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Aviation Continuation Pay (ACP - The Bonus)

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How do you avoid a break in service? Don’t you need your DD-214 to inprocess at your guard unit and I’ve heard that MPF has taken weeks after separation to get them completed and sent to people.


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Palace Front, you can apply when you establish a DOS, ensures you dont have a break in service and gets you 180 days of extended health care. That is how you handle the break in service without the DD 214

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1 hour ago, brabus said:

Not worth it. If that's all thats available at the unit a guy wants, then I'd take it initially to get in the door, but I wouldn't plan on that for the long term/retirement purposes.

1. The GS system is filled with bullshit of the worst kind - a perfect example of govt bureaucracy and agonizing idiocy. 

2. Who wants to work in the AF until they're 55 to get a retirement that you won't get paid until 60 (or maybe slightly earlier if you run it down with deployments, etc.) To really have a shot at two retirements, you're going to have to buy back your AD time (yeah I didn't want that $15K in my savings account anyways, can I please give it to the govt!)  

3. Airlines aside and only comparing AD to FERS retirement, you have to live until around 80 at min before the FERS retirement starts netting you more money than an AD retirement in your early to mid 40s. And personally once I'm 80, I don't really give a shit about that paycheck...I would rather have been 42-45, start getting that check and living life/having experiences that I can look back at when I'm 80.

Bottom line, the GS thing works out for that guy who joined in 1990 as a permanent GS and is still slogging along. That guy's life choice is great for him, but I think the majority of people are not looking for that lifestyle, especially for marginal pay and a very late retirement (compared to AD). Bring in the airline pay, and its laughable.

I don't remember the details, but a break in service does have consequences, and you might be right about the BRS thing.  Bottom line, do not have a BIS if you're going to punch to the ARC.

1.  The GS is filled with BS but it's BS that you deal with on the clock. The only time I worked past my contacted work deal to deal with the BS I logged comp. By the way, I had more leave then I could use as a GS.

2.  Buying back is a no brainier if you plan to stay in the GS system. That $15k it would have cost you is worth about $12k a year so you break even after 1 year of retirement. My dual retirement if I hang on that long will pay me about $80k a year.

3. Valid but I'm sure your wife will appreciate that extra money at 80 when you can no longer wipe your own ass but can easily afford a high school drop out to do it for you. Of course if you go airlines after AD you could afford a past her prime swedish bikini model.
 

4. I took a pay cut to go AGR. Assuming the tech bonus stays around, the pay is pretty good. Take the bonus away and it's not worth it.

For someone that doesn't want to go airlines, the tech world really isn't a bad option.

 

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Reasonable points, but I think the most honest answer is it depends vastly on the state (guard) and the wing (guard or res). Some states are handing out step 7 with a bonus like free candy, other states/wings will start you at step 1 no bonus regardless of your quals.  Our HRO is even denying step increases to weapons officers and OGV, because "what do they do that deserves a step increase? Denied!" I've been in a squadron with a reserve presence where I'd say quite possibly some of the most important/influential Maj/Lt Col fighter pilots work and they were making less money as ARTs than I did as a new Capt in 2012...I shit you not.  So while there may be specific "decent" deals out there in the GS system, there are probably far more shitty deals. I doubt this will change until wings and HROs get their craniums out of their asses.

The big "IF" to always consider too is will an individual honestly be willing to do this job until 55? I thought it sounded awesome when I was a Capt, but it took only a few months of working around a couple of those guys to realize there's no fucking way I was going to do that...I didn't know if I would eventually decide to go airlines, work for LM, or any other host of non-mil related jobs, but I knew that guy was not who I wanted to be (and not because they're bad dudes).  To each their own, but this a significant piece of the puzzle that every person has to do some serious thinking about.

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3 hours ago, Yoda said:

https://militarypay.defense.gov/Portals/3/Documents/Blended Retirement/Combined BRS Policy Document.pdf?ver=2018-09-19-094018-610

Your DIEMS (date of initial entry of military service) determines which plan you are in.  

 

Unless you read the fine, Gov't accountant, print!

"Members who have a DIEMS of December 31, 2017 or earlier are generally NOT subject to the automatic enrollment and reenrollment provisions of Public Law 114-92, the National Defense Authorization Act of 2016 even if they elect (opt in) to be covered by BRS.

However, when an opt-in member separates and then reenters service, that member will be automatically enrolled."

There goes a favorable COA, poof gone....

Edited by Swizzle
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9 minutes ago, Swizzle said:

....

