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The Air Force Personnel Center began accepting applications Thursday from officers eligible for voluntary separation pay.
Officers commissioned in 1998-1999 and 2002-2004 in nine Air Force specialties who are being considered to face the 2010 Reduction in Force Board that convenes Sept. 20 are eligible for voluntary separation pay.
This is part of the Air Force's expanded force management measures announced March 25. Nearly 6,000 active-duty airmen enlisted and officers will be cut in the next two years to allow the Air Force to return to its congressionally mandated end-strength of 332,200 by fiscal 2012.
Voluntary separation pay is paid in a lump sum and is worth twice the involuntary separation payment that is based on an officer's rank and years of service. For example, a major with 12 years of service will qualify for about $188,500.
Officers in the vulnerable specialties who do not take the voluntary separation pay could find themselves in front of the RIF board and then told to leave the service. However, the RIF board will not be convened if enough officers 585 volunteer to exit. Officers told to leave by the board qualify for involuntary separation pay.
The nine Air Force specialties affected by this are space and missile (13S), weather (15W), aircraft maintenance (21A), communications and information (33S), force support (38F), chaplains with the exception of Catholic chaplains (52R), behavioral science/human factors scientist (61B), chemist/biologist (61C), and financial management (65F).
The application window for voluntary separation pay is June 30. Applications will be considered in the order they are received by AFPC through the Virtual Military Personnel Flight.
Officers who want to separate Sept. 30 or sooner must have their applications to AFPC no later than April 30. All other airmen approved for this pay must separate between Oct. 1 and Dec. 31, 2010.