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NORFOLK, Va. (NNS) -- With the end of the Iraq War and the draw down in Afghanistan, the U.S. Navy is reducing the size of the Navy Reserve Expeditionary Force.
The largest change that will occur is a 45 percent reduction in Navy Reserve construction forces, affecting more than 6,000 Sailors.
For the Navy Expeditionary Combat Command Reserve Force, the immediate impact of the planned force restructuring is the reassignment of Sailors to other units and reduced advancement opportunities while the force adjusts to the new billet structure over time.
"Despite these large reductions, the Reserve Component will remain a large and important contributor to the Navy Expeditionary Command's mission," said Deputy Commander, Navy Expeditionary Combat Command, Rear Adm. Sandy Adams. "After all the changes, the RC will remain 49 percent of all NECC forces and the Naval Construction Total Force will remain over 47 percent of NECC."
The non-Seabee ratings that will be impacted the most are: Aviation Ordanceman (AO), Boatswain's Mate (BM), Culinary Specialist (CS), Electrician's Mate (EM), Gunner's Mate (GM), Logistics Specialist (LS), and Master-at-Arms (MA). These ratings will experience billet losses of 10 to 20 percent, resulting in overmanning over the next several years.
"These changes will be managed by a fair and transparent process," said Chief of Navy Reserve, Vice Adm. Robin Braun. "All Sailors affected by the restructuring will be reassigned to other units and will remain in a pay status. We'll manage this force reduction through normal attrition, reduced accessions and voluntary rate conversions."
Sailors who lose their billet due to command restructuring will be able to apply for a new billet through the Career Management System-Interactive Detailing (CMS-ID) system. Personnel not immediately assigned to a billet will be assigned in an In Assignment Processing (IAP) status at a local Navy Operational Support Center (NOSC). Those placed in an IAP status will have the opportunity to apply for future vacant billets through CMS-ID.
The NECC unit restructuring will result in a force-wide reassignment of all remaining Selected Reserve (SELRES) Naval Construction Force (NCF) billets. All SELRES NCF Seabee billets throughout the Force will be vacated during Fiscal Year 13. Once the reorganization is complete, the billets will be advertised and personnel assigned using CMS-ID.
"Every effort will be made to allow Reserve Seabees the opportunity to serve with a Seabee unit," said Navy Reserve Force Master Chief Chris Wheeler. "However, in some cases, individuals may be cross-assigned from non-Seabee units or assigned IAP in non-Seabee units."
In cases where affected Sailors are not assigned to a Seabee unit, leadership will work to maximize training opportunities.
"We are doing everything we can to honor our commitment to those who provided critical support to the nation and Navy over the past decade. However, we do recommend that affected Sailors consider applying for a rating conversion using FleetRIDE," said Wheeler.
FleetRIDE for SELRES is a web-enabled career counseling tool that screens and guides the right Sailors to the right jobs. FleetRIDE assists career counselors, enlisted community managers, and Sailors with reclassification and career guidance by providing the best match of a Sailor's qualifications and interests to meet Navy requirements for rating conversions.
"Force reductions are part of the fiscal and operational challenges our Navy is confronting. Navy Reserve leadership is committed to supporting our Sailors and affording all personnel the opportunity to serve," said Braun.