“In 2019, with the addition of the Salute to America event, the Department of Defense (DOD) and Executive Office of the President undertook additional efforts,” the report states.
“Estimated costs for the 2019 events on the National Mall increased to more than $13 million,” it continues. “This increase was attributable to the cost for DOD to transport several vehicles to the National Mall, the production and execution of the Salute to America event, and the additional security involved because the President attended the event.”
After a flyover from the plane that normally serves as Air Force One, Trump delivered 20 minutes of remarks that were an homage to the nation’s early history and its military. In a crowd-pleasing closer, the President hailed each branch of the military as aircraft from their fleets — including a B-2 stealth bomber and the Blue Angels — flew overhead, causing Washington’s buildings to shake and rumble. Bands heralded the individual branches with their official march songs.
There were to be about 750 to 800 military personnel taking part in the celebration, a defense official told CNN. That didn’t include members of the DC National Guard who were activated to provide traffic control and security on the streets and in the city’s Metro system.
The Interior Department announced in a statement just before the event that the additional fireworks, valued at $750,000, had been donated.
CNN’s Gregory Wallace, Kevin Liptak and Ryan Browne contributed to this report.