A new menu of retention bonuses that range from $1,600 to $72,000 for qualified Regular Army soldiers will take effect May 7, replacing a lineup of bonus options that have been in effect since Jan. 27.
Soldiers who want to re-enlist under the old rates have until May 7 to execute a new enlistment contract, provided they are otherwise eligible for retention as stipulated in the newly updated (April 1) AR 601-280, Army Retention Program.
For the old rates go here.
Scroll down for the new rates.
The Army also has revised the Reclassification In/Out Calls (posted below), a matrix that displays the relative strength status of all enlisted military occupational specialties.
Soldiers who want to transfer to another military occupational specialty with better career prospects must consult the in/out calls to determine which specialties are open and closed to migration.
The Bonus Extension and Retraining, or BEAR, program no longer is in effect, but soldiers who qualify for re-enlistment, may be able to retrain and reclassify for a specialty in the tiered Selective Retention Bonus program.
Top-end SRBs of $10,000 or more generally apply to soldiers who re-enlist for duty with units and commands carried in the "location-specific" category of the bonus program, or who have special skills, such a proficiency in a priority foreign language.
Assignment specific bonus opportunities include duty with airborne units, the 75th Ranger Regiment, the 160th Special Operations Aviation Regiment, Special Operations Command, the 780th Military Intelligence (Cyber) Brigade and the Civil Affairs Brigade.
Soldiers who have a listening and speaking or reading proficiency score on the Defense language Proficiency Test of 3/3 or higher in a priority language at the time of re-enlistment are authorized an additional $7,500 above the regular bonus amount, up to a total SRB amount not to exceed $90,000.
It's possible to earn up to $90,000 under the Army's Selective Retention Bonus program.
Photo Credit: Staff Sgt. Opal Vaughn/Army
Similarly, CMF 18 Special Forces staff sergeants and sergeants first class who will have six to 10 years of active service on the date of re-enlistment are authorized an additional $10,000 above the normal bonus amount, not to exceed $90,000.
Soldiers may receive more than one SRB during their career, but the total combined SRB payments over a career cannot exceed $200,000.
The Army continues to offer retention bonuses to select categories of infantrymen (MOS 11B), with a particular focus on staff sergeants who can earn lump-sum payments of $7,400 to $22,500, depending on the length of their service extension.
Infantrymen in the ranks of private first class through staff sergeant who re-enlist for service with the 75th Ranger Regiment can earn bonuses of $5,500 to $22,500 under the location-specific category of the SRB program.
While the Army does not offer retention incentives for M1 tank crewmen (MOS 19K), it continues to offer bonuses for 19D armor scouts in the ranks of private first class through sergeant, with payments ranging from $2,500 to $7,800.
PFC who are jump-qualified armor scouts, and who re-up with the 75th Ranger Regiment, can earn bonuses of $5,500 to $16,700 for service extensions of 12 to 60 months, or more.
The Army continues to offer retention incentives for soldiers in two of its newest high-tech MOS, 17C (cyber operations specialist) and 29E (electronic warfare specialist).
The incentives for these MOS can range from $5,500 to $50,400, depending on rank, special skills and length of re-enlistment.
Special operations soldiers, particularly NCOs with a foreign language proficiency, remain eligible for the largest of bonuses with payments ranging from $8,600 to $72,000 for Special Forces, psychological operations and civil affairs specialists.
Bonuses continue to be available to select categories of privates and specialists in CMF 68 (medical), one of the Army's largest career fields.
Eligible MOS include 68A (biomedical equipment specialist), 68B (orthopedic specialist), 68C (practical nursing specialist), 68F (physical therapy specialist) and 68L (occupational therapy specialist).
Also, 68N (cardiovascular specialist), 68R (veterinary food inspection specialist), 68T (animal care specialist), 68U (ear, nose and throat specialist), 68W (health care specialist) and 68Y (eye specialist).
Payment levels range from $1,600 to $18,200 for service with conventional units, and up to $22,500 with location-specific units, such as the 160th Special Operations Aviation Regiment.
Some special rules apply to the new in/out calls as follows:
• Soldiers who are in the re-enlistment window only are authorized to change their primary MOS through re-enlistment. They are not eligible to request a voluntary reclassification.
• Ranger-qualified soldiers in the rank of non-promotable sergeant and below may request reclassification into MOS 11B without regard to the in/out calls.
• Soldiers may request reclassification into career field 18 (Special Forces), and these MOS without regard to the in/out calls for their current specialty:
12P (Prime Power Production Specialist), 17C (Cyber Operations Specialist), 25D (Cyber Network Defender), and 25E (Electromagnetic Spectrum Manager).
Also, 31D (CID Special Agent), 35L (Counterintelligence Agent), 37F (Psychological Operations Specialist), 38B (Civil Affairs
Specialist), 46R (Public Affairs Broadcast Specialist) and 79R (Recruiter, staff sergeants only who have served as detailed recruiters).
Soldiers with questions about retention and reclassification policies should contact their local career counselor.