Good afternoon. I am _____________. It is a pleasure to be here today to discuss the Minnesota National Guard and the Department of Military Affairs.
This is a great opportunity to inform you of the current status of our great organization, and discuss with you a path to the future so that your Minnesota National Guard can continue to be the most cost-effective operational force that leverages the skills of our most talented and our most committed citizens for the vital missions that we serve both at home in Minnesota and abroad.
Throughout my tenure, I have witnessed the immense pride displayed by our Soldiers and Airmen, and the immense gratification that they take from lending their skills to the common defense of their communities and nation.
Minnesotans have much to be proud of in their National Guard.
For the remainder of my briefing, I call your attention to the document entitled “2013 Annual Report and 2014 Objectives,” as it provides more examples of the Minnesota National Guard’s commitment to a better Minnesota.
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Slide 2 -- Agenda:
Today I will provide an overview of the Minnesota National Guard; where we fit in for both global and domestic operations; some of the unique capabilities we bring the state; how we take care of our service members and their families; and a little about our unique role as a state agency.
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Slide 3 -- Missions:
I’d like to start with a broad overview of the military in Minnesota.
The National Guard is the same as other reserve components in that we are part of the federal reserve of the Army and Air Force.
The Navy, Marine Corps and Coast Guard also have federal reserves but do not have a National Guard.
The Minnesota National Guard has three missions: federal, state and community.
In our federal role, we have the common mission to fight and win America’s wars and to be part of a response in federal Title 10 status for homeland security and defense roles when ordered by the President of the United States.
The Army and Air National Guard are different from the other reserve components in that the National Guard also works for the Governor of the State of Minnesota and is available to respond to the call of the Governor to report for state active duty in response to domestic emergencies within the state of Minnesota.
We also have the additional mission to add value to our communities.
We do this by constructing facilities in cooperation with communities in order to serve as a gathering place for the community and to make maximum use of the facilities available to the citizens during emergencies.
The National Guard, the other reserve components, and our active duty brethren have one standard.
We go to the same basic training, we attend the same schools, we have the same fitness and educational standards and our units must achieve the same readiness standard and accomplish our missions.
When our active duty and reserve brothers and sisters take the oath of office they raise their right hand and swear to support the Constitution of the United States.
When complete, they lower their hands.
Guardsmen raise their hands a second time and swear an oath to support and defend the constitution of the state of Minnesota.
No other military force does that.
Your Minnesota National Guard is strong.
We have ~13,137 soldiers and airmen standing ready to support these three missions. This number fluctuates a bit day-to-day because of new recruits and retirements.
I assure you that even during periods of high deployments we still have adequate troops to respond to state emergencies.
Minnesotans also answer the call to service.
Even though we are the 21st state in population we are the seventh largest National Guard formation in the country.
Finally, the state agency that controls the military and provides the crucial link between the state and the National Guard is the Department of Military Affairs.
This is a modest agency that provides civilian leadership, oversight, and support to the military units.
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Slide 4 -- Priorities:
The Minnesota National Guard’s enduring goal is to provide agile and resilient citizen-soldiers
and -airmen to fulfill any federal, state or community demand. To reach this goal the Minnesota
National Guard must be successful in two key areas: providing ready military units whenever
and wherever needed and integrating the mutual needs and requirements of our many important stakeholders with our own capabilities. Providing ready units achieves our greatest obligation to the state of Minnesota and the United
ensure we are ready when called upon to support our nation overseas or at home. In order to
provide this force, we must have the right mix of personnel and force structure for current and
anticipated missions. Developing and maintaining external relationships that add value to the Minnesota National
Guard benefits our soldiers and airmen by providing the resources needed to sustain quality of
life during periods of deployment and redeployment. To accomplish these objectives, we focus on six priorities. The priorities complement each other and work together to strengthen our organization. Each of these priorities are integrated into everything we do throughout the force. We will achieve and maintain the required personnel, equipment, training and resourcing
levels that ensure our success. Additionally, we will value, maintain and enhance our international partnerships. Personnel readiness is the cornerstone of organizational readiness and maintaining a competent ready force. beady al We will maintain optimal force structure by continuously assess and evaluate the right mix of people and equipment to leverage our capabilities, while balancing the ideal composition for current and anticipated missions. The Minnesota National Guard has facilities located in 63 communities across the state.
