Military Report - Week of January 14, 2013

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Military Report - Week of January 14, 2013

#1 Postby boardman » Tue Jan 15, 2013 1:40 pm

Military Report - Week of January 14, 2013

2013 Navy Faculty Research Openings
The U.S. Navy's Office of Naval Research (ONR) is accepting applications now through Feb. 16 for the 2013 Summer Faculty Research Program, which teams researchers from institutions of higher education with peers at Navy laboratories throughout the country for a 10-week period between May and August. Faculty members from U.S. Department of Education-designated Historically Black Colleges and Universities, Minority Institutions, American Indian Tribal Colleges and Universities, and Hispanic Serving Institutions (HBCU/MI/TCU/HIS) are especially encouraged to apply. For more information, visit the (https://onroutreach-summer-faculty-rese ... __faq.html) Office of Naval Research Summer Faculty Research and Sabbatical Leave Program website.
For more Navy news, visit the (http://www.military.com/news) Military.com News Center.


Vet Bonuses in Ohio
Veterans of the Persian Gulf War have only until December 31, 2013 to apply for a tax-free bonus from the state totaling between $150 and $5,700. The only requirements are that the veteran was an Ohio resident when he or she entered the service, is currently an Ohio resident and he or she served at least 90 days on active duty between Aug. 2, 1990, and March 3, 1991. It does not matter whether the applicant was in a combat zone. Veterans of the Persian Gulf, Afghanistan and Iraq wars are the only ones who are eligible at this time. For more information, called 1-877-OHIO VET (1-877-644-6838) or visit the (https://veteransbonus.ohio.gov/odvs_web/) Ohio Veterans Bonus Program website.
For more tips and guides for tax season, visit the (http://www.military.com/money/personal-finance/taxes) Military.com Tax Center.


Eucom Extends Civilian LQA Allowance
The Department of Defense is extending housing allowances by one year for DoD civilians employed overseas by the U.S. European Command who were mistakenly granted the benefit. DoD has directed all components with employees in the Eucom area of responsibility to audit their employees' pay files to determine who is affected. For affected employees, there will be a one-year continuation of living-quarters allowances (LQA) payments and a waiver of indebtedness. DoD policy does not allow blanket waivers, so each affected employee will have to file for a waiver of indebtedness. Each case will be weighed on its individual merits.
For more on housing allowances and other pay benefits, visit the (http://www.military.com/benefits/military-pay) Military.com Pay Center.


AF MilPDS Upgrade Delayed
The Air Force has delayed its major upgrade to the Military Personnel Data System (MilPDS) until March. The Air Force Personnel Operations Agency here will upgrade and transfer MilPDS to the Defense Information Systems Agency Defense Enterprise Computing Center. The project is expected to take 23 days. During the upgrade, MilPDS will not be available. Air Force officials will release additional information and guidance to the Air Force's manpower, personnel, services and pay communities and total force Airmen to explain how the service will perform personnel and pay tasks during the upgrade and scheduled system outage. For more information about personnel services and self-service applications, visit the myPers (https://mypers.af.mil) website.


Military Skills Translator: Civilian Jobs You Qualify For
Translate your military skills, experience and training to find career opportunities that best align with your capabilities. Enter in your MOS, MOSC, Rating, or Designator and we'll give you a list of civilian skills and equivalent job openings. (http://www.military.com/veteran-jobs/sk ... RC=mrvr.nl) Translate Your Skills and Apply for Jobs Now.


Tax Assistance at Military OneSource
As tax season nears, Military OneSource and H&R Block have joined forces again to provide a free online tax preparation service for servicemembers. Two services -- basic and premium ---- are provided through H&R Block, with one notable difference. The basic service is free, and the premium service would apply to taxpayers who must file Schedule C returns, generally to report gains or losses from business ownership. All members of the Army, Navy, Air Force and Marine Corps are eligible to use these services including members of the National Guard and Reserve components, regardless of activation status. Coast Guard reservists activated under Title 10 authority to serve with the Navy also are eligible, and so are spouses and other family members enrolled in the Defense Enrollment Eligibility Reporting System. For more information, contact Military OneSource at 1-800-342-9647 24 hours a day, seven days a week, or visit the (http://www.militaryonesource.mil/) Military OneSource website.
For more tax season tips and options for organizing and paying your taxes, visit the (http://www.military.com/money/personal-finance/taxes) Military.com Tax Center.


SGLI Supplement: $250k Coverage from $18.15 a Month
Need more coverage than SGLI? ASMBA offers $250k supplemental insurance starting at $18.15 a month. (http://www.military.com/insurance/?lpid ... =mr0114.nl) Get quality coverage now.


