Spending deal bolsters shipyard improvement plan funding

By Aidan Quigley / March 9, 2022 at 11:58 AM

The Navy's plan to improve the infrastructure at its public shipyards received a significant increase in the final fiscal year 2022 spending package, released early Wednesday morning.

Congress allocated an additional $564 million for the Shipyard Infrastructure Optimization Plan, on top of the $280 million the Biden administration initially requested.

The bill, released early Wednesday morning, totaled $782 billion for U.S. defense, which is $30 billion more than the administration requested and $4 billion more than lawmakers previously authorized.

The SIOP, initially a 20-year, $21 billion program, has faced questions from Congress on schedule delays and cost overruns. The Navy completed digital twin models of the four shipyards last fall, a major step in the program.

Of the additional $564 million included in the bill for the SIOP, $200 million will go toward additional facility renovations, $64 million for base operating support costs and $300 million for additional industrial equipment, according to a summary released by the Senate Appropriations Committee.

The bill also includes an additional $269 million for unfunded priorities related to the Marine Corps Force Design 2030 effort, which is preparing the service for a potential conflict in the Pacific with China.