Navy, Marine Corps Detail Plans to Address Readiness Issues

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The U.S. Marine Corps and Navy have announced plans to leverage commercial services, replace aging systems, accelerate ship and aircraft acquisition, build shipyard workforce and increase international partnerships to address recently found readiness issues.

Workforce shortfalls and gaps, ship maintenance delays and unavailable aircraft contributed to deployment challenges for the two military branches, the Government Accountability Office said in a new report posted Wednesday. 

John Pendleton, director of defense capabilities and management at GAO, said the Navy and Marines are also facing budgetary shortfalls and an aging and shrinking fleet of ships, submarines and aircraft. 

To address such issues, Navy Secretary Richard Spencer said his service plans to implement several corrective actions such as:

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  • Partnering with the private sector to maintain ships and aircraft
  • Speeding up acquisition of new weapon systems and ships
  • Increasing funding for maintenance by $1.1B 
  • Partnering shipyards with the private sector 
  • Increasing public shipyard workers from 34.9K to 36.7K

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Meanwhile, the Marine Corps plans to improve readiness by increasing investments in aviation, modernization, combat vehicles, close combat lethality equipment, cyber and ground equipment.

Both military branches also plan to strengthen alliances and attract new international partners through combined and joint exercises.

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