The White Falcon


The White Falcon - 26.03.1976, Blaðsíða 1

The White Falcon - 26.03.1976, Blaðsíða 1
< White Falcon Volume XXXII. Number 12 Keflav*. Iceland March 26, 1979 Sailor of the Year competition begins The Naval Forces Iceland Sailor of the Year competition Is fast approach- king. The 1976 selection board is sched- uled to meet Tuesday to choose the rep- resentative of the U.S. Navy in Iceland. The Sailor of the Year Program has been in existence for about five years. "The program allows commands and ac- tivities to recognize personnel who are doing an outstanding job," commented Commander Robert C. Truax, Naval Station administrative officer. The Sailor of the Year Program is open to all active duty Navy personnel in pay grades E-4, -5 and -6. Selection of a nominee is based on leadership qualities, technical and professional proficiency, motivation, participation in community affairs, acts of heroism, awards and other noteworthy achieve- ments. "Nomination for Sailor of the Year, from the competition within an individ- ual command all the way to the compe- tition in Washington for the whole Navy, is keen. Just being nominated is an honor," said the Commander. In addition to representing the Navy in Iceland, the Naval Forces Iceland Sailor of the Year will represent Ice- land in the Atlantic Fleet competition. The Naval Forces Iceland Sailor of the Year will receive: a $100 Savings Bond; an engraved plaque; a Certificate of Commendation; dinner for two at the Top of the Rock Club; one Category III rating, with dependents if applicable, and a normal Category IV or V flight eligibility for the Environmental and Morale Leave Program. This rating will be valid for one year subsequent to se lection and may be used at the indi- vidual's option before or after use of a lower precedence category. The Sailor of the Year will also re- ceive a 96-hour liberty; head of line priviledges for six months at the Barber Shop, Navy Exchange, and Mess Hall; and an Iceland Sailor of the Year ID Card. "It comes back to the idea that the Navy has a large number of dedicated, conscientious personnel who work very hard. This program is a means of iden- tifying those people and giving them and their efforts recognition," Cdr. Truax explained. CHAMPUS changes affect few benefits Recent changes in the method for de- termining how much the Civilian Health and Medical Program of the Uniformed Services (CHAMPUS) pays for many bene- fits have created some misunderstand- ings. To correct these misunderstandings, Defense Department officials emphasize that the recent changes have a slight effect, if any, on most beneficiaries. For some, they actually increases the amount CHAMPUS pays. However, those who receive "high priced" medical help from .doctors who decline to participate in CHAMPUS could find themselves paying more out of their own pockets. The new method is viewed as an effort to get the most out of the health care dollar for the greatest number of bene- ficiaries and to minimize the flow of health care funds to a small percentage of high charging doctors. Also, it pro- vides greater program uniformity and as- sures that CHAMPUS procedures are con- sistent with those of the other major federal medical program, Medicare. As in the past, many CHAMPUS payments are based on a factor known as a "rea- sonable charge." These payments include charges for outpatient services and sup- plies, for maternity care, and for in- Tower Amendment protects retirement pay Starting in October 1974, it was pos- sible for service members to receive less retired pay by retiring after Oct. 1, 1974 than they would have received had they retired prior to that date. This disparity resulted from two con- current happenings: (1) from October 1972 onward, inflation caused Consumer Price Index (CPI) increases to retired pay to occur at a greater and more fre- quent rate than active duty pay raises; and (2) a Comptroller General (CG) de- cision placed severe constraints on the save-pay provisions in law. Under the CG decision, a member could retire under the basic pay rates in ef- fect at the time of his retirement or those basic pay rates which were in ef- fect for the preceding pay raise. What this restriction meant was that a member retiring after Oct. 1, 1974 could either retire under the October 1974 pay rates or the October 1973 rates, CPI adjusted, whichever provided the higher retired pay annuity. Similarly, a man who retired prior to Oct. 1, 1974 could-retire under either the October 1973 or the October 1972 rate. Because of the inflation driven adjustments to retired pay discussed above, the October 1972 rates normally provided more retired pay than either the 1973 or 1974 rates. Here is an example of how the Tower Amendment works under the FY 76 Defense Procurement Authorization Bill. Assume you are an E-8 and your pay date is July 6, 1953. Your active service began Nov. 4, 1953 and your promotion date is July 1, 1974: PAY RATE RETIRED PAY HYPOTHETICAL RETIREMENT CALCULATION OPTIONS ADJUSTED TO DATE 1. You could have retired as E-7 with 20 years of service on Nov. 30, 1973 2. You could have retired as E-7 with 21 years of service on May 31, 1974 3. You could have retired as E-8 with 21 years of service on Dec. 31, 1974, if permitted .to retire with only six months in grade. 4. You could have retired as E-8 with 22 years of service on May 31, 1975, if permitted to retire with only 11 months in grade. 