Military Report - Week of December 22, 2014

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Military Report - Week of December 22, 2014

#1 Postby boardman » Mon Dec 22, 2014 2:28 pm

Military Report - Week of December 22, 2014

Get Ready to Use Your $0 Down VA Loan Benefit in 2015
Now is the time to use your VA Loan. Rates are near historic lows and you don't have to pay PMI or have a large down payment. Plus you can get financing up to $417,000. (https://secure.military.com/leads/VALoa ... rvr1222.nl) Use your VA Loan Benefit today.
(http://www.military.com/money/va-loans?ESRC=mrvr1222.nl) Want more information about this great benefit?


Sky-High Pricing Has VA Rationing Drugs
VA has had to ration a break-through medicine that cures hepatitis C, a liver virus infecting 174,000 veterans. Many of the veterans believe they were exposed to the disease due to improper treatment procedures at a VA facility in 2009. The treatment for hepatitis C requires 84 pills over 12 weeks, which costs VA almost $50,000 per patient. The cost is forcing VA to ration the medications.
(http://militaryadvantage.military.com/2 ... is-c-drug/) Read the full Military Update article to learn more about this issue.


AF Promotes 109 More Airmen
The Air Force recently selected 109 enlisted Airmen for promotion via the supplemental promotion process. To see the list, visit the (https://www.my.af.mil/) Air Force Portal and select the promotion news link, or visit the (https://mypers.af.mil/) myPers website and select "Search All Components" from the drop down menu and enter "Active Duty: Enlisted Promotions Home Page" in the search window. Select the page and scroll down to the supplemental promotion section. Airmen on the supplemental list tested outside of their required cycle because of an extended TDY or deployment in support of a contingency. For more information about promotions and other personnel issues, visit the myPers website.
For more Air Force news updates, visit the (http://www.military.com/daily-news) Military.com News Center.


Help for DoD Personnel Exposed to H2O Contamination
(http://www.civilianexposure.org/) Civilian Exposure's mission is to shed light on contamination and health impacts to civilians who work on U.S. military installations. Civilian Exposures first and flagship effort involves: building awareness, accountability and assistance for civilians exposed to Camp Lejeune water contamination. The 501c3 non-profit organization's five goals are to: 1) Raise national awareness; 2) Ensure accuracy, transparency and the release of all information; 3) Ensure protections and assistance in current/future policies; 4) Raise funding for outreach efforts; and 5) Expose contamination risks for civilians employed on other U.S. military installations beyond Camp Lejeune.
(http://www.civilianexposure.org/) Find out how you can help Civilian Exposure make a difference.


Secure Your Next Career at SCIS
Securitas Critical Infrastructure Services', or SCIS' mission is to provide innovative, cost-effective solutions to ensure the safety and security of the assets of the U.S. Government, government contractor organizations worldwide, and the Energy and Petrochemical industries. SCIS will relentlessly strive to preserve national security and improve the protection of the personnel, programs, resources, and facilities of their clients. (http://www.military.com/veteran-employe ... =mr1222.nl) Learn more.


Navy, Marines Offer COOL Credentialing
The new Marine Credentialing Opportunities On-Line (Marine COOL) is now partnering with the existing Navy COOL program. DoN COOL provides a unique shared-entry portal for Sailors and Marines to access their service's credentialing programs (Marine Corps COOL and Navy COOL). The COOL sites are web-based hubs that consolidate information from numerous sources at the federal, state and local levels on certifications, licenses, apprenticeships and growth opportunities that correspond with each Navy rating and Marine Military Occupational Specialty (MOS) as well as enlisted jobs and occupations. Every Navy rating and Marine MOS has at least one associated professional credential. For more information on Navy credentialing, visit the (https://www.cool.navy.mil) DoN COOL webpage.
For more on military education benefits, visit the (http://www.military.com/education) Military.com Education section.


NETPDTC Seeks Subject Matter Experts
The Naval Education and Training Professional Development and Technology Center (NETPDTC) has released the latest schedule for upcoming Advancement Examination Readiness Reviews (AERRs) held between January and June. Chief petty officers (E7-E9) identified as fleet subject-matter experts (FSME) are highly encouraged to apply and participate in this process, which helps identify the most qualified advancement candidates. The application to volunteer as an FSME for advancement exam development must be endorsed. To take part in the AERR process, log into NKO then use (https://www.nko.navy.mil/group/navy-adv ... eview-aerr) this link. Potential SME's should submit their nomination packages to Peter Pappas, NETPDTC N33A, via email: (mailto:peter.pappas@navy.mil) peter.pappas@navy.mil. Pappas may also be contacted with further questions at (850) 473-6121/DSN 753, fax (850) 473-6124.
For more Navy news updates, visit the (http://www.military.com/daily-news) Military.com News Center.


