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Stop the Title 5 Repeal!

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The FY16 NDAA contained Section 1053, a bi-partisan provision that ordered the conversion of no less than 20% of all National Guard (NG) Dual Status technicians (DSTs) from Title 32 to Title 5 employment to begin on January 1, 2017. The National Guard Bureau (NGB), the Adjutant Generals Association (AGAUS), the National Guard Association (NGAUS), and the Council of Governors (CoG) strongly opposed the law and called for its outright repeal citing unsupported claims of increased cost and reduced readiness. Senator John McCain, SASC Chairman, and Senator Jack Reed, SASC Ranking Member, strongly rejected the calls for repeal, and Section 1053 was ultimately included in the 2016 defense bill.

After repeal efforts failed, opponents of Section 1053 asked that language be included in the FY17 NDAA to delay conversion until at least October 1, 2017, under the guise that: 1. It would align the conversion with the beginning of FY18; and, 2. It would allow leaders some time to ensure a smooth transition for affected employees. The House and Senate Armed Services Committees (HASC/SASC) agreed to the proposal as presented, and included draft language in the FY17 NDAA to delay the conversion.

Supporters of Section 1053 warned HASC/SASC, and other members of Congress that calls to delay were merely a veiled attempt to give NGB, AGAUS, NGAUS, and CoG one more crack at repealing Section 1053 in the FY18 NDAA. It appears the warnings were justified as Section 1053 opponents are renewing their push for a full repeal of Section 1053 now, rather than later, during the election season, through the lame duck session, and before the FY17 NDAA is even signed. For the reasons stated below, I strongly urge you to oppose any effort calling for the repeal of Section 1053.

The NG DST program is over 100 years old. I believe the program is outdated, and the changes mandated in Section 1053 are a great start towards modernizing this force. The new law streamlines administration, cuts overall operating costs to the US Government, and allows technicians access to due process.

Concerning due process, technicians do not enjoy the full due process protections guaranteed to other federal employees because current law limits appeals of adverse employment actions to their respective State Adjutants General. As such, these employees cannot appeal to an arbitrator, the Merit Systems Protection Board, the Office of Special Counsel, or even Federal Court, which means they are also not protected as under Federal Whistleblower laws. The result is a program that is often susceptible to fraud, waste, and abuse, and is the only program in the federal government where the person who fires you also hears and decides your appeal.

The changes required by Section 1053 are the start of much-needed reform. The law is based on the independent report prepared by the Center for Naval Analysis at the direction of Congress in section 519 of the 2012 defense bill. It takes a conservative approach and gives National Guard and State authorities the ability to provide input on how the transition should occur, including how best to maintain these employees under the control of State AGs, all while affording them the rights enjoyed by every other federal civilian employee. Section 1053 will allow these employees an opportunity to reach full civilian retirement age, provide access to federal appeal rights, and simultaneously correct other inconsistencies that only affect this small but much-needed workforce.

