State of the Air Force Reserve|
9/22/2011 - NATIONAL HARBOR, Md. (AFNS) -- Lt. Gen. Charles E. Stenner Jr., Chief of Air Force Reserve remarks at the Air Force Association's 2011 Air & Space Conference & Technology Exposition, National Harbor Md., Sept. 21, 2011
Here is is his written statement:
What is an F-4? Does anybody remember? [Laughter]. It makes you feel kind of experienced, doesn't it, when you start talking about F-4s and way back when. But I'm pleased to be here this afternoon.
Thanks very much for allowing me to speak just a minute or two about operating in the 21st Century. That's where we are. We are involved in a continuing conflict. We're involved in a rebalancing effort. We are involved in a time of some fiscal issues that we have as a nation. We are involved in trying to fulfill [inaudible] issues in my mind as a three component Air Force. I really firmly believe that as a three component Air Force is the only way we're going to make our way through this.
Each of us brings a strength to the Air Force, each component brings a strength. And I'm very pleased, as I mentioned before, that I have two hats, and I'm a lucky guy to be able to wear two hats -- as Chief of the Air Force Reserve, as the Principal Advisor to the Chief of Staff of the Air Force. In that job I get a chance to see what happens in this AOR known as Washington, DC. It's not a shooting war, but you've got to wear pads a lot of times up in this AOR. And you get to see the strategic environment, the lay of the land, integration with Congress and the policy, the kinds of things you have to do programmatically, the funding streams, and all of that has to fit into the national defense.
And as a three component Air Force, I think you heard the Secretary say it this morning, what we do has got to be what's good for the nation. Not what's good for the Air Force. Not what's good for any one component. I firmly believe that we are a three component Air Force and we work together and we are trained to the same standards and we are able to seamlessly integrate. That's one of the great strengths of our service, seamless integration, available to deploy, react and respond within 72 hours no matter what the issue.
I think the most recent example of that was Marone when Libya kicked off and when we had a very small planning timeframe and we prepared to deploy/deploy about like that [snapping fingers], and within 36 hours there were people from 50 different locations and tankers from 50 different locations that descended on Marone and operated 12 hours later and were putting gas into jets over the AOR. That's huge. You can't do that in any other service. That's a strength, that's what we have to leverage as a service. Three components, seamless unity. Train to the same standards, able to respond and react to whatever our nation calls upon us to do.
That's my starting point from the strategic perspective. From the operational perspective, though, at the command, I don't have enough money. I keep telling the Chief of the Air Force Reserve to work on that. [Laughter]. The Commander has to remind the Chief every day that he needs it now. The Chief has to remind the Commander every day that nothing works that fast in Washington, DC. You have to work it through the systems. And you have to understand the systems, and I believe that [inaudible] components to work together is a much stronger entity than any one component working separately. That's my starting point.
So we didn't get there, where we are today, by accident. Let's just put it in context. A little history, and then current state, and up on the top ribbon up there is a security environment and you can read it as well as I can, but you go from the Cold War kinds of things and where we are today with post-Cold War after Desert Storm, and Bosnia, to the Global War on Terror. It's not force on force, it is insurgencies, it is everywhere. It's a Global War on Terror.
The second one, the force engagement. What we did in the past, that garrisoned force after World War II, there was, we were a surge capability and capacity. We worked into Force on force. That's what we did. It was the big Russian Bear, it was the United States, it was the Fulda Gap, we planned a force on force, we were a strategic reserve, and that's who we were and that's what the nation asked us at the time.
We have evolved to a sustained irregular warfare posture, and that means there's something totally different than sitting on the shelf and waiting for the big one. It is a rotational kind of thing. It is sustained and it is not going to be all forces in all at once. It is as necessary forces in where and when needed.
Then you look at the total force policy. It went from a [inaudible] and service kind of a deal back in the World War II ages, to a force in being, to a homogenous whole as we worked through. We are now a seamless total force in the Air Force. We made that decision consciously. We've made all those decisions consciously along the way based on the security environment we saw ourselves in.
And then that fourth ribbon up there, the Reserve posture. From am augmentation force to a force that was relied upon, to a force that is now depended on. The Air Force Reserve, the Air National Guard on a daily basis, seamlessly integrated. We're building a picture.
The last one down there, the Air Force Reserve contributions. From train only kind of force, you were back in garrison, you got your broomsticks out and practiced gunnery -- that's exactly what the Secretary said we're not going back to. Our senior leadership is committed to not being a hollow force and maintaining the three components -- seamless integrated, ready to be. And went from a strategic reserve to a strategic reserve that okay, you can get a little bit of an operational [inaudible] over time. But when we are talking about today, I firmly believe that first and foremost we're a strategic reserve, that is what the nation has asked us. to be. We leverage that strategic reserve on a daily basis to provide an operational force that we manage now. Every mission set around the world, rotational capability, throughout the Air Force.
