The Department of Energy (DOE) will definitely be leaner in the future, if not outright abolished by the newly Republican Congress. To get a jump on Republicans as well as to help pay for a middle-class tax cut, President Clinton proposes to cut DOE's budget by $10.6 billion over the next five years-a 10-percent cut in the agency's $18-billion annual budget.
Energy Secretary Hazel R. O'Leary has formed a 35-member "structure team" of agency employees and outside industry experts to plan "a new DOE." The external steering committee, headed by Mark De Michele, president and CEO of Arizona Public Service Co. (APS) will submit its report April 29. Deputy secretary Bill White, head of the internal steering committee, says he will use De Michele's restructuring of APS as a model for reorganizing DOE: "APS identified the core businesses it wanted to be in, then used employees to define what value they can add." The restructuring will extend to personnel. O'Leary already was planning to cut headquarters staff by 8 percent over five years, field offices by 5 percent, and contracting personnel (the largest segment) by 20 percent-paring 1,200 from DOE's 20,000-person staff, and 28,000 from its 144,000 contract employees.