US Navy Picks Electric Boat As Prime Contractor For New Sub

Electric Boat is already designing 12 ballistic-missile submarines to replace the current fleet of 14.

(Image credit: U.S. Navy/Mark Turney/Released)
(Image credit: U.S. Navy/Mark Turney/Released)

The U.S. Navy has chosen General Dynamics Electric Boat to be the prime contractor for a new class of ballistic-missile submarines.

The Navy announced the selection and its submarine construction strategy for the next decade Monday night. Electric Boat is already designing 12 ballistic-missile submarines to replace the current fleet of 14.

Groton, Connecticut-based Electric Boat will perform about 80 percent of the construction work for the ballistic-missile submarines, according to U.S. Rep. Joe Courtney, a Connecticut Democrat. Newport News Shipbuilding in Virginia will do the rest.

The shipyards build two Virginia-class attack submarines annually under a teaming agreement.

A Navy statement says both shipbuilders will continue to build the attack submarines, though Newport News Shipbuilding will begin delivering more of them.

(Image credit: U.S. Navy/Mark Turney/Released)(Image credit: U.S. Navy/Mark Turney/Released)

The Navy is also now proposing to build two attack submarines instead of one in 2021, the year construction is scheduled to begin on the ballistic-missile submarines.

Courtney said the Navy has emphatically declared its submarine construction priorities and now has a plan for achieving them. The strategy means billions of dollars and thousands of jobs for southern New England, he added.

"There's going to be a lot of work and a lot of hiring," said Courtney, who noted that Electric Boat offered jobs to nearly 150 people at a job fair this month.

Congress would need to annually approve the construction funding. Some have been critical of the roughly $100 billion price tag to replace the ballistic-missile submarines.

Electric Boat employs about 14,100 people, mainly in Connecticut and Rhode Island. Employment is projected to grow to 18,000 by 2030 to build the ballistic-missile submarines.

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