So there you have what we have today. This is what we're looking at today; and what we have to plan from today to tomorrow is a post-9/11 Global War on Terror kind of posture with sustained irregular warfare operations where the seamless total force is operating in every single mission set cooperatively, dependent upon, to make sure that we get that to the fight, and then we have a strategic reserve, a leveraged capability to provide an operational force around the world.
When you look at that, what is this strategic reserve? What is its operational course?
This is cut in the macro. Just a quick snapshot of the kinds of mission sets that the Air Force is in today. You see a couple of 100 percents up there. Very specific kinds of things. But that is not something that I would recommend, nor do I want to be 100 percent of anything. I want to be wherever the active force is. I want to be there where there's an enduring mission. I want to be in partnership with the active force, and where necessary with the Guard, and make sure that we are where we need to be so that when somebody in the active force makes a life-changing decision, I want to give them the opportunity to continue to participate in a part-time reserve capacity.
When we do that kind of thing, we look at this lay-down the way it is, that's what we have today. Is that the right lay-down for today's operations and for tomorrow's necessities? Should the Air Force Reserve be in all those missions? Well, only where there's an enduring requirement, in my personal opinion.
We use this kind of an optic, if you will, to say this is a starting point. Is this something that we cut with a strategic reserve? What would you do with a strategic reserve? Which of these mission sets are more suited to the strategic reserve and which of these mission sets are more suited to a rotational operational daily OpsTempo? And therein starts the equation of how much of each component do we need in each mission set? And are there some of these mission sets, oh by the way, as we listened to the Secretary, are there some of these that we as an Air Force won't even be doing in the future? Which of these mission sets are the priority for the nation? Which of these mission sets do we do that nobody else does? Those are the discussions that are being had right now as we work together as three components to figure out the right balance. The knee in the curve, so to speak.
And you look at some of those, we didn't have those several years ago. Space operations. That's not that old. Cyber. That's just starting up. Aeromedical evacuation. That's a three component deal right there. There's a lot of aeromeds that come in on part-time and volunteer to go do the things that are happening on a daily basis. We saw that this morning, the three component team in the aeromed award that was given.
So there's a way, a specific way to say we're paying for this. We have bought and paid for this capability and there are two other charts just like it that equal now 100 percent of each of those mission sets, and each of the other components has their piece. That's where the rebalancing starts, in my opinion, after we have the strategic discussion on which of these mission sets should we be doing as an Air Force. Which of these mission sets must we do as an Air Force? Which of these are more suited to the Reserve? Which of these might be more suited to the Guard? Because remember, they've got a state mission that they've got to acknowledge and we need to acknowledge as well. And then which of these mission sets need to have more active duty presence or less active duty presence? There's a starting point.
The people that do these missions. This is another very interesting equation and problem that I think we've got to look into. Not only do we have on the left-hand side there a lay-down of what we as the Air Force Reserve have; on the right-hand side we have some depth that we need to talk about in just a second.
But on the left-hand side rendering, that's the part-time force. The red piece is that traditional reserve; the green piece is the individual mobilization augmentee. When you put those two together, that's 80 percent of the uniformed force that the Air Force Reserve has. When you add the ATR and the ART, those are the two full-time statuses in uniform that take care of the things we need to do as an Air Force Reserve. Then you have the red piece, civil service. The continuity that exists, that huge civil servant piece that we need to continue. You have 286, almost 300 active duty folks working on headquarters Air Force Reserve Command Staff. And until a little while ago that was all was had. We currently have 70, give or take, Guardsmen. Fifty-five to 70 of them we work in the Air Reserve Personnel Center. In the lower right hand corner you see the Guard records. We are managing Guard/Reserve working together at ARPC, the Guard and Reserve records. A hundred percent of them.
There's also, a little nuance here because I also believe that the Air Force Reserve and the Air National Guard have more in common than we have differences. We are built and made up of citizen airmen, period. Eighty percent in uniform. And when you start talking about that we need to understand what each of us is doing in each mission set.
