July 14, 2024

Lawmakers Ask for Halt on Nice Bridge Demolition

Nice Bridge
(mdta.maryland.gov photo)

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.

Three Maryland lawmakers are urging the state Department of Transportation to pause plans to demolish the existing Gov. Harry Nice Memorial Bridge, WBFF Baltimore reports. They want a review conducted to determine the feasibility and cost of repurposing the old bridge for recreational use. The lawmakers requested a study to ensure that this is not a wasted opportunity to provide taxpayers with bicycling and pedestrian transportation options. “An independent study, conducted by an entity with experience in similar bridge repurposing projects, is in the taxpayer’s interest to ensure that we are not wasting an opportunity to provide bicycling and pedestrian transportation options at a competitive cost or potentially lower cost than demolition,” reads a letter from Rep. Steny Hoyer and Sens. Chris Van Hollen and Ben Cardin.

In testimony last week before the House Oversight Committee’s panel on national security, Brendan Carr of the Federal Communications Commission told lawmakers that troops and family members could be jeopardizing national security with their use of the TikTok video-sharing app. Carr is concerned about the amount of non-public sensitive data Americans upload that could be flowing into the hands of the Chinese government. “There’s a range of ways that sensitive data going back to Beijing with their sophisticated [artificial intelligence] can ultimately be used to harm US national security,” he said.

The US Navy is struggling to fill its mental health providers positions, reports Navy Times. As of last month, the service had not filled 132 of 455 budgeted jobs for licensed civilian and contractor mental health providers, according to the Navy Bureau of Medicine and Surgery.

AFSec Frank Kendall met with Air Force Medical Service leaders to discuss the service’s approach for prioritizing post-traumatic stress disorder care and support, reports Dayton Daily News. Kendall met with medics during a visit to Joint Base Andrews last month.

The White House is coming out against a House of Representatives’ plan to give extra pay to soldiers in the Arctic and sailors aboard ships undergoing major construction, reports Military.com, arguing the law already allows for stipends in special situations. The pay hike proposal was spurred by several suicides among military members in Alaska and on the USS George Washington aircraft carrier.

A news analysis by Voice of San Diego finds that young men in the military are nearly twice as likely to die by suicide than their civilian counterparts. “Arguably, the most significant challenge is a cultural challenge,” one expert said. “As a warrior culture, it’s about selfless sacrifice and personal courage – the team being more important than the individual. But if you feel like you can’t hold up your end of the bargain or feel like you’re the weakest link in the chain, it amplifies feelings of failure and shame.”

Ukraine is racing to acquire more drones, reports Military.com. Never in the history of warfare have drones been used as intensively as in Ukraine. Russians and Ukrainians alike depend heavily on the unmanned aerial vehicles to pinpoint enemy positions and guide their artillery strikes.

Throughline Inc., a design strategy firms, said it will open an office in Leonardtown to support its contracts with NAVAIR, reports yahoo.com. The new office marks Throughline’s fourth location, with headquarters in Washington, DC, and other offices in Charleston, SC, and Camp Hill, PA.

 

 

Two NAVAIR employees will serve on the Open Group Future Airborne Capability Environment Consortium, reports The BayNet. Sheila Fortner and Hebin Luan, members of the Air Combat Electronics program office (PMA-209), will be the new vice chairs of the Business Working Group and Technical Working Group. The Open Group FACE Consortium consists of more than 90 member organizations and 2,200 participating individuals from government, industry, and academia. Members of the consortium have developed the FACE approach software standard and business strategy, which define an open avionics environment.

The new CMV-22B Osprey has been praised for its range, payload, and mission flexibility following its first operational deployment, reports The Drive, prompting VADM Kenneth Whitesell, commander of NAVAIR and Naval Air Force US Pacific Fleet, to call it a “game changer.” Whitesell cited several advantages the CMV-22B has over both the Greyhound and the Marine Corps’ MV-22 tilt-rotor variant.

Two more US Air Force B-2 Spirit stealth bombers from Whiteman Air Force Base in Missouri arrived in Australia last week as part of a Pacific Air Forces Bomber Task Force deployment to conduct training in the Pacific region, reports Air Force Times.

A Chinese Su-30 fighter jet had “unsafe” interaction with US military C-130 in June in the South China Sea, reports Politico. The interaction, which had not been previously reported, comes amid more aggressive military actions by Chinese pilots in recent months involving Australian and Canadian aircraft. DefSec Lloyd Austin condemned the behavior during a visit to Singapore last month.

