WASHINGTON, DC — Lt. Gen. Frank Klotz (Ret.), Administrator of the Department of Energy’s National Nuclear Security Administration, hosted two members of the New Mexico congressional delegation on Feb. 18 for a tour of the aging facilities occupied by 1,200 NNSA employees at the Albuquerque Complex on Kirtland Air Force Base in New Mexico.
“NNSA’s missions—to maintain a safe, secure, and effective nuclear deterrent; to reduce global dangers from nuclear and radiological threats; and to power our nuclear Navy—are critical to protecting America's national security interests,” Klotz said following the tour. “Unfortunately, our highly talented and dedicated employees in Albuquerque are forced to work in substandard conditions at facilities that are decades old and inadequate for our current mission. The President's Fiscal Year 2017 Budget Request asks Congress to continue authorizing and appropriating the funds needed to design and construct a new facility for NNSA and other DOE employees in Albuquerque. A quality workforce deserves a quality workspace.”
Klotz told Sen. Martin Heinrich and Rep. Michelle Lujan Grisham that the existing site does not meet the same facility standards maintained at other NNSA facilities. Portions of the current facility, a former military barracks, date back to the early 1950s and are in poor condition. Because of the age of the buildings, routine maintenance is costly and inefficient. He said construction of a new facility at Kirtland would allow for modern and efficient office space that will improve productivity, morale, and retention.
“The current NNSA Albuquerque Complex is too large, too old, and too costly to continue to effectively meet the needs of the agency,” Sen. Heinrich said after the tour of the current complex. “NNSA maintains the safety and security of our nation's nuclear deterrent, and their 1,200 NNSA employees who work here deserve a modern facility. I was proud to help secure more than $10 million for engineering and design of a new complex and look forward to seeing the new facilities take shape in the coming years."
“The 1,200 employees of the NNSA here at the Albuquerque complex perform some of the most important work on behalf of our national security mission,” said Rep. Grisham. “I appreciate what they do. I also appreciate the need to modernize the infrastructure and facilities where these employees work. Some facilities are over 60 years old with safety, health and quality of life concerns."
The Albuquerque Complex houses staff who support a wide variety of NNSA programs and offices including the Office of Secure Transportation, emergency operations, defense programs, management and budget, acquisition and project management, and nuclear security.