Developing sustainable infrastructure in our facilities enable us to best meet our mission requirements, while enhancing partnerships throughout the communities in which we serve. We will mitigate threats and coordinate efforts to assist civil authorities in the event of a large-scale failure of, or an attack on, one of Minnesota’s many vital computer systems. We must defend the Minnesota National Guard’s cyber network through cyber security and response in order to assist civil authorities in the event that an essential system is interrupted or degraded.
The Beyond the Yellow Ribbon program improves the wellness and resiliency of service members, their employers and military family members. We have focused on sustaining the partnerships we have created with civilian and government agencies. By leveraging those established relationships, we can provide the best service, training and support to our service members and their families. The final priority of ours is diversity of our force. We are committed to fostering an environment that truly represents the demographics of the communities in which we serve. We must reflect those who we lead, serve and protect. Next slide, please. Slide 5 -- Economic Impact:
To this point I have been talking about what the National Guard is and how we are shaping our future through specific priorities.
Now I want to highlight the positive economic impact and value that the Guard provides the state and nation.
Some organizations try to figure the cost of the reserve versus the cost of the active force.
According to the Office of the Secretary of Defense Cost Assessment and Program Evaluation and recent Reserve Policy Board studies, a National Guard soldier is significantly more cost effective when compared to an active duty soldier. When we are mobilized for federal duty, a National Guard soldier costs approximately the same as an active duty soldier; however, when not deployed a Guardsman costs the taxpayers one-third of what it costs to house, feed, train, equip and support an active duty soldier. I don’t think these studies present the truest sense of the total cost of the force but I am sure that America cannot afford an active duty of large enough size to accomplish all the missions that the Guard and Reserve accomplish on an ongoing basis.
The Minnesota National Guard receives more than 96% of its funding from the federal government to maintain our readiness.
The state funds -- although a small percentage -- are critical to meet matching fund requirements for federally reimbursed state positions, construction and asset preservation projects for our facilities throughout the state.
In fact, state-built facilities can often be supported by federal funds as the federal interest in the facility clearly makes it a value for the federal government.
As of Dec. 31st2013, of the 13,000 Soldiers and Airmen 2,070 are full-time employees, 1,132 federal technicians and 938 Active Guard Reserve.
We are located in 63 communities throughout the state and are committed to staying in greater Minnesota, as those communities have been loyal to us for decades providing us soldiers and airmen generation after generation.
We also make a large impact in the communities in which we reside by providing stable long-term jobs and community leaders.
And with these full and part-time employees in Minnesota towns, it makes an impact on local businesses.
You can see the town-by-town break down on page 27 of the 2013 annual report.
A few projects to point out that have brought economic stimulation to communities in the form of capital enhancements are three renovations of Minnesota National Guard armories completed in 2013: Duluth Armory ($2.4 million), St. Paul Armory ($9.87 million)
and Jackson Armory ($2.1 million).
And this success does not happen by accident, by the way. I don’t have to tell anyone in this room how difficult it is to design, prepare and approve a budget.
Our team prides themselves on their ability to execute the funding that we are allotted on time and on budget. To learn more about our military construction projects turn to page 30 of the 2013 Annual Report.
