And you thought your phone bill was high. The Navy is paying about $4 billion a year for calls, according to Defense News. And not surprisingly, there is a whole lot of padding in that tab.
A check of telephone bills in the Jacksonville, Fla., area “found that when we have a digital receipt for a phone bill in the area…we are being overcharged 30 percent,” deputy chief of naval operations Vice Adm. Mark Edwards told a group of military-industrial insiders at a recent conference.
Telephone service with no digital receipt showed overcharges of 18 percent, he added.
The Navy’s top IT official said he wasn’t accusing telephone companies, but he just might not let it slide. “What I’m saying is: It’s my money and I want it back. And we’re going to get it back,” he said, to some chuckles.
By recouping 30 percent of the $4 billion tab over the five-year defense plan, “we could build another carrier, just on the phone bill,” noted Edwards, a former ship and carrier battle group commander. “It won’t be quite that easy, but we’re working it.”
And it might not end there. Edwards wants the Navy to change course by replacing traditional landlines for VOIP, or “voice over IP,” communications, he said. “It would save us over 24 percent the first year” and 24 percent the second year, he estimated.