In March 2012, the Army plans to launch a five-year troop reduction effort to cut nearly 50,000 soldiers from its ranks using voluntary and involuntary separations and is considering buyouts, reductions in high-year tenure limits and early retirement boards as a means of reducing numbers, Army Service Personnel Chief Lt. Gen. Thomas P. Bostick said, according to an Army Times article.
Bostick said the first phase would be to drawdown the temporary 22,000 soldier increase to support the Afghanistan troop surge three years ago, according to the article. The second phase would be to drawdown the remaining 27,000 spaces that were added during the Grow the Army program leaving the service with 520,400 active-duty soldiers on Sept. 30, 2016.
Army officials also said officer selection rates for all grades will almost certainly decrease as end-strength numbers drop, but said their goal was to make the transition as gradual as possible, according to the release.
The pin-on-point for advancement to captain also will increase, so that officers, on average, will spend 42 months as a lieutenant, rather than 38, the release said.
Bostick said, according to Army TImes, “it’s not so important what the end number will be, but what will the ramp be to get to the final total? We don’t want a steep drop off.”
Read more on the Army to cut nearly 50,000 soldiers over 5 years by Army Times.