'Fiscal-Cliff' Deal Affects Paychecks
The legislation that President Barack Obama signed Jan. 2 that postponed the fiscal cliff means changes to military and civilian paychecks. The legislation increases Social Security withholding taxes to 6.2 percent. For the past two years during the "tax holiday" the rate was 4.2 percent. For military members, Social Security withholding is located on their leave and earnings statement in the blocks marked "FICA taxes". Active duty military personnel will see pay adjustments in their January mid-month paycheck and will be reflected on the January leave and earnings statement. The Defense Finance and Accounting Service (DFAS) stresses that all personnel should review pay statements carefully.
(http://www.military.com/money/personal- ... taxes.html) Read more about the changes to your taxes.


COLA Overview & Calculator
As a servicemember, you can expect to be stationed virtually anywhere in the country. During your career, you are likely to be assigned to a variety of low-, moderate- and high-cost locations. To help offset the effects of higher cost areas, military servicemembers may be eligible for a Cost-of-Living Allowance (COLA). COLA is designed to compensate for being stationed in certain "high-cost" locations in the continental United States (CONUS). (http://www.military.com/benefits/milita ... ESRC=mr.nl) Get a full overview and calculate your COLA.


Updated: VA Loan Limits for 2013
The maximum guaranty amount of a VA loan is typically $417,000, but you may qualify for much more depending on the county where you live. VA has announced new loan limits for 2013 for certain counties, with some limits as high as over $1 million. These limits apply to all loans closed January 1, 2013 and afterwards. For the full chart of every county and contact information for regional VA loan centers, see this (http://www.military.com/money/va-loans/ ... nties.html) updated Military.com article.


USAF Enlisted Promotion List
Several hundred Air Force enlisted members were selected for promotion in the January supplemental promotion process. The list is available on the (http://www.afpc.af.mil/shared/media/doc ... 10-004.pdf) Air Force Personnel Center website. Promotion selections are tentative until the data verification process is complete; generally 10 days after the promotion release date. For more information about enlisted promotions or other personnel issues, visit the myPers (https://mypers.af.mil) website.
For more Air Force news, visit the (http://www.military.com/news) Military.com News Center.


AF Improves Reserve Travel Vouchers
The Air Force Reserve Command is making travel voucher processing easier for reservists. The Air Force Reserve Order Writing System (AROWS-R) will now allow nearly two-thirds of the AROWS-R orders generated each month to be imported into the Defense Travel System (DTS). DTS Phase II is already in play at Headquarters AFRC; Barksdale AFB, La.; Joint Base Lewis-McChord, Wash.; and Wright-Patterson AFB, Ohio. Beginning in February, the command will lift the AROWS-R business rules for 5 additional locations, and complete the Phase II implementation at all units by mid-spring. The Department of Defense has mandated that all travel be processed electronically through DTS by December 2013.
For more on military travel and travel discounts, visit the (http://www.military.com/Travel/Home) Military.com Travel Center.


Navy Exchanges to Offer Charging Stations
The Navy Exchange Service Command is piloting a program to offer electric vehicle charging stations at several of its NEXs. NEX Bethesda, Md., is the first store to offer electric vehicle charging. Adjacent to the new NEX is a two-level 500-space parking garage that features two electric vehicle charging spots reserved specifically for Eco-friendly, low emissions vehicles. The cost for charging an electric vehicle in Bethesda is $.48 per kilowatt hour. The price to charge a vehicle may differ from one NEX location to another. NEXCOM plans to provide electric vehicle charging stations at NEX San Diego and NEX North Island, Calif. In 2013 and at NEX Annapolis, Md., in 2014.
For more military family support resources, visit the (http://www.military.com/spouse) Military.com Family Center.


New Online Deployment Planning Resource
The Defense Department launched a new resource to help troops and their families plan for the "before, during and after" of deploying. "Plan My Deployment" is a new, interactive, online tool that supports servicemembers and their families as they prepare for the different stages of deployment. The new resource guides users through the "ins and outs" of deployment, Thompson said: from power of attorney and legal assistance considerations to financial and emotional issues. Other tips and tools address education and training benefits. Plan My Deployment is available at DOD's (http://www.militaryonesource.mil) Military OneSource website and is in the public domain, so it is available to extended family members who do not have access to military facilities.
For more on deployment and guides on how to prepare for and handle deployment, visit the (http://www.military.com/deployment) Military.com Deployment Center.


