June 20, 2024

100% ID Check at Pax River

Morning Coffee is a robust blend of links to news around the internet concerning the Naval Air Station Patuxent River Morning Coffee logoeconomic community. The opinions expressed here do not reflect opinions of the Leader’s owners or staff.

NAS Patuxent River has instituted a 100 % ID check policy for all personnel entering the base. While the Trusted Traveler Program remains in effect, all vehicle passengers must present valid state or federal government ID in order to gain entry to the base. For more information about base access, visit here or call the Pax River Visitor Control Center at 301-342-3231.

Two Coast Guard cutters are stuck in the service’s Curtis Bay shipyard, with five others unable to get in for scheduled maintenance due to the Francis Scott Key Bridge collapse, reports USNI. The Coast Guard shipyard in Curtis Bay, MD, is located off of Curtis Creek, a tributary of the Patapsco River, the river in which the shipping channel from Port of Baltimore flows. It is the service’s only maintenance shipyard.

Nineteen retired generals, admirals, and former top civilian defense officials have filed a brief with the US Supreme Court opposing former President Donald Trump’s bid for immunity from prosecution, reports Stars and Stripes. The 38-page amicus brief includes officials from Democratic and Republican administrations dating back to former President John F. Kennedy, as well as four-star generals from the Army, Air Force and Marines, and Navy and Coast Guard admirals.

The Air Force is betting a large part of its future air warfare on a fleet of more than 1,000 autonomously operated drones, reports Military.com. At a Senate hearing on the service’s 2025 budget on Tuesday, AFSec Frank Kendall said he will enter the cockpit of one of the F-16s converted for drone flight to see for himself how it performs in the air.

Navy drones going into the future will have to be cheap, topping out at about $15 million per unit. RADM Stephen Tedford, the Navy’s program executive for unmanned systems and weapons said, “I want something that’s going to fly for a couple hundred hours. The last hour it’s either a target or a weapon. I’m either going to hit something with it or I’m going to train [a sensor on it] and shoot it down. But I’m not going to sustain them for 30 years.

A proposed transfer of Air National Guard space units into the Space Force is a unique circumstance and will not set a precedent for other services to follow, reports Breaking Defense. The move would involve around 700 Guard members. Legislators are not yet sold on the idea.

A recent Navy contract award may have extended the lifespan of Boeing F/A-18 Super Hornet production for a couple more years, but after failing to find additional customers, the aerospace giant plans to close up shop on the legacy fighter after 2027, reports Breaking Defense.

Rep. Gregory Meeks (D-NY), the top Democrat on the House Foreign Affairs Committee, said on Tuesday he is noncommittal about approving an $18 billion F-15 sale to Israel, even as centrist members of the party who previously supported unrestricted military aid to the country become increasingly skeptical amid the humanitarian crisis in Gaza, reports Defense News.

Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-MA), joined by fellow Sens. Dick Durbin (D-IL), Jeff Merkley (D-OR), Chris Van Hollen (D-MD), and Peter Welch (D-VT), sent a letter to Biden on Wednesday encouraging his administration to “mobilize airlifts of medicine and medical equipment” to the few remaining functional hospitals in war-torn Gaza and to deploy the US Navy’s hospital ships to the region, reports Military.com.

Reuter’s Middle East Monitor reports the details of US support for Israel’s military and for the fighting in Gaza. In 2016, the US and Israeli governments signed a third 10-year agreement to run October 2018 to September 2028 providing $38 billion in military aid over those 10 years, $33 billion in grants to buy military equipment, and $5 billion for missile defense systems. Israel is buying 75 F-35s and taken delivery of 36 by last year, paying for them with US assistance.

Israel’s C-Dome, the naval version of Iron Dome, downed a unmanned aerial vehicle over the Red Sea in what the Israel Defense Forces said was the first operational interception by the air defense system, reports Breaking Defense.

Israel’s cybersecurity industry is bucking some of the downward trend in the tech sector amid a surge in hacking attacks and threats from Iran and Hezbollah, reports The Times of Israel. The first quarter of 2024, mergers and acquisitions generated $985 million across eight deals; local cyber startups nabbed $620 million investment capital, according to a report by Cybertech Global and IVC, released on Sunday ahead of a global cyber conference in Tel Aviv kicking off this week.

