Contractor to Pay $3.8M to Settle Federal Charges

     COLUMBIA, S.C. (CN) – Parsons Government Services Inc., a contractor at the Savannah River site, a federal research laboratory, will pay $3.8 million to settle charges it knowingly gouged the government by inflating worker relocation costs.
     Parsons, which is based in Pasadena, Calif., has been the primary construction contractor on the salt waste processing facility on the site, which is located near Aiken, S.C., since September 2002.
     According to federal prosecutors, Parsons sought and obtained reimbursement for relocation expenses “even for employees it knew did not qualify for these payments under the terms of the contract.”
     Parsons denied any wrongdoing, but said in a statement that it decided to settle the case rather than become involved in protracted and expensive litigation.
     The company emphasized that the dispute with the government was not related in any way to its performance in fulfilling its contracted obligations, and that the settlement “does not constitute an admission of liability on the part of Parsons.”
     “Parsons is pleased that the settlement has enabled it to put this matter behind it and looks forward to continuing to support its government customers,” the statement said.
     A spokesperson for the Savannah River Operations Office told Courthouse News the Department of Energy, which oversees the facility, did not wish to comment on the matter.

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