So as of April the 1st the Air Force Reserve Commander asked for and got the Guard Advisor working at the Air Force Reserve Command Headquarters, sitting in all the meetings, and working with his Reserve counterpart who is General Bud Wyatt's Reserve Advisor at the Readiness Center here in DC. And as we speak, the Air Force Reserve Command Staff is getting on an airplane and flying up here to do one full day of Air Force Reserve Command/Air National Guard Readiness Center staff-to-staff talks to understand what we do, how we do it, how we -- Isn't that something? Go figure. I've got a Guard Advisor, a Reserve Advisor, staff-to-staff talks because there can't be daylight and there can't be, in my humble opinion, [rice bowls], and there can't be internal fights. We'll have the discussions. We'll understand the positions everybody has, but at the end of the day we've got to come to an agreement on what's right with the nation and what mission sets belong where they should be, how can we most effectively use, and how do we take the Title 10 Reserve and do what a Title 10 Reserve should be, and how do we make sure the Title 32 Air National Guard does what they need to do with two missions, a federal and state mission, that they swear an oath to both, and how do we augment, sustain, surge, that force to meet the nation's needs along with the active duty.
So there on the left-hand side is who we are as an Air Force Reserve. Working with our Air National Guard partners.
On the right hand side is a very interesting piece. If we're going to give bang for our buck we also need to understand what kind of strategic depth we have. And that top piece of selective reserve is just -- the folks on the left-hand side that are in uniform that are actively participating on a daily basis, the SELRES. We know exactly how to get to them. We know exactly how to use them. Whether it's [inaudible] or whether it's Individual Mobilization Augmentee.
The IRR, Individual Ready Reserve, what an interesting piece that is. You go to the IRR when you no longer have the ability to continue to participate actively, or in today's world we call it continuum of service when you have a change in life that says I really can't participate daily but I don't want to go away, I'm not eligible to retire. Can I go to the IRR and wait until I'm ready to come back? Yes, we do that. And in the IRR there are folks that still have a commitment left. There are folks that are still trained and ready and very capable.
As an example, Haiti. When Haiti kicked off last year the question was asked, what if we needed some French Creole speakers? Good question. We go look in the IRR, there's 35 fluent French Creole speakers in there. I would not hesitate to say, you ask me for a skill set and I'll find it somewhere on that right-hand side.
IRR. How do we get to them? How do we count them? How do we understand their capability, their training? How ready are they? Then go to the next level, the active duty retired. There's folks that just got 20 years that have gone -- I went to a seminar the other day, and they told me not to use the word retired, even though I'm getting used to being that, they said you are just leaving the military. You are transitioning. Okay, good. They're just transitioning, I'll go get them.
How do I get to that active duty retired doctor? How do I get to the active duty retired lawyer? That linguist? All those skill sets that don't atrophy too much because you're probably doing them on a daily basis in your civilian practice, and how do I understand how much of each functional area exists there? And how much of each functional area exists in the retired Reserve? How much exists in the standby? You put all that together with the Guard, there's close to a million records. That's strategic depth. We need to understand that as an Air Force Reserve, because we manage the Air Reserve Personnel Center. And I want to ask how to get to those? How do we tell what the skill sets are that we atrophy in? How do we count them, if we count them? And then how do we use them when and if we use them? Air Reserve Personnel Center. That's the lay of the land. That's the strategic reserve. That's something that we need to understand.
Another way to cut it. So you saw the mission sets we did. And when you do stuff about personnel and fiscal efficiencies and dollars and cents and 2.7 Reservists to one full-time equivalent if you just talk pure dollars. Seventy percent of the nation's capability across the Air Force Reserve, or four percent [inaudible].
This is another lay-down that says here's where those people and our biggest partner and partner MAJCOMs exists in Air Mobility Command. And the second largest partner is in Air Combat Command. And we have a significant presence in Global Strike Command. Bottom line, you can put the Air National Guard patch in the middle of that too. They also have a relationship, a partnership with every other major command, every other lead major command and every mission set we do. And we put those two together and we now have a starting point from which to vary as well.
Do we do more or less in mobility? Is it a good Reserve mission set? Is it a better active mission set? Do we do more or less in Global Strike? What kinds of things are we not doing today that maybe the Reserve could do which would in fact free up active force manpower to go to another priority for the active force? That's the tricky part. We've never done that. When you have a program and you have a POM, you look at your POM inside of your portfolio and you turn your homework in and it gets collated as an Air Force.
If we looked a little harder at how do I increase a little bit over here by bringing the Reserve component, whichever one it happens to be, in this case Title 10, based on what's the right thing to do for Title 10 Reserve, that will free up manpower to go elsewhere. That's the rebalancing effort that's underway. That has to be underway. None of those missions are going to go away. None of those partner MAJCOMs are going to go away. None of the Reserve or Guard is going to go away as far as an entity, a component. So how do we rebalance it inside those mission sets? How do we get the biggest bang for our buck on personnel?
If you want to build an Air Force that can handle a major combat operation and you want to do it the most fiscally efficient -- I won't say cheap way -- what are you going to put it in? Are you going to strategic reserve -- it's a major combat operation. You assume mobilization is going to be there, the money's going to be there. And you're going to mobilize this force. So you're going to put a whole lot of part-time in that force.
