Growler, A-10, U-2 Win Reprieves in U.S. Legislation for 2015

The defense appropriations portion of the Fiscal Year 2015 “omnibus” spending legislation the U.S. Congress passed in December extends production of the Navy’s EA-18G Growler and prevents retirement of the Air Force’s aging A-10 Warthog. Lawmakers provided $554.2 billion overall for base and overseas contingency funding of the Department of Defense, $18 billion less than the previous fiscal year, but roughly the same amount requested by the Obama administration.

The President’s budget request contained no funding for the Growler electronic warfare variant of the F/A-18 Super Hornet, raising the possibility that Boeing’s Super Hornet production line in St. Louis would be nearing an end. But the Navy added 22 Growlers to a list of “unfunded” priorities it submitted to Congress last spring, and Boeing said those aircraft would sustain production until 2017. The FY2015 appropriations legislation, which contains funding through September, provides the Navy with $1.46 billion to acquire 15 EA-18Gs.

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