Overview: Thrift Savings Plan
The Thrift Savings Plan (TSP) is a retirement and savings plan available to servicemembers. There are differences between the traditional version of the Thrift Savings Plan and the Roth version. On October 1, servicemembers became eligible to take advantage of a Roth version of the Thrift Savings Plan, where money is deducted from taxed income, but becomes tax-free money when it is withdrawn. However, the traditional TSP is pre-taxed money, so it reduces the amount of your income in that year. Servicemembers can take advantage of TSP from day one of their enlistment through the Defense Finance and Accounting Service (DFAS). For more information, visit the Thrift Savings Plan website at (http://www.tsp.gov) www.tsp.gov, view the video on TSP on (http://www.youtube.com/user/tsp4gov) YouTube and visit the (http://www.military.com/money/personal- ... vings-plan) Military.com TSP Overview.


New All-Weather Coats Available at NEX
The Navy Exchange Service Command (NEXCOM) has announced that select NEX Uniform Shops, the NEX Web Store at www.myNavyExchange.com and the Uniform Support Center now sell the recently approved optional All-Weather Coat. The black poly/cotton coat comes with a zip out liner for extra warmth. The cost of the new optional All-Weather Coat is $97.40 for the men's coat and $91.85 for the women's coat. Select NEX Uniform Shops that will carry the optional All Weather Coat include NEX Norfolk, Va.; NEX Henderson Hall, Va.; NEX Great Lakes, Ill.; and NEX Bangor, Wash. Additional NEX Uniform Shops will begin selling the coat in 2013.
For more discounts for military servicemembers, veterans and families, visit the (http://www.military.com/discounts) Military.com Discount Center.


DoD Battles Rumors Over Troops' Meals
A chain email has been circulating online, claiming that "elected officials believe that our military who are deployed overseas don't have a need for breakfast anymore." In response, the DoD has taken to Twitter to clarify that some troops in Afghanistan's Paktika province are receiving Meals, Ready to Eat instead of hot breakfasts as U.S. forces prepared to pull out next year. The decision was based off a need to reduce logistics, not because of budget cuts, military officials said in a statement. "We want to assure you that all soldiers are receiving four meals per day (if they want all four)," the statement said. Making similar changes in other areas would be up to local commanders. For more details, see (http://www.military.com/daily-news/2013 ... meals.html) this Military.com article.


Navy Family Planning Training
The Coalition of Sailors Against Destructive Decisions (CSADD) will address the topic "Planning a Family During Your Navy Career" throughout the month of January. CSADD will provide information and training across the fleet on resources available to Sailors considering parenthood, as well as information for Sailors who are already parents. The CSADD topic is intended to facilitate an open discussion with Sailors about the many ways having a child can affect an individual Sailor's life. According to the Navy's most recent Pregnancy and Parenthood Survey, 74 percent of pregnancies in the Navy were unplanned. To learn about CSADD and how to set up a chapter at your command, visit the Navy Personnel Command's (http://www.public.navy.mil/bupers-npc/s ... ault2.aspx) CSADD webpage.
For more military family support resources, visit the (http://www.military.com/spouse) Military.com Family Center.


Navy Upgrades Medical Website
The Navy and Marine Corps Public Health Center (NMCPHC) has announced the upgrading of its (http://www.med.navy.mil/sites/nmcphc/Pages/Home.aspx) public website. The new website features an improved search capability and optimized navigation to provide user-friendly access to the center's vast library of public health tools and resources. The website homepage also features news and alerts for the latest information relating to Navy Medicine, public health and operational preventive medicine. NMCPHC's web content will continue to be updated, reflecting the command's most recent strategic initiatives.
For more on military health benefits, visit the (http://www.military.com/benefits) Military.com Benefits Center.


Must-see Base Guides: Local News and Info
Find Base Directories, Base Talk, Local Events and News, Reviews, and connect to other servicemembers, spouses, veterans and retirees near you. Browse installations by Service, location or name. (http://www.military.com/base-guide/?ESRC=mrvr.nl) Get local now.


Navy Detailer Application Phase Opens
The U.S. Navy's Career Management System Interactive Detailing (CMS/ID) application phase began Jan. 10 and will remain open until 5 a.m. Jan. 22 for Sailors in their permanent change of station (PCS) orders negotiation window. Sailors may access the site at the (https://www.cmsid.navy.mil) CMS/ID website or from the CMS/ID link at www.npc.navy.mil. Sailors are in their orders negotiation window when they are within nine through seven months from their projected rotation date (PRD). This is the first application phase for Sailors with an October 2013 PRD, the second application phase for Sailors with a September 2013 PRD and the last application phase for Sailors with an August 2013 PRD. These Sailors may review advertised billets in CMS/ID during the application phase and apply for up to five jobs, either directly using CMS/ID or through a command career counselor (CCC). Sailors can learn more about CMS/ID from their CCC or access CMS/ID by selecting the CMS/ID link on the Navy Personnel Command website at (http://www.npc.navy.mil) www.npc.navy.mil.
For more Navy news, visit the (http://www.military.com/news) Military.com News Center.


