The Pentagon on Monday unveiled a fiscal 2019 budget request to Congress that would buy 10 new Navy ships and add 15,600 troops above this year’s authorized levels.
The request is part of the Trump administration’s second annual budget and would provide the Pentagon $617 billion in its base budget and $69 billion for its overseas operations account.
The funding represents a major hike for the military in 2019 and comes after Congress reached a deal to raise a $549 billion defense spending cap. The figures released Monday do not include the Department of Energy and some other non-Pentagon defense spending, which if included bring the total national defense request to $716 billion.
Defense Secretary Jim Mattis has said the money will be used to rebuild military capabilities that have atrophied in recent years.
The Navy would get a total of 10 new ships, including three destroyers, one littoral combat ship, and two Virginia-class submarines.
Last year, the Pentagon requested eight ships and Congress ultimately authorized 13 as part of the 2018 National Defense Authorization Act, which set levels for ships, aircraft and troops but must still be funded by appropriations legislation being worked on by Congress.
The budget proposal also would increase production of Lockheed Martin F-35 joint strike fighters and Boeing F/A-18 Super Hornet fighter jets.
The services would buy 77 F-35s, with 48 of those going to the Air Force, 20 to the Marine Corps and 9 to the Navy. A total of two dozen Super Hornets would be procured under the request.
Meanwhile, the total size of the military would grow by 15,600 troops over what was authorized in the NDAA, and the Navy is poised to see the lion’s share of that growth, according to the Pentagon budget documents.
The service would increase by 7,500 sailors as it struggles to meet demands on its crews and ships in the Western Pacific and around the world.
Both the Air Force and Army would each see their troop strength increase by 4,000 troops. But Army Guard and Reserve forces would not grow over 2018 levels.
Last year, the Trump administration proposed zero growth for the Army but Congress instead authorized 7,500 more soldiers this year.
Many defense contractors and analysts were somewhat disappointed by the president’s request last year and defense hawks in the House and Senate boosted the plans in the NDAA.
Overall, the Pentagon request asks for 25,900 more than its request released in May.