Senate passes their version of NDAA
In a surprise move, the Senate passed their version of the National Defense Authorization Act (S. 1390) late Thursday night, July 23rd by a vote of 87 to 7. The NDAA now goes to conference where House and Senate leaders will determine what will be in the final bill.
This e-mail lists the amendments that were included that affect the Guard and Reserve. The entire bill is in review by ROA and more information will be shared in the near future.
Senator John F. Kerry (D-Mass.) was successful at including an amendment on early retirement. It would allow for service back to September 11, 2001 for the determination of a reduced eligibility age for receipt of pay National Guard and Reserve retired pay.
Sen. James Risch (R- Idaho) got Senate agreement to authorize the service secretaries to increase the end strength of the Selected Reserve by two percent. This would allow the National Guard, the Army and Air Force Reserve the flexibility to adjust the end strength numbers.
ROA 2008 Minute Man of the Year, Sen. Joe Lieberman got Senate approval to increase the authorized number of troops in the Army by 30 thousand starting in Fiscal Year 2010, with the Senate markup already including increases in FY 2011 and 2012. Improving active dwell time, this should also reduce pressure of deploying the Army National Guard and Reserve.
An amendment by Sen. Christopher Dodd (D-Conn.) would extend monthly special pay benefit for members of the Reserve Components of the Armed Forces to include time spent performing pre-deployment and re-integration duty.
Two accepted amendments from Sen. Jeanne Shaheen (D-N.H.) would improve and expand suicide prevention and community healing and response training under the Yellow Ribbon Reintegration Program; and require a report on plans for further implementation of the program as a whole.
An amendment by Sen. Robert Casey (D-Penn.) would require a report on the feasibility of requiring post-deployment health assessments of Guard and Reserve members deployed in connection with contingency operations at their home stations or counties of residence.
Sen. Amy Klobuchar’s (D-Minn.) amendment would require DoD to improve access to mental health care for family of National Guard and Reserve members who were deployed overseas.
Another amendment, by Sen. Russell Feingold (D-Wisc.) would permit Guard and Reserve members to continue in an active duty status during the physical disability evaluation process resulting from disabilities incurred during deployment in an area of imminent danger.
Sen. Bernard Sanders’ (I-Vt.) amendment requests a report to Congress on financial assistance for child care available to deployed members of the Reserve Components of the Armed Forces.
The reader is reminded that none of the amendments are yet law, but will be subjects of discussion during the upcoming NDAA conference.
CAPT, USNR (Ret.)
Director, Legislative and Military Policy
Reserve Officers Association
Back to top of page