5. You can retire on May 31, 1976 with 23 years of service, if permitted to retired with only 23 months in grade. Oct 72 $515.59 Oct 73 500.44 Oct 72 $541.37 Oct 73 525.47 Oct 73 $595.65 Oct 74 550.98 Oct 73 $660.46 Oct 74 611.00 Oct 74 $638.77 Oct 75 638.71 Members penalized In summary, the combined effect of inflation and the CG decision, was that members could be penalized for continued active duty unless they .received promo- tions or longevity increases which countered the effects of inversion. Accordingly, the military services pursued legislation to preclude service members from being so •penalized. After considerable deliberations, the military services agreed that an "individualized" save-pay approach would be equitable to the member as well as, the taxpayer. Therefore, the individualized approach was incorporated into the Retirement Modernization Act. Tower Amendment However, in response to concerns ex- pressed by active duty members, Senator John Tower, R-Tex., accelerated the leg- islative process by incorporating the individualized save-pay language in an amendment to the fiscal year 1976 De- fense Procurement Authorization Bill. The Tower Amendment, as it was called, solves the inversion problem by guaran- teeing a member that he will not receive less retired pay by remaining on active duty than he would have received had he retired at any time earlier in his ca- reer (assuming he met retirement eligi- bility criteria). The amendment does not guarantee a member that he would necessarily receive as much retired pay as anyone else with the same grade and years of service who had achieved the grade and years of ser- vice and actually retired at an earlier date. This is an important distinction which is the key to understanding the "individualized save-pay" clause in the Tower Amendment. The inversion legislation applies to any service member who was eligible to retire Jan. 1, 1971 or later. Since in- version first appeared in 1971, that date was necessary to insure • that mem- bers would not be penalized for their decisions to continue on active duty, For the majority of the force, actual inversion did not occur until Oct, 1, 1974 when new pay scales went into effect. In summary, the Tower Amendment pro- tects the member against the inequity of receiving less retired pay by virtue of remaining on active duty. It also in- sures that the inversion will, not work against the retention of highly quali- fied personnel. patient services and supplies not in- cluded in hospital bills. A reasonable charge involves con- sideration of the following three fac- tors: the actual charge, which is the exact fee charged to a patient for medi- cal care; the usual charge or the amount an individual doctor most frequently charges his patients for a particular service or supply; and the prevailing charge, which is the amount charged in the majority of bills for a specific service or supply by all doctors in a geographic area during the previous cal- endar year. The lowest of these three factors is considered the reasonable charge. By law, the amount allowed as the govern- ment's share under CHAMPUS is based on the reasonable charge, which also in- cludes the beneficiary's share. AF consecutive tours available Naval Station inspection There will be a personnel inspec- tion by the Commanding Officer of all personnel attached to the Naval Sta- tion on Thursday at 9 a.m. in Hangar 885, southeast bay. The uniforn for the inspection is service dress with ribbons. Women will wear white gloves. Busses will be provided to trans- port personnel to and from Hangar 885. The schedule will be promulgat- ed by Public Works. The use of POVs is discouraged. There are some changes ahead for Air Force people who want to go to a specif- ic area overseas. A new program has been developed from the permanent char.ge-of-station study at the Air Force Military Personnel Center (AFMPC). It applies to both U.S. bas^d and overseas members who want a consecu- tive overseas tour (COT). By volunteering for a normal accom- panied tour plus 12 months, persons can get priority consideration for an as- signment to the country of their choice. Both married and single members are eligible if they have the retainability to serve the extended tour. Also, there must be a requirement in the desired country; if one does not exist, they can select another country where there is a requirement. Program managers at AFMPC say the program will give more stability to the individual and his family, while saving critical Air Force moving funds. Top priority goes to people now over- seas. Those serving short tours can volunteer for an extended COT anywhere. Those now on long tours are restricted to applying for an extended slot in the same theater. Second consideration goes to normal COT volunteers. Air Force members who are now in stateside jobs and volunteer for accom- panied tours plus 12 months will be con- sidered ahead of their contemporaries who volunteer for a normal length accom- panied tour. The application procedures are sim- ple. For further details visit your Air Force personnel office, assignments branch. AF Retiree Council to meet in Texas soon The Air Force Retiree Council, repre- senting a cross section df the Air Force retired population, is scheduled to meet the week of April 12 at the Air Force Military Personnel Center (AFMPC), Ran- dolph AFB, Texas. The council will review programs and policies which affect all Air Force re- tirees and make recommendations to the air staff. Along with representative geographi- cal distribution, minority groups, won- en, regular and reserve components and both service and disability retirees have council seats. The council's prime objective is to provide a link between the retired com- munity and the Air ' Force. It also serves as an additional avenue for transmitting information from retirees to the active force and assists the air staff in understanding the broad prob- lems of retirees and in initiating im- proved procedures wherever possible. The first council meeting was held in 1973 and has convened annually at AFMPC.

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