Funding Boost for 2010 Still
Falls Short of Shipbuilding Goals
Concerned that the Pentagon’s plans will leave the Navy short of its goal of at least a 313-ship fleet,
lawmakers approved a defense budget for fiscal 2010
that gives the service a modest boost in its shipbuilding accounts.
After months of deliberation and delays during
which the military was funded by a stopgap funding
resolution, Congress approved the final defense appropriations bill Dec. 19, nearly three months after the
start of the 2010 fiscal year.
Meanwhile, the fiscal 2011 budget request, along with
the much anticipated Quadrennial Defense Review of
military capabilities and requirements, will be sent to
Capitol Hill and released to the public in early February.
The final 2010 bill, which totals $636.3 billion,
includes $15 billion for shipbuilding, which is roughly
$120 million above the Obama administration’s request.
The funding buys seven Navy ships, including one
DDG 51 Arleigh-Burke class destroyer, one Virginia-class submarine, two Littoral Combat Ships (LCSs),
one intra-theater connector ship and two T-AKE auxiliary dry cargo/ammunition ships.
“The fiscal year 2010 shipbuilding budget request
from the Department once again falls short of the
quantity [of] ships nominally required to reach and
maintain the required fleet size of 313 ships,” according to the congressional report accompanying the bill.
The budget request had included eight ships, but
the Navy’s decision last year to restructure the LCS
program and decrease its fiscal 2010 buys ultimately
cut this year’s overall ship purchases to seven hulls.
Advanced procurement funding added to the final 2010
defense spending bill supports the restart of the Arleigh
Burke-class DDG 51 destroyer program, which will be built
again after Navy officials halted the DDG 1000 Zumwalt-
class destroyer program at three ships. The Arleigh Burke
destroyer USS Sampson is shown here Nov. 12 while
deployed in the Gulf of Oman.
In an effort to position the
Defense Department to request
more ships in fiscal 2011, appro-
priators inserted $170 million in
advanced procurement funding for
the LHA (Replacement) helicopter
assault ship and $250 million in
advance procurement funding for
the two DDG 51s planned for next
The advanced procurement funding added to the fiscal 2010 bill for
the DDG 51 “fully supports restart
of the DDG 51 program and provides additional funding in an effort
to restart the program in a more efficient and cost effective manner,”
according to the report on the bill.