New High Year Tenure Limits in Effect for 3rd Class Petty Officers

Story Number: NNS030623-08Release Date: 6/23/2003 10:49:00 AM
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From Chief of Naval Personnel Public Affairs

WASHINGTON (NNS) -- The Navy has adjusted high year tenure (HYT) limits for 3rd class petty officers from 10 to eight years, as part of its continuing effort to improve combat readiness, shape the force and maintain a healthy advancement opportunity.

The changes will be phased in through August 2004 to give Sailors and their families the opportunity to adequately prepare for their transition to a post-Navy career.

"Our aggressive growth in the Top Six paygrades, combined with this historic retention we are still seeing, tells me we are on the right path to developing a more experienced force," said Chief of Naval Personnel Vice Adm. Gerry Hoewing. "Now we need to ensure we maintain the same healthy advancement flow for our up-and-coming career-minded Sailors. This adjustment will help us do that."

This HYT adjustment affects E-4s who will reach eight or more years of service between now and Aug. 31, 2004. Currently, there are 1,685 E-4s with greater than eight years of service (1,849 E-4s in their eighth year of service and 3,094 E-4s in their seventh year of service). All affected Sailors will have the chance to compete in both the September 2003 and March 2004 exam cycles.

"This is not a decision the Navy makes lightly," said Master Chief Petty Officer of the Navy (SS/AW) Terry D. Scott. "We understand the impact this will have on some Sailors and their families. This revision has been carefully phased in to give Sailors adequate time to prepare for their futures and to minimize the impact on their lives."

A transition period has been developed which will take into account the new HYT limits, as well as the final stages of the July 2002 E-4 HYT change from 12 years to 10 years, announced in NAVADMIN 208/02.

There are some exceptions to this revised HYT policy. However, commands must notify PERS-832 in Millington, Tenn., prior to effecting reenlistments under these exemptions, which include obligated service in conjunction with formal training, reenlisting under Selective Training and Reenlistment (STAR), and reenlisting for a Selective Reenlistment Bonus (SRB). Also, Sailors with an approved Perform-to-Serve reenlistment request who are required to obligate service for a formal school are exempt, with certain limits.

Sailors in critical paygrades, undermanned ratings or holding specific Navy enlisted classification codes (NECs) should submit a HYT waiver through their chain of command. The approval process takes into consideration a minimum of four factors: end strength, community manning (advancements opportunity and rate readiness), scope and billet priority, and quality of life issues.

Those reaching old E-4 HYT limits (12 years) prior to Sept. 30 must separate when they accrue 12 years of total active service. Sailors with greater than 10 years of service between now and Sept. 30 must separate no later than Sept. 30. E-4 Sailors completing 10 years of service between Oct. 1 and Aug. 31, 2004, must separate when they accrue 10 years of total service.

E-4s who currently have less than eight years of service and who will complete eight years of service between now and Aug. 31, 2004, must separate no later than Aug. 31, 2004.

Sailors completing eight years of service as an E-4 after Aug. 31, 2004, must separate when they accrue eight years of total active service.

"Our bottom line and our continued focus," added Hoewing, "is to ensure the combat readiness of the fleet, by shaping the force to provide the right number of Sailors with the right training at the right time, and that those Sailors have a defined career path."

"We value the service of all our brave men and women, and understand that some may be leaving us as a result of this change. As we continue to shape the size and scope of our force, we must do so with a strong commitment to providing healthy advancement opportunity and the highest possible quality of service."

For more complete details on the revised High Year Tenure Policy, refer to NAVADMIN 160/03, available soon on the Web at

For related news, visit the Chief of Naval Personnel Navy NewsStand page at

Advancement exam aboard USS Belleau Wood (LHA 3)
Official U.S. Navy file photo of Sailors taking a Navy-wide advancement examination aboard ship.
March 25, 2002
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