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More Training on Tap for Guard, Reserve

 
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National Guard

Feb. 9, 2017

As the Army has ramped up operational use of its National Guard and Reserve units amid ongoing counterinsurgency operations, budget constraints and end strength cuts, training has become more critical than ever for all components, Vice Chief of Staff Gen. Daniel B. Allyn told a Senate Armed Services subcommittee.

“To build sufficient operational and strategic depth, the Army continues to explore ways to build increased readiness” in the Guard and Reserve, Allyn said during a Feb. 8 hearing of the readiness and management support panel.

That includes boosting the number of annual training days for Guard and Reserve units designated as early deployers, building multicomponent units, and expanding combat training center rotations for National Guard brigade combat teams from two to four in fiscal 2018, Allyn said. 

The Army has taken other steps to shore up readiness across the force, such as its relatively new Sustainable Readiness Model that is designed to restore and maintain the core warfighting skills of units between operational missions and avoid the “readiness cliff” that can follow redeployment, Allyn said.

Allyn cautioned that successfully continuing to conduct realistic, rigorous, sufficient training across multiple echelons in all components depends heavily on “predictable and sustained resources—both time and money.”

He implored committee members to repeal the ongoing funding caps under the Budget Control Act of 2011, calling that “the most important action you can take … that will have both positive and lasting impact” on Army readiness.