Recently the Missouri Chamber of Commerce and Industry sent letters to Sens. Claire McCaskill (D) and Roy Blunt (R) urging them to support the Navy’s “unfunded requirement” for 14 F/A-18E/F Super Hornet aircraft and its request for 2 aircraft in the Overseas Contingency Operations fund to replace aircraft lost during wartime operations.
The Fiscal Year 2017 budget highlights the growing stresses on and demands for United States Navy tactical aviation. In this budget, the Navy took steps to address its shortage of operational aircraft – commonly referred to as the tactical aviation shortfall. Specifically, the budget request includes two F/A-18E/F Super Hornets in the Overseas Contingency Operations (OCO) to replace training and operational losses. Also, the Navy included funding to extend the service life of older, legacy Hornet aircraft to help address the inventory that is perpetually “out of reporting” due to maintenance and high flight hours.
These aircraft are built by Boeing in Missouri and this program also provides a positive impact to the Missouri economy of $640 million, 13,000 total estimated jobs, and work for 91 F/A-18 supplier companies.
“Our soldiers need the very best equipment to keep them and our country safe,” Dan Mehan, president of the Missouri Chamber of Commerce and Industry said. “This is an opportunity for our lawmakers to work together on this budget and provide an economic boost to Missouri and the proper equipment to our soldiers.”