U.S. Representative Colleen Hanabusa (HI-01), a member of the House Armed Services Committee, released the following statement after Secretary of Defense Chuck Hagel announced the Department of Defense will reduce management headquarters staff by 20%:
"As we continue to look for ways to save money in the Pentagon's budget, there will need to be appropriate reductions in staff. However, imposing arbitrary numbers that focus heavily on military and civilian personnel is not the responsible way to go about making these cuts. I have said repeatedly that strategy should drive savings, not the other way around. This directive also goes against both current law and DoD's own directives on total force management."
Officials said the initiative will affect permanently assigned defense civilian employees and military personnel. Though officials said the ratio and depth of cuts has yet to be determined, the directive stated that, "Senior managers should ensure cuts are made aggressively and as soon as possible" and that the cuts "will take place regardless of the budget levels approved by Congress."
"There is no question that the Department can become more efficient, and I welcome their efforts to make reductions in spending and personnel costs, but any decision that affects the hard working men and women of our Armed Forces and our federal civilian workforce deserves an appropriate forum where those choices and decisions can be debated."
Hawaii is home to several headquarters units, including U.S. Pacific Command, U.S. Army Pacific, U.S. Pacific Fleet, and their subcomponents.