Navy SWO Retention Bonus Still Pending
A delay in coordinating approval for reauthorization of the Revised Surface Warfare Officer Critical Skills Retention Bonus (RSWOCSRB) will mean no new contracts will be processed for the bonus after Dec. 16 until reauthorization is received. Officers impacted by this delay have been contacted by their detailer. Eligible surface warfare officers with four or more years of service who have not yet signed up for the RSWOCSRB department head bonus can sign up for the bonus by Dec. 16. Eligible lieutenant commanders who have not yet signed up for the SWO Critical Skills Bonus (SWOCSB) will be eligible for the total bonus amount when the bonus is renewed as long as they sign up prior to the second anniversary of their promotion to O-4. Officers who have questions on their bonus status may contact the surface warfare community manager at (901) 874-3173 or DSN 882-3173.
For more on military pays and bonuses, visit the (http://www.military.com/benefits/military-pay) Military.com Pay Benefits section.


Air Reserve Center Notes IE-11 Problem
The Air Reserve Personnel Center (ARPC/DPXI) is aware of an interface problem for customers using Internet Explorer 11 while accessing the vPC-GR Dashboard through the (https://mypers.af.mil/) myPers website. The underlying cause is the inability to upgrade Oracle RNT from the current May 2011 version which limits Internet Explorer support to version 9 and below. The interface problem is exhibited by a continuously loading graphic. The ARPC recommends setting Internet Explorer 11 to compatibility mode by doing the following: (1) tap or click the Tools button, and then tap or click Compatibility View settings; and (2) under Add this website, enter the URL of the site you want to add to the list (add: disa.mil for myPers and vPCGR problems), and then tap or click Add. Questions can be directed to the ARPC Communications Focal Point through the Total Force Service Center at 210-565-0102 or DSN 665-0102.
For more Air Force news updates, visit the (http://www.military.com/daily-news) Military.com News Center.


Airmen Should Maintain Copies of Records
Active-duty, Air Force Reserve and Air National Guard officers and enlisted members who want to maintain copies of their pre-July 2010 fitness records need to access the Air Force Fitness Management System (AFFMS) and save or print their records by Dec. 30. AFFMS will be offline from Dec. 31 - Jan. 11 to enable AFPC teams to transition content to the improved Air Force Fitness Management System II. When the new system comes back online, it will not include fitness information older than July, 2010. To save copies of pre-July 2010 records, visit the (https://www.my.af.mil/) Air Force Portal, hover the curser over the "Life & Fitness" menu and select "AF Fitness Management System" from the drop down menu. For more information about the fitness management system and other personnel issues, visit the (https://mypers.af.mil/) myPers website.
For military-grade fitness tips and workouts, visit the (http://www.military.com/military-fitness) Military.com Fitness Center.


Family Planning and TRICARE
TRICARE covers several birth control options, but only when prescribed by a TRICARE-authorized provider. These include intrauterine devices, hormonal methods and barrier methods. If none of these options seem right for you, there are others to consider. For more information, visit the " (http://www.tricare.mil/CoveredServices/ ... nning.aspx) Family Planning" section of the TRICARE website. TRICARE also offers tips and resources for living a healthy lifestyle on the " (http://www.tricare.mil/HealthWellness.aspx) Health and Wellness" section of the TRICARE website.
For more on TRICARE, visit the (http://www.military.com/benefits/tricare) Military.com TRICARE section.


Gold Medal for Civil Air Patrol
The Civil Air Patrol (CAP) received the Congressional Gold Medal, which is awarded to those who have performed an achievement impacting American history and culture. The presentation acknowledged their role in protecting the U.S. Homeland against deadly German U-boat attacks during World War II and other wartime domestic missions. The Civil Air Patrol organization was founded Dec. 1, 1941. For more than 60 years, CAP-U.S. Air Force provided guidance, training, assistance and oversight to CAP organizations nationwide. For more information on the Civil Air Patrol, visit the Civil Air Patrol Official Website at (http://www.gocivilairpatrol.com/) www.gocivilairpatrol.com, the Civil Air Patrol Official (http://www.af.mil/AboutUs/FactSheets/Di ... -usaf.aspx) Fact Sheet, the (http://caphistory.org/) National Museum of the Civil Air Patrol website, the (http://www.capvolunteernow.com/multimed ... /index.cfm) Civil Air Patrol Multimedia Library, and the (http://spaatzassociation.wordpress.com/) Spaatz Association website.
For more news on military medals, visit the (http://www.military.com/topics/medals) Military.com Medal section.


