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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 I believe the program is outdated, and the changes mandated in Section 1053 are a great start towards modernizing this force.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 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!
May 23rd, 2017
Someone from San Juan, PR writes:
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There is a bill to amend the NDAA FY 17 to change the following: Commencing not earlier than October 1, 2017 (instead of no later than) and the total number of positions converted may not exceed the number equal to 4.8 % of military technician (instead of converting no fewer than 20%). Where is the justice?
May 22nd, 2017
Someone from Sparks, NV writes:
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Hurry this up already.
May 19th, 2017
Someone from Jackson, MI writes:
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Stop the Title 5 Repeal!
May 15th, 2017
Someone from Oakland, ME writes:
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Convert ALL dual Status techs to title 5 ! after 30 years in the NG I'm still bound by this law,, as I work beside civilians in this office , does this military career ever end as a Dual Tech,, with all the negatives that im not entitled to as a M-day SM makes me wonder why I've chose this career,,, I'll have almost 40 Years in the NG before I can draw my Tech Retirement,, this needs to change
May 15th, 2017
Someone from Lincoln, NE writes:
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Convert all technicians to title 5!
May 10th, 2017
Someone from New Orleans, LA signed.
May 10th, 2017
Someone from Concord, NH signed.
May 10th, 2017
Someone from Shelburne, VT signed.
May 9th, 2017
Joe P. from Gulfport, MS writes:
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I have been dual status for 19 years now. I currently face a retention board every 1 or 2 years. What kind of job security is that? I say they should convert all title 32 to title 5. It would be better for all in the end. I have a total of 33 years now. Les than 5 years to ERD. But I loose my job if not retained in the guard. All my experience walks.
May 9th, 2017
Darlene P. from Hilliard, FL writes:
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It is bad enough that a National Guard member who has served the country more than 30 + years must be subjected to an annual board that will "assess" whether their expertise and experience is still needed. What a way to show support for your toughest, best and brightest. In private industry, this could be classified as age discrimination! For dual status technicians, the pressure is much greater. Not only could they be kicked to the curb, but they also lose their livelihood, possibly their retirement, and their insurance. National guard members already must wait to age 60 to receive retirement benefits even though many have served on active duty for years with all of their deployments. They also cannot qualify for military insurance until 60. If they lose dual status, they are likely over the age of 50, searching for a job, and in many cases without any benefits. Is this any way to treat those that fight for our country? This is the unspoken veteran travesty! My husband is a great example. He has been in the Guard for 33 1/2 years and a federal technician for 7. He is 52 years of age and received the notice from his commander that he will be non retained. He is too young to receive any insurance or retirement from either the federal government or the National Guard and as stated in other comments posted, his rights and ability to challenge are extremely limited. He deployed just last year to the Middle East for six months to return to this nonsense. As a military spouse for all of these years, it is an unthinkable way to treat our servicemembers and our families. Stop talking out of both sides of your mouth, you either need them so readiness is not reduced or your don't. Eliminate the need for dual status technicians to go to the retention board every year (and keep your readiness) or follow the law and convert these civilian technicians positions to Title V.
May 8th, 2017
Someone from Lansing, OH writes:
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I have been a military technician for almost 20 years. I now have over 24 years of exemplary military serivce that includes 31 months of mobilization in support of overseas operations. Now it appears the retention boards have it out for all technicians, regardless of how well they have served their county. The retention boards don't consider or care about the service individuals such as myself have given to the federal government. Many times I put my military job and federal job above my family needs. Now it seems it was all for nothing, they are now getting rid of us, I am now considered a marginal Soldier and I will lose my federal technical job. This law can't be repealed, it must go forward to help hundreds of individuals such as myself. The boards are getting rid of techcians, it is happening now, it needs to stop. Thank you for your time.
May 7th, 2017
Someone from Marana, AZ signed.
May 7th, 2017
Someone from Tucson, AZ signed.
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