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Slide 6 -- 2013 HOT TOPICS:
There were a number of hot topics in 2013 for the Minnesota National Guard. The Department of Defense announced several policy changes in 2013 regarding women who serve in the military, including rescinding the Ground Combat Exclusion Rule which prevented women from being assigned to combat units below the brigade level. The Minnesota National Guard’s 1st Armored Brigade Combat Team volunteered to be one of the test brigades to incorporate women into positions within units at the headquarters level of combat arms battalions that were previously unavailable to them. The Minnesota Department of Health released its most recent suicide data in August, highlighting an increase in adult suicides. The statewide suicide statistics follow a national trend and the Minnesota National Guard is not exempt from this societal issue. Reported suicides in the Minnesota Army National Guard are the highest in the nation. As a result, we have developed robust suicide prevention efforts. Our soldiers and airmen are our most valuable resource and the well-being of our members is the top concern of Minnesota National Guard Leaders. Members of the Minnesota National Guard are not immune to sexual harassment or assault. Sexual assault is a crime and a problem that violates everything we in the Minnesota Army and Air National Guard stand for. Through rigorous bystander intervention training, victim advocates in every unit and soldier and airman stand-downs, the Minnesota National Guard is working to bolster a supportive culture throughout our organization. We demand that our soldiers and airmen live up to the core values of military service. We hold each soldier and airman accountable for their actions and insist that our members intervene when they encounter a situation that could lead to sexual violence. In 2013, the Minnesota National Guard was affected by the $46 billion budget cuts to the Department of Defense due to sequestration. Furloughs impacted every branch and component of the Department of Defense. More than 1,100 uniformed Minnesota National Guard technicians faced six days of administrative furlough between July 15 and August 19. These same technicians, along with some other members of our force, were furloughed again October 1, when Congress failed to avert a government shutdown. Continued budget cuts and furloughs could put Minnesota National Guard readiness at risk. Each day that equipment and facilities go without maintenance and soldiers and airmen go untrained has a negative impact on the Minnesota National Guard’s ability to fully support the broad range of federal and state missions. Next slide, please.
Slide 7 -- Air National Guard:
Now let me share some details about the units in the Minnesota National Guard, and I’ll start with our two distinguished Air Guard units.
The Air National Guard is a ‘base’ oriented force with wings located at both the Minneapolis-St Paul Airport and a base at the Duluth Airport.
Both of the wings have a reputation for consistently having a strong personnel end-strength; with all available positions being filled at a rate of 101%.
The 133rd Airlift Wing is a Minnesota Air National Guard flying wing headquartered at the Minneapolis/St. Paul International Airport. Utilizing the C-130 Hercules, the 133rd provides the U.S. Air Force with tactical airlift capability to transport troops, cargo and medical patients across the globe in addition to providing the citizens of Minnesota with domestic operations and disaster response support. The 133rd is known as the first federally recognized National Guard flying unit in the country. In 2013, the 133rd was presented with its ninth Air Force Outstanding Unit Award, a coveted designation earned by only the top 10 percent of all Air Force units annually. The 148th Fighter Wing, headquartered in Duluth, flies the Block 50 F-16CM Fighting Falcon, the newest F-16 in the U.S. Air Force fleet. Also known as the Bulldogs, the 148th Fighter Wing is one of only two Air National Guard wings tasked to provide Suppression of Enemy Air Defense for our nation. The 148th continues to actively support overseas Air Expeditionary Force and Expeditionary Combat Support taskings for operations worldwide. In 2013, the 148th Fighter Wing was awarded its eighth Air Force “Outstanding Unit Award” and was awarded the National Guard Association of the United States “Distinguished Flying Unit Plaque,” presented to the highest-rated Air National Guard flying unit for the year. Next slide, please.
Slide 8 -- Army National Guard:
The Minnesota Army National Guard also has a strong tradition of personnel strength which promotes the readiness of its units.
The Army Guard is at 116% percent strength, which enables us to field fully manned units to respond to federal missions while preserving other units to answer the call of the Governor.
