At a time when much of the Armed Forces are looking to scale operations back, the Navy may be going the opposite route. As revealed in the branch's budget, which was released Tuesday, the Navy is looking to add 8,600 sailors to its ranks over the next six years in an effort to grow its capabilities, Military Times reports.
The proposed addition of sailors means that other priorities may be delayed. For instance, the budget pushes back necessary repairs for two of the Navy's vessels. However, it's important for the branch to add crews to ships and strengthen their cyber security division. Officials expect to add about 1,000 sailors each year, while also focusing on building new ships and acquiring new planes.
"The Navy's going to grow slowly over time," Rear Adm. Joe Mulloy, the deputy assistant Navy secretary for budget, told reporters. "We've pretty much reached the point where, to be able to operate with the force we have and to be able to properly man and train, we need these forces."
Mulloy's announcement comes as the debate continues over the recently-released Pentagon budget, which was announced on Wednesday. The proposal includes several areas of contention including reduced active duty pay raises and increased TRICARE fees, according to The Associated Press.