A chemical, biological, radiological and nuclear defense specialist pops a capsule of tear gas Jan. 7 to train Marines aboard Camp Pendleton, Calif. AR staff sergeants in 12 military occupational specialties are eligible for the Temporary Early Retirement Authority Program. (Lance Cpl. Shaltiel Dominguez / Marine Corps)
Manpower officials have extended early retirement incentives to Active Reserve Marines, according to a recently published message.
AR staff sergeants in 12 military occupational specialties, in addition to all staff sergeants who have twice failed selection to the next highest paygrade and are not already slated to leave the service, are eligible for the Temporary Early Retirement Authority Program.
TERA allows Marines who have served more than 15 years, but not yet reached a full 20 in uniform, the option of leaving the service early while retaining retirement benefits calculated at a reduced rate based on a Marines’ final paygrade and years of service.
The early-out incentive has been extended to AR Marines because they count towards the active component’s end strength number. Unlike most reservists who drill one weekend a month and two weeks a year, AR Marines support reserve units full time, as if they were an active duty Marine. While regular Reserve Marines are tallied separately, Marines in the AR must also be culled as the active duty service aims to hit 188,800 by the end of this fiscal year and 174,000 by the end of 2017.
AR Marines also count towards specific populations limits at each rank which is likely why AR staff sergeants are being targeted by this incentive. The E6 paygrade has been chronically overmanned, making it difficult for junior Marines in many jobs to pick up rank and earn a career in uniform.
Because TERA and other financial incentives to leave the service early have been carefully targeted to overpopulated ranks and military occupational specialties, not all requests will be approved.
“TERA is not an entitlement and each request will be considered based on the needs of the Marine Corps and the active reserve program,” reads Marine administrative message 138/14, published March 21.
To be eligible, AR staff sergeants must serve as:
■ 0111: Administrative specialist
■ 0291: Intelligence chief
■ 0369: Infantry Unit Leader
■ 0411: Maintenance management specialist
■ 0491: Combat service support chief
■ 3043: Supply administration and operations clerk
■ 3451: Fiscal/budget technician
■ 3529: Motor transport maintenance chief
■ 5711: Chemical, biological, radiological and nuclear defense specialist
■ 6019: Wire chief
■ 6391: Avionics maintenance chief
■ 6591: Aviation ordnance chief
Any staff sergeant, including those who have twice failed selection to the next highest grade, are ineligible if they have requested non-consideration for promotion.
Waivers for service obligations including time-on-station and education pay-back will be considered.