Located in St. Paul, the Minnesota National Guard’s Joint Force Headquarters is a joint Army and Air National Guard unit that oversees operations for all state National Guard forces. Joint Force Headquarters coordinates military support at the request of the governor in the event of a disaster and is capable of providing a joint command staff for federal military forces operating within the state of Minnesota. The organization of the Minnesota Army Guard closely follows the structure of the US Army. We have a Major General two-star headquarters in perhaps our most recognizable unit -- the “Red Bulls” of the 34th Infantry Division. The Rosemount-based 34th Red Bull Infantry Division oversees the training and operations of ten National Guard brigades in six different states - a total of 25,000 soldiers in all. In Minnesota, the division includes the 1st Armored Brigade Combat Team, 34th Combat Aviation Brigade, 84th Troop Command and the 347th Regional Support Group. The 34th Infantry Division is capable of deploying its Main Command Post, Tactical Command Post and Division Headquarters and Headquarters Battalion to provide command and control for Army brigades. I will now talk about the four Army brigades in Minnesota. The Bloomington-based 1st Armored Brigade Combat Team of the 34th Infantry Division is capable of providing the U.S. Army with a trained and ready combat force, in addition to supporting local civil authorities throughout Minnesota in a disaster. The brigade is one of seven Army National Guard Armored Brigade Combat Teams. In 2013, soldiers began new equipment fielding of the M2A2 and M3A2 ODS SA (Operation Desert Storm-Situational Awareness) Bradley Fighting Vehicle as well as the M3A3 Bradley Cavalry Fighting Vehicles, M1117 Armored Security Vehicles and Assault Breacher Vehicles. The St. Paul-based 34th Combat Aviation Brigade supports the 34th Infantry Division and the state of Minnesota by providing aviation capabilities – both UH-60 Black Hawk and CH-47 Chinook helicopters – for federal and state missions. The brigade is preparing to mobilize its headquarters and 2nd Battalion, 147th Assault Helicopter Battalion to Kuwait in 2014. In addition to preparing for deployment, the brigade will also continue equipment enhancements and soldier readiness training. The 34th Combat Aviation Brigade continues preparation to assist civil authorities during state missions that include fire suppression, flood response and search and rescue. The brigade will host the Minnesota National Guard’s 2014 observance of African American History month. The mission of the Roseville-based 347th Regional Support Group is to deploy and provide contingency and expeditionary base operations, with responsibilities for managing facilities, providing administrative and logistical support for troop services and ensuring the security of personnel and facilities on a base camp. The unit provides command and control of assigned units during homeland security, homeland defense and other civil support missions within the U.S. including managing the reception, staging, onward movement and integration of supporting forces. The final brigade, the Minneapolis-based 84th Troop Command is a unique and diverse organization that maintains a large footprint across Minnesota, with units spanning from Appleton to Stillwater. The 84th Troop Command includes a headquarters element; 1st Battalion, 151st Field Artillery; 682nd Engineer Battalion; 34th and 257th Military Police Companies and the 55th Civil Support Team. Because of its unique organization, the 84th Troop Command often finds its units supporting domestic response missions. The very specific Chemical, Biological, Radiological and Nuclear, or CBRN, response capabilities within the 55th Civil Support Team and the CBRN Enhanced Response Force Package, or CERFP, are an asset to the state. Another unit that is unique to Minnesota is the Camp Ripley-based 175th Regiment Regional Training Institute which provides combat arms, military occupational specialty and leadership training to the Army National Guard, U.S. Army Reserve and the U.S. Army to prepare soldiers and units for deployment at maximum combat readiness levels. The Minnesota National Guard’s 175th Regiment Regional Training Institute received the “Institution of Excellence” award from the Army’s Training and Doctrine Command for achieving a score of 97.5 percent in their accreditation process. Next slide, please. Slide 9 -- Camp Ripley:
