Latest on T5 conversions
This is from LIUNA, just wanted to keep everyone updated.
T5 UPDATE – June 5 2017:
Another long one…but it's important to make sure we get the correct information out so you know what's going on.
Remember – you got this from LIUNA not ACT!!!
NGB has sent the Unions drafts of the T5 Implementation Notice, as well as the draft notification letters that will be given to employees whose positions are going to covert. We are in the process of providing our reply to those drafts.
There's already a problem. It seems that NGB is going to play semantics with the T5 conversion law. As we've been noticing (and letting SASC know for the last few months), NGB only plans to convert 'positions not people' by October 1. They are trying to hide behind an obscure Federal regulation that they claim allows them to convert positions, only, but delay conversion of actual people for 6 months, until March 31, 2018. We strongly disagree with this as it raises many many questions. Aside from the obvious 'what the hell has NGB been doing for the last year and a half,' it also raises the question of what happens to an individual whose 'position' gets converted, but they don't, and then that individual get's non-retained before they actually convert. Our opinion, and we believe the law and Congressional intent is on our side, is that if the incumbent's position is converted on October 1 then the individual retains their job regardless of military non-retention, and regardless of whether they're actually converted or not by on October 1.
We have been asking NGB for the list of actual dual-status positions that are going to convert, but they refuse to identify actual positions. This is deliberate. They readily admit that non-dual status positions will convert, but, for some reason, they claim that they have not yet figured out which DS positions will convert. Unless we're provided a different explanation, the only reason NGB has not yet identified which positions are going to convert is because they are holding out hope that the efforts of the Governors and TAGs to repeal T5 will bear fruit. There's really no other reason for them not to have that list yet because the positions within the NG technician program are the same today as they were when T5 passed, and (once again) they've had more than 1 1/2 years to identify all the positions by now.
We're also asking NGB in regards to positions that have both dual and non-dual status position descriptions currently approved, and whether all those positions that currently have 2 PDs identified are going to convert, or whether they're going to try and claim that, even though they have NDS PDs for these positions, that they are still 'inherently military.'
Stay tuned because next week we're going to start an on-line petition so that everyone can sound off to Congress and ask that they not support any legislation that aims to reduce or repeal the T5 conversion.
In the meantime, attached is the second of several Myth vs. Fact Sheets, which addresses all the lies being put out about T5. The text of Fact Sheet follows in case you cannot download the pictures:
T5 Myth – Readiness Impact
“It is unfortunate that Governors and Adjutant Generals have resorted to scare tactics and fact-distortion in opposition to bi-partisan legislation that aims to modernize the NG technician program.”
Ben Banchs LIUNA Local 1776
MYTH: Converting Technicians from T32 to T5 would harm readiness by reducing the total number of National Guard personnel available for emergency response.
The conversion of dual-status technicians (DSTs) from title 32 to title 5 employment has zero impact on overall end-strength, or on the ability of the National Guard (NG) to respond to Federal or state emergencies, period. When you truly consider the facts, the numbers just don’t support the Adjutant Generals’ claims:
FACT #1: On any given day, the NG has over 94,000 Federal employees and Active Guard Reserve (AGR) personnel on full-time duty nationwide able to respond immediately to emergencies. Compared to other Federal Agencies, the NG, collectively, has more Federally-funded personnel assets than the Departments of Commerce, Labor, Energy, State, Housing, and Education, combined. Compared side-by-side, the NG also has more full-time personnel than the Departments of the Treasury, Agriculture, Health, Transportation, or Interior . These figures do not include full-time state employees, which number in the thousands and serve in different duty statuses and functions, to include law enforcement and medical services during emergencies.
FACT #2: The conversion to T5 does not reduce total NG end-strength, period!
- NG FY17 end-strengths per the NDAA (before and after T5 conversion):
Army: 343,000 (AGR: 30,155 – DST: 25,507 – NDS: 1,600)
Air: 105,700 (AGR: 14,764 – DST: 22,104 – NDS: 350)
Total Strength: 448,700
Fulltime Federal: 94,480 (AGR and Technicians combined)
Army: 343,000 (AGR: 30,155 – DSTs: 20,407 – T5: 6,700)
Air: 105,700 (AGR: 14,764 – DSTs: 17,333 – T5: 4,770)
Total Strength: 448,700
Fulltime Federal: 94,480 (AGR and Technicians combined)
FACT #3: As seen in the table above, this is a ‘conversion in place’ not a ‘reduction in force.’ Positions converted continue to serve in a full-time capacity within the NG, and continue to perform the same exact duties after conversion as they did before the conversion. The only difference is that those converted to T5 will no longer be required to remain in the NG as a condition of their civilian employment. Even if a converted individual ends their military affiliation, this does not reduce NG end-strength because those vacated military billets would then be filled by DSGs. T5 employees will still support emergency operations in their civilian capacity in the same way other Federal employees respond to emergencies, either directly or in a support role, within the confines of their civilian position description.
FACT #4: The number and type of personnel actually required for immediate NG response is not as high as the Governors and AGs are claiming. National Guard Regulation (NGR) 500-5, titled National Guard Domestic Law Enforcement Support and Mission Assurance Operations , sets emergency response parameters for the NG, as follows:
Paragraph 7.1(a) requires each state/territory to form a National Guard Reaction Force (NGRF) ‘capable of supporting law enforcement by providing site security, presence patrols, show of force, establish roadblocks and/or checkpoints, control civil disturbances, provide force protection and security for…operations, or respond to and assist in protecting selected assets.’ The regulation does not say a force of ‘technicians’; rather, it says a force comprised of current units and personnel resources, allowing Governors and Adjutant Generals (AGs) to tap all personnel resources.
Paragraph 7.1(c) also states that the NGRF need only deliver ‘a quick reaction force unit of 75-125 personnel within 8 hours.’ So, even if you were to assume that states could no longer use the 11,470 employees that convert to T5 for immediate response, they would still have access to the other 83,010 full-time individuals serving in either DST or AGR Federal status, not to mention the rest of the 448,700-strong NG Federal force, and the thousands of unaccounted for state employees.
Conclusion: In order to believe the myth that the T5 conversion would harm readiness to the degree that Governors and AGs have been panicking about, you would also have to believe that only NG technicians respond to emergencies. Even if you believe that, you would also have to believe that T5 personnel cannot be used in an immediate response situation, and that AGs won’t be able to find 75-125 response personnel out of a pool of 83,010 instead of the current 94,480, within the first 8 hours of an emergency. Even then, you would also have to believe that, for some reason, the NG is incapable of mobilizing any of the remaining 365,690 personnel that comprise the full end strength of the NG within those first 8 hours, or during the following 24-36-hour period…for whatever reason.
There is absolutely no evidence, anecdotal or otherwise, that T5 will reduce the ability of the National Guard to respond to emergencies, and it is both ludicrous and irresponsible for anyone to claim such a thing.