BAE awarded new contracts, avoids May layoffs

(WAVY Photo)

NORFOLK, Va. (WAVY) — BAE Systems has been awarded new contracts for ship repair and maintenance work at its Norfolk shipyard, and will be avoiding layoffs that were previously expected for May.

BAE spokesman Karl Johnson confirmed to 10 On Your Side that BAE received a $52.5 million contract on Monday for maintenance work on the USS Kearsarge, which returned to Naval Station Norfolk from a deployment last week.

Johnson says BAE will be doing ordinary repair and upkeep on the Kearsarge following this latest deployment.

USS Kearsarge pulling into port at Naval Station Norfolk on Tuesday, May 3. Credit: WAVY/Lex Gray.
USS Kearsarge pulling into port at Naval Station Norfolk on Tuesday, May 3. Credit: WAVY/Lex Gray.

A total of 170 employees were notified on March 30 that they would be let go from BAE. An additional 200 workers were told in March that their layoff notices had been extended until April 30.

However, Johnson says the company no longer felt the April 30 layoffs were necessary after it received a $48.8-million contract for the destroyer USS McFaul on April 5 and a $29.4-million contract for the guided missile cruiser USS Gettysburg on April 27.

According to Johnson, the shipyard’s current headcount is 900 workers.

Johnson said the maintenance work on the USS Kearsarge should begin sometime this summer.

He says the company will need to win more contracts in order to avoid more workforce reductions in the second half of 2016.

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