House would deepen Deepwater funding

A House transportation panel yesterday voted to give the Coast Guard $702 million next year to speed up its Integrated Deepwater System acquisition'$202 million more than President Bush requested.

The House Transportation and Infrastructure subcommittee approved a $7.4 billion Coast Guard and Maritime Transportation Act authorization bill for fiscal 2004.

Rep. Frank LoBiondo (R-N.J.), chairman of the Coast Guard and Maritime Transportation Subcommittee, cited homeland security as the reason for the increase in the modernization project.

He said the extra funds are targeted to fast-track Deepwater, a 20-year, $17 billion plan to build new ships, planes, and command and control systems. Deepwater will replace 100 cutters'some dating back to World War II'and 200 aircraft from the Coast Guard's aging fleet.

About the Author

Mary Mosquera is a reporter for Federal Computer Week.

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