PSH-20-0031 - In the Matter of Personnel Security Hearing

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On April 3, 2020, an Administrative Judge determined that an Individual should not be granted access authorization under 10 C.F.R. Part 710. The Individual completed an
Electronic Questionnaire for Investigations Processing (e-QIP) on which he disclosed that, since 1993, he had been arrested for Driving Under the Influence (DUI) three times,
domestic violence, and marijuana possession. A DOE-contracted psychologist (DOE Psychologist) evaluated the Individual and, based on the Individual's report that he consumed
approximately twenty-eight alcoholic drinks each week and the results of a Phosphatidylethanol (PEth) test which confirmed that the Individual was consuming significant
quantities of alcohol, opined that the Individual habitually consumed alcohol to the point of impaired judgment. The DOE Psychologist recommended that the Individual abstain from
alcohol for nine months, document his abstinence with PEth testing, and attend counseling. At the hearing, the Individual testified that he had abstained from alcohol for approximately thirteen months, but had decided not to pursue the counseling recommended by the DOE Psychologist based on his success abstaining on his own. The Individual also provided numerous PEth test results which were negative for traces of alcohol. However, one of the  PEth tests was positive and there was a gap of over five months between tests during one period in which the Individual asserted that he had abstained from alcohol. The DOE Psychologist testified that, in his opinion, the Individual had demonstrated rehabilitation, but that the Individual was at a higher risk of relapse than he would have been had he pursued counseling. The Administrative Judge determined that the period of the Individual's abstinence
was not sufficiently certain, and that the Individual had not demonstrated sufficient insight into his alcohol-related problems or efforts to address the causes of these problems, to establish that he would not relapse into problematic alcohol consumption as he had after each of his alcohol-related arrests. Thus, the Administrative Judge determined that the Individual had not mitigated the security concerns raised by the local security office under Guideline G of the Adjudicative Guidelines. As the Individual had not resolved the issues that led him to commit alcohol-related criminal offenses, the Administrative Judge likewise concluded that the risk of he Individual reoffending in the future was too high to conclude that the Individual had resolved the security concerns asserted by the local security office under Guideline J of the Adjudicative Guidelines. Therefore, the Administrative Judge determined that the Individual should not be granted access authorization. OHA Case No. PSH-20-0031 (Richard A. Cronin, Jr.).