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News - 2011
PCS Order Writing May Resume In Weeks 


By Mass Communication Specialist 1st Class(AW) LaTunya Howard, Navy Personnel Command Public Affairs

SCHAUMBURG, Ill. (NNS) -- The Chief of Naval Personnel (CNP) said June 15 that he is optimistic that permanent change of station (PCS) order writing would resume within a few weeks.

Via video stream, Vice Adm. Mark Ferguson spoke to more than 600 Navy counselors, career counselors and command master chiefs attending the 21st annual Navy Counselor Association (NCA) symposium here.

The Navy's $350 million budget shortfall was partially responsible for the hold on PCS transfers throughout the summer.

Changes with the order-writing accounting system were another factor affecting the PCS transfers hold. The Navy now requires funding for orders when they are written versus when the orders are executed. This paired with record retention and fewer separations due to attrition has slowed the number of Sailors leaving active duty and required the Navy to divert money for payroll rather than previously budgeted programs.

"Manpower costs are one of the fastest growing components of the budget. It's growing at about four to six percent a year and is much higher than inflation," said Ferguson.

CNP explained Navy's force stabilization objectives to the audience indicating where the Navy is with end strength, how it got there and where the Navy is headed.

"The anticipated retention rate was 52 to 54 percent; we are at 60 percent retention for Zone A. This behavior is tracking with the rate of unemployment," said Ferguson.

Zone A Sailors have less than six years of service, and six percent more of these Sailors than projected are choosing to stay Navy, contributing to the Navy's budget shortfall.

The NCA symposium runs from June 15-19. This year's theme is "Building a Top 50 Organization." Emphasis areas include benefits, force stabilization and Sailor performance. Other topics covered at the symposium include career development boards, sponsorship and command indoctrination, Perform to Serve expansion to Zones B and C and electronic service records.

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