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Housing recovery funds available
Military DoD civilians who face financial losses due to the current housing downturn can find relief in the ARRA influx of funds to the Housing Assistance Program (HAP).
Active members, former members, and survivors of those who have died on deployment of the Army, Navy, Marine Corps, Air Force, Coast Guard, as well as DoD civilians, who have sold a primary residence for a loss, or are considering selling their home, may qualify for funds.
The Recovery Act appropriated $555 million in funds to the HAP, which DoD will use to temporarily expand this program in order to partially reimburse eligible members. applications.
To speak with a HAP representative, call (916) 557-6850 or 1-800-811-5532.

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RADM Rich takes command as RADM Lorge retires

SAN DIEGO, Calif. (Jul. 13, 2015) -- Rear Adm. Markham K. Rich (right) assumes command of Navy Region Southwest from Rear Adm. Patrick J. Lorge (left) during a Change of Command ceremony aboard USS Midway Museum. This is also a retirement ceremony for Lorge who ends 34 years of service to the U.S. Navy. Photo by MCC(SW/EXW) Liz Murray

SAN DIEGO, Calif. (Jul. 13, 2015) -- Rear Adm. Markham K. Rich (right) assumes command of Navy Region Southwest from Rear Adm. Patrick J. Lorge (left) during a Change of Command ceremony aboard USS Midway Museum. This is also a retirement ceremony for Lorge who ends 34 years of service to the U.S. Navy. Photo by MCC(SW/EXW) Liz Murray

Navy Region Southwest holds change of command ceremony
7/14/2015
by MCC(SW/EXW) Liz Murray, Commander, Navy Region Southwest Public Affairs

SAN DIEGO (NNS) -- Rear Adm. Markham K. Rich relieved Rear Adm. Patrick J. Lorge as commander of Navy Region Southwest (NRSW), July 13, during a change of command ceremony aboard the USS Midway Museum in San Diego.
Lorge led Region shore operations to support 325,000 Sailors, Marines, family members and retirees. He initiated an energy strategy that included steam decentralization, Utilities Renewable Energy initiatives, energy security, and micro-grid technology that will lead to savings of 25 percent in consumption and $12.5 million per year. He collaborated with state and local governments to build a state-of-the-art coastal campus project in support of Naval Special Warfare. He also developed a Base Operations Long-Range Tracker synchronizing planning across all warfare enterprises and installations.
Lorge is retiring after serving 34 years in the Navy. During his speech, he compared the mixed feelings of closing this chapter in his life, to the scene between Clarence and George Baily in the movie "It's a Wonderful Life."
"As I reflected on my life in uniform over these last 34 plus years, I realized that I have been blessed by God in too many ways to count," Lorge said. "He gave me a purpose in life, the woman of my dreams, and five children more precious than gold. And he also gave me the gift to lead, and I, like George Baily, think this is a Wonderful Life."
Vice Admiral Kenneth Floyd, commander, U.S. 3rd Fleet, presented Lorge with the Distinguished Service Medal for his inspirational leadership of NRSW from July 2013 to July 2015, culminating 34 years of honorable and dedicated service.
Lorge's five children read the "The Watch," a poem typically read during military retirement ceremonies to respectfully relieve a service member of military duties and acknowledge the younger generation's role in carrying the mission forward. Following the poem, Lorge's son, U.S. Marine Corps 1st Lt. Phillip Lorge, gave his father his last active duty salute before being piped ashore.
Rich assumed command of NRSW following a tour in Washington D.C., where he served as the 88th Commandant of Naval District Washington. He previously commanded Naval Air Station Oceana and was chief of staff at Navy Region Southwest.
"To the Navy Region Southwest Team, I'm ready to get to work with you, for the second time in many cases, serving the fleet, fighter and family," Rich stated. "Our reason for being is to ensure the continued mission success of our tenants and mission partners."

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New chiefs' names released Aug. 5
7/27/2015
WASHINGTON (NNS) -- Names of Sailors selected to advance to chief petty officer by the fiscal year 2016 E-7 selection board are scheduled to be posted to commands' BUPERS Online (BOL) accounts Wednesday, Aug. 5, with public release via NAVADMIN Thursday, Aug. 6 at 11:00 a.m. eastern time.
Approximately 4,100 quotas were announced in June with an overall advancement opportunity of 23.64 percent for this cycle, just a .45 point drop from last cycle and above the 10-year average of 21.94 percent.
The selection board is not required to fill all quotas; only the best and most fully qualified candidates are selected for advancement to chief.
Because the Navy advances to vacancies, opportunity varies by rating, though advancement planners work to smooth overall opportunity across cycles.


