As widely predicted, the two AustalUSA built former Hawaii Superferries, Huakai, and Alaka, are at last going to wind up under Navy control. Shipbuilding guru Tim Colton has found the following tucked away in the Defense Authorization Act of 2012:
SEC. 1026. TRANSFER OF CERTAIN HIGH-SPEED FERRIES TO THE NAVY.
(a) TRANSFER FROM MARAD AUTHORIZED.—The Secretary of the Navy may, subject to appropriations, from funds available for the Department of Defense for fiscal year 2012, provide to the Maritime Administration of the Department of Transportation an amount not to exceed $35,000,000 for the transfer by the Maritime Administration to the Department of the Navy of jurisdiction and control over the vessels as follows:
(1) M/V HUAKAI.
(2) M/V ALAKAI.
(b) USE AS DEPARTMENT OF DEFENSE SEALIFT VESSELS.—Each vessel transferred to the Department of the Navy under subsection (a) shall be administered as a Department of Defense sealift vessel (as such term is defined in section 2218(k)(2) of title 10, United States Code).
December 19, 2011