Policy change allows experienced Soldiers to serve longer
November 21, 2008
WASHINGTON (Army News Service, Nov. 21, 2008) -- A recent extension of retention control points means Soldiers in the rank of staff sergeant and above will be allowed to serve the Army longer, should they desire.
An All Army Activities message, or ALARACT, dated Nov. 8, spelled out the changes to retention control points. The changes, which became effective Nov. 1, increase RCPs for E-6s and above by as many as three years in some cases. The ALARACT also changes the maximum age for enlisted Soldiers to 62 years.
The increase in RCP -- called "high year of tenure" in the Air Force and Navy -- is a force-shaping measure meant to allow experienced noncommissioned officers to stay in the Army longer.
"This is not designed to address any specific shortage," said Master Sgt. Patrick Johnson, retention operations NCO with Army G-1 at the Pentagon. "Rather, it is to provide an avenue for our experienced NCOs to stay in longer if they wish, and to stabilize the force longer. It's good for the Army and good for readiness."
The change to RCP applies to active-duty Army Soldiers and to reserve-component Soldiers in the Active Guard Reserve program. Changes have been made to the RCP for Soldiers in the grade of E-6 and above, and include:
Aca,!Ac Staff Sergeant, 23 years
Aca,!Ac Staff Sergeant (Promotable), 26 years
Aca,!Ac Sergeant First Class, 26 years
Aca,!Ac Sergeant First Class (Promotable), 29 years
Aca,!Ac First Sergeant/Master Sergeant, 29 years
Aca,!Ac First Sergeant/Master Sergeant (Promotable), 32 years
Aca,!Ac Command Sergeant Major/SGM, 32 years
The RCP defines the maximum time a Soldier may stay in the Army at a certain rank. For instance, the RCP for a promotable staff sergeant is now 26 years -- up from 24.
If a Soldier in the rank of staff sergeant has served 26 years and hasn't been promoted to sergeant first class, he or she must retire. The ALARACT additionally says a Soldier must leave Army service at the time of their RCP or age 62, whichever of the two comes first.
Johnson said that the change to the RCP does not mean a Soldier must now stay in the Army longer. In fact, Soldiers may apply for retirement any time after becoming eligible.
The original ALARACT message follows:<h2>ALARACT 267/2008</h2>
<p style="font-family: courier, 'monospace'">
ALARACT 267/2008 - CHANGE TO RETENTION CONTROL POINTS (RCP) AND AGE REQUIREMENT FOR ENLISTED SOLDIERS SERVING IN THE REGULAR AR
PRECEDENCE TO: ROUTINE
DTG: 080025Z NOV 08
SUBJECT: ALARACT 267/2008 - CHANGE TO RETENTION CONTROL POINTS (RCP) AND AGE REQUIREMENT FOR ENLISTED SOLDIERS SERVING IN THE REGULAR AR
THIS MESSAGE HAS BEEN SENT BY THE PENTAGON TELECOMMUNICATIONS CENTER ON BEHALF OF DA WASHINGTON DC//DAPE-MPE//.
SUBJECT: CHANGE TO RETENTION CONTROL POINTS (RCP) AND AGE REQUIREMENT FOR ENLISTED SOLDIERS SERVING IN THE REGULAR ARMY OR UNDER THE ACTIVE GUARD RESERVE (AGR) PROGRAM
A. ARMY REGULATION 135-18, THE ACTIVE GUARD RESERVE (AGR) PROGRAM, 1 NOV 04.
B. ARMY REGULATION 140-111, THE U.S. ARMY RESERVE REENLISTMENT PROGRAM, 16 FEB 06.
C. ARMY REGULATION 601-280, ARMY RETENTION PROGRAM, 31 JAN 06.
D. NATIONAL GUARD REGULATION (NGR) 600-200, ENLISTED PERSONNEL MANAGEMENT, 1 MAR 97.
E. DAPE-MPE MESSAGE DTG: 081402Z JUL 04, SUBJ: IMPLEMENTATION OF RCPS FOR TITLE 10 ARNG AGR ENLISTED SOLDIERS, 8 JUL 2004.
1. THE PURPOSE OF THIS POLICY MEMORANDUM IS TO IMPLEMENT RETENTION CONTROL POINTS (RCPS) AND AGE REQUIREMENTS THAT ARE CONSISTENT FOR ENLISTED SOLDIERS SERVING ON ACTIVE DUTY ACROSS ALL ARMY COMPONENTS. THIS POLICY WILL APPLY TO SOLDIERS SERVING IN THE REGULAR ARMY (RA), AND TO SOLDIERS OF THE ARMY RESERVE (AR) OR ARMY NATIONAL GUARD OF THE UNITED STATES (ARNGUS) WHO ARE SERVING UNDER THE ACTIVE GUARD RESERVE (AGR) PROGRAM. THIS POLICY DOES NOT APPLY TO SOLDIERS SERVING IN THE AR OR ARNG WHO ARE MOBILIZED, ASSIGNED TO THE INDIVIDUAL READY RESERVE (IRR), MAN DAY STATUS (M-DAY), OR A TROOP PROGRAM UNIT (TPU).
