(a) The Coast Guard Auxiliary is a nonmilitary organization administered by the Commandant under the direction of the Secretary. For command, control, and administrative purposes, the Auxiliary shall include such organizational elements and units as are approved by the Commandant, including but not limited to, a national board and staff (to be known as the "Auxiliary headquarters unit"), districts, regions, divisions, flotillas, and other organizational elements and units. The Auxiliary organization and its officers shall have such rights, privileges, powers, and duties as may be granted to them by the Commandant, consistent with this title and other applicable provisions of law. The Commandant may delegate to officers of the Auxiliary the authority vested in the Commandant by this section, in the manner and to the extent the Commandant considers necessary or appropriate for the functioning, organization, and internal administration of the Auxiliary.
(b) Each organizational element or unit of the Coast Guard Auxiliary organization (but excluding any corporation formed by an organizational element or unit of the Auxiliary under subsection (c) of this section), shall, except when acting outside the scope of section 822, at all times be deemed to be an instrumentality of the United States, for purposes of the following:
(1) Chapter 171 of title 28 (popularly known as the Federal Tort Claims Act).
(2) Section 2733 of title 10 (popularly known as the Military Claims Act).
(3) Section 30101 of title 46 (popularly known as the Admiralty Extension Act).
(4) Chapter 309 of title 46 (known as the Suits in Admiralty Act).
(5) Chapter 311 of title 46 (known as the Public Vessels Act).
(6) Other matters related to noncontractual civil liability.
(c) The national board of the Auxiliary, and any Auxiliary district or region, may form a corporation under State law in accordance with policies established by the Commandant.
(d)(1) Except as provided in paragraph (2), personal property of the auxiliary shall not be considered property of the United States.
(2) The Secretary may treat personal property of the auxiliary as property of the United States—
(A) for the purposes of—
(i) the statutes and matters referred to in paragraphs (1) through (6) of subsection (b); and
(ii) section 641 of this title; and
(B) as otherwise provided in this chapter.
(3) The Secretary may reimburse the Auxiliary, and each organizational element and unit of the Auxiliary, for necessary expenses of operation, maintenance, and repair or replacement of personal property of the Auxiliary.
(4) In this subsection, the term "personal property of the Auxiliary" means motor boats, yachts, aircraft, radio stations, motorized vehicles, trailers, or other equipment that is under the administrative jurisdiction of the Coast Guard Auxiliary or an organizational element or unit of the Auxiliary and that is used solely for the purposes described in this subsection.
(Aug. 4, 1949, ch. 393, 63 Stat. 555; Pub. L. 104–324, title IV, §401(a), Oct. 19, 1996, 110 Stat. 3922; Pub. L. 108–293, title II, §226, Aug. 9, 2004, 118 Stat. 1041; Pub. L. 109–304, §17(c), Oct. 6, 2006, 120 Stat. 1707; Pub. L. 114–120, title II, §209(14), Feb. 8, 2016, 130 Stat. 41.)
Based on title 14, U.S.C., 1946 ed., §§260, 263 (Feb. 19, 1941, ch. 8, title I, §§1, 4, 55 Stat. 9, 10).
This section continues the Auxiliary, redefining it as a nonmilitary organization, and providing for its administration. 81st Congress, House Report No. 557.
2016—Subsec. (b)(1). Pub. L. 114–120 substituted "Chapter 171" for "Chapter 26".
2006—Subsec. (b)(3) to (5). Pub. L. 109–304 added pars (3) to (5) and struck out former pars. (3) to (5) which read as follows:
"(3) The Act of March 3, 1925 (46 App. U.S.C. 781–790; popularly known as the Public Vessels Act).
"(4) The Act of March 9, 1920 (46 App. U.S.C. 741–752; popularly known as the Suits in Admiralty Act).
"(5) The Act of June 19, 1948 (46 App. U.S.C. 740; popularly known as the Admiralty Extension Act)."
2004—Subsec. (d). Pub. L. 108–293 added subsec. (d).
1996—Pub. L. 104–324 inserted "of the Coast Guard Auxiliary" after "Administration" in section catchline and amended text generally. Prior to amendment, text read as follows: "The Coast Guard Auxiliary established on February 19, 1941, is a nonmilitary organization administered by the Commandant under the direction of the Secretary."
Pub. L. 99–640, §9, Nov. 10, 1986, 100 Stat. 3548, provided that:
"(a) It is the sense of the Congress that the Coast Guard Auxiliary performs a broad range of services in behalf of the safety and security of the American people, and that the continued strength and vitality of the Coast Guard Auxiliary is important to the United States.
"(b)(1) The Secretary of Transportation shall investigate and submit to the Congress a report within 1 year after the date of enactment of this Act [Nov. 10, 1986] regarding—
"(A) the extent to which membership of the Coast Guard Auxiliary has declined in recent years and the causes of such decline;
"(B) the effect, if any, on the maritime community of any such decline in the performance levels of the Coast Guard Auxiliary in the areas of life-saving, assistance to persons in distress, safety patrols and inspections, and support missions for the Coast Guard; and
"(C) the effect, if any, of the Coast Guard's non-emergency assistance policy on the overall effectiveness of the Coast Guard Auxiliary.
"(2) The report submitted by the Secretary under this section shall include such recommendations for legislative and administrative action as the Secretary considers appropriate to achieve and maintain the Coast Guard Auxiliary at its optimum strength."