Navy Cuts Focus on Operations Budget
Navy commanders and senior managers were ordered Thursday to impose immediate cuts, including laying off temporary workers and trimming installation support, to mitigate the funding shortfall that would result if the Pentagon is forced to operate under a continuing resolution for the entire year.
Adm. Jonathan Greenert, chief of naval operations, directed commanders to:
- reduce spending on base operating support and plan to cancel repair and modernization of nearly all piers, runways, buildings and other facilities through September 2013;
- plan to cancel the majority of surface ship maintenance at private shipyards between April and September, affecting about 30 ships;
- plan to cancel all aircraft depot maintenance from April to September, affecting about 250 aircraft; and
- terminate temporary employees and implement a civilian hiring freeze, reducing the Navy’s shipyard workforce by more than 3,000 workers or almost 10 percent of the workforce.
“This is a big deal for all those yards here that have been hiring,” Craig Quigley, executive director of the Hampton Roads Military and Federal Facilities Alliance, told the Virginian-Pilot.
“They have been investing … They have been doing advance purchases. This completely pulls the rug out from under them,” Quigley said. The moves are expected to affect multiple Navy bases and private ship repair firms in southeast Virginia.
If the fiscal 2013 continuing resolution funding DOD is extended through Sept. 30, the Navy’s operation and maintenance account will fall $4.6 billion below its requirements for the year, according to the memo Greenert sent to senior officials.
Greenert’s memo follows the guidance Deputy Defense Secretary Ashton Carter issued earlier this month authorizing the services to consider a range of immediate actions and to conduct more detailed planning for longer-term budget uncertainty to prepare for the threat of sequestration, as well as to accommodate the possibility that DOD is funded under a stopgap spending bill for all of FY 2013.
Also last week, Thomas Lamont, assistant Army secretary for manpower and reserve affairs, directed officials to implement a service-wide hiring freeze, to terminate temporary employees and not to extend the appointments of term employees, reported Government Executive.