Thank you for your attention to this very important matter.
Public Comments
Jun 30th, 2017
Michael K. from Lagrange, ME writes:
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I urge you to refuse efforts to change the law, as it was passed last year, on this issue. Any arguments for change are about 'control,' not readiness. Conversion of Title 32 technicians to Title 5 will increase strength and readiness and will allow current dual-status technicians to support the war effort beyond their 60th birthday when they are forced to retire from the service.
Jun 30th, 2017
Michael K. from Lagrange, ME writes:
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As the other comments explain, this conversion will INCREASE readiness, not decrease readiness.
Jun 27th, 2017
Someone from Hernando, MS signed.
Jun 27th, 2017
Someone from Bismarck, ND writes:
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Opponents of the Title 5 conversion claim this will degreed readiness. As a 20 year technician I can tell you it will help readiness. Currently when a dual status technician deploys it leaves a vacancy in their full time position. Other employees in the office have to do the work of the person deployed. A full civilian Title 5 employee will not deploy, either for federal or state duty. This will allow an M-Day Soldier to fill the deployed position, and the full-time employee can continue to support the war fighters doing their full-time job without interruption. In addition, most will stay in the military at least until they hit their 20 years. If the person is a Title 5 employees who decides to stay in the military nothing changes. So all the arguments saying it degrades readiness is very far from the truth. If these title 5 employees retire from the military and stay as full-time title 5 employees, readiness is helped. Both for the military and federal position. More efficient to have an employee do one position instead of trying to do two, and gone from both all the time. Thanks!
Jun 27th, 2017
Eric L. from Fresno, CA signed.
Jun 26th, 2017
Calos H. from Clovis, CA signed.
Jun 26th, 2017
Steven D. from Brunson, SC writes:
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This Issue needs to be addressed
Jun 25th, 2017
Steven B. from Lincoln, NE signed.
Jun 22nd, 2017
Someone from East Nassau, NY signed.
Jun 15th, 2017
Gina W. from Maricopa, AZ signed.
Jun 15th, 2017
Someone from Wasilla, AK writes:
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I have served in the National Guard for 22 years, but only been a technician for 11 years. I have meet all requirements to retire from the National Guard, however I have 19 more years until I meet my technician retirement. I have already started going through the QRB's which could eventually lead to my non-retention in the National Guard and cost me my civilian job and retirement. I would say that is one hell of a way to thank those that serve our country that after dedicated serves we not only get kicked out of the military but lose our way of life at the same time. I do believe there needs to be stipulations on going title 5 though. My opinion is that in order to earn a title 5 position the individual should have to successively meet the required time to retire from the military (20 years). once this is meet they should be able to continue their service as title 5. I personally will remain in the military until I am QRB out. However it would take a load of stress off of me as well as others not to have to worry about my civilian job at the same time as trying to serve my country.
Jun 15th, 2017
Julio R. from Casa Grande, AZ signed.
Jun 15th, 2017
Someone from Incline Village, NV signed.
Jun 15th, 2017
Humberto M. from Peoria, AZ signed.
Jun 15th, 2017
Angelica D. from Phoenix, AZ signed.
Jun 15th, 2017
Justin G. from Casa Grande, AZ signed.
Jun 14th, 2017
Someone from Falling Waters, WV writes:
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Been a Technician dual status title 32 for 30 years. At end of my career there are concerns of being SRB and being forced out of the military. If this happens, I will lose my fulltime position. I am not ready to retire and see title 5 non-dual status as a way to continue serving my country and unit. Asking you all to stop the repeal of title 5.
Jun 14th, 2017
Mike M. from Ada, MI signed.
Jun 7th, 2017
Caje D. from Sherwood, AR writes:
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The current systems leaves some individuals with many years invested (such as myself) in a bad situation, with no good solution. Title 5 would solve those issues for us.
Jun 4th, 2017
Courtney K. from Tucson, AZ signed.
Jun 2nd, 2017
Diego S. from Queen Creek, AZ signed.
Jun 2nd, 2017
Herbert V. from Tucson, AZ signed.
Jun 1st, 2017
Someone from Casa Grande, AZ signed.
Jun 1st, 2017
Someone from Red Rock, AZ signed.
May 31st, 2017
Juan G. from Marana, AZ writes:
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This a fair and just act, The QRB program is unfair to those of us who have devoted our time and made a career of supporting the facilities that are forcing us older folks out. No more delays and stop the repeal!
May 31st, 2017
Francisco S. from Mesa, AZ signed.
May 31st, 2017
Michael E. from Mesa, AZ writes:
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Title 5 is fair.
May 31st, 2017
Ron V. from Tucson, AZ signed.
May 31st, 2017
Eric S. from Goodyear, AZ signed.
May 31st, 2017
Emmitt W. from Tucson, AZ signed.
May 31st, 2017
Aarron N. from Tucson, AZ signed.
May 31st, 2017
Luis L. from Tucson, AZ signed.
May 31st, 2017
Someone from Tucson, AZ signed.
May 31st, 2017
Andrew A. from Tucson, AZ writes:
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We need this. Please.
May 31st, 2017
William J. from Tucson, AZ writes:
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No more delays and stop the repeal!
May 31st, 2017
Someone from Red Rock, AZ writes:
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Stop the repeal!!!
May 31st, 2017
Richard W. from Maricopa, AZ writes:
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I am a title 32 technician and strongly believe the title 5 conversion needs to happen in order to creat a more fair a balanced system that is currently one sided. Currently under title 32 Technicians there is no fair due process and decisions are based of rumors and opinions rather than facts.
May 31st, 2017
Someone from Hampton, SC writes:
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All arguments I have seen made to justify a repeal and or reduction in the 20% conversion from title 32 to title 5 are blatantly false and serve only to maintain what is currently a broken system. Soldiers who are unable to deploy but remain fit for civilian service should not be forced out of their jobs for failing to maintain military service.
May 30th, 2017
Someone from Arlington, TX writes:
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I am currently a Title 32 Technician with 22 years of military service. If I lose my military affiliation, I lose my job. Please repeal this now!
May 25th, 2017
Someone from Sherwood, AR writes:
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Convert all Title 32 Technicians to Title 5 NOW! The excuses given by the chain of command are BS!
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