However, when an opt-in member separates and then reenters service, that member will be automatically enrolled."

There goes a favorable COA, poof gone....

 

I'm reading it as an "opt-in" member being one that has opted in previously, separated, then automatically enrolled when they return.

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2 minutes ago, Yoda said:

 

I'm reading it as an "opt-in" member being one that has opted in previously, separated, then automatically enrolled when they return.

I'll read it that way to, but feel it'll soon change to favor Uncle Sugar. 

Side note: wonder if they could force in someone whose DIEMS wasn't initially eligible to enroll in the first place who had a break in service!? Can a DIEMS be reset?

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The big "IF" to always consider too is will an individual honestly be willing to do this job until 55?

I’m not sure why you keep talking about 55. A common misconception about GS retirement is the amount of time you have to serve. After 5 years you’re vested and can collect retirement when you’re 60/62. Even if you worked when you were 20-25. Obviously it wouldn’t be worth much. But if you’ve bought back 12 years of military service, now you’re looking at a 17 year retirement check. For 5 years of work. Just like the military, every year is worth more. And if you hit 20 or 30 years then there are some additional benefits. But 5 years is all you need.


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Valid, but the "I'm making shitloads of money with two retirements!" isn't going to happen if you're not going to 55 or near there.  If you punch at 12, you still have to make up 8 years somewhere to get the AD retirement, then you still have to work enough GS time to be "worth it." So essentially you have to put in 13 more years (8 AGR+5 GS) to get both, and that 5 GS isn't going to be that much retirement, or at least not worth it for most people to do 25 years of total service.  If you're a guy who wants to do 20 and go to airlines or other similar paying job, that 20-25 year period of service is going to be nowhere close to making up for your lost earning potential outside of government work.  If your intrinsic value of service is worth enough to stomach an "extra" 5-10 years of GS time (i.e. 25-30 years of service), then more power to you, but that doesn't seem to apply to the majority of people.

I think the GS thing can work for some people, but its an entirely different animal than most people first realize (myself included). I'm not a "bail to the airlines ASAP" guy, but after getting more insight into it, and having been a GS for the last 1+ years, its not nearly what its cracked up to be for many reasons. I'm not saying guys are idiots for going that path, but there's a reason many of us are only looking at AGR options for long term (GS is fine for a short period). I have a lot of friends +/- a couple years of my year group, and I don't know any that are planning on long term GS for retirement purposes.

Edited by brabus

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I'm a career AGR and there's no fucking way I'd take an ART job, even though I'm not an airline bound guy. Put simply, the 2.5% multiplier of an Active duty year is worth a hell of a lot more than the bullshit 1% FERS multiplier. Another thing people are missing, the FERS retirement for new hires since oh 2014, requires a yearly vesting fee of 4.4%!!! compared to goose egg for the military retirement. The FEHB offering is also expensive compared to Tricare. ART Pay is also 100% taxable vice AGR. It's just not anywhere near parity. The ART job nickle and dimes your paycheck to death, for a lower multiplier retirement.

The value of buying back AD time is diluted when you consider you gotta wait until 50-whatever to collect the Reserve one to give you parity with the AD one, and you still have to do 5 physical years, you just can't buy back and call it time served. Nevermind you're doing so to shift down from 2.5% to 1% per creditable year. Maybe if they extended ARTs the fedral LEO multiplier you'd have a deal. Alas, nothing. 

If I knock out an active duty retirement in my late 40s (in my case) you'd have to make up that entire disbursement over 15 years, compared to me going and doing something else with my life and getting a monthly retainer check for waking up in the morning. And that's the problem with the ART calculus: It assumes you'd have no other option than doing the exact same shit you're doing right now, which just isn't the case for most dudes. Even if you know you're gonna hold on to this job until they kick you out at 57-60, you'd still be better off doing 20 AD in the AGR program and then mulling over if you want to continue as an ART for 5 years or whatever you need to tide you over. But that only works if you hussle all the way to fully vested retirement. If you stop short of that as an ART (the whole "it's only 5 years" vesting premise), you would have been better off getting an AD retirement, collecting a check immediately, and done something else with your life....

..and the reason is that put simply: I don't need half a mil at 80, I need that money today so I can have a life while I'm young and active. Check of the month club in my 40s and 50s allows me the flexibility to reinvent myself without concern for the initial paycut. That's gonna be a different and personal answer for everybody. If you know for a fact there's nothing else you'd rather do between now and 60, go ART and have a nut. I don't have that kind of certainty in my life, certainly not anymore.

