Armed Forces News

The Coast Guard would finally get the new icebreaker cutters it has long sought, under the Trump administration’s proposed $11.65-billion budget for 2019. The proposal calls for $1.54 million for vessels, which includes the design and construction for both the new icebreakers and a new offshore patrol cutter. The first icebreaker would be delivered by 2022. The allocation also would be used to acquire four more fast response cutters and plan for design and construction of the waterways commerce cutter. The latter vessel would replace the fleet of inland tenders and barges — some of which have been in service since 1944. Other provisions would ensure that Coast Guard members receive the same pay and benefits as their comrades in the four Defense Department armed services, and replace aging aircraft that do not conform to FAA airspace requirements.