NRC rejects license renewal applications for Pennsylvania company

WASHINGTON, D.C., Dec. 13, 2004 — The Nuclear Regulatory Commission has denied applications to renew the licenses of the Safety Light Corporation in Bloomsburg, Pa. The agency has also issued an Order suspending the licenses when they expire at the end of this month.

Two of Safety Light’s NRC licenses are the subject of these actions. Presently, the company manufactures self-luminous exit signs using tritium under one of its NRC licenses. The other license authorizes characterization and decommissioning of contaminated facilities, equipment and land from previous operations at the site.

In its application requesting the renewal of the two licenses, the company did not provide a decommissioning funding plan, as required, but instead requested that the NRC grant an exemption from this requirement.

The company made a similar request when renewing its licenses in 1999. The Commission granted that request with two conditions: that the company make payments to the decommissioning trust fund at a set schedule, and that the company demonstrate compliance with NRC requirements regarding decommissioning funding at the time of its next renewal. Because the company did not fully comply with those requirements, it has failed to satisfy both of the conditions for renewal of the licenses.

The NRC also issued an Order suspending the company’s licenses on Dec. 31 (when the current licenses expire), because the agency found that the failure to make the required payments was willful and adversely affected the safe conduct of activities under the company’s licenses. The Order also requires Safety Light to submit to the NRC by Dec. 20 a plan for an orderly shutdown of its licensed activities.

Because Safety Light did not comply with the Commission’s substantive requirements, “The staff does not have the requisite assurance in Safety Light’s ability to comply with those requirements in the future,” Jack R. Strosnider, Director of the Office of Nuclear Materials Safety and Safeguards, said. “Consequently, the staff is unable to make the requisite findings to grant an exemption.”

Safety Light has 20 days to request a hearing on this issue.

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