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National Military news

RFID reduces inventory time aboard littoral combat ship
7/30/2015
From Naval Surface Warfare Center, Panama City Divisio
n
PENSACOLA, Fla. (NNS) -- Sailors aboard the littoral combat ship USS Independence (LCS 2) successfully demonstrated a passive radio frequency identification (RFID) system's utility during mine countermeasures mission package (MCM MP) container testing conducted off the coast of Florida, in early July.
The RFID project showed the technology's ability to dramatically reduce the time Sailors spend conducting parts and equipment inventory in support of ship replenishment.
"RFID reduced the time the Sailors are in the containers in the ship, and that's a goal - to reduce the warfighter's workload," said Naval Surface Warfare Center, Panama City Division (NSWC PCD) project engineer Bill Israelson. "With the system's proven accuracy, we can quickly tell what needs to be resupplied so the ship can get what it needs and head back to sea."
During the container testing Littoral Combat Ship (LCS) Mine Countermeasure Detachment Sailors scanned and inventoried 1,300 pieces of MCM MP equipment in only 21 minutes during a rapid replenishment evolution between at-sea periods. Previously, this task would have required three Sailors 72 hours to accomplish.
The inventory occurred once the Sailors returned to port from after conducting at-sea technical evaluations of the littoral combat ship (LCS 2) MCM MP. Once in port, engineers from NSWC PCD, NSWC Port Hueneme Division and contractor support scanned parts and equipment inside the mission package and sent the information to a computer to determine what needed replenishment.
The RFID project is nearing the final test and evaluation stage, necessary to validate the proof of concept. The RFID prototype was initially developed by the Office of Naval Research.

Navy announces Command Senior Chief rating
7/29/2015
From Chief of Naval Personnel

WASHINGTON (NNS) -- NAVADMIN 177/15, released July 29, establishes the Command Senior Chief (CMDCS) rating to provide earlier leadership opportunity for senior enlisted.
Initial eligibility for conversion to the CMDCS Rating will be those active duty Sailors assigned the 9578 Navy Enlisted Classification (NEC). All future conversions to the CMDCS rating will be through the annual CMDCS administrative selection board.
"The CMDCS rating strengthens the command leadership triad and provides our very best senior chiefs increased responsibilities in this rating while enabling greater levels of experience as they advance through the ranks," said Fleet Master Chief April Beldo, fleet master chief for Manpower, Personnel, Training and Education (MPT&E).
Sailors with a 9578 NEC must request conversion or decline conversion to the rating by submitting NAVPERS Form 1306/7 to the command master chief detailer, no later than Aug. 31, 2015.
This is a one-time opportunity for those eligible to convert. Future conversion to the CMDCS rate will be automatic from the annual administrative selection board.
Although highly encouraged, Sailors holding the 9578 NEC do not have to convert to the CMDCS rating. Those requesting not to convert will remain in the program until their projected rotation date (PRD), and will then be made available to their respective source rating detailer when in the detailing window.
For more information, read the NAVADMIN 177/15 at the Navy Personnel Command website www.npc.navy.mil.

Randall Smith laid to rest
7/28/2015
From Navy Public Affairs Support Element East

CHATTANOOGA, Tenn. (NNS) -- Logistics Specialist 2nd Class Randall Smith, a victim of the shooting at Navy Operational Support Center (NOSC) Chattanooga July 16 which also took the lives of four Marines, was laid to rest at the Chattanooga National Cemetery July 28.
Family members along with members of the Chattanooga Police Department and NOSC Sailors filled the First Baptist Church Fort Oglethorpe to witness the funeral.
During the funeral, speakers, including Vice Adm. Robin Braun, Commander, Navy Reserve Force, and church officials praised and honored the life of Petty Officer Smith.
Angie Smith, widow of Petty Officer Smith, also sang a song as a tribute to honor her late husband.
Smith's remains traveled in a funeral procession where citizens of Chattanooga lined the streets to pay their respects.

