VH-71 Suffers Cost Breach and Connecticut is Lobbying

by: Matthew Potter
February 16, 2009

Category: Business Line, commercial aviation, Companies, Congress, Connecticut, Contract Awards, Department of Defense, development program, Events, Federal Budget Process, Lockheed Martin, Military Aviation, production program, Proposal, Restructuring, Services, Sikorsky, States, U.S. Navy, UTC | RSS 2.0

The Connecticut Post reports that the VH-71 new Presidential helicopter program suffered a “Nunn-McCurdy” cost breach. There are two levels of this breach and the higher one, a 25% increase, requires the Secretary of Defense to certify the program is still required for the U.S. national defense. The fine Senators and Congressmen from Connecticut have pricked up their ears at this development and want to meet with DoD to discuss canceling the program and giving it to Sikorsky. The contract with Lockheed Martin has seen considerable cost growth due to requirements creep since the contract was awarded. This has required wholesale changes to the EH-101 platform selected. Hence the great increase in cost and schedule for the program. Of course the DoD will have to weigh the savings if another vendor proposes something cheaper with the time required to restart the program. With a new administration it is conceivable that the contract could be canceled and started over, like ARH, but it probably won’t happen.

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