U.S. Senators Charles E. Schumer and Kirsten Gillibrand announced that the Senate’s National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) does not include a provision from the U.S. House of Representative’s version of the NDAA that could cut 200 of nearly 960 jobs at Rome’s Defense Finance and Accounting Services (DFAS). Schumer and Gillibrand said the House provision is a direct threat to hundreds of jobs at DFAS Rome and the regional economy, as well. The Senators successfully ensured that the Senate committee bill did not include these additional cuts to headquarters staff, which would threaten DFAS Rome jobs and plan to work in tandem to assure the provision will not be included in the final post-House-Senate conference legislation.
“The provision in the House-passed bill was a clear and present threat to hundreds of jobs at DFAS Rome and it was critical that we eliminate that threat in the Senate version of the NDAA bill,” said Senator Schumer. “DFAS Rome is an anchor for thousands of good-paying jobs in the Mohawk Valley. Every year when Congress sets our defense budget, without hesitation I work overtime to eliminate any threat – big or small – from hurting DFAS Rome. When we caught wind of an attempt by the House of Representatives to put DFAS jobs on the chopping block, Senator Gillibrand and I immediately got to work. We made it crystal clear to our colleagues that DFAS is cost-effective, productive, and vital to our defense mission, and we will ferociously fight this attempt or any future attempt that could put Rome DFAS jobs at risk.”
“I strongly oppose any attempts to cut the civilian workforce at DFAS, and I will do everything in my power to make sure these jobs stay in Rome where they belong,” said Senator Gillibrand, a member of the Senate Armed Services Committee. “DFAS workers play a vital role in the local economy and are crucial to the Army’s financial management. They should be able to continue doing their work efficiently and effectively, and I will always fight to protect their jobs.”
“AFGE is extremely grateful for the continuing support of DFAS Rome by both Senator Schumer and Senator Gillibrand. We fully appreciate their understanding of the attributes of the best local government workforce in the DFAS network,” said Edward Abounader President AFGE/DFAS.
The House of Representatives passed their version of NDAA last week, which includes a provision calling for a 25 percent cut that would affect how the Department of Defense funds DFAS operations. Schumer, Gillibrand said the provision could cause the loss of more than 200 of about 960 jobs at the Rome facility. The provision can be found HERE: “Sec 911: A) CERTIFICATION.—Not later January 1, 2021, the Chief Management Officer shall certify to the congressional defense committees that the reductions and eliminations carried out under paragraph (1) accomplished savings with respect to the total amount obligated and expended for the covered activities in fiscal year 2020 that were not less than 25 percent of the baseline amount.”
The Defense Finance and Accounting Service was created in 1991 to standardize and improve accounting and financial operations for Department of Defense. They provide payroll services for Department of Defense military and civilian personnel, retirees and other major contractors and vendors. DFAS operates as a separate and unique entity in Department of Defense, to ensure transparency and accountability on behalf of Department of Defense financing and accounting.