I want to highlight our state-owned 53,000 acre training center, Camp Ripley, located about five miles north of Little Falls in Morrison County. Camp Ripley Training Center, located near Little Falls, Minn., strives to provide the best support, facilities and resources enabling customers to train in a realistic environment while maintaining positive community relations. Integral to this mission is maintaining partnerships with local, state, military and civilian agencies. Camp Ripley regularly hosts military and civilian agencies from across the state and from other countries that conduct training at the 53,000-acre facility. Camp Ripley serves as a training center for all military services. A $3.9 million Unmanned Aerial Surveillance Facility was unveiled in 2013. In April, the Marine Corps Recruiting Station based in the Twin Cities held their annual “mini boot camp” at Camp Ripley to provide Marine recruits an idea of what Marine Corps initial training is like. Civilian agencies also train at Camp Ripley. In addition to partnerships with the Minnesota Departments of Transportation, Public Safety, Corrections, Education, Health and Natural Resources, many local law enforcement agencies also train at Camp Ripley. New partnerships are added each year. This year, the fire marshal for the state of Iowa visited Camp Ripley to gain a better understanding of the services offered. Camp Ripley is well known for its excellent hunting and fishing. Several outdoor sporting events this past year honored service members and wounded veterans, including the “Trolling for the Troops” fishing event in June and the “Deployed Soldiers’ Turkey Hunt” in May. Members of the community can also take advantage of the deer hunting opportunities at Camp Ripley. Ladies and gentlemen, I believe that the utility of Camp Ripley to our taxpayers is enormous. Please consider this my personal invitation for you to travel to Camp Ripley so you can see for yourself how this incredible site can continue to benefit Minnesota. Next slide, please. Slide 10 -- Statewide Presence:
The Minnesota National Guard operates in 63 communities throughout our state. It is crucial that we optimize the physical capabilities at each location. Our locations enable us to best meet our mission requirements, while enhancing partnerships throughout the communities in which we serve. This slide illustrates the geographic locations of our armories, air bases and training sites throughout the state. Next slide, please. Slide 11 -- Global War on Terror: Since 9/11, a great deal has changed for the Minnesota National Guard. We used to be called “weekend warriors,” but a decade of exceptional performance by the units that I have just showcased changed that. We transformed from a strategic reserve to an operational force. Next slide, please. Slide 12 -- Operations: More than 26,000 citizen-soldiers and airmen have deployed on behalf of our nation to 33 countries around the world – places like Iraq, Afghanistan, Bosnia, Kosovo; and homeland security missions that stretched from Europe to securing the U.S. southwest border. Next slide, please. Slide 13 -- Future Operations: And while not as large, there will continue to be a demand for Minnesota National Guard forces. More than 300 Soldiers and Airmen are deployed today, and more than 200 are on alert for deployment or are preparing for a deployment in the next year. Next slide, please. Slide 14 -- State Active Duty Summary:
And all the while that we’ve had Citizen-Soldiers and Airmen serving in harm’s way on our nation’s behalf, we’ve always had enough people and equipment – more than enough people and equipment – to answer the call for unexpected state emergencies. As you can see, since 2005 more than 22,000 man-days – that is one person on active duty for the state, per day – were ordered by the Governor to assist local authorities for a variety of disasters – fires, floods, blizzards, tornadoes and missing person searches. I should point out that the relationships that we have built – and continue to build – in the training environment at Camp Ripley greatly assists when these missions occur with little or no notice. This is the value we add for Minnesota – having regional mobile, trained, rapidly-deployable forces that can quickly assist when civilian assets are overwhelmed, then quickly step away when operational capability is regained by the civilian incident commander. We will continue to maintain a force that is available and effective when needed anywhere in our state. Next slide, please. Slide 15 -- Essential Core Capabilities: In addition to our ability to rapidly respond to a natural disaster, post-9/11 has caused the Minnesota National Guard to become better equipped and organized to respond for larger-scale disasters or an attack on the homeland. The National Guard Bureau is committed to the fundamental principle that the States must possess 10 core capabilities for homeland readiness. Governors count on National Guard assets to be available to them within the first hours of a domestic incident. To meet the governors’ requirements, the Chief of the National Guard Bureau established 10 essential capabilities for National Guard Domestic Operations, which are displayed on this slide. The essential 10 capabilities also encompass cyber response. We have some specialized units in the Minnesota specifically designed for domestic operations. Next slide, please.
