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U.S. House panel adds $450 million to FY15 budget for 5 Boeing jets

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - The U.S. House Armed Services Committee on Monday proposed adding $450 million to the U.S. Navy's fiscal 2015 budget for five more Boeing Co EA-18G electronic attack planes, well short of the 22 jets on the Navy's list of "unfunded priorities."

Boeing and its backers in the House and Senate are seeking funding for 22 more planes to maintain the St. Louis, Missouri production line where Boeing builds the planes. The line is slated to shut after 2016 unless Boeing receives more orders.

House Armed Services Committee Chairman Buck McKeon said his proposed changes to the Pentagon's fiscal 2015 budget found savings across the Defense Department to fund many key programs, but "there simply was not enough to save every program."

In a press release announcing the chairman's "mark," the committee said McKeon "recognizes the need for continued production of the EA-18G Growler but was only able to fund five additional aircraft."

(Reporting by Andrea Shalal; Editing by Bernard Orr)

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