Defense Force Management:

Status of Military Force Downsizing

T-NSIAD-92-20: Published: Mar 25, 1992. Publicly Released: Mar 25, 1992.

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GAO discussed its ongoing review of the Department of Defense's (DOD) military strength management, focusing on: (1) the magnitude of force reductions; (2) programs designed to foster force reduction; (3) the extent of such reductions; and (4) funding for two special separation incentive programs. GAO noted that: (1) DOD plans to reduce 561,000 active duty positions by 1995; (2) the National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Years 1991-93 authorized several programs that expanded authority for selected early retirement and reduced time-in-grade/service requirements pertaining to officers, expanded lump sum separation pay for involuntarily separated personnel, and offered financial incentives to induce voluntary separation of personnel with between 6 and 20 years of service; (3) DOD and the services are pursuing a policy of trying to achieve and maintain a degree of balance between accessions and losses in order to shape military forces in terms of rank, years of service, and specialties; (4) the Army is trying to maximize its use of special incentive programs, while the Navy is making less use of the programs; (5) the Air Force intends to use the special separation incentive programs through 1992; and (6) funding questions regarding special separation incentive programs remain, because significant personnel savings will not be likely during fiscal year 1992.

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