You will be redirected to the page you want to view in  seconds.

Defense bill calls for reducing number of generals, flag officers

Jun. 10, 2013 - 06:00AM   |  
  • Filed Under

Lawmakers are calling on the Pentagon to cut back on its general and flag officers.

Inserted into the annual defense bill passed last week by the House Armed Services Committee was a call for the Defense Department to reduce the total number of officers wearing stars by 14 positions, or less than 2 percent of the total.

There are 924 general and flag officers on active duty, according to the most recent Pentagon data.

The number of high-ranking officers grew by about 10 percent in the decade after 2001, when there were 889 general and flag officers. That rate of growth was higher than the rate for the enlisted ranks and for the force as a whole.

That so-called “brass creep” may have peaked in 2010, when the Pentagon reported 983 officers in paygrades O-7 through O-10.

That was about the time former Defense Secretary Robert Gates cited the number of top-ranking officers as an example of resources being devoted to nonwarfighting capabilities. Gates said cutting senior officer billets — and their accompanying staffs — was one way to reduce overall defense spending.

The House Armed Services Committee’s version of the 2014 National Defense Authorization Act passed on June 6 also ordered the Pentagon to eliminate 10 joint billets. The measure will need approval by the Senate before it becomes law.

The reductions would be in addition to those Gates mandated in 2010. Those long-term plans call for eliminating 102 top jobs over the next several years as current office holders leave and wartime billets go away.

The House committee also ordered the Government Accountability Office to conduct an assessment of how much the senior officer corps costs. The report should review not only the pay and compensation provided to the senior officers but also costs linked to “all officer and enlisted aides assigned to or supporting general or flag officers; the travel and per diem costs of such aides; the annual expenditures for military housing provided the general and flag officers; and other support costs,” according to the bill.

Answers by RallyPoint

Join trending discussions in the military's #1 professional community. See what members like yourself have to say from across the DoD.

More In News

Start your day with a roundup of top defense news.

VA Home Loan

Search By:

Product Options:
Zip Code:

News for your in-box

Sign up now for free Military Times E-Reports. Choose from Money and Education. Subscribers: log in for premium e-newsletters.

This Week's Air Force Times

This Week's Air Force Times

CrossFit vs. unit PT
Troops will do the training plans in a $2.5 million study

Subscribe for Print or Digital delivery today!

MilitaryTimes Green Trusted Classifieds Looking to buy, sell and connect on Military Times?
Browse expanded listings across hundreds of military installations.
Faces of valorHonoring those who fought and died in Operations Iraqi Freedom and Enduring Freedom.
hall of valorThe Hall of Valor is a searchable database of valor award citations collected by Doug Sterner, a Vietnam veteran and Military Times contributing editor, and by Military Times staff.

All you need to know about your military benefits.

Benefits handbook

Guard & Reserve All you need to know about the Guard & Reserve.

guard and reserve handbook