Navy Virginia (SSN-774) Class Attack Submarine Procurement: Background and Issues for Congress [September 2, 2011] [open pdf - 455KB]
"The Navy has been procuring Virginia (SSN-774) class nuclear-powered attack submarines (SSNs) since FY1998. Fourteen have been procured through FY2011, and another two are requested for FY2012. The eight boats to be procured in the five-year period FY2009-FY2013 (boats 11 through 18, in annual quantities of 1-1-2-2-2) are being procured under a multiyear procurement (MYP) arrangement. The Navy's proposed FY2012 budget requests $3,232.2 million in procurement funding to complete the procurement cost of the 15th and 16th Virginia-class boats. The FY2012 budget estimates the combined procurement cost of these two boats at $5,142.8 million, and under Navy budget plans the boats are to receive a total of $1,910.5 million in prior-year advance procurement (AP) and Economic Order Quantity (EOQ) funding. The Navy's proposed FY2012 budget also requests $1,524.8 million in AP funding for Virginia-class boats to be procured in future years. The Navy's 30-year SSN procurement plan, if implemented, would not be sufficient to maintain a force of 48 SSNs consistently over the long run. The Navy projects that the SSN force will fall below 48 boats starting in 2024, reach a minimum of 39 boats in 2030, and remain below 48 boats through 2041. On September 1, 2011, it was reported that the Navy, in response to anticipated reductions in planned levels of defense spending, is considering a variety of budget-cutting options, but has identified attack submarines as a high priority and wants to preserve the two-per-year procurement rate for the Virginia-class program."
CRS Report for Congress, RL32418