Navy announces retirement grade determinations
7/17/2015
From the Navy Office of Information

WASHINGTON (NNS) -- Today, the Navy announced the retirement grade determinations for the three Navy officers who received Secretarial Letters of Censure on February 10, 2015.
The following are the dispositions of each:
- Rear Adm. Michael Miller will retire on August 01, 2015 at the rank of Vice Admiral (O-9), after 41 years of service.
- Rear Adm. Terry Kraft retired on June 01, 2015 at the rank of Rear Admiral (O-8), after 34 years of service.
- Capt. David Pimpo retired on July 01, 2015 at the rank Captain (O-6), after 30 years of service.

New Global Trade Compliance impacts FPO package mailings Oct. 1
7/17/2015
From NAVSUP Corporate Communications

MECHANICSBURG, Pa. (NNS) -- The United States Post Office and Military Postal Service Agency announced new Global Trade Compliance requirements, effective Oct. 1, that will impact all packages mailed at Navy Fleet Post Offices (FPO).
"The new Global Trade Compliance program will require the data on all customs forms for packages mailed to and from our Navy FPOs to be entered into the U.S. Customs and Border Protection (USCBP) database, similar to the way U.S. Postal Service post offices are currently conducting business for international and military packages with customs forms," said Naval Supply Systems Command (NAVSUP) Navy Postal Director Gabe Telles.
"Sailors can reduce waiting time in line to mail packages by filling out their customs forms online with the U.S. Postal Service's website, and bringing them to the post office; which is good news for Sailors," Telles added. "Navy postal personnel will experience an increased workload due to the manual input of the customs form data into the USCBP database. However, if Sailors come to the Navy FPOs with their customs forms already completed online, this will save time and only require the scanning of a barcode on the customs form."
Sailors can complete their customs forms online at www.usps.com under the "International" tab when they click the link titled "Complete Customs Forms."


San Diego Navy news

CORONADO, Calif. (July. 14, 2015) Chief of Naval Personnel (CNP) Vice Adm. William F. Moran speaks to the staff of Naval Special Warfare Center during an all-hands call. U.S. Navy photo by MC1 Michael Russell CORONADO, Calif. (July. 14, 2015) Chief of Naval Personnel (CNP) Vice Adm. William F. Moran speaks to the staff of Naval Special Warfare Center during an all-hands call. U.S. Navy photo by MC1 Michael Russell

CNP visits Coronado Sailors
7/15/2015
by MC3 Richard Miller, Naval Special Warfare Public Affairs

SAN DIEGO (NNS) -- Chief of Naval Personnel (CNP) Vice Adm. Bill Moran met with Naval Special Warfare (NSW) Sailors during an all-hands call on Naval Amphibious Base Coronado, July 14.
Moran discussed a variety of topics, including family support, General Military Training (GMT) and changes to the promotion and advancement process.
"What you see in terms of policy changes is leadership working to empower COs, pushing decision making to the lowest possible level," Moran said. "For example, the Command Advancement Program shifting to the Meritorious Advancement Program is just that, giving more authority to local commanders to make the call on what Sailors deserve to be promoted based on performance."
Moran addressed the reduction in annual GMT requirements.
"We have thrown out all GMT that's under the view of the Secretary of the Navy, it's gone," said Moran. "However, we're still required to do some GMT as directed by the Secretary of Defense or Congress."
Detailed information on the new training policy is available on the Navy GMT page at https://www.nko.navy.mil.
Moving beyond training, CNP discussed plans to focus on family-centered initiatives, like expanded child care opportunities and updated co-location policies for dual military families.
"At the end of the day, many of the changes to policy we are pushing through are about improved quality of life and quality of service for you and your families," Moran said.
CNP concluded his remarks by recognizing Naval Special Warfare and the critical capability they provide our Navy and joint force.
"You are our most flexible force in responding quickly to things that flare up or events that could surprise us," Moran said. "Your expertise is central to our Navy's ability to respond to crisis, to defeat the enemy far away from America, long before they threaten our loved ones back home."
As the Chief of Naval Personnel, Vice Adm. Moran is responsible for all recruiting, training and detailing policies. He and his staff ensure Navy has the right number of Sailors with the needed skill sets to carry out operations across the Fleet.

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