Poliquin pushes for full funding of destroyer shipbuilding program at Bath Iron Works

U.S. Rep. Bruce Poliquin (R-ME) pushed for critical funding on Wednesday for the DDG-51 AEGIS Destroyer program at Bath Iron Works (BIW) shipyard in Maine.

Poliquin issued the call in a letter to U.S. Rep. Rodney Frelinghuysen (R-NJ), the chairman of the House Appropriations Subcommittee on Defense, in response to upcoming negotiations regarding Navy shipbuilding programs.

“The highly-skilled shipbuilders at Bath Iron Works manufacture the best, most dependable ships on the planet, contributing to our nation’s strength around the world,” Poliquin said. “America’s might depends on the Maine workers at BIW, and I am doing everything I can to secure these critical funds and make sure they have the support they need to help keep our nation strong, safe and free.”

The House previously approved a version of the Defense Appropriations bill for fiscal year 2017 that would fully fund DDG-51 programs while adding critical funding and support, but it would rescind $262 million of existing funds appropriated in the fiscal year 2016 appropriations bill.

“While the House bill takes several very positive actions towards funding the DDG-51 shipbuilding program, the bill also proposed to rescind or cancel $262 million of existing FY2016 appropriated funds for the same ship,” Poliquin wrote. “Should that proposed rescission be agreed to in conference and enacted, it would prevent, delay or render uncertain the procurement and construction of this required warship. The Senate Defense bill proposes no rescission of FY 2016 DDG-51 appropriated funds.”

Poliquin concluded the letter by requesting that House conferees agree to the Senate position on DDG-51 funding.

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