Defense

April 17, 2013

DOD scrubbing money pot to reduce furloughs, Carter says

Karen Parrish
American Forces Press Service

Pentagon leaders from Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel on down are looking for ways to reduce the pending civilian employee layoffs known as furloughs, Deputy Defense Secretary Ash Carter said April 16.

Under the departmentís current plan, more than 700,000 civilian employees will receive furlough notices in early May notifying them of furloughs to begin in June. Furloughs would happen over seven two-week pay periods until the end of September and the close of the fiscal year, with employees likely to be told not to come to work for two days during each of those pay periods.

ìI hate the idea of furlough,î Carter said during a discussion with service members and civilian employees at Scott Air Force Base, Ill.

ìI think itís outrageous. I think itís unfair,î Carter said, noting he is planning to cut his own pay, though not his workload, commensurate with any furlough of civilian employees. As a Senate-approved presidential appointee, Carter canít be furloughed.

I don’t want to be collecting my whole paycheck while other people [canít],î the deputy defense secretary added.

The sequester cuts that took effect in March will cost the department $46 billion through the end of the fiscal year, which ends Sept. 30, officials have said.

Carter noted the continuing resolution Congress passed in March to fund that period gives DOD some flexibility in operations and maintenance spending. The ìO and Mî account, as itís commonly known, contains funding for civilian pay as well as for training, operations at military installations and family and troop programs. After Congress acted in March, Hagel announced the department would cut the planned number of furlough days from 22 to 14.

Defense leaders are submitting a massive reprogrammingî request to Congress in response to ìthe idiocy of sequester,î Carter said. According to the DOD comptrollerís office, reprogramming can involve moving funds from one appropriation to another or within an appropriation, and cannot be performed without statutory authority. Carter added that he hopes Congress will ìgive us some additional [budget] relief of some kindî over the summer.

The deputy secretary said department leaders are focused on managing a depleted fiscal year 2013 budget as skillfully as they can.

Of course, it’s not just to alleviate the furlough. We have other things that are important – all these things are important, he said. We have to make sure our nuclear deterrent forces are at full readiness. We have to support [troops in Afghanistan]. We have to take care of wounded warriors.

Defense leaders are looking to balance spending and ìenlarge that pot,î Carter said. He added that he hopes the department can further reduce civilian furloughs.

It’s a terrible way to treat people who are dedicated to the nation,î he said.




All of this week's top headlines to your email every Friday.


 
 

 
Army photograph by C. Todd Lopez

Smart-mortar will help Soldiers more effectively hit targets

Army photograph by C. Todd Lopez Nick Baldwin and Evan Young, researchers with the Armament Research Development and Engineering Center at Picatinny Arsenal, Pennsylvania, discuss the 120mm Guided Enhanced Fragmentation Mortar ...
 
 

Air Force assigns new chief scientist

The Air Force announced the service’s new chief scientist to serve as a science and technology adviser to the secretary of the Air Force and the chief of staff of the Air Force, May 21. Dr. Greg Zacharias will be the 35th chief scientist and is ready to “dive in” to his new role. “I...
 
 

TSgt promotion release delayed to allow system validation

Technical sergeant promotion selection results, originally scheduled for release May 28, will be delayed to enable the Air Force to continue to validate extensive system changes to the Weighted Airman Promotion System, officials announced. The 15E6 technical sergeant promotion cycle is the first to incorporate recent changes in the enlisted evaluation and promotion system. Recent...
 

 

Freedom completes rough water trials

The littoral combat ship USS Freedom completed Seakeeping and Structural Loads Trials, commonly referred to as Rough Water Trials in late March the Navy reported May 21. The U.S. Navy must demonstrate the seaworthiness and structural integrity of each new ship class. One of the primary ways the Navy verifies these qualities is through a...
 
 

Air Force releases Strategic Master Plan

The Air Force officially released the Strategic Master Plan May 21, which is the latest in a series of strategic documents designed to guide the organizing, training and equipping of the force over the coming decades. The SMP builds on the strategic imperatives and vectors described in the capstone document, America’s Air Force: A Call...
 
 

HYT extension possible for SrA-MSgt in 35 career fields

Eligible senior airmen, staff sergeants, technical sergeants and master sergeants in 35 Air Force specialties will be able to apply for a high year of tenure extension and, if approved, will be able to extend between 12 and 24 months past their current HYT. The Air Force is introducing several personnel and manpower initiatives to...
 




0 Comments


Be the first to comment!


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>