VA Loan Limits: Updated for 2015
The VA home loan guaranty program does not impose a maximum amount that an eligible veteran may borrow using a VA loan but limits the maximum guaranty amount to $417,000 for 2015. However, if you live in one the following counties listed in (http://www.military.com/money/va-loans/ ... nties.html) this chart, follow the data on the chart to determine the VA's maximum guaranty amount for a particular county. These limits apply to all loans closed January 1, 2015 and afterwards. For the full chart and more details, see the (http://www.military.com/money/va-loans/ ... nties.html) VA Loan for High-cost Counties page.


Report: VA Misled Congress
A new report from the Inspector General of the Department of Veterans Affairs has found that the Department of Veterans Affairs misled Congress and members of the media about how many veterans died or suffered serious harm as a result of extreme treatment delays. The VA shared a fact sheet in April with Congress and the press that said 23 veterans died and a total of 76 suffered serious harm throughout the nation while waiting months or years for health care since 1999. But the recently released report highlights multiple errors with these findings and a lack of evidence for statements the VA released about them. A summary of the December 15, 2014 report is available on the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) (http://www.va.gov/oig/publications/repo ... sp?id=3256) Office of Inspector General website.
For more veterans benefits info and updates, visit the (http://militaryadvantage.military.com) Military Advantage blog.


AF Selects 22 ROTC Commanders
Twenty-two lieutenant colonels and lieutenant colonel-selects have been selected for Air Force Reserve Officer Training Corps (AFROTC) detachment command. To see the commander selection list, visit the (https://mypers.af.mil/) myPers website. Select "Search All Components" from the drop down menu and enter "Summer 2015 AFROTC Detachment Commander (91C0) Selection Results" in the search window.
For more Air Force news updates, visit the (http://www.military.com/daily-news) Military.com News Center.


Obama Signs Bill Granting Pay Raise
President Barack Obama on Friday signed into law a massive defense policy bill that endorses his plan to fight Islamic State militants, including air strikes and training Iraqis and moderate Syrian rebels. The law authorizes funds for basic military operations, from a (http://www.military.com/benefits/milita ... harts.html) 1 percent pay raise for troops to the purchase of ships, aircraft and other war-fighting equipment.
(http://www.military.com/daily-news/2014 ... -bill.html) Read the full article on Military.com


Beware of IRS Scam
The Treasury Inspector General for Taxpayer Administration has issued a warning to taxpayers to beware of phone calls from individuals claiming to represent the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) in an effort to defraud them. Callers claiming to be from the IRS tell intended victims they owe taxes and must pay using a pre-paid debit card or wire transfer. The truth is the IRS usually first contacts people by mail about unpaid taxes. And, the IRS will never ask for payment using a pre-paid debit card or wire transfer. People who get a call from someone claiming to be with the IRS asking for a payment should call the IRS at 800-829-1040 if they think they owe federal taxes. People can also file a complaint with the Federal Trade Commission at (http://www.FTC.gov) www.FTC.gov -- add "IRS Telephone Scam" to the comments in their complaint. Forward any scam emails to (mailto:phishing@irs.gov) phishing@irs.gov.
For more personal finance tips and guides, visit the (http://www.military.com/money) Military.com Money Center.


33 Aircraft at AMC Museum
The ever-growing Air Mobility Command Museum boasts a collection of 33 aircraft, a staff of more than 170 volunteers. When it comes to the aircraft, the museum's restoration crew is renowned as one of the best, doing what they can to conserve, preserve and restore the aircraft in their care. In addition to the numerous aircraft, the museum houses functioning flight simulators, tens of thousands of artifacts and a multitude of exhibits that display AMC's, Dover AFB's and the Air Force's history. For more information, visit the Air Mobility Command Museum website at (http://amcmuseum.org/) amcmuseum.org.
For more Air Force news updates, visit the (http://www.military.com/daily-news) Military.com News Center.


Help with Your New Year's Fitness Resolutions
Committed to getting back into shape, or getting into even better shape in 2015? Drop by the Military.com Fitness Center, which features workout plans, tips and guides by former Navy SEAL and fitness guru Stew Smith -- everything from erasing those love handles to acing those military PFTs. For more, visit the (http://www.military.com/military-fitness) Fitness Center.


