Coast Guard Polar Icebreaker Modernization: Background and Issues for Congress [April 25, 2013] [open pdf - 763KB]
"This report provides background information and issues for Congress on the sustainment and modernization of the Coast Guard's polar icebreaker fleet, which performs a variety of missions supporting U.S. interests in polar regions. The Coast Guard's proposed FY2014 budget requests $2 million to continue survey and design activities for a new Coast Guard polar icebreaker, or $118 million less than the $120 million that was projected for FY2014 for the new polar icebreaker under the FY2013 budget. The proposed FY2014 budget anticipates awarding a construction contract for the ship 'within the next four years.' The issue for Congress is whether to approve, reject, or modify Coast Guard plans for sustaining and modernizing its polar icebreaking fleet. Congressional decisions on this issue could affect Coast Guard funding requirements, the Coast Guard's ability to perform its polar missions, and the U.S. shipbuilding industrial base."
CRS Report for Congress, RL34391