and business systems.
The lab earned 97 percent of its maximum available fee in 2008, 2009 and 2010, but Roger Snyder, manager of DOE's local Pacific Northwest Site Office said he wouldn't characterize the 94 percent earned this year as a reduction.
Snyder said each year's goals are different as the lab takes on new and challenging tasks, and that it isn't accurate to compare one year's results to another, or one national laboratory to another.
"It's what they do with those building blocks from year to year," Snyder said. "This year they operated some new facilities and they moved out of some old facilities. ... I would focus on the fact that it is a high score, a very positive score in some challenging times."