Okay, let's take a look at what the AEF rotation requirements are right now, and if we built the force to make sure you could do an AEF rotation and it's a very high tempo, what do you want in there? You want folks that are full time? Okay. You've got them. That probably means you take risk in a major combat operation.
So if you build to the AEF, have we built it enough to maintain and sustain a daily operational tempo? That's the three layered cake that all of those partner MAJCOMs along with the Air Force Reserve and Air National Guard have got to balance and build.
How do we do the major combat operation? How do we make sure we leverage the strategic reserve, AEF rotation wise? We've got to assume mobilization, and how do we make sure we can do the continuation training? Because if everybody's in an AEF rotation and gone, they're not going to be in continuation training either.
That's a three layer cake. There's a knee in the curve. There's a strategic reserve that's leveraged on a daily basis that we can pay for and afford if we pick the right mission sets and the right risk, regardless of component. It's the component strengths we play to.
We as an Air Force Reserve have been working about three years now on what we've called Air Force Reserve 2012. 2012 was an initiative to take an Air Force Reserve that was purely strategically oriented in management structures and adjust it so that we could handle the operational tempo, understand how we get those trained and ready airmen to the fight, through the AEF construct, in a more nimble and accurate fashion. We looked at the Numbered Air Forces and the Regional Support Groups. The Numbered Air Forces had a layer of bureaucracy in them that the wings would have to go through the NAC to get to the headquarters MAJCOM AFRC, and they were doing more training than they were monitoring readiness. So the initial premise was take those Numbered Air Forces, focus them on readiness, focus them specifically on the type of readiness they were suited for. In other words, 4th Air Force is going to be strategic reach, period. All the tankers, all the lift, strat lift. Not East Coast/West Coast like it is today. One NAF handles all of those things. 22nd Air Force becomes the tactical reach. All tactical reach, all institutional forces, and the RMG or the individual mobilization augmentation piece. 10th Air Force is purely focused on the readiness of the power and vigilance piece that comes in there. So all three of those Numbered Air Forces are downsizing. Looking at Numbered Air Force readiness for the wings that are below them. The manpower that came out of there went to the wings to establish exercise and evaluation teams so that the wings could prepare for and sustain the readiness, take the inspections, do the kinds of exercises that need to happen without having a layer of bureaucracy.
The rest of the manpower that came to the Numbered Air Force and Regional Support Groups [inaudible]. 1 October they're gone on paper. It will take a while to actually phase them out. The NAFs are downsizing to about a third of their regular size and they are purely focused on readiness. The Headquarters Air Force Reserve Command is now a skip echelon from the wings to the headquarters for the kinds of things that need to happen where headquarters can take the lead. That starts on 1 October and the Air Force Reserve Command has one thing we'd add as well, a Force Generation Center. The Force Generation Center is the one-stop shop for combatant commanders to get what they need. The one fallacy in this whole thing right now, in my humble opinion, is a thing called the gaining major command concept. We have got nine partner major commands and we have got to work through nine partner major commands to get to a place where we need to be anyway.
One example, they asked us to send ten contractors somewhere. Ten. We had to work through five different major commands. And every time you change one name or one thing on any of those requests you have or coordinate with four of the other five that didn't get the name in the first place. Didn't care.
So Air Force Reserve Command is the lead command for Reservists. Their gaining construct is an antiquated, non-rapid or functional way to do business anymore and that is one place that I would like to attack next as a three component Air Force and get rid of that gaining MAJCOM because we can provide those forces from the Air Force Reserve Command directly to the warfighter. Lock, stock, and barrel, through a Force Generation Center that understands, because there are 52 PAMs whispering in the Force Generation Center's ears, exactly the capability that those PAMs have and the numbers they have, and how much we can afford to use and give it directly to the warfighter that asked for it. It's in my mind a more efficient way to get those trained and ready airmen to the warfighter around the globe today through a Force Generation Center that is about 50 percent manned right now.
As we turned the key back in the Libyan days, we have a 24x7 capability right now, Force Generation Center. Some of it's on-call. The guy who stood it up is sitting here, he's -- Brigadier General [Gobanger]. It was a year ago March, a year and a half ago now, that we were going to stand up a Force Generation Center and I needed a commander, so I called up this guy I knew [inaudible], and I said hey Bill, I'd like you to come up to the Air Force Reserve Command Headquarters -- and click. He hung up on me. [Laughter]. Can you believe that? It only took two more phone calls. You know what he did? He volunteered. [Laughter]. But hats off to him, he stood that thing up and it's running. He's coordinating it with every other MAJCOM out there. The staff talks we're doing and the relationships we're building and the understanding of how to get reserve forces to the fight is growing and going. We'll call ourselves a Command FOC here in the next half a year to a year. We're doing it up in DC as well in the RC staff because that Air Force Reserve Command is supported by an RC staff as a full partner in the Pentagon. Their personnel center, I've already given you that picture, you've got a million folks strong, a million records strong, there's strategic depth there.
