January 9, 2002
Navy may buy Ingalls cruise ships
Harry Potter's Hogwarts Castle is not the only place they shake a mean magic wand. Another is the U.S. Congress. Tucked away in the House-Senate conference report on the FY2002 Defense Appropriations Bill is this little gem, under the heading "Mobile Deployable Assets":
In the wake of the tragic events of September 11, 2001, the conferees are concerned that future deployments of United States forces may expose personnel to the risk of terrorist attack similar to the bombing of Khobar Towers in Saudi Arabia and the Marine barracks in Beirut. Instead of building vulnerable fixed barracks for United States forces deployed in highly dangerous locations, the conferees believe the Navy should give the highest consideration to acquiring mobile, deployable assets, which could provide additional "in situ" hospital, housing, MWR, or command and control capability. The conferees recommend that the Navy expeditiously pursue the possibility of capitalizing MARADloan guarantees for up to two multipurpose passenger ships presently under construction in a United States shipyard.
A Reuters story yesterday quoted a Northrop Grumman spokesman as saying that the company is still in talks with bankrupt AMCV about the two cruise ships on which Northrop's Ingalls yard has now stopped work, but that it was "looking at all possibilities.
"Congress has stepped in, asking the Navy to consider completing the program,'' Reuters quotes Randy Belote, as saying, adding ``We discussed this with Congress.''
An admiral takes the helm at Avondale
Northrop Grumman Corporation has announced that Rear Adm. George R. Yount, USN (Ret.), has been named vice president of its Ship Systems sector, with responsibility for operations at the Avondale facility.
Yount, 55, will join Ship Systems' senior management team in mid-January. He will have responsibility for 5,000 craft and ship management personnel involved in ship construction as well as production planning, scheduling and facility engineering. He will also serve on the Ship Systems Policy Council which influences all future Northrop Grumman Ship Systems business decisions.
Yount has served 33 years in the United States Navy, retiring in September 2001, following an assignment as deputy commander for Integrated Warfare Systems, Naval Sea Systems Command.
His shore assignments include director, Supportability, Maintenance and Modernization, on the staff of the Chief of Naval Operations; commander, Naval Ordnance Center; and commander, Puget Sound Naval Shipyard. Additionally, he served at the Mare Island Naval Shipyard; Portsmouth Naval Shipyard; Norfolk Naval Shipyard; Supervisor of Shipbuilding, Newport News, Va.; and the Engineer and Repair Department, Naval Submarine Base, New London, Conn.
He became deputy commander for Integrated Warfare Systems, Naval Sea Systems Command, in July 1998.