Unity of Effort
Centralization of surface ship maintenance
aims for greater efficiency and effectiveness
By RICHARD R. BURGESS, Managing Editor
Eyes on the I-Level
result of efficiency reductions
related to base realignment and
closures — “maintenance response
[had] slowed” and “total work
accomplished during maintenance
periods [had] declined.”
The FRP determined that the
Navy’s efforts to save manpower
with minimal crew efforts and
other efficiencies had negative
effects on ship maintenance. It
found that “shore billets for Sailors
to gain and hone maintenance
skills and technical expertise
before they return to the force
NAVSEA commander Vice Adm. Kevin McCoy and
the fleet commanders took action to address the FRP’s
concerns. Two of those were the creation of SURFMEPP
“In November 2010, Commander, SURFMEPP —
Surface Maintenance Engineering, Planning Program
— stood up,” said Fred Henney, spokesman for
CNRMC. “Their purpose was to look at all the ship
classes and come up with engineering programs to get
them through their expected service life, including the
basic availability work package development.”
The next step was the establishment of CNRMC.
Prior to October 2009, all of the various RMCs were
fleet owned and operated, Gale said. That changed
when some were placed under CNRMC, who reports
directly to the commander of NAVSEA.
CNRMC directly supervises RMC Southeast
(Mayport, Fla.), Southwest (San Diego) and the
Norfolk Ship Support Activity. The Norfolk activity
also supports ship repair in Naples, Italy, and Bahrain.
CNRMC has coordination responsibility with I-level
maintenance activities at RMC Northwest at Puget
Sound Naval Shipyard in Washington and the Hawaii
The Navy established Commander, Navy Regional Maintenance
Centers, to provide a single point of management for surface ship
; The effort focuses on restoring excellence to intermediate-level maintenance.
; The surface community adopted submarine and aircraft carrier
; Sailors return to the fleet with higher maintenance skills.
The centralization of the Navy’s regional ship maintenance activities under a single com- mand — which marked its first anniversary
this month — is steadily refocusing the service on
improving the upkeep of its surface warships.
Commander, Navy Regional Maintenance Centers
(CNRMC), headquartered in Norfolk, Va., under Rear
Adm. David J. Gale, was established on Dec. 15, 2010, in
large part as a response to a sweeping report that looked
at deficiencies in the maintenance of surface warships.
The CNRMC directs or coordinates the repair and
upkeep activities of the Navy’s surface fleet in the United
States and Japan through a number of facilities.
The Fleet Readiness Panel (FRP), formed in 2009 by
the commanders of the U.S. Fleet Forces Command and
U.S. Pacific Fleet and chaired by retired Vice Adm. Phillip
M. Balisle, a former commander of Naval Sea Systems
Command (NAVSEA), issued its report, “Fleet Review
Panel of Surface Force Readiness,” in February 2010.
The FRP found “degraded intermediate-level (I-level)
maintenance capability, capacity and responsiveness to
the fleet” and that I-level maintenance was “less respon-
sive than ten years ago.”
It also found that with the merger of I-level and
depot-level maintenance organizations — partially as a