A separate dispute remains over Exelon
, which has hired many of the Wackenhut guards but did not hire Beal
did not meet the criteria, but Wachtel said Exelon
cited a one-day suspension that Beal
received for being eight minutes late for work one day.The suspension was given after Beal
tried to alert supervisors to the sleeping guards.
was taken aback when he
discovered last March that many of his
fellow security guards at the Peach Bottom nuclear power plant in Pennsylvania were taking regular naps in what they called "the ready room."When he
spoke to supervisors at his
company, Wackenhut Corp.
, they told Beal
to be a team player.When he alerted the regional office of the Nuclear Regulatory Commission, regulators let the matter drop after the plant's owner, Exelon, said it found no evidence of guards asleep on the job.
videotaped the sleeping guards.
Region I was unable to substantiate the allegation until Beal
came forward with his
video footage (INRC, 1 Oct., 1)., Brian of POGO said October 31 that Exelon's decision not to hire Beal "is the stupidest thing they could have done.
Wachtel said last week that Beal
is considering possible legal action against Exelon Nuclear, and feels that "we have a good case" that the company's decision not to hire Beal
was "retaliation" for his whistleblowing activities.
NRC's Sheehan said that the issue of possible retaliation against Beal
"will be addressed" in the agency's ongoing reviews.
, who secretly videotaped guards sleeping near the nuclear reactor at Peach Bottom this summer, had his
computer hard drive seized as part of the federal investigation into the plant after the videos were leaked to a New York TV station in September.Earlier this week, Warrenville, Ill.-based Exelon Nuclear fired Beal because he
"did not meet the selection criteria" for continuing to work at the plant as it transitions to an in-house security staff, according to a letter obtained by the watchdog group Project on Government Oversight.
...Beal had been working for Palm Beach-based Wackenhut Security.
had never submitted an application and has been on administrative leave since the investigation began, but he
received the letter notifying him of his
"non-hiring" on Oct. 25 , also the last day of Wackenhut's contract at the plant.
, who publicly identified himself as the whistleblower earlier this month, said in an interview with Platts last week that on at least two occasions since NRC's investigation began, he
was given a complete list of Peach Bottom security guards and asked by agency investigators to identify every guard he
had personally seen sleeping on duty., "Everybody [at Peach Bottom] is fearful for their jobs.If they talk to NRC
or anybody, it eventually gets right back to Wackenhut
," Beal said last week.For the NRC
to ask Wackenhut or Exelon
to investigate inattentive guards, Beal
said, is "like asking a murderer to go out and do an investigation on himself.What evidence are you going to find?None.", Danielle Brian, executive director of the Project on Government Oversight, said in an October 16 letter to NRC Chairman Dale Klein that "it now appears" that NRC is "investigating" Beal and "subpoenaing the hard drive from Mr. Beal's personal computer."
"Please redirect the efforts of the NRC
to focus on the public policy implications raised by Mr. Beal's
whistleblowing, rather than intimidating or shooting the messenger of bad news," Brian said.
There are "no other outstanding requests" from NRC
, Wachtel said.