Local shipbuilder finalist for $10.5 billion contract

Published: Thursday, February 13, 2014 at 09:07 AM.

If awarded the project, D’Isernia said it would add between 750 and 800 employees to Eastern’s team of 1,500, and also indirectly create many jobs for the area. 

“With the multiplying affect in the area, that’s easily 2,000 to 2,500 jobs,” said D’Isernia, who noted the contract is the largest the company has ever bid on. 

If Eastern were awarded the contract, D’Isernia said it could also lead to facility expansion at one or both of the Panama City shipyards, depending on the company’s other workload. 

U.S. Sen. Bill Nelson said in a press release Wednesday that he was confident in Eastern’s capabilities in developing the vessels.

“I think Eastern makes a lot of sense given its facilities, capabilities of its workforce and solid track record in this industry,” said Nelson, a senior member of the Senate's Armed Services Committee and Commerce Committee, which has jurisdiction over the Coast Guard. 

U.S. Rep. Steve Southerland, R-Panama City, said the contract would bring a much-needed boost to the region’s economy.

“Should Eastern Shipbuilding win this contract, it will provide a tremendous boost to Northwest Florida’s economy and bring hundreds of well-paying, highly-skilled construction jobs to our community,” Southerland said.

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