DOD may alter ‘dwell time’
ARLINGTON, Va. — The Defense Department expects to announce next week how it plans to compensate U.S. troops who have to curtail their time at home to deploy, Defense Department spokesman Maj. Stewart Upton said.
Right now, U.S. troops are supposed to get one month at home for every month they are deployed, but some units are getting less than that.
The Defense Department announced Monday that two units would have to deploy to Iraq before their “dwell time” between combat tours. One of those units, the 4th Infantry Division Headquarters is now slated to deploy 81 days before the end of their year at home.
Ultimately, the Defense Department wants to give troops more time at home. The department’s goal is to give active-duty troops two months at home for every month deployed, and Reserve component troops would get five months off for every month deployed.
The Defense Department is now considering how to compensate troops who deploy before this extended time at home, Upton said Friday.
“Different alternatives have been debated,” Upton said. “We won’t define the various options that are on the table, because they’re still on the table.”
Gates and other Defense officials discussed the package Thursday after Gates spoke with reporters at a news conference, Upton said. Since then, Defense officials have reworked some of the options that have been proposed.
“We will not know what the final incentives are until the secretary approves the final compensation package,” Upton said.