Slide 16 -- Domestic Operations:
First, the 55th Civil Support Team. The 55th is a 22-member group of full-time soldiers and airmen on call 24 hours a day in the event that a law enforcement agency needs specialized help in detecting, identifying, analyzing or assisting when a chemical, biological, radiological or nuclear hazard may be present. We also have a joint CERF-P, which stands for Chemical, Biological, Radiological, Nuclear, Explosive Enhanced Response Force Package. We are one of only 17 states with this capability. This group of 100 soldiers and airmen are trained to assemble and assist local law enforcement during an event that might require extraction, decontamination or other assistance in a contaminated environment. The CERF-P has the capability to construct a modular mobile hospital that would provide medical professionals, and a place to treat patients in the event of the loss of medical facilities, or a requirement to augment civilian medical professionals. We also have a cell of counterdrug soldiers and airmen, who are full time and assist law enforcement agencies with demand reduction, analysis, and eradication. Next slide, please. Slide 17 -- Domestic Operations Equipment:
And with this renewed focus on leveraging our military resources to assist local authorities, we’ve taken a close look at what equipment – provided by the federal government for military use – can be helpful to the state of Minnesota in a disaster or homeland security scenario.
This slide depicts the ground equipment available: Humvees, high-axle trucks, water pumps, generators and reverse-osmosis water purification systems.
You can also see that we place an emphasis on having track vehicles, such as the small unit sustainment vehicle, on hand to assist with traversing terrain covered by snow.
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Slide 18 -- Aviation Capability:
This slide depicts the aerial capability in the Minnesota National Guard.
Our UH-60 Blackhawk and CH-47 Chinook helicopters have proven to be invaluable in fire suppression, and each year we train our crews to expertly operate the water buckets and work in an interagency fire fighting environment.
On the Air Guard side, I am sorry to inform you that we cannot dispatch our F-16s to drop ordnance on log or ice dams, but our C-130s have transported critical supplies while in a state active duty status.
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Slide 19 -- Domestic Operations Communication:
One of the most valuable assets the Minnesota National Guard can bring to a domestic emergency is the ability to connect the communication platforms of the wide variety of agencies that respond.
An important asset is the Joint Communication Platform.
The JCP is a mobile set of communications equipment that provides voice, video, and data connectivity to the public and Minnesota National Guard Network.
It also provides interoperability with non-military radios.
This equipment set is designed to provide communication capabilities for enhanced command and control and shared situational awareness among first responders, and with state and federal command authorities and centers.
We also have Remote Communications Platforms.
RCP’s are mobile communications towers mounted on a 4X4 truck chassis, equipped with both military and civilian radio systems to extend communications distances.
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Slide 20 -- Yellow Ribbon Program:
But with all the best organized units, the best trained leaders and the best equipment, we still need to take care of our most important asset – our soldiers, airmen and their families.
The cornerstone of this process is the homegrown “Beyond the Yellow Ribbon” program.
We’ve expanded greatly from the initial years, where the focus was on gathering returning service members at 30-, 60- and 90-days to provide specialized training. We still do that, but our focus is now on developing “Yellow Ribbon Networks.” Next slide, please. Slide 21 -- Yellow Ribbon Networks:
We’ve seen a tremendous outpouring of support from cities, towns, companies, colleges and counties as they form “Yellow Ribbon Networks” statewide. As of December 2013, 202 cities, 23 counties and 34 companies have been proclaimed “Yellow Ribbon Networks,” bringing the total number of recognized entities to 259. These networks connect and coordinate agencies, organizations, resources and employers for the purpose of proactively supporting Servicemembers and military families. These community networks are especially vital now, as the drawdown of federal dollars to support our Citizen-soldiers and –airmen and their families will most certainly decline, and we will rely on the networks in your respective districts to reach out to our military after wartime-level funding stops. Next slide, please. Slide 22 -- Education:
As you know, one of the legacies of the “Greatest Generation” was the introduction of meaningful education benefits.
