It’s Still Mighty Expensive:

The Congressional Budget Office recently released a new report outlining pros and cons over the sea basing efforts the Navy and Marine Corps have been working for a number of years. While the Defense Science Board has advocated sea basing as a means to overcome potential access problems to a combat zone, the approach has met with considerable skepticism, primarily because of its high price tag. (Read our July 2004 article.) At heart of the sea basing is the Maritime Prepositioning Force (Future), which CBO acknowledges would provide “improved responsiveness” over the current means of deploying a Marine Expeditionary Brigade. However, CBO believes that there are “alternative systems” that would be superior to today’s capability but at “a significantly lower cost” than the MPF(F), which CBO pegs at between $15 billion to $22 billion for a planned 14-ship squadron. The CBO report outlines four alternative employment and sustainment approaches and four for sustainment only.