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Governor Jindal said, “Specifically, the Navy has updated its shipbuilding procurement plan to push back the LCC program, which would have provided a great deal of work for Avondale after the LPD program. Moreover, the LPD 26 and the LPD 27 – transport warfare ships – would keep workers at Avondale busy through 2015. However, we learned from recent discussions with NG that the company could potentially move the construction of the LPD 26 and the LPD 27 both to Ingalls in MS, which would mean that shipbuilding at Avondale could end by 2012/2013.
“If the LPD program were to be completed early at Avondale, there is nothing significant left in the Avondale backlog and the Navy's 30-year plan, which leaves the facility without a major ship program to produce after about 2012.
“This presents a tremendous economic challenge to the Avondale area. The roughly 5,000 direct jobs at the Avondale site support about 6,500 additional indirect jobs in the
“Two weeks ago, Secretary Moret briefed our Congressional delegation on this issue and the need for a correction to the Navy’s procurement plan to ensure that these jobs are not lost at Avondale and in the
“Northrop Grumman indicated to us that Northrop Grumman does not intend to keep Avondale open for the long term in the absence of a viable Navy shipbuilding program there. It does appear that the yard should stay active in the short-term, but it also is likely that the total employment level could decline over this period of time.
“Let me be clear – we will do everything we can to secure the future of Avondale, the workers who depend on this company and the communities around them that are all tied to the work done here.”
Governor Jindal said the state has already begun discussions with potential buyers and tenants in order to secure employment at Avondale. The Governor said, “We are asking the federal government not to turn its back on
“We continue to tell the federal government and Secretary of the Navy Ray Mabus that the best solution is for the Navy to restore shipbuilding levels to enable Avondale to continue operations at full strength. The bottom line is that – we will continue doing everything we can, from calling on the federal government to not turn their backs on this important facility to exploring every alternative to secure Avondale and the 5,000 jobs at the site that support thousands of our
The Governor went on to note that
“Additionally, the Administration called for the cancellation of NASA’s Constellation program, which is resulting in the loss of more than 2,000 direct jobs in
“More recently, the deepwater drilling moratorium, which was not even supported by the Administration’s own handpicked experts, has already begun destroying thousands of jobs and is eventually expected to destroy roughly 20,000 direct and indirect
“By any reasonable measure, our economy has outperformed the South and the
“At a time when our country is facing the most severe recession we have faced in decades, we should be focusing on job retention and job creation. We need the Administration and Secretary Mabus to recognize the importance of this facility to our state and to work with us to protect and create jobs here.”
The Congressional delegation has agreed to meet with Secretary Mabus in the upcoming week to discuss ways to secure employment at Avondale.
(Bayoubuzz will post governor Jindal's updated statement upon receipt)
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