Audit Report: OIG-19-14

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February 2, 2019

Management of Consultant Agreements at Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory

Since October 2007, Lawrence Livermore National Security, LLC has operated Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory (Livermore) for the National Nuclear Security Administration.  Livermore has a primary mission to strengthen the United States’ security through development and application of science and technology to enhance the Nation’s defense, reduce the global threat from terrorism and weapons of mass destruction, and respond to scientific issues of national importance.  In accomplishing its mission, Livermore uses a variety of methods for obtaining services, including consultant agreements.  For fiscal years 2013 through 2015, Livermore had 484 active consultant agreements, with incurred costs of approximately $6 million.  We initiated this audit to determine whether Livermore effectively managed and administered its consultant agreements.

In general, nothing came to our attention to indicate that Livermore had not effectively managed and administered its consultant agreements.  Livermore had a consultant agreement and claims administration in place to process consultant agreements and review consultant invoices.  In addition, Livermore established policies and procedures to reflect its management and operating contract requirements and applicable regulations.  However, we identified instances that would improve how Livermore manages and administers its consultant agreements. 

The issues we identified were due to weaknesses in Livermore’s internal policies and procedures, as well as a lack of implementation of Federal Acquisition Regulation requirements.  Specifically, Livermore’s policies and procedures did not provide clear guidance for mitigation plan monitoring responsibilities, consultant agreement renewals, and travel requirements.  In addition, Livermore did not always follow its internal policies and procedures.  Therefore, we made recommendations to ensure that Livermore’s consultant agreements are effectively managed and administered.

Topic: Management and Administration