House Passes DHS Authorization Bill
For the first time since the creation of the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) the House passed an annual authorization act for the entire DHS (H.R.2825). This omnibus legislation includes authorization for the U.S. Coast Guard FY2018 authorization bill (H.R.2518) and authorization for the other 21 agencies within DHS. The legislation authorizes an increase in Coast Guard end strength from 42,000 to more than 47,000 for the next five years.
FRA supports the annual authorization legislation for the Coast Guard to enable Congress to provide adequate oversight of the 11 Coast Guard statutory missions. Coast Guard parity with DoD personnel programs remains a high priority for FRA. The association notes the Administration’s FY2018 budget request increased funding for the Navy and Marine Corps by nine percent and provided no increase for the Coast Guard. The House Authorization bill authorizes a 6.3 percent increase for the Coast Guard compared to FY2017 and 7.3 percent more than the FY2018 Administration’s request. Members can use the FRA Action Center to ask their legislators to provide the same increase for the Coast Guard that was provided to the Navy and Marine Corps.