Navy Increases Bonuses for Nuke Sailors

ARLINGTON, Va. — The Navy is increasing re-enlistment bonuses for sailors qualified to serve on nuclear vessels, said Cmdr. Jeff Manning, nuclear community enlisted manager.

Of the 15,000 sailors with nuclear ratings, about 4,800 sailors are eligible for increased Selective Reenlistment Bonuses, which are based on rates and years of service, Navy officials said.

The Navy hopes to retain 989 sailors through the bonus, which is offered to sailors with up to 10 years of service, Manning said.

Manning said the following sailors with nuclear ratings will see an increase in re-enlistment bonuses:

  • Electronic technicians, submarines and surface ships.
  • Machinist’s mates, submarines and surface ships.
  • Engineering lab technicians, submarines.

The bonus is calculated using an award multiple, which is multiplied by additional months of service and base pay and divided by 12 to come up with a dollar amount, Manning said.

For example, the award multiple for electronic technicians on submarines has been raised from 8.5 to 9, meaning the re-enlistment bonus for a four-year contract has increased from $59,600 to $63,000, he said.

Award multiples for the nuclear ratings can be viewed in NAVADMIN 155/06, available at

An additional 680 sailors with more than 10 years of experience are eligible for the Enlisted Supervisor Retention Program, which targets sailors at E-6 (Petty Officer 1st Class) and above with skills deemed critical, Manning said.

Started in 2004, the Enlisted Supervisor Retention Program was expanded in May to include sailors with between 16 and 20 years of experience. Because the Navy is closer to its retention goals for those sailors, their re-enlistment bonuses are much less than bonuses for sailors with between 10 and 16 years of experience.

Right now, the Navy is about 110 sailors shy of its goal of retaining 368 sailors in certain ratings, Manning said.

Short-handed in one rate in particular, the Navy is increasing re-enlistment bonuses for machinist’s mates on nuclear-powered surface ships from an average of $86,700 to $99,000, Manning said.

So far, the Navy is about one-third of the way toward its goal of retaining 73 sailors in the machinist’s mates, surface ships ratings for this fiscal year, Manning said.

Manning said the Navy missed its target of retaining 268 sailors through the program last fiscal year but he declined to say by how much.

For more information on which rates are covered under the bonus program, see NAVADMIN 159/06 at

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