According to contract reforms announced earlier this year, the NNSA will conduct a bidding competition for a single contract to manage the Pantex Plant and Tennessee's Y-12 National Security Complex, which produces uranium parts for warheads.
There's also a contact option to manage operations at South Carolina's Savannah River Site, which handles tritium, a radioactive gas used in nuclear weapons.
The Amarillo Globe-News reports that NNSA official Patty Wagner said the agency will get public comments about the overall contract reform process before it issues the draft request for proposals -- a document spelling out government requirements for the contract. Wagner says the overall contracting process usually takes 12 to 18 months.
NNSA official Kim Gallegos said that after the agency issues its draft requests, it will hold another public comment period. Then contractors will submit bids.
Wagner said she could not say whether NNSA will issue an extension for the Pantex contract. The five-year contract for B&W Pantex, which manages and operates Pantex for the federal government, will expire in September.