[Skip to Content]

Project Highlights

OEA continues to assist communities, both large and small, with adapting to Defense program changes. Communities benefit from decades of OEA knowledge and community best practices, allowing them to leverage state and federal resources to proactively and positively change their individual community.

Each project highlight story below showcases a challenge the community is facing and how this community, with OEA support, is working to solve it.

BRAC Transition Assistance for DoD Civilian Employees

Civilian Personnel Management Services /Civilian Assistance and Re-Employment

U.S. Department of Defense

Through Civilian Personnel Management Services (CPMS), the Department of Defense (DoD) administers the Civilian Assistance and Re-Employment (CARE) Program, which is the Department’s primary means to provide transition assistance to displaced civilian employees. The CARE Program consists of job placement programs, voluntary separation incentives, and other benefits and services. CARE also provides direct program assistance to DoD activities affected by downsizing or reorganization. This Web site provides a wealth of information and links to other Web sites that will help users learn more about the various tools available to minimize involuntary separations.

BRAC Transition Assistance

U.S. Department of Defense

The Department of Defense is committed to providing civilian employees affected by Base Realignment and Closure (BRAC) maximum assistance to continue Federal careers or pursue other endeavors. This Web site provides employees, managers, supervisors, and human resources specialists the latest information on BRAC. It also provides information on the transition assistance programs offered by the Department and other Federal Agencies. In addition, it addresses frequently asked questions concerning BRAC and the Department’s transition programs, and provides links to Web sites that will help employees learn more about BRAC, transition assistance programs, and employment opportunities.

Priority Placement Program

U.S. Department of Defense

The Priority Placement Program is the Department’s principal mechanism for retaining employees who are adversely affected by reduction in force, transfer of function, base realignment and closure, and other downsizing and restructuring actions. Through its Automated Stopper and Referral System (ASARS), the skills of displaced employees are matched with vacant positions at DoD activities in the employees’ selected geographic area of availability. Placements are mandatory when displaced employees are found well qualified for the vacant positions. If the new job involves a move to another location, the costs of moving the employee and his/her household are borne by the Government in accordance with the Joint Travel Regulations.

Re-Employment Priority List

U.S. Department of Defense

The Re-Employment Priority List (RPL) provides priority re-employment consideration for current and former DoD career and career-conditional competitive service employees who are separated by reduction in force (RIF) or have received a RIF separation notice or Certificate of Expected Separation (CES). The RPL is also available to employees who are separated (or who accept a lower grade position instead of separation) due to compensable injury or disability and who fully recover more than one year from the date compensation is payable as described in 5 CFR Parts 330 and 353.

Voluntary Separation Incentive Pay

U.S. Department of Defense

Voluntary Separation Incentive Pay (VSIP) allows activities to offer incentive payments, or “buyouts,” of up to $25,000 to encourage DoD employees to resign or retire. Buyouts are targeted to employees in specific grades, series, or locations, and are used to restructure the workforce or to help avoid RIF and minimize involuntary separations.

Voluntary Early Retirement Authority

U.S. Department of Defense

Voluntary Early Retirement Authority (VERA) is a management tool used to mitigate the effects of substantial delayering, RIF, reorganization, or transfer of function. Using the VERA, which is also referred to as “early retirement” or “early out,” DoD activities may downsize or restructure the workforce by allowing employees to retire under reduced age and service requirements. To learn more about VERA and other transition assistance tools and benefits, refer to the BRAC Transition Web site mentioned above.

Career Assessment

One-Stop Career Centers

U.S. Department of Labor

One-Stop Career Centers provide access to a wide array of services, including the initial assessment of skills and abilities, self-help information relating to career exploration and skill requirements of various occupations, consumer report information on the performance of local education and training providers, and quality labor market information. The above Web site and phone number 1-877-US2-JOBS: 1-877-899-5627 (TTY) can be used to locate a One-Stop Career Center in nearly any community in the U.S.

Career Compass

U.S. Department of Labor and U.S. Department of Education

Career Compass helps users explore career options based on interests and values.

Skills Profiler

U.S. Department of Labor

The Skills Profiler contains three tools to help users advance to a better future: the Skills Identifier, Skills Explorer, and Skills Gap Analyzer. These resources are intended to aid users in cataloguing their skills and exploring opportunities that their specific skill set may provide.

