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US revokes $5B contract to operate Nevada National Security Site

The National Nuclear Security Administration on Wednesday rescinded a $5 billion, 10-year contract it awarded last week to a Lockheed Martin subsidiary to manage and operate the Nevada National Security Site because the company did not tell the agency it had sold the unit.

“This change in ownership raises substantial questions about the information in the NVS3T proposal, which could significantly impact the evaluation of the proposal and award decision,” said a statement from the National Nuclear Security Administration, a branch of the Department of Energy.

The decision to rescind the contract to NVS3T — short for Nevada Site Science Support and Technologies Corp. — has prompted the federal agency to “reconsider all offers previously received in response to the request for proposals,” the statement said. Five competitors vied for the contract.

After the contract was awarded Friday, the agency learned Leidos Innovations Corp. had acquired NNS3T from Lockheed Martin, according to the statement. Leidos Innovations Corp. is part of Leidos Holdings, a Reston, Virginia, business that supports the U.S. intelligence community and military customers.

NVS3T was supposed to take over Sept. 30 from National Security Technologies LLC, with both companies sharing a four-month transition period to manage and operate the Nevada National Security Site, 65 miles northwest of Las Vegas.

NVS3T, headquartered in Gaithersburg, Maryland, was a wholly owned subsidiary of Lockheed Martin Integrated Technology LLC. Two other companies — Fluor Federal Services and Longenecker and Associates — were to support NVS3T under the contract.

The 1,360-square-mile site, formerly the Nevada Test Site, hosted full-scale nuclear weapons tests from 1951 to 1992. Among its current missions is to help ensure the safety and reliability of the U.S. nuclear weapons stockpile through scientific experiments.

Calls seeking comment from Leidos and Lockheed Martin Integrated Technology were not returned Wednesday.

Before 2013, Leidos had been known as Science Applications International Corp., or SAIC, which for years had a stake in the Department of Energy’s Yucca Mountain Project — the effort to study, license and build a repository for the nation’s highly radioactive waste in a ridge on the southwestern edge of the former Nevada Test Site.

SAIC teamed with Bechtel to serve as chief management contractor on the Yucca project from 2001 to 2009.

Contact Keith Rogers at krogers@reviewjournal.com or 702-383-0308. Find him on Twitter: @KeithRogers2.

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