The Commandant of the United States Coast Guard delivered his first State of the Coast Guard address Thursday at Coast Guard Base Los Angeles-Long Beach in San Pedro.
Speaking from the largest port in the nation, Adm. Karl Schultz highlighted Coast Guard security and marine safety operations, which facilitate $4.6 trillion in annual economic activity.
Schultz also recognized the service and sacrifice of Coast Guard men and women deployed around the world ensuring global peace and prosperity, including servicemembers supporting U.S. Indo-Pacific Command and U.S. Central Command. He also honored servicemembers in San Pedro, who help ensure the safety and timely movement of vessels operating in the Ports of Los Angeles-Long Beach.
“We must make a difference today, for the Coast Guard of tomorrow,” said Schultz. “Our Coast Guard men and women are united by a shared commitment and eagerness to serve, to demonstrate skill and courage, so that America’s Coast Guard will remain Semper Paratus—Always Ready.”
Schultz also made multiple policy and acquisition announcements including:
- Increased presence in Southern California, including construction of a new air station at Ventura County Naval Station; the homeporting of the service’s first two new Offshore Patrol Cutters at Base Los Angeles-Long Beach in 2021; and four new Fast Response Cutters in Los Angeles.
- Confirmed the service was poised to release an update to its Arctic Strategic Outlook in the coming weeks.
- $675 million to fully fund the Polar Security Cutter and award the first construction contract for the cutter in the spring.
- Provided an update on Coast Guard Cutter Bertholf’s deployment to the Western Pacific in support of United States Indo-Pacific Command combating North Korea’s maritime sanctions evasion activity.
- Confirmed the service will accelerate delivery of unmanned aerial systems for National Security Cutters to enable operations that reduce violence and economic/political instability in the Western Hemisphere.
“As Congress makes tough fiscal decisions and looks at the best ways to spend the nation’s precious resources, there’s not a better return on investment in government than the United States Coast Guard,” said Schultz.