While the Defense Department balances the threat of sequestration with additional spending money from the White House, some members of Congress are looking at ways to support military members and their families.
When it comes to defending the country from cyber attack, Defense officials have made abundantly clear that they plan to leverage the military’s National Guard and reserve components as much as possible, including, most recently, by tasking the Army Guard and Reserve to build 21 cyber teams on top of the 133 U.S. Cyber Command had planned as part of its Cyber Mission Force.
The Defense Department is trying to make benefits administration simpler for reservists. Currently, service members in reserve ranks have more than 30 duty statuses to wade through to figure out what benefits they are entitled to. Often changes in orders lead to gaps in benefits. DoD has a new plan to simplify all of that, and expand benefits.
DoD presented a plan to lawmakers last month to consolidate 32 reserve duty statuses into just four. For years reservists received differing pay and benefits depending on which of the duty statuses their orders fell under, causing a bureaucratic mess and gaps in benefits.
The Pentagon said Tuesday that it expects to reach final decisions by July on each of the more than 17,000 cases in which soldiers were paid large bonuses to re-enlist during the heights of the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan only to be told years later that they must give the money back.
National Guard officials say dozens of people have been punished over a scandal that forced thousands of soldiers to have to repay their enlisted bonuses. But only one has been sent to jail. Congress held its first oversight hearing on the issue yesterday.
The Pentagon said Wednesday that it expects to permanently stop collection procedures for the vast majority of National Guard soldiers who, according to various audits, got bonuses they weren’t technically entitled to between 2004 and 2011.
In today's #FedFeed, Secretary of State John Kerry visits Vatican City and the Tennessee National Guard takes on a forest fire.
When the Pentagon demanded nearly 10,000 California National Guard soldiers pay back a decade-old re-enlistment bonus, it had do back down days later. Federal News Radio's Eric White spoke with retired Maj. Gen. Gus Hargett, president of the National Guard Association, on Federal Drive with Tom Temin to examine if the incident will produce lasting effects.
Last month, the Army, along with the rest of the military services, announced all of the active duty cyber teams they’re building for U.S. Cyber Command have reached their initial operating capability and are ready for offensive and defensive missions. Next in line: teams made up entirely of National Guard and Army Reserve personnel.
The Pentagon says its new Silicon Valley-based technology outreach office is seeing some early successes in rapid acquisition. It handled its first dozen procurements in an average time of 60 days. But most of the money it spent went to established companies, not garage-style startups.
National Guard units were activated in several East Coast states over the weekend to help with the relief effort in the aftermath of Hurricane Matthew.
From gathering weather data in the air to providing relief on the ground, federal employees snap into action as Hurricane Matthew ravages the East Coast.
Members of the National Guard, Coast Guard and Air Force pitch in to help Louisiana residents dealing with massive flood.