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Courtney Statement On Strong Outlook For Hiring At Electric Boat And Suppliers In 2017

January 9, 2017
Press Release

NORWICH, CT —Today, Congressman Joe Courtney (CT-02), the ranking member of the House Seapower and Projection Forces Subcommittee, attended the annual Electric Boat legislative update hosted by company President Jeffrey S. Geiger in Groton. Courtney released the following statement after Geiger presented a strong and positive outlook for hiring in 2017, reporting that the company will hire approximately 2,000 new employees this year -- including 1,350 in Connecticut.

“The sustained growth in hiring at Electric Boat is continuing to significantly boost the economy of our region and the entire state,” said Courtney. “As this morning’s presentation clearly showed, the pace of construction of Virginia-class submarines and the increasing work associated with the next critical phase in the Columbia-class program will continue the yard's strong hiring trend. This is not just good news for EB and southeastern Connecticut because work at the shipyard is supported by a state-wide network of nearly 500 small parts suppliers and precision manufacturing firms that are growing along with the company. Even more exciting, the Navy’s new force structure plan that calls for more submarines provides additional opportunity for growth in the years ahead.

“This solid outlook in hiring at the shipyard and beyond underscores the need to sustain workforce development programs in eastern Connecticut. We have made great progress over the past two years as federal support I have helped to secure has allowed us to create an advanced manufacturing pipeline of workers coming from our local community colleges and restart the long-dormant apprenticeship program. We must continue these efforts to ensure that EB and other manufacturers in our state have access to the skilled workforce they need to keep up with the demand in the years ahead.

"With so many critical and positive developments since last year's update that have added to the already strong outlook for Electric Boat, I look forward to continuing to work in Congress and here in Connecticut to ensure that our undersea investment, and the workforce that makes it possible, remains a top priority for our nation."

Among the notable updates from the briefing today:

  • Total hiring in Connecticut is projected to be about 1,350 in trades, design and engineering and support positions. EB expects to grow from 14,000 to 18,000 by 2030.
  • Electric Boat is utilizing key workforce investment tools secured by Congressman Courtney and the Connecticut Delegation to support the training of their new workforce, including the Eastern Connecticut Manufacturing Pipeline and the Investing in Manufacturing Community Partnership (IMCP). Key partners like the Eastern Connecticut Workforce Investment Board (EWIB), Three Rivers and Quinebaug Valley Community Colleges, along with state technical high schools are supporting these efforts.
  • Investment in key submarine programs like the Virginia Class Submarine, Virginia Payload Module and the Columbia-class submarine program is expected to grow from $7.1 billion in 2017 to $7.3 billion.