Pursuant to a congressional request, GAO evaluated cost, schedule, and test plans for the Army's special operations forces (SOF) helicopter program, focusing on: (1) the Army's planned concurrency of developmental and operational testing with actual production; and (2) current cost estimates for the program.
Recommendations for Executive Action
|Department of Defense||1. The Secretary of Defense should direct the Secretary of the Army to limit low-rate initial production to the minimum number of MH-47E and MH-60K helicopters necessary for operational testing.|
|Department of Defense||2. The Secretary of Defense should direct the Secretary of the Army to postpone contract awards beyond low-rate initial production until the Army can demonstrate that the aircraft can meet the operational needs of the users through required operational testing and evaluation.|
|Department of Defense||3. The Secretary of Defense should direct the Secretary of the Army to develop and provide to Congress complete cost estimates that accurately reflect all costs to the government associated with acquiring fully equipped, mission-capable SOF helicopter systems.|