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September 29, 2006

Senate panel votes $1.1 billion for DD(X)

The split between the House and Senate over how to treat the DD(X) destroyer program appears as wide as ever.

U.S. Senator Olympia J. Snowe (R-ME) announced today that the Senate Appropriations Committee has included $1.1 billion for the Navy's next generation destroyer program the DD(X) and $50 million for advanced procurement in the Fiscal Year (FY) 2006 Defense Appropriations bill. This legislation now awaits full consideration by the Senate.

In June, the House approved a $9.6 billion shipbuilding budget that slashed $1 billion from the DD(X) program and instead provided $1.4 billion for a new DDG-51 destroyer and $440 million for two Littoral Combat Ships that the Bush Administration hadn't asked for.

"The future of our national security is based on a robust and modern Navy," said Senator Snowe . "Today, the Senate Appropriations Committee took a step towards that goal by fully funding our next generation destroyers and providing money toward the advanced procurement of future ships. It was the joint effort of Maine's and Mississippi's Senators that we have come this far and it will be together that we will ensure that the level of funding in the Senate Appropriations bill for the DD(X) program is maintained. With a cohesive and dedicated group of advocates in the Senate, I believe that any cuts to this essential naval program will face stiff opposition. I continue to believe that we must give the Navy 21st Century weapons to fight 21st century wars. To give in to shortsighted attempts to save money would cripple the security of our nation," said Snowe.

The Senate Appropriations Committee's version of the FY 2006 bill provides $8.8 billion for shipbuilding programs.

It fully funds the Research, Development, Testing and Evaluation request for the DD(X) and for the Littoral Combat Ship (LCS) from this part of the budget, adds $50 million in advance procurement funding for DD(X), reduces the request for T-AKE due to construction delays and adds $86.7 million to the CVN-21 program to maintain schedule.

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