So the [inaudible] Force Generation Center are the centerpiece of fully operational capable, getting Reservists to the fight.
Rebalancing the force. Just a few basic tenets that I see in that one. A comprehensive review of the Reserve components has been, it's worked. I think there is an understanding, and it's not just the Air Force Reserve or the Air National Guard. Every Reserve component commander right now will tell you that nobody wants to go back to being a strategic reserve and sitting on a shelf and just waiting for the call. The Army Reserve especially is interested in making sure that that force is used because he's heard, my partner Lieutenant General Jack Stoltz has heard from his folks, don't do it. It's going to be terrible on retention if they send them back to the shelf. He's looking at how do they exercise them, how do they do the theater security packages? How do we leverage the reserve components? Not just the Air Force Reserve but the rest, and identifying the roles and missions for which they're best suited. Using them for not only the capabilities and capacity they have for the warfight, but in a lot of cases you've got civilian skills that just go along with that and make a huge difference in state partner programs, in Air Force Reserve, theater security operation exercises, [man readies], establishing the building of a relationship with our partner nations which allows that access, which is that deterrent, which is that leverage for the future.
Total Force Policy 21 says RC is sustainable and affordable. And if you go after it from an efficiencies perspective, in other words how do we do this the cheapest, you will not get it right. The cheapest means that we're going to start going down a slippery slope [inaudible] tiered readiness, and we should never do that. We've got to be able to do what we need to today, seamlessly integrated, and the right tactics in each mission set and the right policies to go along with how do we get the Reserve Component to the fight. And the Title 10 Reserve Component stands ready to do that through a force generation center and command headquarters and an Army Staff, and an Air Reserve Personnel Center that have been evolved, adjusted, and crafted to support that operational reserve that we leverage from that strategic entity out there that we've got right now.
I think that there's opportunity here. I believe the Secretary and the Chief have said that. This is not doom and gloom. It's not easy, but there is an opportunity here to adjust and craft this Air Force to meet today's realities and be flexible enough to meet tomorrow's changes.
With that said, I'd be happy to answer any questions. If you'd like to talk to the Chief, raise your right hand; if you want to talk to the Commander, raise your left hand. [Laughter].
Question: You said [inaudible]. [Inaudible].
Lt. Gen. Stenner: Yes, no, maybe. [Laughter].
The retirement. As a result of the QDR, there was a QDR review of the total compensation in the military and there have been many of those kinds of things coming out. But the one thing that I took away from the last couple of meetings we've had and the readings we've done, Secretary Panetta says we're going to keep faith with the force. Retirement issues notwithstanding. They may need to be looked at, they may need to be understood. We need to perhaps craft a little better system. But keeping faith with the force means that you don't want to do something that's going to degrade recruiting and retention.
We made some promises when folks raised their hands and swore an oath. They had an expectation. I believe that we could look at the next generation of retirement constructs, but we're going to have to keep faith with the ones we've got right now and make sure that we don't do harm.
There have been other thoughts as far as -- You can save $6 billion over ten years if you combine UTAs into one day, you've got two types of statuses, active duty or inactive duty. Whoo. There's a stretch. What about [AFPs, RFPs] and all those kinds of things that go along with that? All those that have to be restructured or reproduced and it would take a lot of legislation.
Then there are some thoughts about okay, if you do all of your duty for a year we'll pay you a bonus at the end of the year and if we do this kind of a construct that will save us $6 billion over 10 years. That's out there too.
And I go back to, we've got to keep faith with the folks who signed up and said this is what I want to do and I'm ready to do it. Before we change it we need to be very thoughtful about how.
The business model that has evolved from a Defense Business Board, it was purely done in a business kind of model fashion without, I don't think, any thought of the two being in tension. That's my humble opinion.
Your second question part of that?
Question: Sir, the --
Lt. Gen. Stenner: Oh, okay. There's nothing wrong with looking at just about everything. But there's a Title 10 Reserve for a very good reason, and there's a Title 32 Air National Guard for a very good reason. And the domestic piece of the Title 32 is becoming bigger and bigger. That doesn't mean that the Title 10 doesn't respond, but there's a lot of work to be done with the Council of Governors before you have the Northern Command Commander able to reach out and touch the Title 10 forces and then apply them in a state kind of environment without the approval and consent of the governors.
