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Federal Managers Association

Press Release

  • FMA Supports Passage of 2022 NDAA, Despite Objections to Repeal of Two-Year Probationary Period at DOD - December 8, 2021
  • Alexandria, VA – Congress is set to approve the 2022 National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) this week. The House passed it on December 7, and the Senate is expected to pass it in short order. The compromise includes repeal of the two-year probationary period at the Department of Defense (DOD), despite the fact that a study Congress ordered on the efficacy of the policy is still pending. FMA National President Craig Carter issued the following statement about the NDAA:

    “While we are disappointed that the conference bill reduces the current two-year probationary period at DOD to a single year, we are overall supportive of passage for this critical bill. We are almost ten weeks into the fiscal year, and every additional day without the ability to adequately plan for the future hurts our military readiness.

    There is a lot to support in the Fiscal Year 2022 NDAA. FMA supports the pay raise for the uniformed military, the extension for the authority to grant allowances, benefits, and gratuities to civilian employees on official duty in a combat zone, and many other policies. The NDAA is a must-pass bill, and FMA supports the overall bill.

    We are disappointed the conference report reverts the Department of Defense probationary period back to one year, beginning in 2023. In the FY2020 NDAA, Congress ordered a comprehensive study on the effectiveness of the current policy, which only took effect in 2016. The report has not been completed and Congress has not received the results of the study. We urged Congress to not take premature action, and to wait until it could make an evidence-based decision using actual data. Acting now makes zero sense.

    We expect the results of the study to be submitted to Congress in the coming weeks or months. In the spirit of the Biden administration’s promise in the Presidential Management Agenda to be guided by science and data on these decisions, we urge Congress to reconsider a two-year probationary period in the 2023 NDAA if the data supports it.”


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