BY MAIRE O’NEILL
New Mexico Environment Department and N3B, the legacy waste cleanup contractor at Los Alamos National Laboratory, have been notified that David S. Rhodes, director of the Office of Quality and Regulatory Compliance for the Department of Energy’s Environmental Management Los Alamos Field Office, has been placed on administrative leave pending an investigation.
EM-LA Field Office Manager Doug Hintze confirmed Rhodes’ status to the Los Alamos Reporter late Wednesday but declined to offer further comment.
When the Northern New Mexico Citizens Advisory Board joint committees convened in Pojoaque Wednesday afternoon, chair Stan Riveles announced that Dave Nickless would be taking over from Rhodes as the deputy designated federal officer for the board. Nickless is the EM-LA Completion of Project Delivery Director.
Rhodes is responsible for establishing and maintaining the quality assurance, radiological cleanup and property release. He is also responsible for Resource Conservation and Recovery Act and other hazardous waste, National Environmental Policy Act, groundwater monitoring and National Pollutant Discharge System regulatory, permitting and compliance programs for EM-LA.