No Program Better Prepared for Multiyear

Those words indicate the belief by Maj. Gen. Richard Lewis, USAF’s F-22 program executive officer, that the F-22A is an ideal candidate for a much-in-dispute multiyear funding approach. The Senate apparently agrees but, at last word, the House is not yet sold. Lewis explains that allowing the contractor to buy materials and parts in bulk would mitigate the increase in cost per aircraft created by the planned slow-down in production to just 20 aircraft in each of Lot 7, 8, and 9. The multiyear arrangement would enable the service to stretch procurement to 2011, keeping the line hot in case there are further delays with the other fifth-generation fighter, the F-35. It could provide, says Lewis, about $225 million in cost avoidance.