Press Release

January 20, 2023
Cardin, Van Hollen, Ruppersberger, Sarbanes Call for Full Funding for Coast Guard Yard Infrastructure Modernization in President’s Upcoming Budget

WASHINGTON – U.S. Senators Ben Cardin and Chris Van Hollen and Congressmen Dutch Ruppersberger and John Sarbanes (all D-Md.) urged the Biden Administration to include full funding for the critical infrastructure overhaul of the Coast Guard Yard in Curtis Bay, Maryland, in its upcoming proposed budget for Fiscal Year 2024. In their letter to Department of Homeland Security Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas, Office of Management and Budget Director Shalanda Young, and U.S. Coast Guard Commandant Linda Fagan, the lawmakers outline the Yard’s importance to our national security and Maryland’s economy as well as the need to bring its World War II-era infrastructure into the 21st century. Senators Van Hollen and Cardin worked to include provisions from their Service to the Fleet Act to authorize up to $636 million to meet the Yard’s modern infrastructure needs in the National Defense Authorization Act, which all the lawmakers supported as it became law in December 2022.

The lawmakers wrote, “For over 100 years, the Coast Guard Yard has played a vital role supporting the Coast Guard mission and our national security. The Yard is also an economic engine for Maryland, directly and indirectly generating thousands of good-paying, local, union jobs. This authorization, originally set forth in the Service to the Fleet Act which Senators Van Hollen and Cardin introduced last year, will ensure that the Coast Guard’s only shipbuilding and major maintenance facility will continue to serve the nation for the next century.”

“As you know, inclusion in the President’s annual budget is an important step toward ensuring that a priority is funded when Congress enacts annual appropriations. For that reason, we strongly encourage you to request full funding for this authorization in the President’s budget submission for the Department of Homeland Security for Fiscal Year 2024. We look forward to working closely with you to ensure that Congress enacts this funding as soon as possible,” the lawmakers concluded.

Full text of the lawmakers’ letter can be viewed here and below.

Dear Secretary Mayorkas, Director Young, and Admiral Fagan:

The National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2023 which became law on December 23rd authorizes $636 million for the modernization of the U.S. Coast Guard Yard in Baltimore, Maryland. This authorization is the first step in modernizing the Coast Guard Yard’s World War II-era infrastructure to support the next generation of Coast Guard vessels.

For over 100 years, the Coast Guard Yard has played a vital role supporting the Coast Guard mission and our national security. The Yard is also an economic engine for Maryland, directly and indirectly generating thousands of good-paying, local, union jobs. This authorization, originally set forth in the Service to the Fleet Act which Senators Van Hollen and Cardin introduced last year, will ensure that the Coast Guard’s only shipbuilding and major maintenance facility will continue to serve the nation for the next century.

In addition to authorizing these efforts in the NDAA, Congress urged the Coast Guard to fund them. The Joint Explanatory Statement accompanying the omnibus government funding measure passed last month directed that the Coast Guard “should dedicate funding to facility upgrades needed to improve the resilience of the Coast Guard Yard and associated infrastructure, as well as any other shore infrastructure maintenance and capital improvement projects.”

As you know, inclusion in the President’s annual budget is an important step toward ensuring that a priority is funded when Congress enacts annual appropriations. For that reason, we strongly encourage you to request full funding for this authorization in the President’s budget submission for the Department of Homeland Security for Fiscal Year 2024. We look forward to working closely with you to ensure that Congress enacts this funding as soon as possible.

Sincerely,