2. EFFECTIVE 1 NOVEMBER 2008, RA AND AGR SOLDIERS MAY PERFORM ACTIVE SERVICE (SEE NOTE 1) UP TO THEIR RETENTION CONTROL POINT (RCP) OR AGE 62, WHICHEVER OCCURS FIRST. SOLDIERS MAY NOT EXCEED THE RCP AS SHOWN BELOW, BY MORE THAN ONE MONTH.
ARMY RETENTION CONTROL POINTS
GRADE........TOTAL ACTIVE SERVICE IN YEARS
SSG (PROMOTABLE) (SEE NOTE 2)...........26
1SG/MSG (SEE NOTE 3)....................29
CSM/SGM (SEE NOTE 4)....................32
1. SERVICE ON ACTIVE DUTY OR FULL-TIME NATIONAL GUARD DUTY (GLOSSARY, AR 135-18).
2. THE RCP FOR SOLDIERS IN THE GRADES OF SSG(P) AND ABOVE WHO ARE ASSIGNED TO SPECIAL BANDS (WEST POINT BAND, THE ARMY BAND, THE FIFE AND DRUM CORPS, AND THE ARMY FIELD BAND) DIFFERS FROM THE ABOVE TABLE. THEY ARE: SSG(P) AND SFC 30 YEARS; SFC(P) AND 1SG/MSG 33 YEARS; AND 1SG/MSG(P) AND CSM/SGM 35 YEARS.
3. MASTER SERGEANTS SELECTED TO ATTEND THE USASMC ARE AUTHORIZED TO SERVE UP TO 32 YEARS.
4. COMMAND SERGEANTS MAJOR AND SERGEANTS MAJOR SERVING IN NOMINATIVE POSITIONS WHERE THE OFFICER IS A GENERAL OFFICER OR SENIOR EXECUTIVE SERVICE (SES) EQUIVALENT (OR SERVING AS COMMAND SERGEANT MAJOR, USA SERGEANTS MAJOR ACADEMY OR EXECUTIVE OFFICER TO THE SERGEANT MAJOR OF THE ARMY) ARE AUTHORIZED TO SERVE UP TO 35 YEARS.
3. SOLDIERS NOT SERVING ON AN INDEFINITE REENLISTMENT, WHO REACH THEIR RCP DURING THEIR CURRENT ENLISTMENT AGREEMENT THROUGH LENGTH OF SERVICE, REDUCTION IN GRADE, OR BY REMOVAL FROM A PROMOTION LIST (EITHER VOLUNTARY OR INVOLUNTARY) WILL PERFORM ACTIVE SERVE UNTIL THEIR CONTRACTED EXPIRATION TERM OF SERVICE (ETS), UNLESS THEY ARE SEPARATED EARLIER UNDER APPLICABLE ADMINISTRATIVE, PHYSICAL DISABILITY, OR UNIFORM CODE OF MILITARY JUSTICE (UCMJ) SEPARATION PROVISIONS.
4. SOLDIERS SERVING ON AN INDEFINITE REENLISTMENT, WHO EXCEED THEIR RCP AS THE RESULT OF A REDUCTION IN GRADE, MAY PERFORM ACTIVE SERVICE UNTIL THE RCP FOR THE LOWER GRADE OR MINIMUM RETIREMENT ELIGIBILITY, WHICHEVER OCCURS LATER, UNLESS THEY ARE SEPARATED EARLIER UNDER APPLICABLE ADMINISTRATIVE, PHYSICAL DISABILITY OR UCMJ SEPARATION PROVISIONS. SOLDIERS WHO HAVE BETWEEN 18 AND 20 YEARS OF ACTIVE SERVICE MAY NOT BE SEPARATED UNLESS THE CONVENING AUTHORITY RECOMMENDS DISCHARGE AND THE ASSISTANT SECRETARY OF THE ARMY (MANPOWER & RESERVE AFFAIRS) HAS MADE A FINAL DETERMINATION IN SUCH CASES.
5. SOLDIERS WITH A PENDING OR APPROVED RETIREMENT MAY REQUEST WITHDRAWAL OF THEIR RETIREMENT APPLICATION AND CONTINUE SERVING TO THE NEWLY ESTABLISHED RCP. ACTION TO WITHDRAW PENDING OR APPROVED RETIREMENTS AS A RESULT OF THE ANNOUNCED RCP CHANGES MUST BE FINALIZED NO LATER THAN 30 NOVEMBER 2008.
6. THE THREE-YEAR PROBATIONARY PERIOD POLICY FOR ALL AGR PROGRAM SOLDIERS REMAINS IN EFFECT.
8. EXPIRATION DATE CANNOT BE DETERMINED.