Alternatives Are Available Which Can Reduce Costs of the LAMPS MK III Program

MASAD-81-40: Published: Sep 2, 1981. Publicly Released: Sep 2, 1981.

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GAO was requested to review the program cost and, because of the inordinate cost growth experienced over the years, examine potential cost reduction alternatives to the Light Airborne Multipurpose System (LAMPS) MK III antisubmarine warfare system. The objective of the review was to determine whether current estimates of the program's total cost were complete or whether additional cost increases could be expected.

Program uncertainties still exist which could result in further cost increases of up to $1 billion. On May 1, 1981, the Navy released a report on the causes of the cost growth and indicated that program costs may still be underestimated. Several management actions which could be taken by the Department of Defense (DOD) offer potential for cost reductions in the LAMPS MK III program. One such action is the use of multiyear contracting, while other actions relate to the consideration of lower cost alternatives to the system at some sacrifice in total mission capability. The LAMPS program exhibits certain characteristics such as large quantity, high cost, and an extended procurement schedule which should make it a candidate for multiyear contracting. Regarding other actions which can be taken to reduce LAMPS MK III program costs, several alternatives were considered, including: (1) purchasing fewer LAMPS MK III weapon systems; (2) purchasing less costly radar and electronic support measures equipment; (3) reducing the number of LAMPS MK III scheduled for retrofitting; and (4) eliminating the LAMPS MK III system from the CG-47 class cruisers. If these alternative actions were implemented, reductions in terms of reduced procurement costs of $970 to $1,850 million could be achieved.

Matters for Congressional Consideration

  1. Status:

    Comments: Please call 202/512-6100 for additional information.

    Matter: The House Committee on Appropriations should explore with DOD the other cost reduction alternatives and encourage a final decision be made as to the future course of the Light Airborne Multipurpose System program.

  2. Status:

    Comments: Please call 202/512-6100 for additional information.

    Matter: The House Committee on Appropriations should require DOD, if multiyear contracting is approved by Congress, to make a determination regarding the appropriateness of the Light Airborne Multipurpose System (LAMPS) MK III for multiyear contracting. If cost savings can be validated, LAMPS MK III could then be funded on a multiyear basis.


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