So I think they've done some marvelous work with the Council of Governors. There's an understanding now, whether it's implementable in the near future or not, there's an understanding that there are forces out there and when they're close you want to be able to reach them and touch them, but you don't want to wait until you want to do that to have a construct that says here's how we're going to use it. And I think that's what's good about what's happening right now with that kind of a conversation.
So if you're going to manage the Title 32 force you need to be managing it through folks who understand Title 32. If you're going to manage the Title 10 force you need to understand that and have a Reserve command structure that manages that.
Is there a way to cooperate? Yes. And as far as I'm concerned the step that I think we're taking next is not a combined force of some kind of command and control authority. It is a collaborative force. I talk about the two advisors that we have and the staff-to-staff talks that we have. If we can get that far down the road with the Force Generation Center talking to the Readiness Center, with the staffs talking to each other, and understanding that we may need to work together in a state, and maybe that happens under the governor's control, but that has got to be worked out first.
I've never felt that just saying we'll take these two entities and if we just give them one boss everything will be all better. [Laughter]. No, it won't, because you don't grow up in those different cultures and you don't understand those different cultures and it takes a long time to figure out the way you do business in each of those cultures and if we can at least collaborate on that I think the price we pay for what is assumed to be excess overhead is well worth the bucks.
The third one was --
Question: The upgrade, [inaudible].
Lt. Gen. Stenner: Okay. We got that fixed today. Anything else?
Question: How are we doing on wearing our folks on the OpsTempo? And secondly, how are our employers responding? Are we seeing a wearing out of the welcome for our employers?
Lt. Gen. Stenner: That's a great question. Are we wearing our folks out depends on the mission set. There are some mission sets where we've got one-to-one so we're 1 to 1 to 5, some of those high demand/low density kinds of things. You can easily wear somebody out if you don't pay attention to it. So the dwell becomes very important to me. When we get to a mission set where Reserve is being used as something less than 1 to 5, 1 to 4, 1 to 3, I'm concerned.
But the triggers are when the active force in that particular mission set goes below 1 to 2. That triggers mobilization for the Air Force Reserve, or it triggers a higher tempo.
So there's where I see mobilization as a tool. In other words, when you have a requirement for more than the active force can do in a 1 to 2, then I want to put somebody into what we call the M&M band if you all are familiar, that takes capability buckets in any mission set, spreads it out, so that we can maintain 1 to 5 dwell forever. Now there's a big one, you want [inaudible] you've got it all. But after you've got it all, two years later you've got nothing until we reset.
So I'd rather meter it, and I'll have folks stay, because I gave them predictability which is the bridge to the employer. If we give them predictability they're fine. It's the unpredictability of he went six months ago, you told me he was going to stay home for two and a half years, and you called him up again. That's not good. It's not good for the family, it's not good for the member, it's not good for the employer.
Right now I'll tell you, the employers are proud to be able to say I have folks that work for me that are participating. That's the dominant feeling I get from the employers. There are pockets of you know, he's volunteering again? Okay. He's volunteering again, and there's a difference between being mobilized and volunteering. I hear that from our members right now. They're saying you've got to mobilize me. I'd love to go, but if you don't mobilize me, my employer is not going to understand.
It all goes back to predictability. Put it into a construct, give you a date to start, give you a date to stop. Send you on that date. Bring you home. Everybody's happy. Watch the dwell. 1 to 5 is a planning factor. Pick up to 1 to 4, I lose 10 percent. It's a retention issue. 1 to 4 and 1 to 3 I lose about another 10 percent. That's driving to zero, and that's not good. So mobilization is a protection, mobilization is a meter, employers understand that they're going here and coming back here, there's a dwell to be had and if we stick to that they're happy, we're happy, and we've got to watch them close to make sure we don't break it in any mission set.
There are 22 mission sets that I'm concerned with right now that we're watching very closely, and we're making sure we meter the output to meet the need.
Question: [Inaudible]. We've been doing a couple of projects over mobility on [inaudible], and we're rethinking the whole Guard/Reserve [inaudible] looking at, especially in the maintenance world. The way we're looking at labor. We're realizing that [inaudible] an hour. They don't have a lot of excess capacity in terms of labor. We start seeing the Guard and Reserve, some areas where it's a little bit more idle. For an example, the sheet metal [inaudible]. So [inaudible] on a KC-35, [inaudible] work on a C-5 [inaudible]. I've also seen people that specialize in [inaudible] be able to pull them [inaudible]. You work out [inaudible] with the Air National Guard, [inaudible] the Reserves, is who's [inaudible] is another program for [inaudible]. [Inaudible]. What we're doing is we're identifying policies [inaudible]. And [inaudible] that whole control center there, [inaudible] policies [inaudible], they look to the [inaudible].