Operation Live Well
Thanks to Operation Live Well, military installations are starting to provide environments that encourage good nutrition, active lifestyles and tobacco-free living. As the program moves forward into 2015, the team running the program is visiting the test installations to see the progress of the OLW and its related Healthy Base Initiative (HBI) program. Those interested can go to the (http://www.health.mil/Military-Health-T ... -Live-Well) Operation Live Well website and find a set of tools and resources, such as (http://www.health.mil/Military-Health-T ... /Cookbooks) cookbooks, to help them adopt or maintain a healthy lifestyle into the new year and beyond.
For military-grade fitness tips and workouts, visit the (http://www.military.com/military-fitness) Military.com Fitness Center.


Santa Is Ready to Go!
At Ramstein Air Base, Germany, Santa needed a little more help than usual this year. Knowing this, he enlisted the support of some very special elves at the 86th Logistics Readiness Squadron to help him pack, load and upgrade one of his sleighs, a C-130J Super Hercules. Meanwhile, the North American Aerospace Defense Command's 'NORAD Tracks Santa' website at (http://www.noradsanta.org/) www.noradsanta.org is ready to track Santa's flight across the globe on Christmas Eve. Starting at 12:01 a.m. MST on Dec. 24, website visitors can watch Santa continue to make preparations for his flight. NORAD's "Santa Cams" will stream videos on the website as Santa makes his way over various locations. Then, at 4 a.m. MST (6 a.m. EST), trackers worldwide can speak with a live phone operator to inquire as to Santa's whereabouts by dialing the toll-free number 1-877-Hi-NORAD (1-877-446-6723) or by sending an email to (mailto:noradtrackssanta@outlook.com) noradtrackssanta@outlook.com.


Thunderbirds Release Show Schedule
The U.S. Air Force Thunderbirds have announced their 2015 show schedule. In its 62nd season, the team is slated to perform 71 demonstrations at 39 locations. The show schedule is available on the U.S. Air Force Thunderbirds website at (http://afthunderbirds.com/site/show-season/) afthunderbirds.com/site/show-season. Aside from performing impressive aerial demonstrations, Thunderbird Airmen visit with local schools and hospitals, hold enlistment ceremonies and conduct media engagements to speak with people about the Air Force.
For more on military-related entertainment news, visit the (http://www.military.com/off-duty) Military.com Off-duty section.


TRICARE: Do You Need Urgent Care?
TRICARE beneficiaries can call the Nurse Advice Line (NAL) to get advice on their health care questions. Not all health problems require a visit with a medical specialist but a Registered Nurse at the NAL can help you make the decision on whether you should seek care at an urgent care center. There is always a live person on the line to answer your concerns. When you call, the nurse will ask several medical questions based on your symptoms. If self-care is recommended, the nurse may provide you with advice on home treatments and remedies. The NAL is a new and easy option for beneficiaries to get information on their medical problems quickly and at any time. To access the NAL dial 1-800-TRICARE (874-2273) and select option 1. For more information, visit the (http://www.tricare.mil/ContactUs/CallUs ... tabase=web) TRICARE Nurse Advice Line webpage.
For more on TRICARE, visit the (http://www.military.com/benefits/tricare) Military.com TRICARE section.


Get $100 Mil Coverage from Only $7 a Month
Protection for less. Get $100,000 Coverage from only $7 a month. (http://www.military.com/insurance/?lpid ... rvr1222.nl) Could your family survive if something happened to you?


Sailors Can Request Record Corrections
Sailors whose official service record may reflect reprisal or retaliation because they reported a criminal offense, including sexual assault or sexual harassment, can request records correction through the Board for Correction of Naval Records. For instructions, visit the Corrections of Naval Records webpage at (http://www.public.navy.mil/bupers-npc/c ... /BCNR.aspx) www.public.navy.mil/bupers-npc/career/r ... /BCNR.aspx . You should also know: (1) reprisal includes taking adverse personnel actions or withholding favorable personnel actions; (2) Sailors wishing to report reprisal or retaliation can speak with their local inspector general (IG) office; and (3) sailors can also visit the Department of the Navy's IG website at (http://www.secnav.navy.mil/ig) www.secnav.navy.mil/ig to report reprisal or retaliation through the complaint hotline.
For more Navy news updates, visit the (http://www.military.com/daily-news) Military.com News Center.


AF Test and Ops Command Candidates
Fourteen Air Force officers have been selected for test and operations squadron command assignments. Candidates who are not on the selection list will remain eligible for additional vacancies throughout calendar year 2015, as they occur. To see the commander selection list, visit the (https://mypers.af.mil/) myPers website. Select "Search All Components" from the drop down menu and enter "CY15 AFMC Test/Operations Squadron Commander Selections" in the search window.
For more Air Force news updates, visit the (http://www.military.com/daily-news) Military.com News Center.
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