The investment in the G.I. Bill led to growth in our economy, arts and society, and I believe that education benefits for today’s “Next Greatest Generation” is no different for Minnesota.
In the Minnesota National Guard, we prudently shepherd our resources. Since we have had so many service members deploy in federal service, we have been able to coordinate federal funding of some education benefits, saving the Minnesota State Tuition Reimbursement as a last funding option. I also want to highlight STARBASE, a DoD-funded Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics program located at the 133rd Airlift Wing. Each year, hundreds of students from under-served Twin Cities schools have the opportunity to be inspired by science. They learn problem solving and experience teamwork by designing missions to Mars, building model rockets and interacting with volunteer military members who serve as mentors. I believe that STARBASE will make Minnesota more competitive in the future. Next slide, please. Slide 23 -- International Partnerships:
I would be remiss if I did not highlight our international partnerships.
This year, we celebrated the 41st anniversary of the Minnesota National Guard and Norwegian Home Guard Reciprocal troop exchange.
This is the longest-running military exchange in the world, a fact not lost on Governor Dayton, who traveled to Oslo last year to celebrate with Norwegian military leadership.
We also have a special relationship with Croatia.
Eighteen years ago, Croatia was designated as the Minnesota National Guard’s “State Partnership Program” nation.
We have been training with them and have gained such proficiency that we have deployed six rotations of joint forces to Afghanistan to train the Afghan National Army.
Croatia is now a full NATO member and joined the European Union last summer.
The Minnesota National Guard’s international relationships add to our rich traditions in the state.
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Slide 24 -- DMA:
I mentioned earlier the State Agency that controls and supports the military operations of the National Guard, the Department of Military Affairs.
The department is comprised of and includes the military forces of the state, including the National Guard, the office of the Adjutant General, all military reservations, installations, armories, and air bases owned or controlled by the state for military purposes.
DMA is the agency that the legislature supports with an appropriation to make the whole system work.
This slide depicts the various branches of the Department, with the military components displayed either as green for Army or blue for air, the civilian component in gray and joint functions in purple.
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Slide 25 -- DMA Staffing:
The DMA employs 305 state employees, 31who are NOT federally reimbursed.
They provide the interface between state and federal programs, and function through a Cooperative Agreement between TAG and the Chief of the National Guard Bureau to provide services like fire protection, security, and other support to the National Guard.
This slide depicts the scale of investment in the department between the federal and state government, and between the full time staff and the traditional National Guard force.
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Slide 26 -- Funding Levels:
To give you another way of looking at the relative funding levels between federal and state contributions last year, this slide shows the levels of funding provided directly by the federal government, the amount that flows through the master cooperative agreement, and the amount of state funding provided annually to the agency for our operations.
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Slide 27 -- State Operating Budget:
This slide depicts the annual amounts for our three state appropriations in the Governor’s budget request.
The total amount is 19.839 million dollars per year.
About one third of that amount is used for the maintenance and upkeep of our training centers and other facilities.
Even though we are able to use federal matching funds to bolster the effect of this funding, this amount is inadequate to meet our needs.
However, it is typically supplemented with bonding bill funds that allow us to keep our backlog of maintenance at an acceptable level.
Over half of our state budget is appropriated to our enlistment incentives program, and most of this funding is used to reimburse tuition paid by our soldiers and airmen attending colleges.
This is an important program that helps us maintain the quality of our force as well as helps our members improve their educational level, and therefore their relative value to our economy.
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Slide 28 -- Conclusion:
In conclusion, the Minnesota National Guard is a cost-effective operational force that leverages the skills of our most talented and our most committed citizens for the vital missions that we serve both at home in Minnesota and abroad.
There are still many untapped methods by which the Guard can expand partnerships with state agencies to continue to increase efficiencies.