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National Briefing / Washington, D.c.

Jets approved for federal officials

August 07, 2009|TIMES WIRE REPORTS

The House is ordering up three Gulfstream jets to fly Pentagon and other top government officials -- including members of Congress -- around the globe in conditions far cushier than coach class.

The almost $200-million appropriation to buy three C-37 jets, the military version of the Gulfstream 550, is buried in a $636-billion Pentagon budget passed by the House last week.

The Pentagon had asked for only one of the $65-million planes as part of an ongoing effort to replace aging jets such as the C-20, an older Gulfstream Aerospace Corp. plane that costs about $6,100 an hour to operate, compared with less than $2,700 for the C-37, according to department figures.

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