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WASHINGTON – The Navy plans to deliver six new ships this year and retire 11, and begin adding sailors to support new platforms, while the Marine Corps wants to ramp up funding for unit readiness and training, and cut funding for infrastructure and some equipment modernization projects.

The funding bill recently passed by Congress fixed many of the Navy’s ship maintenance and operating budget problems, so now there are only eight ships that may face maintenance delays later this year, Rear Adm. Joseph Mulloy, deputy assistant secretary of the Navy for budget told reporters.

Ship construction under the continuing resolution was “all broken,” but the funding provided by Congress made a dramatic difference, he said.

Still, he said, if the Navy is forced to furlough civilians, it will have a major negative impact on the Navy and Marine Corps.

The services did not take sequestration cuts into account when building their proposed fiscal 2014 budgets.

In its proposal for next year, the Navy plans to add about 900 new sailors to reduce manning gaps at sea and support new platforms – such as the Littoral Combat Ship. At the same time, the Marine Corps will continue its drawdown to 182,100 by the end of fiscal 2016.

Many investments will stay relatively flat, but the Marine Corps will increase readiness, recruiting and retention by about $2 billion. Of that, $843 million will support the Pacific pivot.

The Navy will add 21 EA-18G Growlers and two new Growler squadrons as it moves to replace aging EA-6B Prowlers.

And while the Corps plans to fund the Joint Light Tactical Vehicle, Ground/Air Task Order Radar and current planned Amphibious Combat Vehicle, it will delay upgrades to Light Armored Vehicles and reduce funding for sustaining other equipment.

hlad.jennifer@stripes.com Twitter: @jhlad


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