Senate panel wants to pump up funding for Coast Guard's Deepwater

The Senate Commerce, Science and Transportation Committee has called for giving the Coast Guard an extra $202 million next year for its Deepwater acquisition program.

As part of the $7 billion Coast Guard fiscal 2004 authorization act, the Senate panel last week recommended the program receive $702 million. The Bush administration requested $500 million; the House has approved an authorization of $530 million.

Senate lawmakers said they want to keep Deepwater'a 20-year, $17 billion plan to build new ships, planes, command and control systems and computer and intelligence systems'on a fast track. Through the program, the Guard plans to replace 100 cutters and 200 aircraft in its aging fleet.

The bill awaits a full Senate vote when lawmakers return from their August recess.

About the Author

Mary Mosquera is a reporter for Federal Computer Week.

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