State and Tribal Government Working Group Spring Meeting

May 3-5, 2016 | Niagara Falls, N.Y.

The State and Tribal Government Working Group (STGWG) held its spring meeting on May 3-5, 2016, in Niagara Falls, N.Y. Participants also visited the West Valley Demonstration Project and the Seneca Nation Alleghany and Cattaragus Territories. STGWG members had the opportunity to meet and discuss with U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) Office of Environmental Management (EM), DOE Office of Legacy Management, DOE Office of Nuclear Energy and the National Nuclear Security Administration.








Tuesday, May 3, 2016

The History of the Western New York Nuclear Service Center and Present Status of the West Valley Demonstration Project

  • Paul Bembia, program director, New York State Energy Research and Development Authority's West Valley Site Management Program | Presentation
  • Bryan Bower, manager, DOE West Valley Demonstration Project | Presentation

West Valley Demonstration Project and the Seneca Nation's Alleghany and Cattaraugus Territories Tour

Tribal Executive Session (Closed)

Wednesday, May 4, 2016

Tribal Executive Session (Open)

  • Report out on closed Tribal Executive Session
  • Site Updates from DOE Tribal Points of Contact

State Executive Session

STGWG Business Session (State and Tribes Only)

Working Lunch with STGWG and DOE Officials 

  • Todd Gates, treasurer, Seneca Nation of Indians 
  • Debbie Duren and Gabe Bohnee, STGWG co-conveners 
  • Brant Petrasek, DOE-STGWG lead
  • Mindy Bridges, National Conference of State Legislatures 

Program Update with DOE Office of Environmental Management 

  • Mark Whitney, principal deputy assistant secretary, DOE-EM 

Energy Technology Engineering Center (ETEC) Update

  • Frank Marcinowski, acting associate principal deputy assistant secretary, DOE-EM | Presentation

Waste Isolation Pilot Plant (WIPP) Update

Frank Marcinowski, acting associate principal deputy assistant secretary, DOE-EM | Presentation

Making Progress on Natural Resource Damage Assessment and Restoration (NRDAR)

This session provided an opportunity for states, tribes and DOE officials to discuss successes, challenges and perceived impediments to making progress on NRDA at the sites. Participants explored the possibility of utilizing a decision making framework. 

Reports by STGWG Members on NRDAR Process:

  • Oak Ridge
  • Los Alamos
  • Weldon Spring
  • Hanford

Discussion with DOE-EM leadership and determination of path forward

  • Mark Gilbertson, deputy assistant secretary for site restoration, DOE-EM 
  • Doug Gray, program analyst, DOE-EM 

Overview of Sustainability for the Nation and Discussion of Decision Framework

This session discussed the National Academy of Science’s 2013 report – Sustainability for the Nation: Resource Connection and Governance Linkages. DOE introduced the report and how it may be used in DOE activities and decision making.

  • Session Introduction and Overview by Mark Gilbertson, deputy assistant secretary for site restoration, DOE-EM
  • Alan Hecht, director for sustainable development, Office of Research and Development, U.S. Environmental Protection Agency | Presentation
  • Bernard Goldstein, elected member, National Academy of Sciences | Presentation

Overview of Planning for Long-Term Stewardship and Institutional Controls

This session broadly covered long-term stewardship (LTS) activities performed by DOE within the different regulatory structures. Attendees heard from and discussed with DOE officials how the different offices design and implement the long-term surveillance and maintenance of the sites.

  • Mark Gilbertson, deputy assistant secretary for site restoration, DOE-EM Presentation 
  • Gwen Hooten, Office of Site Operations, DOE-Office of Legacy Management | Resource
Discussion of the Applicability of Sustainability for the Nation Report for Long-Term Stewardship Activities

Thursday, May 5, 2016

Update and Dialogue with DOE Office of Nuclear Energy on Consent-Based Siting

In Dec. 2015, the DOE Office of Nuclear Energy (NE) announced the launch of its consent-based siting initiative, which represents an important step toward addressing nuclear waste management. Jay Jones provided an update on NE’s activities and path forward.

Review of Wednesday Sessions and Determination of Path Forward

  • Mark Gilbertson, deputy assistant secretary for site restoration, DOE-EM
  • DOE Site Managers and Staff

DOE/Tribal Acquisition-Procurement Session

This session provided an opportunity to share information on acquisition opportunities and engage in dialogue on successful examples and alternatives to contracting. Tribal representatives left with information and ideas to share with the appropriate entities at their Tribes. 

DOE Update on Acquisition Opportunities and Participation in the National Center for American Indian Enterprise Development’s (NCAIED) Reservation Economic Summit 2016

  • Norbert Doyle, director, Office of Procurement Planning, DOE-EM  | Presentation
  • Steven Sylvester, small business program manager, DOE-EM
Brief Overview on Los Alamos Successes in Contracting with Tribes and Mentor-Protégé Program
  • Don Ami, DOE Los Alamos-NNSA 
 Brief Discussion of a Native American Owned Contracting Business
  • Roxie Schescke, president, Indian Eyes, LLC. (by phone)
 Other Site Examples and Alternatives to Contracting and Open Discussion 

Science, Technology, Engineering and Math (STEM) Initiatives and  Educational and Internship Opportunities for Tribal Nations

Overview of DOE-EM / STEM Opportunities
  • Junita Turner, Office of Human Capital, DOE-EM
General Discussion on Educational and Internship Opportunities with DOE Officials and STGWG Tribes

Next Steps and Timeline of Activities for STGWG Tribal Issues Committee

Meeting Resources