The US Air Force has completed its draft environmental review of US Space Command candidate locations — Redstone Arsenal in Alabama, Peterson Space Force Base in Colorado, Kirtland Air Force Base in New Mexico, Offutt Air Force Base in Nebraska, Port San Antonio in Texas, and Space Coast Spaceport in Florida, reports Space News. No environmental impacts were found at any of the locations. The command is currently based in Colorado. In January 2021, Redstone Arsenal was selected as the preferred location but that move was challenged by Colorado lawmakers. The public comment period ends August 12, 2022.

Retail sales picked back up in June after falling in May in the face of rapid price increases, according to the US Census Bureau, reports The Hill.

Military families are being hit with higher costs for fuel and food. Add to that the cost to move to a new duty station, reports Military Times. Military relief societies are looking for some solutions to help service members and their families. There are some new resources — and long-standing ones — that can help.

The US Navy says it will do better when it comes to systemic shortfalls impacting sailor pay, including Basic Allowance for Housing, special pay entitlements, and permanent change of station travel pay, as well as separation and retirement processing, reports Navy Times.

A Defense Department analysis found that about 24% of active-duty service members experienced food insecurity at some point in 2020, reports Navy Times. And officials said they have a plan to do something about that. They will focus on helping service members and families get the food they need, while also improving their economic security over the long term.

Thursday, the last day of the eight-day early voting period in Maryland, had the highest turnout, by far: 49,578, according to preliminary data from the Maryland State Board of Elections. Maryland Matters reports that about 4.6% of all eligible active voters turned out to vote early. Nearly 175,000 people voted July 7-14. Primary Election Day is tomorrow, July 19.

The Town of Chesapeake Beach is seeking public comment on the feasibility phase of the Bayways Crossing Ferry project, reports The BayNet. The Bayways Ferry is a 40- to 50-person passenger ferry system (no cars) that would loop around the Chesapeake Bay with stops in several counties that encircle the bay.

Contracts:

Booz Allen Hamilton Inc., McLean, Virginia, is awarded a $171,768,424 cost-plus-fixed-fee, cost reimbursable, indefinite-delivery/indefinite-quantity contract. This contract provides technical, analytical, and managerial services to support the Naval Aviation Enterprise for strategic objectives and initiatives in support of its mission to sustain required current readiness and advance future warfighting capabilities. Work will be performed in Norfolk, Virginia (32%); San Diego, California (27%); Patuxent River, Maryland (13%); Arlington, Virginia (7%); Cherry Point, North Carolina (3%); New River, North Carolina (3%); Fort Worth, Texas (2%); Millington, Tennessee (2%); Washington, DC (1%); Yuma, Arizona (1%); various locations within the continental US (8%); and various locations outside the continental US (1%), and is expected to be completed in August 2027. No funds will be obligated at the time of award; funds will be obligated on individual orders as they are issued. This contract was competitively procured via an electronic request for proposal; one offer was received. The Commander, Fleet Readiness Centers, Patuxent River, Maryland, is the contracting activity (N6852022D0002).

General Dynamics Information Technology Inc., Falls Church, Virginia, has been awarded a $908,000,000 ceiling, single award, indefinite-delivery/indefinite-quantity contract for the US Air Forces in Europe and Air Forces Africa information technology and enterprise network services. Work will be performed at various locations in Germany, Italy, Turkey, the United Kingdom and other locations throughout Europe, and is expected to be completed by July 13, 2027, with an optional three-year ordering period ending July 13, 2030, and the ability for performance at the order level through July 13, 2032. This award is the result of a competitive acquisition with six offers received. Fiscal 2022 operations and maintenance funds in the amount of $35,000 will be obligated at the time of award. Air Force Installation Contracting Command, 764th Enterprise Sourcing Squadron, Ramstein Air Base, Germany, is the contracting activity (FA564122D0003).