KCI is Hiring Veteran Talent
People Like You Are Our Most Important Asset. KCI offers the excitement and challenges of a growing and innovative company in the medical device marketplace of advanced wounded care solutions -- helping to heal patients, restoring them to active, and productive lives. At KCI, we refer to our employees as "Team Members" because we work together to provide the best products, service and outcomes to our customers. Diversity and prior-servicemembers are central to our hiring efforts and we believe success hinges on integrity, motivation and leadership found in U.S. Military Veterans. (http://www.military.com/jobs-in/employe ... RC=mrvr.nl) Learn More


Physical Fitness for Sailors
The U.S. Navy's Physical Readiness Program has resources and information to help Sailors and families achieve their fitness goals. Sailors should be able to resume their normal fitness routine if little time elapsed between workouts over the holidays. For those who have not worked out since the last semiannual physical readiness test, start off slowly and building up slowly. Navy guidance recommends Sailors complete at least 150 minutes of moderate physical activity each week and perform strength-training exercises at least twice a week to work all major muscle groups. The (http://www.public.navy.mil/bupers-npc/s ... ault2.aspx) Navy Physical Readiness Program website has links to sample warm-ups and workouts along with nutritional information. For more information visit the physical readiness section of the Navy Personnel Command website (http://www.npc.navy.mil) www.npc.navy.mil.
For more on military fitness requirements and training tips, visit the (http://www.military.com/military-fitness/) Military.com Physical Fitness section.


Benefit Calculator: 2013 Benefits in One Place
The Military.com Benefit Calculator is designed to quickly and easily connect you with your benefits information based on service and status. Find Federal Benefits, State Benefits, National Guard State Benefits, Special Military Discounts and More. (http://benefits.military.com/reg/Vetera ... RC=mrvr.nl) Find Your Benefits Now.
(http://www.military.com/benefits?ESRC=mrvr.nl) Visit the Military.com Benefit Channel to access Pay Charts, TRICARE information, BAH, Survivor Benefits, Vet Benefits and More.


ESGR Freedom Award Nomination Deadline
Reserve-component servicemembers have until Jan. 21 to nominate their employers for a 2013 Secretary of Defense Employer Support Freedom Award, which recognizes employers who go beyond what the law requires in supporting the National Guardsmen and reservists who work for them in their civilian lives. The Freedom Award is the nation's highest recognition for employers who support Guard and Reserve members, and employers of every size and industry are eligible to receive the honor. Guard and Reserve members, or a family member acting on their behalf, may nominate their employers at (http://www.FreedomAward.mil) The Freedom Award website.
For more military family support resources, visit the (http://www.military.com/spouse) Military.com Family Center.


Hiring Our Heroes Fairs in 2013
New year, new job opportunities. The U.S. Chamber of Commerce will hold dozens of Hiring Our Heroes job fairs for veterans this year. Update your resume and find one near you at the U.S. Chamber of Commerce (http://www.uschamber.com/hiringourheroes/events) Hiring Our Heroes Fairs webpage.
For a comprehensive schedule of other veteran job fairs across the country, visit the (http://www.military.com/veteran-jobs) Military.com Veteran Jobs Center.


'Healing Heroes' Helps Military Families
A new and unique book has just been released that supports MILITARY FAMILIES who are facing changes due to the injury of someone they love. The book " (http://www.wateringcanpress.com/html/he ... sbook.html) The Healing Heroes Book: Braving the Changes When Someone You Love Is Wounded in Service" is an activity book and valuable tool for military children and families to help them deal with the feelings and challenges, adjust to the changes, and cope when someone they love is wounded in service. Download sample pages and order the Healing Heroes Book at the (http://www.wateringcanpress.com/html/he ... sbook.html) Watering Can Press website.
For more military family support resources, visit the (http://www.military.com/spouse) Military.com Family Center.


Play Military Trivia and Win an iPod
Think you know military history and trivia? Test your knowledge with our the Military.com Trivia Challenge. Here's how you win: For each question you answer correctly you'll receive one point, and for each point you'll earn an electronic raffle ticket. At the end of the month we'll have a random drawing of all the tickets and pull out one to determine the winner. Play as little or as much as you'd like during the month, but the more questions you answer correctly, the greater your chances of winning. (http://www.military.com/Trivia/Home?ESRC=mrvr.nl) Play Now.