Lt. Gen. Stenner: Yes, that's a rebalancing you're talking about. We don't need this much sheet metal over here, and I don't need this much sheet metal in the active force. I need less. How come in an association you've got two tire shops on the same base? You don't need to two tire shops, you need one tire shop. That goes to operational direction. That goes to unity of effort. That goes to the kinds of things that administrative control of each component should reside in that component. Operational direction can only reside in one person. He who has post responsibility has operational direction.
Now the rebalancing you're talking about and the funding streams, we have done a lot of that to ourselves, and I'll just say it out front. It's called MPA, and MPA is something we control but we have to first understand how much we need for that theater security package, how much we need for the Mk, for the daily ops to handle the surge in sheet metal requirements, for some reason. That's us. That's us that has to program for that.
We took a big chunk down as we crossed last fiscal year which drives some different kinds of thoughts which are not necessarily good, meaning well, since I can't get MPA to send to that theater security, [inaudible]. I'll get OCO, so I'll shift this mission that you were going to do to you're going to Iraq and Afghanistan now and we'll have the active force handle the [inaudible] security package with the exercise. That's not good either. I'm not saying it should be all one way or the other, it's just got to be balanced. We've got to understand the MPA.
The problem is we crossed last year's fiscal year and we had taken a slice. We made it through this year which is an execution year, we're paying out of the hide. Next year is another execution year because we didn't put the right number in the bucket in FY12. The first chance we had to put something in there is in FY13. Did we get that one right? Likely not. So it's going to be FY14 before we can kind of normalize the baseline in some of this stuff, and identify the real needs throughout the Air Force. Good point.
Question: Could you share with us your thoughts on [inaudible] training with three components to assure that seamless operation?
Lt. Gen. Stenner: You bet. And we have right now I think a pretty good tempo. We have Air Force Instructions, we have training manuals, we have training plans that don't differ between the components other than by if you're experienced or inexperienced in most cases, or if you're a mechanic there still is the same training plan that you've got to do. If you're a person there's the same training plan you've got to do. The thing that I'm seeing that has worked so well for us right now, and I don't know how many are aware, seasoning training program, STP. The seasoning training program, what we've done with that is taken $20 million about four years ago and spent it on individuals who can come out of their tech school and have availability and will stay with us for some period of time which varies by mission set, until they go from their 3 level to 5 level. That saves 24 to 36 months in getting somebody ready to be a participating member in the AOR. That resonates with our congressional delegations. That seasoning training program, those RPA, Reserve Personnel Appropriation dollars, are put to good use. $20 million four years ago, $80 million, three; $100 last year, and about $110 million this year and growing. That is capability and capacity. Do you know what else it is? When you get a young person trained to the 5 level where they can deploy, they're not watching the rest of their folks leave and they're staying home. They're not coming in once a month on UTA and waiting three or four years in some cases to become a 5 level that can go.
So the training plans are there. They are cohesive, I believe. They can always be adjusted a touch. And we are looking at that. What is the requirement? We're not looking at what's the active duty requirement, we're looking at what's the requirement in Combat Air Forces, pick a [inaudible], [inaudible] pick a weapon system, and there are some reductions being taken based on what can we do in simulation, live virtual constructive kinds of things, DMO, distributed mission ops, all those kinds of things. But the fidelity of electronics and the simulators now in some cases you can't get it better in the airplane. In some cases you can't get it at all in the airplane. So all that is factoring into the training plans but it's not factoring in by component. It is by weapon system and all three components [deal with it].
Question: [Inaudible] tankers, and apparently we have a capability gap. We've got extra tankers but we can't [inaudible]. [Inaudible]? Do you see any future for that and how we're going to fix that? [Inaudible].
Lt. Gen. Stenner: Absolutely we do. We've got to understand, can we turn to you when you cross [10 West]? No. Very rarely. How do we use MPA and how do we put that together? It's a work in progress, a definite work in progress. Just getting the MPA is the first for business. One of the other big sticky wickets is we've always had a doc statement over here and a doc statement over here. The doc statements are under revision and being reworked because when you task somebody to do something and you task it over here, you can't, as you say, cross over. The tasking piece is what's broken and the doc statements are the foundation of that. So fix the doc statements and don't task an organization, task the association is the concept and construct I see. Then you can use whichever ones you want to use, and that to me is a policy. That's also in work.
Question: You mentioned that in conducting a comprehensive review of the Reserve Component that you identified multi-mission [inaudible]. Can you discuss any specific areas [inaudible] for the Air Force Reserve?
Lt. Gen. Stenner: Absolutely. Any place there's a surge requirement is an expanded opportunity. When you look at cyber and you've got folks that are doing things in the civilian world that translates directly to the kinds of things they can do in the military or our needs are in the military. Cyber. Intelligence, surveillance, reconnaissance. You name it, there are opportunities.
