WASHINGTON, D.C. – U.S. Sen. Sherrod Brown (D-OH) announced new legislation that would encourage the retention of National Guard and other reserve component senior leaders by improving the retirement benefits available to them.
“The National Guard officers have answered the call to defend our nation and we must make sure they earn the retirement benefits they deserve,” said Brown. “This legislation would enable the Guard to retain the best and brightest leaders to protect our country and lead our service members.”
Brown’s National Guard and Reserve Retirement Parity Act would improve the retention of National Guard and Reserve senior leaders by allowing credit for retirement benefits earned through service. This bill would address existing regulations that prevent senior officers from earning credit for retirement benefits accrued after advancing in rank from the Active Guard Reserve service.
As a result of current rules, some qualified service members forgo the chance to serve as senior officers since they would be serving for additional time knowing that they will not be permitted to draw retirement benefits at the highest grade held.
The National Guard Association of the United States has endorsed the proposed legislation. According to Brig. Gen. Stephen M. Koper (Ret.), president of the National Guard Association of the United States, “the legislation is a well-reasoned solution to permit the National Guard’s most capable leaders to serve with appropriate recompense.”
Brown, a member of the U.S. Senate Committee on Veterans’ Affairs, has been an advocate for increasing benefits for the men and women of the National Guard and Reserves. In April 2008, he cosponsored the Reserve Educational Assistance Program Enhancement Act, which would provide increased educational benefits for members who have served multiple deployments.