O*NET

U.S. Department of Labor

O*Net provides self-directed career exploration and assessment tools to help workers consider and plan career options, preparation, and transitions more effectively. These instruments help individuals identify their work-related interests, values, and abilities; find matches to occupations in their local areas; and focus on career exploration and planning. Users may link to the more than 900 occupations described by the O*NET database. Additionally, two testing and assessment guides (www.onetcenter.org/guides.html) are available to (1) orient individuals to the use of assessment instruments by counseling professionals, and (2) orient employers to the professional and legal standards required with the use of assessments.

Continuing Education Financial Support

Financial Aid Center

U.S. Department of Labor

This site provides users with information on funding to continue lifelong learning and pay for training to advance career goals.

GovBenefits.gov

Partnership between Federal Agencies

This Web site is the gateway to Federal and State benefits information on continuing education and training, financial support programs, and many more topics. Users can browse benefits by category and specific Government Agency and search at the Federal and State levels. Users can also search topics by population and/or interests.

Think College

U.S. Department of Education

This Web site helps middle and high school students and adults returning to school learn more about the many different types of school and financial aid options available to them. These include diploma, certificate, and degree programs.

Traineeships

U.S. Department of Health and Human Services

Through traineeship grants, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services provides funds to colleges and universities that then fund scholarships in health professions. The Web sites listed below provide information about these grants, including links to grantees that have scholarships available.

Public Health Traineeships
Grant recipients provide traineeships to students in health administration, hospital administration, and/or health policy analysis and planning. Traineeship funds may be used to support tuition, fees, stipends and allowances including travel, subsistence expenses, and dependency allowances. Students interested in applying for a health administration traineeship should contact the grant contacts listed on this Web site.
Health Professions Grants
The Health Resources Services Administration (HRSA) Health Professions grants and cooperative agreements support innovations and targeted expansions in health professions education and training. Emphasis is on increasing the diversity of the health care workforce and preparing health care providers to serve diverse populations and to practice in the nation's 3,000 medically underserved communities. Eligibility and application information is located at this Web site.

Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA)

U.S. Department of Education

All of the following loan and grant programs r equire applicants to first complete a Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA), which will calculate the individual’s expected family contribution. Schools use this information to determine actual financial aid packages. Apply for Federal student aid via www.fafsa.ed.gov or Federal Student Consolidation Loans or call the toll-free number 1-800-4-FED-AID (1-800-433-3243): 1-800-730-8913 (TTY). The following is a list of funds available through FAFSA.

CFDA Information

Occupational and Employment Information State Grants

U.S. Department of Education

This site provides links to Web sites on various Occupational and Employment Information State Grants. These grants promote an individual’s improved career and education decision making. Some of these sites also provide and support (1) professional development and other resources to teachers, administrators, and counselors intended to assist students and parents with career exploration, educational opportunities, and education financing; (2) information and planning resources that relate educational preparation to career goals and expectations; and (3) career guidance and academic counseling programs.

State Grant Agencies

U.S. Department of Education

This site lists State grant agencies and departments of education that offer more information about financial aid specific to each State.

Education Tax Benefits

U.S. Department of Treasury

The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) offers tax benefits to offset some of the costs of higher education. To qualify for this benefit program, an individual must have educational needs and be a taxpayer who is interested in receiving tax information and tax return preparation assistance. For more information, see the publication or call the IRS help line 1-800-829-1040.

NIH Health Care Education Loan Repayment Programs

U.S. Department of Health and Human Services

This site provides information about repaying educational loans for participants with substantial educational debt relative to income. To qualify for these programs, applicants must be health care professionals and U.S. nationals, citizens, dual citizens, or permanent residents who are qualified, certified, and/or licensed in laboratory or clinical research or have nursing degrees. Following is a list of programs this site offers:

CFDA Information

Child Care

GovBenefits.gov

Comprehensive Federal Web site

The GovBenefits.gov Web site is the comprehensive gateway to Government benefits information. Users can browse content by category at the Federal and State level. The site also gives users the ability to search topics by population and/or interests. Among other benefits, the site can help BRAC-impacted families find State and local child care resources.

Child Care Bureau

U.S. Department of Health and Human Services

This site provides information and resources on child care funding, grants, and providers. It includes a tool for parents to find quality child care providers in their area.

Child Tax Credits

U.S. Department of Treasury

The Internal Revenue Service’s (IRS) Web site and toll-free phone line 1-800-829-3676 provide information on three child tax credit programs and the forms needed to apply for them. Free help in preparing tax returns is available through Volunteer Income Tax Assistance (VITA) at 1-800-829-1040. Individuals can get a reduction of taxes owed (or a refund if they owe nothing) of up to $600 (depending upon income) per each dependent child under 17 if annual earnings are more than $10,350 by filing Form 8812.

