By Vice Adm. Bill Moran
Chief of Naval Personnel
We begin fiscal year (FY) 2015 under a continuing resolution (CR) that funds the government until Dec. 11. A CR is short term legislation passed by Congress and signed by the President that ensures our government has the resources necessary to continue normal government operations without disruption.
We anticipate no near term impacts to Navy funding for personnel. Same goes for operations and maintenance, research and development and infrastructure associated with this CR. However, until an appropriations bill is passed, uncertainty still exists. Having an approved appropriations bill would provide greater certainty and enable us to better fund the priorities of maintaining warfighting capability, procurement of new hardware, fleet readiness and Sailor training.
Below are answers to questions that you can expect to get from Sailors and families in your command:
Q1. Will the government shutdown this Oct 1 like it did last year?
A1. No, the government has been funded through Dec. 11 by a continuing resolution. For the most part, operations will continue as normal.
Q2. What happens to my pay, allowances and bonuses?
A2. You will see no disruption in your pay and allowances. All anniversary bonus payments will be paid on time. New personnel contracts will be written during the CR period, but we will need to ensure we proceed conservatively until we have more certainty on what Congress intends to do (i.e. additional CR periods or the passing of a budget). The longer we operate under a CR, the greater the risk there is to payments being delayed until we get additional funds. We will keep you informed on the possibility of future payment slippage.
Q3. How will this impact PCS?
A3. All Accession and Separation orders will be funded. We will make every effort to ensure operational, rotational and training orders are released in a timely manner so that Sailors can prepare themselves and their families to smoothly move to the next location. Our average lead time for PCS orders is currently 4 months. The longer we operate under a CR, the tighter that window may get-we will keep you updated as we know more.
Q4. What is the impact on training pipeline?
A4. We expect very minimal impact on the training pipeline. However, operating under CR limits our flexibility to respond to new training requirements. Sailors who experience “last minute” requirements will need to work closely with their training departments on scheduling and funding issues.
Q5. What will happen to buying supplies?
A5. Supplies will have to be purchased on an as needed basis. Emphasis will be on mission critical requirements during limited cash availability period of a CR.
(If you have specific questions beyond those answered above, please send them to firstname.lastname@example.org, we will make every effort to get you an answer)
We remain hopeful that we will get an appropriations bill sooner rather than later. The President’s budget submission for FY15 reflects the money needed for Navy to continue to modernize and transition to new ships and aircraft, grow cyber and other needed capabilities, as well as carry out our current defense strategy. As we discussed in March, the size of our Navy will remain stable between 323K and 324K Sailors for the foreseeable future. This stability means that we can continue our efforts to fill gaps at sea, focus on retaining Sailors with needed skills and maintain advancement rates at or slightly above historic norms. (link to CNP March 5 blog http://navylive.dodlive.mil/2014/03/05/navys-fy15-budget-more-than-just-numbers/)
If more information on the CR or appropriations bill process becomes available or if anything should change, we will provide updates to this blog.
See you in the Fleet.