An investigation released Wednesday into whistleblower complaints about the leadership of the Northwest’s only nuclear plant found performance measures have declined but that management did not try to deliberately hide that information.

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An investigation released Wednesday into whistleblower complaints about the leadership of the Northwest’s only nuclear plant found performance measures have declined but that management did not try to deliberately hide that information.

The 1,190-megawatt Columbia Generating Plant — operated by Energy Northwest — is located near Richland. It generates enough electricity to power a city the size of Seattle and sells that energy, at cost, to the Bonneville Power Administration.

Anonymous whistleblowers detailed numerous concerns, including poor performance indicators that they alleged were deliberately not disclosed at a meeting last year to the executive board of Energy Northwest.

Earlier this year, the executive board hired Pillsbury, which conducts corporate investigations, to look into the whistleblower allegations.

Pillsbury interviewed some 50 people and reviewed hundreds of documents, according to Energy Northwest. Investigators found that performance measures cited by whistleblowers had fallen. But they did not substantiate one of the most serious allegations — that poor performance is being hidden from employees, governing boards and the public.

The investigation also found there has been “inconsistent communications” regarding performance, and that the senior plant management used incorrect data last year in a report to the executive board that made performance look better than it was.

“We as a board now have a responsibility to review these findings,” and develop corrective action,” said Sid Morrison, executive board chair.

In a second phase of the investigation, Pillsbury will examine the overall work environment at the nuclear-power plant.

Over the months the whistleblowers have communicated with journalists and the board about their concerns.

In a letter sent to The Seattle Times, they allege that six out of 14 senior reactor operator candidates failed a 2015 Nuclear Regulatory Commission licensing exam in what they say was a failure of “management oversight.”