Senate Armed Services adds a second destroyer to Navy budget

Arleigh Burke DDG-51 class destroyer [Image HII]

Posted on July 26, 2021

The Senate Armed Services Committee has passed a version of the FY 2022 National Defense Authorization Act that puts back the second Arleigh Burke class destroyer that the Navy had cut from its request. It also provides an additional $270 million for a further expeditionary fast transport vessel. There’s also pushback against the Navy’s plan to decommission more ships than it builds.

Here are extracts from the executive summary of the Seapower Subcommittee’s mark:

DESTROYERS

• Authorizes $3.716 billion for Arleigh Burke-class destroyers, an increase of $1.7 billion to restore a second guided missile destroyer to the budget.

• Authorizes an increase of $125.0 million for long lead material for a third FY23 Arleigh Burke-class destroyer.

• Authorizes an increase of $50.0 million for surface combatant industrial base stability initiatives.

• Expresses support for an acquisition strategy for the next generation destroyer that would feature greater collaboration between industry and the government, taking lessons from early successes in the Columbia-class program, and directs the Secretary of the Navy to provide a report on the use of such acquisition practices in the next generation destroyer program.

• Expresses support for a new multi-year procurement of destroyers beginning in fiscal year 2023 to support the shipbuilding industrial base and expansion of the Navy battle force to congressionally mandated levels.

AMPHIBIOUS SHIPS

• Extends through fiscal year 2022 an authority granted in last year’s NDAA to enter into a multi-ship procurement for amphibious vessels.

• Authorizes $250 million for LPD Flight II advance procurement, an increase of $250 million to support a multi-ship procurement or long-lead time material procurement for amphibious warships.

• Expresses continued support for a multi-ship procurement of amphibious warships and directs the Secretary of the Navy to provide a report on several potential acquisition strategies for such platforms.

• Directs the Secretary of the Navy to provide a report on various options to improve the lethality and survivability of the San Antonio-class amphibious assault ship.

NAVY STRATEGY

• Requires the Navy to develop a 15-year acquisition, modernization, and sustainment plan for the entire carrier air wing, building off the FY21 NDAA requirement to produce a fighter force structure acquisition strategy.

• Limits transfer of certain operational test flight events and reduction in operational flight test capacity pending certain certifications.

• Directs the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff and the Chief of Naval Operations (CNO) to provide reports detailing forces that may be appropriate to allocate to SOUTHCOM if additional forces were available, as well as the potential use of platforms that would otherwise be decommissioned for such missions.

• Authorizes $192.2 million for F/A-18 research and development, including an increase of $3 million for the incorporation of artificial intelligence on legacy platforms such as the F/A-18.

• Requires updated Navy battle force ship assessment and requirement reporting when DOD updates strategic guidance.

• Expresses support for the replacement of aging training vessels used by the United States Naval Academy and directs the Secretary of the Navy to provide a report on the options to improve surface warfare officer ship handling training.

SHIPBUILDING

• Prohibits the early retirement of naval vessels unless the Secretary of the Navy makes certain certifications to Congress.

• Requires the Navy to establish a position of Deputy Commander of the Naval Sea Systems Command for the Supervision of Shipbuilding, Conversion, and Repair to improve oversight and administration of shipbuilding contracts.

• Authorizes $418.6 million for the LHA replacement, an increase of $350 million to gain efficiencies by accelerating construction of LHA-9.

• Authorizes $270.0 million for expeditionary fast transport vessels, an increase of $270.0 million.

• Reduces $299.9 million requested to purchase used sealift vessels, since the prior-year funds have not been obligated.

• Directs the Secretary of the Navy to provide a report on further risk reduction efforts for the Constellation-class frigate (FFG-62) program.

• Requires the inclusion of naval vessel expected service lives in the annual naval vessel construction plan.

• Requires continued reporting on Littoral Combat Ship mission package development and fielding.

• Requires a comparative assessment of shipbuilding purchasing power in the United States, China, and Russia.

• Authorizes $3.1 billion for the Columbia-class submarine program, an increase of $130 million, for industrial base development and expansion in support of the Virginia and Columbia shipbuilding programs.

Source

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