Pentagon Will Cut $1 Billion in Personnel
Thursday, December 5, 2013 07:34 AM
By: Elliot Jager
The Pentagon will cut $1 billion in personnel costs over five years, a plan that would affect contractor and civilian defense workers, Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel said.
Hagel said that while the number of personnel and support staff reductions are comparatively small overall, "every dollar that we save by reducing the size of our headquarters and back-office operations is a dollar that can be invested in war-fighting capabilities and readiness," The New York Times reported.
At the same time, he urged Congress not to impose another year of across-the-board sequestration cuts to the defense budget, the Associated Press reported.
"Congress must be a full partner in our efforts to responsibly bring down defense spending and to implement needed institutional reforms that maximize the use of our resources," Hagel said.
If Congress and the president fail to reach agreement on a tax and spending plan by Jan. 15 the Defense Department could face another $500 billion reduction over 10 years above and beyond the $487 billion in cuts planned for the next decade, the Times noted.
The cuts to various units that report to his office over the fiscal years 2015 to 2019 would come from eliminating some entire operations and their support staffs, using fewer outside contractors, leaving vacant positions unfilled, and significantly reducing the use of civilian personnel.
Hagel plans to do away with several under deputy secretary and deputy assistant secretary positions within his office as well as consolidating management, intelligence, policy and technical units, the Times reported. Those units now employ more than 2,400 people; that number would be reduced to fewer than 2,200 under his proposal.