The largest aerospace and defense labor union has sent letters to the members of the House of Armed Services Committee to support an amendment to defeat Adam Smith, the HASC chairman’s space launch legislation.
The provisions that were included by Smith in committee’s NDAA includes more number of competitors be added to the National Security Space Launch Phase2 Launch Service Procurement and also a $500 million fund be created to give access for Space X to government funds that has been provided to various other rocket manufacturers by Air Force.
The bipartisan amendment will be offered by Jason Crow(D-Colo.) and Reps. Doug Lamborn (R-Colo.) to strike the launch provisions of Smith. The Northrop Grumman and the Colorado-based ULA have been opposing Smith’s provisions and Crow and Lamborn have been taking actions based on the concerns of these two. Along with Blue Origin and Space X, these two companies are also competitors in the procurement contract Phase2.
In the letter by the International association of Machinists and Aerospace Workers, it was said that the section 1601 will have a negative impact on the competition on space launch and would delay the country’s transition of Russian engines. There are about 600,000 members in the Machinist union including both active and retired people. The final proposal request for Phase2 was given on the May 3.
It was said in the letter that in spite of many years’ planning which was based on congressional action, section 1601 will result in a change in the rules and would give unfair advantage to two companies. This would threaten the jobs of members at Northrop Grumman and at ULA. It is further said in the letter that modifications to be done to the open RFP content will cause a delay in awards. Such a delay would have an impact on the dependence of the country on Russian engines.