For me it's all about that Time value of money homey, and I'm not just talking about compounding. Youth has a $$$ equivalent to me. Lower but earlier disbursement is more valuable to me than later/higher. I can guarantee myself today, tomorrow is not owed to me. That math is really not complicated.

It matters not though. In AFRC the manning picture tells the tale. The ART program was 55% manned last time I gave a crap and looked at it. That was immediately followed by the retrofit ART-to-AGR restoration, which is why ARPC has been sucking hind teet on the personnel management/order cutting front for the last 3 FYs. Proof is in the pudding, the rank and file overwhelmingly favors the AGR. Even with it, manning on the full time side is not anywhere near 100%. So Occam's Razor. I digress. 

 

Edited by hindsight2020
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Those are all good points, and I was just pointing out that you can get more from moving to GS with less time than some folks realize. But nothing compares to the check of the month club. That’s why when I got un-RIF’d three years ago I chose coming back to active duty to finish out rather than continue as a GS and IMA, even knowing that I was unlikely to make O-5. The math worked out heavily in favor of that path. If there were more potential AGR opportunities for a guy like me (test nav), the calculus likely would have been different.


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On 10/7/2018 at 5:39 PM, Ash said:

Any of these opportunities giving up title 10 orders to get a guy to an AD retirement?

As others have said already, yes they can.  If you want a staff gig right now it's likely yours.  Ping your OG, I'm guessing they are getting plenty of emails with opportunities.  If your state partner nation is a good country, the BAO gig is one of the best kept secrets out there.

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6 hours ago, SocialD said:

As others have said already, yes they can.  If you want a staff gig right now it's likely yours.  Ping your OG, I'm guessing they are getting plenty of emails with opportunities.  If your state partner nation is a good country, the BAO gig is one of the best kept secrets out there.

BAO?

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Gonna take a wild guess and say he probably meant FAO?


No, he meant BAO-Bilateral Affairs Officer. It’s an SPP position and it’s awesome. Similar to FAO, but doesn’t have all of the training requirements. I was one for 2 years from 2008-2010. One of the coolest things I’ve ever done. I had an office in the Embassy and an office in the Ministry of Defense. I travelled thru out the country and it rocked. Met my wife, who was also working in the Embassy. Can’t say enough good things about being a BAO.


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9 hours ago, herkbier said:

BAO?

What Herkbum said, and for clarification, SPP = state partnership for peace (google it).  Of course it's highly dependent upon what country your state is partnered with, on whether it's a good deal or not.  Ours happens to be in one of my favorite cities in Eastern Europe.  If I hadn't got hired at the airlines when I did, I would have been lobbying hard for that gig.  As always timing is key.  

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What Herkbum said, and for clarification, SPP = state partnership for peace (google it).  Of course it's highly dependent upon what country your state is partnered with, on whether it's a good deal or not.  Ours happens to be in one of my favorite cities in Eastern Europe.  If I hadn't got hired at the airlines when I did, I would have been lobbying hard for that gig.  As always timing is key.  


We are Eastern Europe as well, NATO and EU members. And actually SPP=State Partnership Program. The Peace part went away in the 90s. New focus and most recent additions have been in Africa. Have fun with that.


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Haven’t checked myPers in a while, but does anyone have intel on when the 19’ bonus is dropping? As i understand it no changes from last year but one would like to think it would drop sooner due to the NDSA is already signed. Crazy talk i know!

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3 hours ago, sling-it-17 said:

Haven’t checked myPers in a while, but does anyone have intel on when the 19’ bonus is dropping? As i understand it no changes from last year but one would like to think it would drop sooner due to the NDSA is already signed. Crazy talk i know!

They'll get 9 more months out of you if they wait until July.

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Haha! I’ve got some slop in there before hitting 20 so that’s not a factor. If they get it out early, i could get another 30k for 3 months over 20. That would be worth it, but i doubt i have to worry about that happening.....

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Any chance the 1 year option will come back for FY19?  When will the FY19 AvB come out anyways?  Would love to milk some more money out of the AF before I retire.  

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Hopefully they bump up what the offer to 11Ms, up to the $35k they are authorized to, instead of the $30k they offered last year. It'll be interesting to see what they end up offering, but I'm not holding my breath for info anytime soon.

Also curious about the rumored professional pay, and how talking the bonus this year would affect flight pay/professional pay if they change it in the future.

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