This bill would authorize appropriations for the Coast Guard for the 2016 and 2017 fiscal years, providing funding for the Coast Guard to carry out its operations, modernize its equipment, and reform U.S. maritime transportation laws.
In each of the fiscal years 2016 and 2017, the Coast Guard would receive $8.7 billion — which is the full amount for what had been previously planned for those fiscal years. This would provide for military pay raises to make pay for service-members consistent with the other Armed Forces.
If passed, the Coast Guard would be required to outline manpower requirements for Congress, the same way other Armed Forces do. This budget allows for 43,000 active duty Coast Guard personnel in each of the fiscal years 2016 and 2017.
Under current law the Coast Guard is not required to provide a long-term plan for its shipbuilding acquisition needs. Under this bill, the Coast Guard would be required to give Congress a plan. Funding in fiscal years 2016 and 2017 would also facilitate the construction of an icebreaker capable of tending buoys on the Great Lakes. The Coast Guard would be given 270 days to assess the condition of its Polar Class icebreaker in order to determine if it is cost effective to reactivate the cutter.