Calvert reintroduces bill to promote efficiency through DoD civilian workforce cuts

U.S. Rep. Ken Calvert (R-CA) recently reintroduced legislation that would require systematic civilian workforce reductions within the Department of Defense (DoD) to foster efficiency.

The Rebalance for an Effective Defense Uniform and Civilian Employees (REDUCE) Act, H.R. 295, would require the DoD to reduce its civilian workforce by 15 percent by fiscal year 2020, and to maintain that level through fiscal year 2025.

“The out of control growth in the Defense Department bureaucracy must be stopped,” Calvert said. “The leadership at the Pentagon may want to continue burying their collective heads in the sand, but Congress should act now and require the necessary cuts to the civilian workforce at the Defense Department.”

Calvert said the civilian workforce reductions would not impair the nation’s ability to maintain a strong national defense in the future.

Under the REDUCE Act, the secretary of defense would have the authority to use voluntary separation incentive payments and voluntary early retirement payments to help reach staff reduction levels.

A recent report by the Defense Business Board estimated the government could save around $125 billion over five years by eliminating the unnecessary bureaucratic waste at the Pentagon.

“Taxpayers as well as our service members deserve to have these funds spent in a much wiser fashion,” Calvert said.

The secretary of defense would also be given greater authority to place more weight on job performance than on tenure in reducing the civilian workforce.