SIMMONS STATEMENT ON LAYOFFS AT ELECTRIC BOAT
Rep. Rob Simmons, R-2nd District, today released the following statement on the layoffs at
Electric Boat Corporation (EB) in New London, CT.
"Today's news is discouraging. But we have been working hard in Congress to curb future layoffs and bring jobs to the region,"
Simmons said. "The House has passed bills to build two subs per year, keep maintenance at the shipyard, re-compete a SEAL
mini-sub and encourage the sale of eight subs to Taiwan. We believe these congressional efforts will bring more jobs to EB in the
In Dec. 2005, EB announced planned layoffs at its southeastern New England locations. Days later, Simmons
outlined a wide-ranging plan to curb these planned layoffs at EB. Using his position as Vice-Chair of the Navy
Subcommittee, Simmons has authored and Congress has passed a number of provisions important to the workers at
Electric Boat. They include:
$400 million for advanced procurement items necessary to begin building two Virginia Class submarines in
2009 (instead of 2012 as currently planned).
Language requiring the Navy to maintain no fewer than 48 attack submarines, a force level floor that could
mean significant work for EB because the undersea fleet is expected to dip to 40 or less unless production
Language prohibiting the Navy from conducting maintenance on a U.S. submarine at a facility more than 200
miles away from the ship's homeport if the work can be performed there. The language also requires a full
report on the monetary and social costs of moving submarine maintenance work away from homeports.
$52 million for submarine research and development projects specifically at EB.
Language to make the Department of Defense re-compete the troubled Advanced SEAL Delivery System
(ASDS), a mini-submarine project EB is favored to win in an open and fair competition.
Language making it the policy of the United States to make available to Taiwan design work prior to construction of eight diesel electric submarines. In March, Simmons traveled to Taiwan, where he brokered a tentative deal to jumpstart an arms sale that would bring eight U.S.-made submarines to the island
These provisions passed as part of the fiscal year 2007 defense authorization bill. The bill passed the House on May
11 by a vote of 396 to 31.
In addition, last month Simmons obtained a formal commitment from the Chairman of the House Appropriations
Committee to make the increased funding for submarine production an issue when House and Senate conferees
meet later this year to iron out differences between the two annual defense appropriation bills.
Finally, Simmons joined Rep. Jim Langevin (D-RI) in forming the Congressional Submarine Caucus. Currently with
about 20 members, the Caucus serves as a foundation for pro-submarine legislation and spending measures.