NORFOLK--After weeks of doom and gloom, there is good news for the 40,000 people who work in the private ship repair industry in Hampton Roads.
The Navy says that at least nine of 11 local ship repair contracts will go forward this fiscal year, which seems to end speculation about layoffs at the 250 companies which make up the Virginia Ship Repair Association.
It is especially good news at BAE Systems in Norfolk, which back in February sent “WARN” letters to more than 1.600 of its employees, informing them that layoffs could take place.
“That’s the best news we’ve heard since we started hearing about sequestration,” said BAE employee Katieh Hirsch. “The morale was really down, it just made everyone around here feel really scared.”