Yesterday was Submarine Day at the House Armed Services Committee; some stories about the testimony given by RADM Breckenridge (N87) and RADM Johnson (PEO SUBS) are here and here. Highlight:
“With the accelerated retirement of Los Angeles-class submarines, our nation will drop below the 48-boat goal starting in 2025,” said Rep. Randy Forbes, R-Va., chairman of the HASC Subcommittee on Seapower and Projection Forces. “We need to ensure strategy drives our budget and that we give a voice to our combatant commanders. We need to be sure that we provide them with every resource.”Other discussion centered on how the Navy was basically assuming Congress would come up for the money for the Government-Furnished Equipment (GFE) for new submarines in time, rather than paying for it up front.
The Navy’s current fleet of 55 attack submarines, or SSNs, will drop down to 42, Rear Adm. Richard Breckenridge, director of undersea warfare said in written testimony . Four guided missile submarines, or SSGNs, will retire and the Navy’s current fleet of 14 Ohio-class ballistic missile submarines, or SSBNs, will drop to 10, Breckenridge wrote.
“The total submarine force will drop from 73 to 52 ships — a cut of 29 percent – before rebounding in the 2030s. The vertical strike payload volume provided by the undersea force will drop by well over half. This trough is borne of the submarine shipbuilding hiatus of the 1990s, and no realistic build plan could now prevent it,” said Breckenridge.
Where do you see the Submarine Funding wars going? Are we Congress will generate more funding to be able to stay above the 45 boat threshold, or will we actually bottom out at 42?