Congressman Ander Crenshaw today said that Navy Undersecretary Robert Work’s testimony at a July 22 House Armed Services Committee Hearing reaffirmed the 2010 Quadrennial Defense Review (QDR) ruling that national security dictates that Naval Station Mayport should homeport a nuclear aircraft carrier.
“Navy Undersecretary Work’s testimony underscored what four years of review, countless hearings, and intense review of comprehensive military analyses showed: national security grounds the decision that our country should have two nuclear aircraft carrier homeports on the East Coast,” said Crenshaw, a member of the House Appropriations Subcommittee on Military Construction, Veterans Affairs, and Related Agencies. “His testimony couldn’t be more clear, and I look forward to continuing my work here on Capitol Hill to direct key resources to Mayport.”
In response to Virginia Congressman Wittman’s inquiry on whether the Mayport decision requires further review under an efficiency initiative, the hearing transcript notes that Undersecretary Work responded:
“Sir, I don’t believe we do. There is a balance between strategic requirement as well as efficiencies. In this case, the department as affirmed by the QDR, that the strategic rationale for the homporting decision is a good one. And I’m reminded of – this reminds me somewhat of – before the DDG-1000 program was truncated, the Department of Navy wanted to single up into one yard for efficiency sake, And we made the case the we would wave about $300 million per board – or per ship.
“And it was the Congress that intervened and said look, you cannot take the risks of singling up into a single yard. Because what would happen if that yard was hit by a catastrophic event. And the wisdom of Congress was proven a year later in Katrina when the yard down in the Gulf Coast was knocked out for awhile.
“There was no objective risks analysis – would give you a number on why you would do that. It’s a strategic judgment of leadership that we basically say this is a good call. And would trump a mere efficiency argument.”