NORFOLK, Va. (WAVY) — A shipyard in Norfolk is suing the U.S. Navy in federal court, saying the military branch is refusing to pay for work the shipyard performed on the USS Bataan.
BAE Systems Norfolk Ship Repair Inc. filed a civil complaint Sept. 11 alleging the Navy had refused to pay BAE and its subcontractors “for work the Navy cannot dispute they performed.”
BAE is demanding nearly $1.2 million to fulfill the contract.
According to BAE, the company provides emergency and planned ship repair, modernization and overhaul services for both commercial and military customers.
BAE was tasked with updating and improving the military and technical capabilities of the Bataan — a multipurpose amphibious assault ship — in September 2017. Work was supposed to continue through July 13, 2018.
BAE and its subcontractors, Accurate Marine Environmental and Surface Technologies Corporation, did all the work they could do “despite the Navy’s inability to perform some of its contractual obligations,” the complaint alleges.
The complaint later states the Navy was delayed in responding to and settling requests for contract change to address “growth and new work needed” for the Bataan. That work BAE says it needed to perform wasn’t known until the ship arrived and work began.
The funds needed to pay for the growth and new work weren’t covered by the original contract because it was for a firm fixed price.
BAE also alleges it sometimes has to redo work for “no supportable reason.”
The Navy’s delays in its part of the contractual obligations caused the work to extend beyond the contract’s terms — however, the Navy told BAE and its subcontractors to keep working.
The Navy extended it four times, moving the end date from July 13, 2018 to Nov. 9, 2018.
Because of the delays and continued work, BAE says the shipyard and contractors to incur amounts beyond what was agreed on in the contract.
Shortly after the Nov. 9, 2018 deadline, the Navy said BAE was in default of the contract because it didn’t deliver a mission-ready ship at that time. The Navy ordered BAE to fix all contractual requirements listed in a discrepancy list, but didn’t include some items required to make the ship mission-ready.
BAE responded and said nearly all of the items on the discrepancy list needed action from the Navy before BAE could proceed with its work.
The Navy and BAE moved forward with addressing those items. BAE informed the Navy is considered some additional requested work a contractual change.
Work deadlines were moved to March 4, 2019.
During that time, BAE was required to do testing, which depended on the Navy personnel finishing their part of the work. BAE personnel were on standby waiting idle at times to be able to do the testing.
“Because of the Navy’s delays, BAE NSR often needed to adjust work schedules and personnel, incurred lost productivity, and had to be present on the Ship in case Ship’s Force personnel became available to test systems repaired on a BAE NSR work item,” the BAE court complaint reads.
The complaint also outlines multiple concerns from subcontractors about completion of work, issues with the work, and compensation for the work.
BAE requested additional money for the additional time spent working on the ship, but the Navy allegedly didn’t respond.
Later, BAE followed the requirements of the Contracts Disputes Act. The Navy still refused to pay.
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