Stefany: Navy to send 30-year shipbuilding plan to Congress in coming days

By Aidan Quigley / June 17, 2021 at 12:52 PM

Acting Navy acquisition chief Jay Stefany told lawmakers Thursday the Navy has finalized its 30-year shipbuilding plan and will be sending it to Congress in the coming days.

"My understanding is the final chops on it were yesterday and my hope would be tomorrow, maybe Monday at the latest, you would get that plan," Stefany said during a House Armed Services seapower and projection forces subcommittee hearing.

The outgoing Trump administration submitted a plan in December 2020 calling for an over-400-ship battle force fleet by 2045, with an additional 119 unmanned surface vessels and 24 unmanned subsurface vessels by FY-45.

Lawmakers and analysts questioned the financial feasibility of the plan, and the Biden administration's FY-22 budget submission cut procurement and funded just eight ships.

Stefany said the Navy does not plan to send Congress a future years defense program budget this fiscal year, with the first FYDP being included in the FY-23 budget.

"That is the direction we have gotten from the department, that we are not going to provide one," Stefany said. "I cannot tell you why, the logic there."

Subcommittee Ranking Member Rob Wittman (R-VA) said he is frustrated that Congress will not receive a FYDP.

"I think it is unfortunate and regrettable that we won't get a future years defense plan," he said.

Subcommittee Chairman Joe Courtney (D-CT) said the Trump administration in its first year also did not submit a FYDP, though "two wrongs do not make a right."

"Particularly when we're talking about transition type of plans, you've got to have more than a one-year set of highlights," he said. "Hopefully, maybe we can follow up, as we did last year, in terms of the absence of a 30-year plan, to really just say there's a reason that's in law, and it's really to help everybody."