Many to Lose TRICARE Prime
On October 1, 2013 more than 171K retirees will be pushed off TRICARE Prime -- the military's managed-care option. The policy change will affect retirees, their family members and military survivors who reside more than 40 miles from a military treatment facility or from a base closure site. Affected retirees will need to shift health coverage from Prime to TRICARE Standard, the military's fee-for-service health insurance option. For beneficiaries who use more than preventive health care during the year, the shift will mean higher out-of-pocket costs.
(http://www.military.com/features/0,15240,254518,00.html) Read the Military Update to get the full story.
(http://www.capwiz.com/military/issues/a ... d=62125486) Let your voice be heard! Click here to tell you elected officials know how you feel about this change in TRICARE benefits.


Encouraging Your Loved One
Family members are key resources for servicemembers and veterans. They know when something is wrong and can encourage each other to seek help. Unfortunately, sometimes misunderstandings, disagreements and conflicts get in the way of helping. For suggestions for working with your servicemember or veteran when you think he or she is troubled and experiencing depression, posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) or another mental health concern and needs mental health services, visit the (http://www.dcoe.health.mil/blog/13-01-0 ... vices.aspx) Defense Centers of Excellence webpage.
For more military family support resources, visit the (http://www.military.com/spouse) Military.com Family Center.


AF Offers Legal Aid for Assault Victims
The Special Victims' Counsel Program, a new Air Force pilot program, will give sexual assault victims legal assistance and help them navigate the criminal justice system with lawyers trained to handle their unique needs. The program will provide 60 specially-trained attorneys Air Force-wide who will be placed geographically and who are certified trial counsel and expressed a desire to help victims of sexual assault. The new program will begin offering victims counsel services with counsel in existing legal offices starting January 28. Special Victims' Counsel will help victims understand the importance of separate interviews with different personnel in the military justice process and help protect their privacy and prevent unnecessary disclosure of intimate details. If you are a victim of sexual assault, consult a Special Victims' Counsel attorney -- you have complete attorney-client confidentiality.
For more on military law and legal options, visit the (http://www.military.com/benefits/milita ... rview.html) Military.com Military Law Overview.


Military News and Benefits on the Go
Get military news and benefits on the go with the new free Military.com app! (https://itunes.apple.com/us/app/militar ... RC=mrvr.nl) Download now.


Security Breach at DODDS Europe
In late-October, 2012, U.S. Department of Defense Education Activity-- Europe (DoDDS-Europe) became aware of the theft of computer memory devices that may have included personal information related to students and sponsors from School Years 2002-03 through this school year. The breach affected four different locations; Aukamm Elementary School, Hainerberg Elementary School, Ansbach Middle High School and Ramstein Intermediate School. Notices have been sent to sponsors of students at these four schools. However, there are a number of names for which no contact information could be found. People possibly affected should be guided by the actions recommended by the Federal Trade Commission at its (http://www.ftc.gov/bcp/edu/microsites/idtheft/) website and place an initial fraud alert on their credit file. Those with questions and concerns can e-mail (mailto:Privacy.Office@eu.dodea.edu) Privacy.Office@eu.dodea.edu.


Are You Eligible for a VA Home Loan in 2013?
In order to obtain a VA home loan, you must first fill out VA Form 26-1880, the request for your Certificate of Eligibility. This certificate is issued only through the Veterans Administration, and is the first step towards applying for your loan. Veterans, active duty, guard or reserve, and military spouses potentially qualify for this certificate. Keep in mind that the Certificate of Eligibility, while necessary, only allows an eligible individual to apply for a home loan; it does not guarantee a loan approval. Eligibility for the Certificate is based on an individual's (or a spouse's) military service. (http://www.military.com/money/content/v ... RC=mrvr.nl) Get specifics on Military.com.
(https://secure.military.com/leads/VALoa ... RC=mrvr.nl) Next Step: Find Lenders ready to help you use your VA Home Loan.


Webpage for Commissary Shoppers
Commissary customers who want to check out more opportunities to find exclusive specials, promotions and sales can visit the Defense Commissary Agency's Exclusive Savings webpage at (http://www.commissaries.com/partners.cfm) www.commissaries.com/partners.cfm, which shows all of DeCA's industry partners that are participating in this exclusive Web savings program. The website contains links to top name-brand websites that offer downloadable coupons, recipes, promotional giveaways and contests. Check out the (http://www.commissaries.com/partners.cfm) 'Exclusive Savings' page for industry specials.
For more discounts for military servicemembers, veterans and families, visit the (http://www.military.com/discounts) Military.com Discount Center.
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