A group of lawmakers has written to President-elect Barack Obama asking for his support in boosting submarine production. The letter was organized by Connecticut congressman Joe Courtney.
Groton shipyard Electric Boat has just celebrated the signing of a new $14 billion contract with the Navy for eight more Virginia class submarines. The agreement increases production to two subs per year by 2011, in effect securing the future of the waterfront workforce in Groton, and adding at least a thousand jobs over the next several years.
Now second district representative Joe Courtney has written a letter to the President-elect, signed by a bipartisan group of 28 House members, urging him to preserve the new agreement as he contemplates some tough financial decisions. Courtney calls the Virginia program a shining example of how shipbuilding can and should be done, citing its record of cost reduction and quality, as well as its national security value.
"The momentum that we started over the last 18 months, 24 months, to invest more in the Virginia class program, is something that all of us feel very strongly should not be allowed to deteriorate. We wanted as early as possible to give the incoming administration a heads up that this is a real success story in the Navy and that we want to maintain the investment that we began."
The letter says the program is of critical importance to the nation’s current and long-term defense.