When you start looking at the rebalancing and what is a mission set that was more likely going to be a major combat operation requirement as opposed to an AEF rotational basis, maybe that's one we ought to start thinking about a little bigger piece in the reserve components. Where is the high OpsTempo one? Maybe we ought to fix that instead of just naming them. High demand/low density. We name it and say yeah, I understand. We've got to put a little more of something in some of those high demand/low density missions which means is it a surge we're in right now? If it's a surge we're in right now then we probably ought to have a little more reserve component capture some of that [inaudible] active duty. But it takes a long time to grow that, and it also takes a definite and very methodical process to say we think we can do this today with this, we know we've got to do this tomorrow, now we take a risk and I hope we're building for the future, and we've got to understand, and we haven't done it as what is the strategic force requirement, what is the tempo on an operational thing, and which one of these mission sets fits best?
More to follow. I can't say one or the other because that's rice bowl talk, you know?
Lt. Gen. Stenner: There's a very specific question again, OSI. More of -- I'll tell you what. I am interested in filling any requirement that somebody gives me as long as it's legal and moral. So there's a lot of stuff that happened. If you remember DBD720, this is where I go back to in my program days.
Can you hear me okay? This doesn't seem to be working.
When you look at DBD720 where we took huge jumps in manpower [inaudible]. [Inaudible] I've got a requirement over here. What do you need? I need 100 APRs. Okay. What else do you need [inaudible]? Well why do you need 100 APRs? Because they took all my manpower [inaudible] over here. Then you don't have a mission, do you? If they took all your manpower, you don't have a mission.
Well, how about [inaudible] Individual Mobilization Augmentees, you know? Well why do you want those? Well, [inaudible]. So Individual Augmentees. Tell me what they're augmenting. [Inaudible].
So when you look at what's the requirement. First, what's the requirement. I'll look at any requirement you bring me. Then we take a look at is it a Reserve-friendly mission? We'll do an initiative review [inaudible], we'll do a roles and missions Reserve mission assessment. We'll say yes we can or can't do it. I don't want to not deliver what I promised. When you take a look at that, then you say now, what kind of manpower do you need for this mission? I need [inaudible]. Is that a Reserve mission? What [inaudible]? We have something [inaudible]. You start over here on the left. Is this a government mission? Yes/no, yes/no. The default position is an Air Reserve technician. Okay? Go through the knot hole. There are some very specific laws that say [inaudible], [inaudible]. There are very specific things. You go through the knot hole until you find exactly the right status. It has to be one of those legal issues because ABRs are paid for by what? Reserve Personnel Appropriations. RPA dollars are given for training. If you're using AGR to fill an operational need, I'm not doing my job of managing the RPA appropriations they gave me in [inaudible] fashion.
So if there's an OSR requirement, bring it on. But sit down and say how will we do this, and then we'll work through the initiative [inaudible], [inaudible] mission analysis, and then we look through the knot hole for the right status, the right time, the right percentage. We have, if nothing else, a process. [Laughter]. And it's one [inaudible]. [Laughter].
Question: I came here to learn today and I've learned a lot. [Inaudible] both men and women and they're high caliber, I want you to know that first and foremost. My question is, sir, as an active duty NCO, [inaudible] NCOs and young officers when they come on active duty, what are the things that you [inaudible] do as an active duty member that can benefit them in the long run? What are some key points that I can take home?
Lt. Gen. Stenner: The first thing you can do is just talk. What are the pressures you have? What do you feel? Ask the pressures they have. What's it like working for this, that and the other? And then if you can establish a relationship and an understanding that's huge because that goes through the rest of the time you are going to serve or the person you're working with is going to serve. So establishing a relationship, understanding the shoes that they walk in, and let them understand the shoes that you walk in, and we now have a team that you can work together a whole lot better.
I've got nine and a half years on active duty so I know exactly what it's like to be on active study. I know exactly what it's like to be [inaudible] on active duty. I've got no idea what [inaudible], the kinds of things you're required to do in a PCS move [inaudible]. [Inaudible]. So I can't stand here and tell you I know all about what the active duty [inaudible]. I don't. I've got nine and a half years of experience with that, I've got a whole lot more in the Reserve. I've been back and forth on statuses several times, so I think I've got a feel for it but I don't want to change that culture over here. I don't want to change this culture here. Except where it's not illegal or immoral or unethical, and I don't think we [inaudible]. So just talk to them.
And then I would think you could share -- Once you understand each other a little bit [inaudible] the business side of things. [Inaudible]. Try this here. Or these are the kinds of things we work on. It's just communication. The best thing you can do is talk.