FEBRUARY 14, 2014 — Eastern Shipbuilding Group, Inc., Panama City, FL, one of the three shipbuilders selected as a Phase I finalist for the Coast Guard's Offshore Patrol Cutter (OPC) program says it "will spend the next 18 months finalizing the engineering and ship design in order to become the final shipyard selected to build the first OPC."
Eastern, which has teamed with STX Marine and Northrop Grumman for its OPC design, says its $21,975,000 Phase I award will bring highly skilled technical jobs to Florida's Bay County over the next 18 months. It says winning the complete design and construction contract wouls create upwards of 2,000 direct jobs in Northwest Florida.
"The United States Coast Guard has evaluated numerous proposals from eight U.S. shipyards based on technical, management, past performance, and price factors," says the shipbuilder's President and CEO, Brian D'Isernia. "Affordability will be the central consideration for this acquisition. With a track record of 110 vessels built on-time and on-budget since 2002, we at Eastern believe that we are the best shipyard to produce the vessels which will cost effectively fulfill the United States Coast Guard Offshore Patrol Cutter Mission. Eastern's location in Northwest Florida is the perfect place for construction of the Coast Guard's Offshore Patrol Cutters. Bay and surrounding counties have a strong tradition of supporting the military and are honored to have bases located here for three branches of the Armed Forces, including the U.S. Coast Guard. An award of this value will represent a significant economic boom for Northwest Florida and Eastern will continue to be one of the State of Florida's top job producers."