EEOICPA CIRCULAR NO. 08-05 May 2, 2008
SUBJECT: OSTI as a covered DOE facility
As part of adjudicating a claim, the issue was raised as to whether the Office of Scientific and Technical Information (OSTI) in Oak Ridge, TN was a covered DOE facility for the period 1957-present under the Energy Employees Occupational Illness Compensation Program Act (EEOICPA or the Act). After researching the issue and reviewing related documentation, it was been determined that OSTI is a covered DOE facility.
Prior to publication of this circular, OSTI was not recognized as a covered facility under the EEOICPA. The purpose of this circular is to alert all Division of Energy Employees Occupational Illness Compensation (DEEOIC) staff that OSTI is now a covered DOE facility. Accordingly, OSTI federal employees are now covered under Part B and any OSTI contractor and/or subcontractor employees are additionally eligible for Part E.
OSTI’s current street address is 1 Science.gov Way in Oak Ridge, Tennessee. Prior to November 7, 2003, the street address for OSTI, at this exact same location, was 175 Oak Ridge Turnpike, Oak Ridge, TN.
The determination that OSTI is a DOE facility is based upon the Act. The relevant statutory section is:
42 U.S.C. § 7384l(12) The term “Department of Energy facility” means any building, structure, or premise, including the grounds upon which such building, structure, or premise is located
(A) in which operations are, or have been, conducted by, or on behalf of, the Department of Energy (except for buildings, structures, premises, grounds, or operations covered by Executive Order No. 12344, dated February 1, 1982 (42 U.S.C. 7158 note), pertaining to the Naval Nuclear Propulsion Program); and
(B) with regard to which the Department of Energy has or had
i. a proprietary interest; or
ii. entered into a contract with an entity to provide management and operation, management and integration, environmental remediation services, construction, or maintenance services. (emphasis added) 42 U.S.C. § 7384l(12).
OSTI has served as a repository for all technical reports pertaining to the Department of Energy and its predecessor agencies since 1943. Its basic functions are the collection, preservation and dissemination of energy-related scientific and technical information. Additionally, it was previously concluded that the term “operations” in §73841 (12) has a broad meaning and there is no requirement that the work performed in a DOE building have a “nuclear weapons nexus” in order for that building to properly be considered a “Department of Energy facility” under EEOICPA. Therefore, the library–type work performed at OSTI constitutes “operations” on behalf of the DOE.
With regard to fulfilling the second part of the definition, the building in which OSTI is now housed was built by the AEC as a warehouse sometime after the final drawings were approved on January 6, 1948, and was in use by 1950. Architectural schematics indicate that in 1957, Building 1916 T-1 was significantly expanded and interior walls were added for the purpose of housing the relocated OSTI (then TISE) offices. The schematics refer to the “United States Atomic Energy Commission” as the owner of the property in 1957 and current real estate assessment data available through the State of Tennessee indicate that DOE continues to own the property today. This therefore shows that DOE has a proprietary interest in the “buildings, structure and land” which house OSTI and the EEOICPA statutory definition of a DOE facility is therefore met, effective January 1, 1957.
PETER M. TURCIC
Director, Division of Energy Employees
Occupational Illness Compensation
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