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Document: HASC Readiness Committee Calls For LCS Sustainment Plan

From the May, 23 2013 House Armed Services Readiness Subcommittee mark:
The committee notes the critical nature of the Littoral Combat Ship (LCS)
program and the importance of the initial deployment of the USS Freedom to the
Republic of Singapore to test and refine operational support and sustainment
concepts. The LCS class takes a unique approach to maintenance which relies
heavily on contractor-provided maintenance in contrast to other Navy ship classes,
which typically use the Navy’s organic capabilities and U.S. shipyards to provide
maintenance. The Navy established an LCS Council to address major concerns
raised by several Navy reports on problems with the LCS’s manning, training, and
maintenance concepts, among other issues. This council has developed a plan of
action with milestones to bring high-level attention to resolving these issues as the
LCS class is introduced into the surface combatant fleet. Given the central role of
the LCS for the future of the surface fleet, the committee has concerns about the
Navy’s long-term sustainment plan. Therefore, the committee directs the
Comptroller General of the United States to analyze and review:
(1) Plans to collect and analyze data during the USS Freedom’s Singapore
deployment, as well as any mid-point or final reports of lessons learned from the
(2) Projected costs associated with providing preventive and depot
maintenance including, but not limited to, an analysis of the alternatives considered
in the use of contractor fly-away maintenance teams and U.S. Government and
commercial shipyards;
(3) Progress on meeting targets established in the LCS plan of action and
(4) Lifecycle cost estimates for the variants of the LCS and their associated
mission modules compared with other Navy ship classes; and
190(5)Any other issue that the Comptroller General determines appropriate
with respect to the sustainment of the LCS platform and its associated mission
modules, including modifications and improvements to reduce long-term
sustainment costs and improve efficiencies.
The committee directs the Comptroller General of the United States to
provide to the congressional defense committees a preliminary briefing by March 3,
2014, on the above factors, with a report or reports to follow by May 30, 2014.