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Old October 17 2013, 12:31 AM   #84
Nob Akimoto
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Re: Starfleet Procurement Policy Draft

Bringing the histories up into the current TrekLit "Present".

Crawling Back from the Brink (2382 - 2385)
63 billion dead. The stark brutality of this statistic has shaped Federation and Starfleet economic policy since 2381. Starfleet's personnel losses in the invasion numbered in the millions. The total personnel and ship loss figures surpassed the entirety of Starfleet's losses since its founding in 2161. At a time of unprecedented demand for humanitarian aid and reconstruction assistance, Starfleet faced its greatest labor shortage in its history.

Admiral Edward Jellico resigned shortly after the crisis, succeeded by Admiral Leonard James Akaar. The Akaar Admiralty faced an impossible task. Its priorities included major reconstruction work in Federation space, humanitarian aid to foreign powers, rebuilding Starfleet personnel numbers and Starbase facilities, and resuming exploration missions along the Federation's frontier. The Bacco Administration's decision to maintain the deep space exploration assignments of Luna, Cheyenne, Niagra, and Andromeda class starships caused substantial controversy on the Federation Council. Deep space exploration held significant symbolic importance to the Federation public, but elected officials across the Federation were bombarded by demands for Starfleet support. Polling data on the decision was mixed, with results varying wildly from month to month.

Starfleet's immediate challenge was finding sufficient manpower to rebuild. Labor shortages were acute within Federation space and the trauma of the invasion led to a substantial portion of Starfleet personnel resigning at the end of their enlistment period. The Akaar Admiralty immediately began a program of stop-loss programs for officers and activated reserve clauses for a large number of retired personnel. Age based restrictions on enlistment were relaxed, while training programs were reduced to 3 month basic training for enlisted personnel and 6 months for officer trainees. Existing Starfleet Academy cohorts had their curriculum reduced to three years, effectively serving their senior year in the field. Finally support facility personnel numbers were dramatically downscaled, reduced to 80% of their pre-invasion numbers.

Starship crews were not immune to personnel shuffles. Plans to restore crew complements to pre-Dominion War levels were shelved indefinitely. In some cases crew numbers were reduced through elimination of smallcraft personnel or increased cross-training of enlisted specialists. Most ships were substantially undermanned, particularly in specialist departments. Larger starships were hit hardest; the typical Galaxy, Sovereign, Vesta and Nebula class starship operated at between 90-95% of its establishment in this period. USS Sugihara's experience at Ardana was sadly typical of the costs of reduced crew size. A lack of trained geologists aboard resulted in vital sensor data forecasting an earthquake being overlooked, resulting in the death of 203 Ardanans and 4 Starfleet personnel.

Significant obstacles also stood in the way of rebuilding fleet strength. Sol and Proxima's primary ship building facilities came through the invasion unscathed, but substantial numbers of civilian yards in systems ranging from Aldebaran to Beta Rigel were devastated. Demand for new civilian starships vastly outstripped supply. Further, Starfleet itself had a large number of starships with urgent repair or refit needs. Starfleet facilities were tasked with a dual task of building new shipyard facilities for civilian contractors and restoring Starfleet fleet strength.

Fleet yard commanders interpreted these priorities rather liberally, donating many of their older, smaller facilities in wholesale shipments to their contractors and building brand new Class I facilities with integration facilities and high levels of automation. By the end of the 2381 calendar year, Utopia Planitia alone had doubled its fleet yard capacity while providing nearly 70 new dockyard facilities for Sol System contractors like Baikonur Cosmodome and Copernicus Shipyards. Similar processes played out through the Federation, with an emphasis on building smaller, simpler fabrication facilities.

When Andor and its territories seceded in 2382 they possessed an eighth of Federation dock yard capacity. Substantial numbers of ships under construction were removed from Andorian yards for completion in Proxima and Tellar. With most advanced civilian yards busily producing ships for the private sector, Starfleet began contracting out orders for new hulls to extremely small private yards. Advanced facilities being in short supply, Starfleet began hauling first generation industrial replicators and fabricators out of storage to equip these new operators. Using this antique equipment, series production of Excelsior and Miranda class hulls resumed in small numbers.

Every hull is precious for Starfleet at the present juncture. Hulls once planned for scrapping have been stripped down, refurbished and rebuilt. Surplus depots have been raided for any usable hulls, with substantial upgrades implemented on designs previously slated for phase out. Despite the great challenges facing it, Starfleet remains poised to boldly go forward, a symbol of strength and stability in an uncertain galaxy.
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