Radioactive waste contract with former DOE manager questioned

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A trucking executive says his company was jilted when a former Energy Department manager in Oak Ridge, Tenn. reportedly got a contract to haul radioactive waste. Then, as a middleman, he bought shipping trailers and hired drivers.

David Bennett — executive vice president for Joplin, Mo.-based Tri-State Motor Transit — describes the bid process and contract as “dirty pool,” according to the Associated Press. Bennett says his company calculated how much it would take to remove the radioactive waste from an abandoned plant in Ohio, and then the contract was changed.

Former Department of Energy nuclear engineer Cavanaugh Mims left that job in 2000 to start Oak Ridge-based Visionary Solutions, the company that won the waste shipment contract. Mims told AP his company submitted the lowest and best proposal.

An official with DOE’s contractor for the Ohio site told the AP that the company is pleased with Visionary Solutions.