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Navy LPD-17 Amphibious Ship Procurement: Background, Issues, and Options for Congress

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On April 6, 2009, Secretary of Defense Robert Gates announced a number of decisions regarding the Department of Defenses DODs proposed FY2010 defense budget. Among these was a decision to defer the procurement of an 11th San Antonio LPD-17 class amphibious ship and of another sealift-type ship called the Mobile Landing Platform, or MLP from FY2010 to FY2011 in order to assess costs and analyze the amount of these capabilities the nation needs. The Navys proposed FY2010 budget requests 872.4 million in procurement funding to complete the cost of the 10th LPD-17, which was authorized but only partially funded in FY2009. The FY2010 budget estimates the procurement cost of this ship at 1,852.5 million. The ship has received 980.1 million in prior-year funding, most of which was provided in FY2009. The proposed FY2010 budget also requests 184.6 million in advance procurement AP funding for an 11th LPD-17 class ship to be procured in FY2011. Although the Navys planned 313-ship fleet calls for a 31-ship amphibious force that includes 10 LPD-17s, Navy and Marine Corps officials agree that a 33-ship amphibious force that includes 11 LPD-17s would be needed to minimally meet the Marine Corps goal of having an amphibious ship force with enough combined capacity to lift the assault echelons AEs of two Marine Expeditionary Brigades MEBs. A 33-ship force would include 15 amphibious ships for each MEB, and three additional ships to account for 10 to 15 of the amphibious ship force being in overhaul at any given time. Marine Corps and Navy officials agree that a 38-ship amphibious force would more fully meet the Marine Corps 2.0 MEB AE amphibious lift requirement. Such a force would include 17 amphibious ships for each MEB, and four additional ships to account for 10 to 15 of the amphibious ship force being in overhaul at any given time.

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  • Marine Engineering

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