GEN Christopher Cavoli, NATO supreme allied commander and head of US European Command, says the US needs to revive the lines of communication with Moscow that helped both countries avoid nuclear conflict during the Cold War, reports Stars and Stripes.

The UN nuclear watchdog’s Board of Governors will hold an emergency meeting today, Thursday, at the request of both Ukraine and Russia to discuss attacks on the Zaporizhzhia Nuclear Power Plant, after the enemies accused each other of drone attacks, Reuters reports. The International Atomic Energy Agency has said drones struck the Russian-held facility in southern Ukraine on Sunday, hitting one reactor building. It has not ascribed blame but has demanded such attacks stop.

Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky warned Ukraine “will lose the war” against Russia if US lawmakers do not pass funding for the war-torn nation, reports The Hill. During a meeting on Sunday with UNITED24, the Ukrainian government’s fundraising platform, Zelensky said if the US “Congress does not help Ukraine, Ukraine will lose the war.”

Six warships and four aircraft from Australia, Japan, the Philippines, and the United States conducted a joint patrol in the South China Sea on Sunday following Chinese harassment of Philippine Navy resupply missions in the region, reports USNI.

For the first time in nearly two years, US and Chinese defense officials met this week to discuss unsafe and aggressive ship and aircraft incidents between the two militaries in the Pacific region, restarting a dialogue that Beijing abruptly ended in a dispute involving Taiwan, reports Military Times.

Greece is advancing a purchase of 35 UH-60M Black Hawk aircraft from Sikorsky, a Lockheed Martin subsidiary. The US State Department approved the Foreign Military Sale, worth an estimated $1.95 billion in December 2023. In addition to the 35 rotorcraft, the overall package backed by Washington includes weapons, subsystems, spare parts, and training devices, reports Breaking Defense.

Chief Fire Controlman (Aegis) Bryce Steven Pedicinia is being court-martialed for passing classified information to a foreign contact, reports Military Times. The Navy chief faces eight espionage charge specifications for alleged crimes.

The first Navy CMV-22B Osprey aircraft assigned to the East Coast arrived at Naval Station Norfolk, VA, on Friday, following a months-long, military-wide safety stand down, reports Military Times.

Most people don’t turn to government jobs for high pay — unless they’re considering joining the military. In addition to a solid base pay, especially as you rank up, the benefits extend  beyond annual salary. Business Insider reports US officers can earn a $220K salary plus some pretty generous benefits.

Jefferson Lab in Newport News, VA, recently received a $7.5 million grant from the Department of Energy to adapt a particle accelerator that could eventually be used in water treatment plants to break down “forever chemicals,” reports Military.com.

Sen. Ted Cruz (R-TX) says the Coast Guard illegally prohibited sexual assault victims from sharing information with Congress about their assaults and investigations. Military.com reports Cruz said illegal nondisclosure agreements were uncovered through his investigation as the top Republican on the Senate Commerce Committee, which has jurisdiction over the Coast Guard.

The Federal Communications Commission last month raised the speeds required to describe internet service as “broadband” for the first time in nearly a decade. The higher benchmark was released alongside an annual assessment by the agency that found it is not deploying high-speed broadband fast enough, reports Route-Fifty.com. As of December 2022, 24 million Americans lack fixed broadband service, including 28% of those in rural areas and more than 23% living on Tribal lands. The new benchmark for broadband is 100/20 Mbps.

Contracts:

KBR Wyle Services LLC, Lexington Park, Maryland, is awarded a $60,000,000 indefinite-delivery/indefinite-quantity contract for secure facility operations, maintenance, and security support. The contract does not include options and has a cumulative value of $60,000,000. An $11,332,251 cost-plus-fixed-fee task order was issued concurrently. The task order includes options and has a cumulative value of $34,063,769. Work for the initial task order will be performed at the US Naval Research Laboratory (NRL), Washington, DC (90%); Monterey, California (5%); and Stennis, Mississippi (5%), and is expected to be completed by March 2025. Fiscal 2024 working capital fund (Navy) in the amount of $9,193,760 will be obligated at time of award and will not expire at the end of the current fiscal year. This contract was competitively procured with one offer received via Contract Opportunities on SAM.gov. The NRL, Washington, DC, is the contracting activity (N0017323D2006, N0017324F2018).

