Navy-Marine Corps Amphibious and Maritime Prepositioning Ship Programs: Background and Oversight Issues for Congress [Updated October 23, 2006]   [open pdf - 143KB]

From the Summary: "The Navy is proposing to maintain in coming years a Navy with 31 amphibious ships and an additional squadron of 14 Maritime Prepositioning Force (Future), or MPF(F), ships. The squadron is intended to implement a new concept called sea basing, under which forces would be staged at sea and used to conduct expeditionary operations ashore with little or no reliance on nearby land bases. For FY2007, the Navy is requesting $297 million in advance procurement funding for a ninth LPD [landing platform/dock]-17 class amphibious ship to be procured in FY2008, and $1,136 million in procurement funding for LHA [landing helicopter assault]-6, an amphibious assault ship to be procured in FY2007 using split funding in FY2007 and FY2008. Although the Navy's proposed force of 31 amphibious ships includes 10 LPD-17 class ships, the Navy is planning to end LPD-17 procurement in FY2008 with the ninth ship. Accelerating the procurement of the ninth LPD-17 class ship from FY2008 to FY2007 is an item on the Navy's FY2007 unfunded requirements list (URL) -- its 'wish list' of items desired but not funded in the FY2007 budget. Potential oversight issues for Congress include the amphibious-ship force-level goal, the potential affordability and cost-effectiveness of the sea basing concept, and Navy and Marine Corps coordination with other services in developing the concept."

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CRS Report for Congress, RL32513
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