PORTLAND, Maine (NEWS CENTER) — Members of Maine's congressional delegation are calling the decision a "very disappointing blow" to BIW and it's more than 5,500 employees.
They are also vowing to scrutinize the details of the contract to make sure the Coast Guard followed proper procedures.
Sens. Angus King and Susan Collins said they want to evaluate the details of the contract to make sure the Coast Guard followed the rules. Their concern is if Eastern Shipbuilding underbid the work and they want to make sure the company can build a quality boat without additional costs.
Sen. King along with Reps. Chellie Pingree and Bruce Poliquin spoke to reporters Friday morning. The delegation said BIW put together a powerful bid but the Coast Guard may have awarded the work to the Florida shipyard because of budget restraints.
BIW currently has contracts to build two types of destroyers for the Navy. The Coast Guard contract was expected to make up for the destroyer work, which will be winding down over the next several years.
Sen. Susan Collins said members of the delegation will meet with the Coast Guard in the next several weeks to make sure the process was fair because this issue has come up before.
“There have been cases in the past where shipyards have underbid BIW and then not been able to perform at the bid price," she said. "That is obviously unfair if they deliberately bid low."
BIW officials will also meet with Coast Guard to go over the contract, but it is not known at this time whether they will file a formal protest over the decision.
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