CACI International Inc., Chantilly, Virginia, is awarded a $37,535,491 indefinite-delivery/indefinite-quantity, cost-plus-fixed-fee, and firm-fixed-price type contract to support integration and operation of information operations payloads into unmanned aerial vehicles used by joint forces. This three-year contract includes a two-year option which, if exercised, would bring the cumulative value of this contract to an estimated $59,911,998. Work will be performed across five geographic zones in the areas of Westminster, Colorado (40 %); Florham Park, New Jersey (40%); Jessup, Maryland (15%); and San Diego, California, and Chantilly, Virginia (5 % combined). The period of performance of the base period is from April 2024 through April 2027. If the option is exercised, the period of performance will extend through April 2029. Funding will be obligated via task and delivery orders. The anticipated types of funding to be obligated include operations and maintenance (Navy); other procurement (Navy); and research, development, test and evaluation (Navy). This sole-source procurement is issued using other than full and open competition in accordance with Federal Acquisition Regulation 6.302-1 and 10 US Code 2304(c)(1), Only One Responsible Source. Naval Information Warfare Center Pacific, San Diego, California, is the contracting activity (N66001-24-D-0013).

BAE Systems Norfolk Ship Repair, Norfolk, Virginia, is awarded a $34,226,211 cost-plus-fixed-fee modification to a previously awarded contract (N00024-21-2451) to exercise an option for a landing platform dock (LPD 29) fitting out availability. Specific efforts include program management, planning, engineering, design, liaison, scheduling, labor, and procurement of incidental material in support of the availabilities. Work will be performed in Norfolk, Virginia, and is expected to be completed by July 2025. Fiscal 2023 shipbuilding and conversion (Navy) post-delivery funds in the amount of $3,029,294 will be obligated at time of award and will not expire at the end of the current fiscal year. This is a modification to a contract that was already competitively procured. Naval Sea Systems Command, Washington, DC, is the contracting activity (N00024-21-2451).

CAPE-RSI JV LLC, Norcross, Georgia (N62470-24-D-0009); EA Engineering, Science, and Technology Inc. PBC, Hunt Valley, Maryland (N62470-24-D-0010); HGL-APTIM Technologies JV LLC, Reston, Virginia (N62470-24-D-0011); and Sevenson-USA Environmental JV III, Niagara Falls, New York (N62470-24-D-0012), are awarded a combined $240,000,000 cost-plus-award-fee, indefinite-delivery/indefinite-quantity, multiple award contract for environmental remediation services for projects at various locations within the Naval Facilities Engineering Systems Command (NAVFAC) Atlantic area of operations (AO). The work to be performed provides for, but is not limited to, remedial actions at environmentally contaminated sites predominately located at Navy and Marine Corps installations and other government agencies. Each awardee will be awarded $10,000 (minimum contract guarantee per awardee) at contract award. The maximum dollar value, including the base period and four option periods, is $240,000,000. Work will be performed primarily within the NAVFAC Atlantic AO which includes Virginia (25%), Florida (10%), New York (10%), North Carolina (10%), Maryland (6%), Texas (5%), Washington, DC (5%), Massachusetts (3%), New Jersey (3%), Pennsylvania (3%), West Virginia (3%), Connecticut (2%), Illinois (2%), Indiana (2%), Maine (2%), Mississippi (2%), Rhode Island (2%), South Carolina (2%), Puerto Rico (2%), and Georgia (1%), and is expected to be completed by April 2029. Although principal sites are identified for the contract, the contractor may be required to perform at any Naval or Marine Corps activity within the NAVFAC Atlantic AO. Work may also be added and performed outside of NAVFAC Atlantic AO, as required by the government. Fiscal 2024 environmental restoration, (Navy) funds in the amount of $40,000 will be obligated at time of award and will expire at the end of the current fiscal year. This contract was competitively procured via the sam.gov website with four proposals received. NAVFAC Atlantic, Norfolk, Virginia, is the contracting activity.

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