Uncharted Software Inc., Toronto, Canada, was awarded a $19,305,329 cost-plus-fixed-fee contract for a research project under the Automating Scientific Knowledge Extraction and Modeling (ASKEM) program. The ASKEM program will create a knowledge-modeling simulation ecosystem, empowered with the artificial intelligence approaches and tools needed to support expert knowledge- and data-informed decision making in diverse missions and scientific domains. Work will be performed in Toronto, Canada; and Washington, DC, with an expected completion date of January 2026. Fiscal 2022 research, development, test and evaluation funds in the amount of $3,017,311 are being obligated at time of award. This contract was a competitive acquisition under an open broad agency announcement and 29 offers were received. The Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency, Arlington, Virginia, is the contracting activity (HR001122C00142).

BAE Systems Ordnance Systems Inc., Radford, Virginia, was awarded a $1,287,655,519 modification (P00023) to contract W52P1J-11-D-0013 for the continued operation of the Radford Army Ammunition Plant in Virginia, and production of nitrocellulose and propellants. Bids were solicited via the internet with one received. Work locations and funding will be determined with each order, with an estimated completion date of July 17, 2022. US Army Contracting Command, Rock Island Arsenal, Illinois, is the contracting activity.

Q.E.D Systems Inc., Virginia Beach, Virginia (N55236-22-D-0005); South Bay Sand Blasting and Tank Cleaning Inc., National City, California (N55236-22-D-0006); and Bay City Marine Inc., National City, California (N55236-22-D-0007), are awarded an overall maximum ceiling value $34,625,320 firm-fixed-price, multiple-award, indefinite-delivery/indefinite-quantity contract with a five-year ordering period to provide Commercial Industrial Services (CIS) heat exchangers repairs. The contract will provide labor, services, equipment, and materials for the cleaning (high-pressure water jet, mechanical, and/or acid) of various shell-and-tube type heat exchangers, condensers, and/or coolers onboard Navy ships within a 50-mile radius of San Diego, California. These three companies will have an opportunity to compete for individual delivery orders. Each contract’s ordering period begins July 15, 2022, and completes on July 14, 2027. Contract funds in the amount of $30,000 ($10,000 for minimum guarantee per contract) will be obligated under each contract’s initial delivery order and expires at the end of the current fiscal year. The initial delivery orders are being funded with fiscal 2022 operation and maintenance (Navy) funds. These contracts were competitively procured via the beta.sam.gov website with four offers received. The Southwest Regional Maintenance Center, San Diego, California, is the contracting activity.

Lockheed Martin Rotary and Mission Systems, Baltimore, Maryland, is awarded a $23,368,814 cost-plus-fixed-fee and cost-only modification to previously awarded contract N00024-20-C-5392 to exercise options for the engineering, design, and technical services in support of the MK 41 Vertical Launching System electronic systems and computer programs. This contract combines purchases by the U.S. (76%); and the governments of Japan (15%); Spain (7%); Canada (1%); and Chile (1%) under the Foreign Military Sales (FMS) program. Work will be performed in Baltimore, Maryland (35%); Moorestown, New Jersey (18%); Seattle, Washington (18%); San Diego, California (18%); and Ventura, California (11%), and is expected to be completed by July 2023. Fiscal 2022 research, development, test, and evaluation (defense-wide) funds in the amount of $2,400,000 (73%); FMS (Japan) funds in the amount of $500,000 (15%); FMS (Spain) funds in the amount of $228,311 (7%); operation and maintenance (Navy) funds in the amount of $99,951 (3%); FMS (Canada) funds in the amount of $49,850 (1%); and FMS (Chile) funds in the amount of $19,940 (1%) will be obligated at time of award, and funds in the amount of $99,951 will expire at the end of the current fiscal year. The Naval Sea Systems Command, Washington Navy Yard, Washington, DC, is the contracting activity.

Professional Solutions1 LLC, Alexandria, Virginia, is awarded a $20,000,000 indefinite-delivery/indefinite-quantity contract (M67854-22-D-7904) for Marine Corps communication instructional services. This contract provides for instructional services in Microsoft, Cisco, radio wave, satellite, over-the-air transmissions systems, virtualization, network storage, and information assurance, as well as curriculum management and test administration for that training. Work will be performed at Camp Pendleton, California; Camp Lejeune, Jacksonville, North Carolina; and Marine Corps Base Camp Smedley Butler, Okinawa, Japan with an expected completion date of Jan. 14, 2028. The maximum dollar value is $20,000,000. No funds are obligated at time of award. This contract was a competitive acquisition issued via the beta.sam.gov to all qualified offerors and four offers were received. The Marine Corps Systems Command, Quantico, Virginia, is the contracting activity.

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