The President may appoint, by and with the advice and consent of the Senate, one Commandant for a period of four years, who may be reappointed for further periods of four years, who shall act as Chief of the Coast Guard. The term of an appointment, and any reappointment, shall begin on June 1 of the appropriate year and end on May 31 of the appropriate year, except that, in the event of death, retirement, resignation, or reassignment, or when the needs of the Service demand, the Secretary may alter the date on which a term begins or ends if the alteration does not result in the term exceeding a period of 4 years. The Commandant shall be appointed from the officers on the active duty promotion list serving above the grade of captain who have completed at least ten years of active service as a commissioned officer in the Coast Guard. The Commandant while so serving shall have the grade of admiral.
HISTORICAL AND REVISION NOTES Based on title 14, U.S.C., 1946 ed., §11 (Apr. 16, 1908, ch. 145, §§1, 2, 35 Stat. 61; Jan. 28, 1915, ch. 20, §1, 38 Stat. 800; Jan. 12, 1923, ch. 25, §2, 42 Stat. 1130; Apr. 23, 1930, ch. 211, 46 Stat. 253; June 9, 1937, ch. 309, §1, 50 Stat. 252; June 6, 1940, ch. 257, §1(a), 54 Stat. 246). Said section has been divided. The provisions of the first proviso are placed in section 45 of this title, and the remainder is placed in this section. The grade of the Commandant is fixed as vice admiral rather than that prescribed for Bureau Chiefs of the Navy. The additional qualifications that an officer appointed Commandant must have at least 10 years commissioned service in the Coast Guard has been inserted. 81st Congress, House Report No. 557.PRIOR PROVISIONS A prior section 302, act Aug. 4, 1949, ch. 393, 63 Stat. 518, related to temporary appointments of warrant officers, prior to repeal by Pub. L. 88–130, §1(10)(A), Sept. 24, 1963, 77 Stat. 177.AMENDMENTS 2018—Pub. L. 115–282 renumbered section 44 of this title as this section. 2014—Pub. L. 113–281 inserted after first sentence "The term of an appointment, and any reappointment, shall begin on June 1 of the appropriate year and end on May 31 of the appropriate year, except that, in the event of death, retirement, resignation, or reassignment, or when the needs of the Service demand, the Secretary may alter the date on which a term begins or ends if the alteration does not result in the term exceeding a period of 4 years." 1972—Pub. L. 92–451 substituted "above the grade of captain" for "in the grade of captain or above" in second sentence. 1966—Pub. L. 89–444 struck out provision that the position of an officer appointed Commandant be filled by promotion according to law. 1963—Pub. L. 88–130 substituted "officers on the active duty promotion list serving in the grade of" for "active list of officers who hold a permanent commission as", required qualifying period of 10 years commissioned service to be "active" service, and struck out ", pay, and allowances" before "of admiral". 1960—Pub. L. 86–474 substituted "active list of officers" for "active list of line officers", "captain or above" for "commander or above", and "allowances of admiral" for "allowances of vice admiral".EFFECTIVE DATE OF 1972 AMENDMENT Amendment by Pub. L. 92–451 effective Oct. 2, 1972, except that continuation boards may not be held until one year thereafter, see section 3 of Pub. L. 92–451, set out as a note under section 2151 of this title.EFFECTIVE DATE OF HIGHER GRADE AND INCREASED PAY AND ALLOWANCES Pub. L. 86–474, §2, May 14, 1960, 74 Stat. 146, provided that: "The increased grade of admiral for the Commandant and vice admiral for the Assistant Commandant [now Vice Commandant], including the pay and allowances applicable to such grades, shall be effective on the first day of the month following enactment of this Act [May 14, 1960]."SAVINGS PROVISION Pub. L. 86–474, §3, May 14, 1960, 74 Stat. 146, provided that: "Except as provided by section 2 [set out as a note under this section], the amendments by section 1 [amending sections 41, 42, 44, 46, 47, 186 to 191, 222, 247(c), 365, and 462 of this title, and repealing sections 45, 48, and 49 of this title] shall not operate to change or deprive the present incumbents serving as Commandant, Assistant Commandant [now Vice Commandant], and Engineer in Chief of any rights, benefits and privileges appertaining to such offices on the day preceding the date of enactment of this Act [May 14, 1960], nor to divest them of their offices for the terms appointed."
14 U.S.C. § 302 (2018)