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State reps say contract ensures Marine One maintenance to remain in Statford

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US President Barack Obama and First Lady Michelle Obama make their way to board Marine One on the South Lawn of the White House in Washington, DC on August 6, 2016. Obama and his family were headed to Martha's Vineyard for their summer vacation. / AFP / MANDEL NGAN (Photo credit should read MANDEL NGAN/AFP/Getty Images)

STRATFORD — Connecticut’s congressional delegation says the new $138 million Department of Defense contract with Sikorsky Aircraft will ensure maintenance on the current Marine One presidential helicopter fleet will remain in Stratford.

Under the contract announced Thursday, work will begin in January.

The delegation in August sent a letter to Secretary of the Navy Ray Mabus, urging him to suspend any possible plans to shift maintenance of the fleet from Sikorsky to a facility in Florida. The delegation had argued that no other facility has the expertise to maintain the helicopters. The fleet has been supported and maintained by about 85 workers in Stratford over the past four decades.

U.S. Sens. Richard Blumenthal and Chris Murphy and Rep. Rosa DeLauro say the decision is a testament to the workers at Sikorsky.