Cannon Air Force Base, N.M., employs civilian security officers for installation entry control to facilitate deployments for active duty airmen. The Air Force plans to cut about 2,700 civilian employees to deal with budget reductions. (Tech. Sgt. Josef Cole / Air Force)
The Air Force plans to cut its civilian workforce by 2,698 positions next year as it grapples with budget cuts.
The Air Force will reduce its civilian workforce from 186,026 employees to 183,328 through a combination of early retirements, buyouts and attrition, according to Lt. Gen. Samuel Cox, the deputy chief of staff manpower in written testimony submitted to Congress April 9.
Our entire workforce military, civilian and contractor must be appropriately sized to support and execute our piece of the National Defense Strategy while concurrently considering fiscal realities, Cox wrote in the testimony.
In fiscal 2013 about 603 employees took early retirements or buyouts, 324 were reassigned to other positions and 86 were separated involuntarily, according to the Air Force. The service has already offered 160 buyouts and early retirements so far in fiscal 2014.
The Air Force will only resort to reductions-in-force as a last resort Cox said. The service plans to continue reducing its civilian workforce in future years, according to Cox.