Greg Schmidt schmidt at DOGWOOD.BOTANY.UGA.EDU
Tue Mar 23 10:53:39 EST 1993

To: Recipients of Grants from DOE Basic Energy Sciences Programs
Subject: Office of Program Analysis Review

      In mid-February, DOE Energy Biosciences grantees received
notification that they will be subjected to an (additional)
external peer review by the DOE Office of Program Analysis during
the coming year as directed by "upper level DOE authorities". It is
my strong feeling that this procedure is obviously redundant and a
waste of federal funds: 200 PI's are to appear before panels of an
unknown number of peers, presumably in Washington. It can be
estimated that at an average cost of $1000 per person for travel
and accommodations alone, this activity will cost more than
$200,000, not accounting for the funds required for peer reviewers.
Additionally, grantees are required to expend considerable time and
effort to provide documentation concerning their research programs.
Again, this amounts to a needless reiteration of the competitive
grant review process.  

      It is relatively effortless to submit a complaint of
government agency waste concerning this matter by telephoning 1-
800-541-1625, the president's DOE Waste-Abuse-Fraud-Neglect
hotline. I found that the personnel were responsive to my protest
and were quite efficient in gathering details. Also, you are not
required to provide your names although I did so for the sake of
credibility. Perhaps the most significant question that I was asked
is whether my colleagues share my feelings.

Gregory W. Schmidt
Professor of Botany
University of Georgia
Athens, GA 30602-7271
schmidt at dogwood.botany.uga.edu

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