On August 16, House Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure Chair Peter DeFazio (D-OR) and Ranking Member Sam Graves (R-MO) asked the U.S. Government Accountability Office (GAO) to review the significant delivery delays of the Offshore Patrol and Polar Security Cutters, as well as related budgetary issues. The Offshore Patrol Cutter fleet is the largest vessel procurement the Coast Guard has undertaken, and Polar Security Cutter acquisition is the most complex.
In a pair of letters to the GAO Comptroller General, Chair DeFazio and Ranking Member Graves highlighted the amount of time and billions of dollars that the U.S. Coast Guard has spent so far on both the Offshore Patrol and Polar Security Cutters and urged GAO to review the management of the acquisitions.
In their letter regarding the Offshore Patrol Cutters, the Members wrote: “Given the significant budgetary commitment that the Congress, DHS, and Coast Guard have made for the OPC program to date, continued oversight is necessary to ensure the OPC program does not continue to experience cost growth or additional schedule delays. As such, the Committee requests that the Government Accountability Office (GAO) review the management of the OPC and Medium Endurance Cutters acquisition programs…”
Similarly, in their letter about the Polar Security Cutters, the Members wrote: “Given the schedule delays and potential for cost growth, continued oversight of the PSC program is critical. As such, the Committee requests that the Government Accountability Office (GAO) review the management of the PSC acquisition program and the Coast Guard’s efforts to address icebreaking capability gaps until the PSCs are fully operational…”