US Navy confirms: Combat camera units will be eliminated over budget issues
The U.S. Navy has confirmed that it will eliminate a pair of combat camera (COMCAM) units. Confirmation was given by the Pentagon's Navy spokesperson Lt. Lauren Chatmas to the Navy Times, which reported last week about the Navy's plans to eliminate the units by October 1st.
The U.S. Navy has two COMCAM units, one called Expeditionary Combat Camera, the other called Fleet Combat Camera. Both units will be eliminated because of budget constraints, according to Chatmas's statement:
...difficult decisions were made in order to ensure the resourcing of critical mission areas that support Navy's expeditionary operations. Other expeditionary mission areas took precedence over COMCAM. Therefore, as an overall cost savings measure, the decision was made to provide this capability to the fleet from the existing Navy Public Affairs Support Element command.
Sources expanded on that statement to Navy Times, claiming that COMCAM budget cuts in fiscal year 2017 decreased funding by 60%, and was joined by a declining workload. Officials reportedly decided to eliminate the COMCAM units entirely when working out the fiscal year 2019 budget, having failed in 2017 to consolidate the two units into a single COMCAM unit.