Governor Rell: Navy Signs Letter Accepting Latest Military Value Projects at Sub Base
Governor M. Jodi Rell today announced that Secretary of the Navy Raymond Mabus Jr. has signed a letter accepting the state’s funding for a pair of new projects on the U.S. Navy submarine base at Groton – one to house a high-tech submarine bridge simulator and another to create a training kitchen for sub-based culinary specialists.
The projects are part of Governor Rell’s ongoing effort to maintain and improve the military value of the sub base, which contributes billions of dollars a year to the state’s economy and is responsible for more than 15,000 jobs. In September 2009, the Navy agreed to accept $7.65 million from the state for construction of a diving support facility and a new boiler at the base – the first time ever that a state fully funded construction projects on a base.
“Five short years ago our submarine base was slated for closure under the Base Realignment and Closure (BRAC) process – and we worked together to save it,” Governor Rell said. “The base means too much to the nation from the standpoint of defense – and too much to Connecticut from an economic perspective – for us to ever have to wage that kind of battle again. These projects help ensure the ‘military value’ of the base, which is the criteria for base closure, and reduce the likelihood it will be placed on a closing list in any future BRAC rounds.
“I greatly appreciate the spirit of cooperation we have received from Secretary Mabus and other Navy officials,” the Governor said. “Connecticut is the first state in the nation to fully fund these kinds of projects, complementing much larger federal investments and demonstrating our commitment to remaining the ‘Submarine Capital of the World.’ And anyone who has visited the sub base over the last few years will marvel at the changes – it is now a thriving and vibrant campus, suited to its role as the home of the nation’s ‘sub school.’ I’m proud of the role the state has played in this transformation and look forward to our continuing relationship.”
The first of the new projects will build a $2.48 million addition to an existing building on the base to house the new Submarine Bridge Trainer – a high-tech, interactive simulator used to train the officers and sailors in submarine navigation. Funding for the $4 million simulator itself is already included in the Navy budget.
The second, $740,000 state project will convert an existing but underused area of the base into a full-size replica of a Virginia-class submarine’s galley, where future culinary specialists can master the particular challenges of cooking and serving meals in a submarine.
The state’s $10 million will complement the approximate $90 million in federal investments for projects in progress at the base.
A formal acceptance ceremony at the base is planned for later this month.