Tax Credit for Parents

U.S. Department of Treasury

This site provides a list of resources and information to parents whose life events may impact their taxes.

Child Care Aware

Nonprofit Organization

Child Care Aware is an online agency that helps individuals find accurate and useful information about child care. Through Child Care Aware, families are linked to local, community-based child care resources and referral programs and receive consumer education materials. More information is available on the Web site and at the toll-free phone number 1-800-424-2246.

Health Care and Health Insurance

GovBenefits.gov

Comprehensive Federal Web site

This Web site is the gateway to Government information on health care, insurance, Medicare, Medicaid, and many more topics. Users can browse benefits by category and specific government agency and search at the Federal and State levels. Users can also search topics by population and/or interests.

Community Health Centers

U.S. Department of Health and Human Services

Community Health Centers offer access to comprehensive primary and preventative health care and focus primarily on low income and underserved individuals. Contact information for health centers in local areas and related general information can be found at the Web site above.

Health Resources and Services Administration

U.S. Department of Health and Human Services

Publications, resources, and referrals on health care services for low-income, uninsured individuals and those with special health care needs are available through the toll-free phone number 1-888-Ask HRSA (275-4772).

Medicaid

U.S. Department of Health and Human Services

Medicaid is health insurance that helps many people who can't afford medical care pay for some or all of their medical bills. Medicaid is a State-administered program, and each State sets its own guidelines regarding eligibility and services. Visit the Web site or call the toll-free number (1-877-267-2323, menu option 5) to read more about State Medicaid programs.

Medicare and the Medicare Prescription Drug Coverage Plan

U.S. Department of Health and Human Services

Medicare is the national health insurance program for people age 65 or older and some people with disabilities under age 65. Medicare also covers people with End-Stage Renal Disease (ESRD), which is permanent kidney failure requiring dialysis or a kidney transplant. Particularly useful is the Medicare and You handbook that is available at the “Find a Medicare Publication” link on this site. Additional information and State contacts are available at the Web site or by calling the toll-free number 1-800-MEDICARE (1-800-633-4227) or 1-877-486-2048 (TTY).

Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services

U.S. Department of Health and Human Services

A variety of free publications related to Medicare and Medicaid may be obtained by subscribing to the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services’ (CMS) publication mailing list. The CMS Partner Center Web site provides a number of resources on Medicare prescription drug coverage that are helpful to individuals and One-Stop Career Centers. They can be downloaded as PDF files.

State Health Insurance Providers

U.S. Department of Health and Human Services

This Web site provides contact information for State Health Insurance Providers (SHIP) counselors. SHIP is a national program that offers one-on-one counseling and assistance to Medicare recipients and their families and provides information about Medicare prescription drug coverage.

State Children’s Health Insurance Program

U.S. Department of Health and Human Services

The State Children’s Health Insurance Program (SCHIP) Web site provides information on low cost health insurance for families and children. The “Your State’s Program” link on the Insure Kids Now site provides links to each State’s benefits and eligibility criteria. Call 1-877-267-2323 or 1-866-226-1819 (TTY) or 1-877-543-7669 (Insure Kids Now) for more information.

Medicare Online Coach

U.S. Department of Labor

The Medicare Online Coach provides interactive step-by-step instructions to help workforce development professionals quickly identify common issues and questions concerning Medicare prescription drug coverage and other Medicare-related issues. This information helps workforce development professionals assist One-Stop Career Center customers who may be eligible to participate in the program. It also provides direct access to the official Medicare Web site and other Government and non-profit resources.

Consolidated Omnibus Budget Reconciliation Act

U.S. Department of Labor

Upon losing a job, almost all full-time or part-time workers (including those self-employed) and their dependents can obtain or maintain health insurance coverage for at least 18 months under the Consolidated Omnibus Budget Reconciliation Act (COBRA). COBRA insurance may be a lower cost than buying new health insurance, but the insured will still be required to pay a monthly premium. Individuals must choose COBRA coverage within 60 days after their plan coverage ends.

Health Coverage Tax Credit

U.S. Department of Treasury

Customers who have lost a job due to foreign trade and whose layoff is “certified” as trade-related by the Government may be eligible for the Health Coverage Tax Credit (HCTC). For more information about eligibility requirements and how the HCTC can be claimed, visit this Web site or call 1-866-628-HCTC (1-866-628-4282) or 1-866-626-HCTC (TTY).

Private Insurance

National Association of Insurance Commissioners

This Web site provides links to state Department of Insurance Web sites for information regarding purchasing private health insurance.