N/MCI watchdog Bateman dies
- By Judi Hasson
- Sep 11, 2000
Rep. Herbert Bateman (R-Va.), chairman of the House Military Readiness Subcommittee
and a onetime critic of the Navy's $16 billion intranet contract, died today.
He was 72.
Bateman, who had announced his plan to retire this year because of poor
health, had watched over the largest slice of the Pentagon's budget that
included the controversial plan to develop the Navy/Marine Corps Intranet
(N/MCI) program — a worldwide network linking vessels and Navy and Marine
His death may delay a decision on whether to go forward with the program.
The Navy planned to award the contract this month, but Bateman had asked
Navy officials to wait until he and other members of Congress could meet
with them. The meeting was to be held after the Labor Day holiday, but it
had not occurred by the end of last week.
Bateman had criticized the Navy for moving ahead aggressively without
involving Congress in the funding process and had called for a General Account
Office analysis on the Navy's plan to develop the intranet. The GAO's findings
were to be discussed at the meeting Bateman called.
Bateman was first elected to Congress in 1982 and brought many defense
contracts to his southeastern Virginia district. He resided in Newport News,
which is among the world's major centers for the construction of warships.