Friday, April 8, 2011

A message from Deputy Secretary of Defense

I know there is a lot of division and misinformation out there in regards to the impending government shutdown- well, hopefully Congress will do what the hell they're supposed to and reach an agreement on their (WAY) overdue budget. We can't count on that because they get paid out of emergency funds (just as the President would) if there is a shutdown. Anyway... back to the message from the Deputy Secretary of Defense William J. Lynn III. You can find it in it's entirety here. Basically the Deputy lays out what can be expected for both active duty and civilian personnel if there is a shutdown:

“Operations and activities that are essential to safety, protection of human life, and protection of our national security, are ‘excepted’ from shutting down.  The DoD will continue to conduct activities in support of our national security, including operations in Iraq, Afghanistan, and Japan; Libya-related support operations; and other operations and activities essential to the security of our nation.  The department must also continue to provide for the safety of human life and protection of property."

Which means the operations themselves will be financed. The personnel are a different story:

“Military personnel are not subject to furlough and will report for duty as normal during the shutdown.  Reserve component personnel should refer to the DoD Contingency Guidance document and to their chain of command for more specific information. 

“If the government shuts down due to the absence of funding, the DoD will have no funds to pay military members or civilian employees for the days during which the government is shut down.  However, both military and civilian personnel will receive pay for the period worked prior to the shutdown.  Military personnel, and civilians occupying excepted status positions and required to work, are entitled to be paid for work performed during the shutdown, and will be paid retroactively once the department receives additional funding.  Congress would have to provide authority in order for the department to retroactively pay non-excepted employees for the furloughed period.  

I hope this is helpful to my milspouses out there. It appears grim to me but if the posturing continues in Washington and a shutdown takes place we can all hope that it'll be short-lived and have a relatively low impact on all those effected; lets not forget this is a Government wide shutdown affecting not only the Department of Defense but all others as well, families who rely on pay from their positions in the Department of Energy, or Transportation (for example) will also be affect.

I just keep reminding myself to count my blessings: I have a warm place to sleep and food in my belly. When the food runs out I have a savings (what's it for after all?) and a credit card. My pops always told me "Failure to plan is planning to Fail." Sometimes it sucks being a grownup because you have to be prepared with contingencies for the worst case scenario. Lucky for me I had great advice from my father. :)

We'll suck it up and drive on like we always do, right? I would remind everyone to get your news from reliable sources, as well as verify and research what you do find.

PS: I got an email from the FRG in Baumholder that some services on post would be affected by the shutdown, check with your FRG to see if services in your area are also going to be canceled/delayed or otherwise affected.

1 comment:

Jen said...

So glad a shutdown was averted!