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Navy To Cut Reenlistment Bonuses In Brilliant Plan To Boost Retention
The Navy is planning to decrease 14 selective reenlistment bonus levels and eliminate six skills from the list of bonus-eligible careers, the office of the Chief of Naval Personnel announced on June 17, a move that seems counterintuitive to a branch that claims to have a renewed focus on reenlistment.
The coming update to the Navy’s December Selective Reenlistment Bonus plan, expected to take effect on July 21, will establish a moratorium on award level increases or additions as the branch explores more effective ways to “maintain acceptable manning levels in critical skills,” according to the announcement.
During fiscal year 2017, the NDAA set the Navy's authorized end strength total is 323,900. For 2018, the branch is hoping to reach 327,900, according to a statement from the Chief of Naval Personnel offices
Several anonymous officials told Navy Times that the branch’s end-strength number could rise as high as 350,000, but Chief of Naval Personnel spokesman Lt. Cmdr. Nathan rejected that target, telling Task & Purpose that while “there is not currently an end goal [or] final end strength number that I’m aware of, we do expect end strength will grow commensurate with force structure changes.”
“We are concerned about the potential impact on future fleet manning if we don't take proactive action now to keep more sailors at sea to finish their first sea tours and thus avoid a significant decline in fleet manning,” Christensen said. “Our number one priority is to keep the Fleet manned at the highest levels we can.”
It’s unclear why the Navy is cutting bonuses across these 14 levels considering the branch is hoping to add 4,000 sailors to its ranks by 2018, and the branch’s decision appears to buck a trend among the other service branches when it comes to retaining top talent.
The Army is attempting to sweeten the deal for reenlistees and new recruits by offering massive reenlistment bonuses and retirement incentives in order to retain and rebuild its force structure. And while the Air Force cut careers eligible for bonuses, but its budget for bonuses grew from $226 million in 2017 to $250 million in 2018.
Currently, The Navy pays bonuses of $30,000, $45,000, $60,000, $75,000, and $100,000, Navy Times reports. Half of each bonus amount is paid up front when a sailor reenlists, with the remainder evenly paid out across each subsequent year of service.
However, the CNP memo says that Navy officials believe they can still fill crucial roles and carry out their missions. If necessary, they may use their discretion to request increases in enlistment bonuses, which CNP will take under advisement.
“There is not currently an end goal [or] final end strength number that I'm aware of, but we do expect end strength will grow commensurate with force structure changes,” Christensen said.
Defense Secretary Mark Esper said Monday that U.S. strategic goals could include drawing down troops in Africa despite French pleas that American support is "critical" to countering the growing strength of terror groups in the region with links to the Islamic State and al Qaeda.
"My aim is to adjust our footprint in many places," including Africa, to free up forces for a "great power competition" against China and Russia, he said at a joint Pentagon news conference with French Defense Minister Florence Parly.
The Air Force's top general says one of the designers of the ride-sharing app Uber is helping the branch build a new data-sharing network that the Air Force hopes will help service branches work together to detect and destroy targets.
The network, which the Air Force is calling the advanced battle management system (ABMS), would function a bit like the artificial intelligence construct Cortana from Halo, who identifies enemy ships and the nearest assets to destroy them at machine speed, so all the fleshy humans need to do is give a nod of approval before resuming their pipe-smoking.
One person was injured by Sunday's rocket attack on the U.S. Embassy in Baghdad, Task & Purpose was learned. The injury was described as mild and no one was medically evacuated from the embassy following the attack.
A U.S. E-11A Battlefield Airborne Communications Node aircraft crashed on Monday on Afghanistan, Air Force Chief of Staff Gen. David Goldfein has confirmed.
The US government is letting Marine veteran Austin Tice languish in a Syrian prison, according to his mother
The mother of Marine veteran Austin Tice told reporters on Monday that a top U.S. official is refusing to give permission for a meeting with the Syrian government to negotiate the release of her son, who went missing near Damascus in 2012.
"Apparently, somewhere in the chain, there is a senior U.S. government official who is hesitating or stalling," Debra Tice reportedly said at the National Press Club in Washington, D.C.
Debra Tice said she is not certain who this senior official is. She also praised those in government who are working to get her son back.