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Congress could reconsider military pension cut in January
Read the Full Story
The Washington Post, Lisa Rein
A cut to military retirement pay in the budget recently signed by President Barack Obama has already triggered such a backlash that Congress may vote in January to toss it out.
President signs budget deal, defense bill
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The Associated Press via Military Times, Josh Lederman
At the end of what was a long and hectic year, President Barack Obama recently signed a budget deal to help with spending cuts. Obama also signed a defense bill that will help crackdown on sexual assault in the military.
Military compensation reform is sacred no more
Read the Full Story
Defense One, Maren Leed
The recent Murray-Ryan budget deal includes one provision that is particularly nettlesome for some in the defense community. The adjustment to decrease the amount of annual increases in pay for military retirees until they turn 62 is calculated to save about $6 billion over 10 years. Many of the associations representing service members, their families and veterans have decried the change, arguing that it reneges on a pact with those who make an unparalleled commitment to national service.
Hagel: Budget 'step in the right direction,'
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U.S. Department of Defense, Claudette Roulo
The budget deal that recent passed Congress means the page is turning on a prolonged period of fiscal uncertainty, Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel said during a joint news conference with Army Gen. Martin Dempsey, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff. The deal eases sequestration's hold on the defense budget during fiscal years 2014 and 2015
Durbin aims to spread around $22 billion in Pentagon cuts
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The Hill, Erik Wasson
The senator in charge of negotiating a spending package for the Pentagon based on the Ryan-Murray budget recently said that he is looking to evenly distribute $22 billion in new spending cuts.
Patrick B. Nixon
President, American Logistics Association
Younger military veterans angered by budget cuts to their pension benefits
The Washington Post
The plan to trim pension increases for working-age military retirees is by far the most controversial provision in a bipartisan budget deal recently approved by Congress and signed by President Barack Obama. The cut is small — a one-percentage-point reduction in the annual cost-of-
living increase — but it has provoked outrage among veterans, some of whom argue that the country is reneging on a solemn pact.
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New Year, new missions: 8 challenges awaiting the Pentagon in 2014
The Pentagon was busy in 2013. A new defense secretary took the helm, the U.S. went to the brink of war with Syria, budget politics continued to frustrate military leaders, and the war in Afghanistan reached a critical moment before its finale. And 2014 promises to bring more challenges as the military continues to redefine and reshape itself for a post-war era by confronting new threats abroad and navigating the battle for resources at home in Washington. The following is a look at what's on the horizon for 2014.
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Commissary Web Posts
The following commissary items were posted to the ALA Website as of 10 a.m., Jan. 2, 2014.
2014 DP #7, WW Promotion Package, Month of the Military Child.
2014 Canning Promotion Package.
2014 Severe Weather Promotion Package.
2014 Mother’s Day Far East & Alaska Quantities.
DP #3, CONUS Quantities.
DP #4, Alaska Shipper & Promotion Quantities.
DP #5, Far East Shipper & Promotion Quantities.
NOTICES TO TRADE
14-09, Reset Schedule for CY 2014.
Adds/Changes/Deletes for Week 13-52 and Week 13-53.
DeCA November Sales Data.
Performance Measures – Bi-Weekly Fill Rates, 16 – 31 Dec 13.
New Items Activated in CAO – Zone 28 Test, 24 Dec 13.
CRV Values, 29 December 2013.
MARK YOUR CALENDAR
March 5-7, 2014: 2014 Exchange Roundtable at Marriott Norfolk Waterside, Norfolk, Va. Registration is open.
Linen/mat rental and cleaning services
Federal Business Opportunities
Linen/mat rental and cleaning services for the following locations: Aberdeen MD, Andrews MD, Annapolis MD, Bolling AFB DC, Camp Lejeune NC, Cherry Point NC, Dahlgren VA, Forest Glen MD, Fort Bragg North NC, Fort Bragg South NC, Fort Eustis VA, Fort Lee VA, Fort Leonard Wood MO, Fort Meade MD, Hanscom AFB MA, Keesler AFB MS, Langley VA, New River NC, Quantico VA, Richards-Gebaur MO, Selfridge MI and Seymour Johnson NC. The Period of Performance is April 1, 2014 through March 31, 2015, and will include four one-year option periods that may extend performance through March 31, 2019.
• One Credential – Access to Nearly 100 Military Installations
• One Program – RAPIDGate®
• One Call – (703) 836-2201
• Contact: Mike Campbell, GM, Alexandria, VA & VP Government Sales
Deli, bakery updated Performance Work Statement/Request For Information
Federal Business Opportunities
This notice is a Request for Information in accordance FAR 15.201(e) and is not a Request for Proposals. The Government will not award a contract on the basis of this notice. No funds are available to pay for preparation or responses to this RFI and no entitlement or payment of direct and/or indirect costs or charges by the Government will arise as a result of a vendor's submission of a response to this RFI or the Government's use of such information. This RFI is for planning purposes only and any information submitted by respondents to this RFI is strictly voluntary.
Armored car services
Federal Business Opportunities
Armored car services for Patrick AFB Commissary: The Period of Performance will be for a base period of March 1, 2014 through Feb. 28, 2015, and will include four 1-year option periods that may extend performance through Feb. 28, 2019. This Request for Quotation will be issued on or about Dec. 30, 2013 with a tentative closing date of Jan. 28, 2014. This acquisition is being issued as Unrestricted.
Shelf stocking, receiving/storage/holding area, custodial operations at the Fort Drum Commissary
Federal Business Opportunities
Furnish all supervision, personnel, equipment and supplies necessary to perform shelf stocking, receiving/storage/holding area and custodial operations for the Defense Commissary Agency, Fort Drum Commissary, located at Fort Drum, New York, in accordance with the Government's Performance Work Statement. The solicitation includes a base period (Sept. 1, 2014 through Aug. 31, 2015) and four 1-year option periods. This procurement is a 100 percent set-aside for Service-Disabled Veteran-Owned Small Business Concerns as determined by the Small Business Administration.
Business reviews now available on the ALA Business Resource
Nearly 7 out of 10 people read online reviews before making a purchase, and in the business-to-business world, reviews are even more important in the decision-making process. To help in your purchasing decisions, we are pleased to announce that we've now incorporated business reviews into our ALA Business Resource. Now you have the opportunity to share your experiences with a company's products or services with your fellow colleagues, or read what others have to say about a potential future vendor. Visit the ALA Business Resource to search for qualified product and service providers and write a review.
Aldi plans 650 new US stores in next 5 years
Chain Store Age
Discount grocer Aldi is launching a 5-year strategic plan to open 650 new stores across the United States. The chain launched its expansion efforts with the decision to build its regional headquarters and distribution center in Moreno Valley, Calif. To reach its aggressive five-year goal, Aldi plans to accelerate the pace of new store openings to an average of 130 per year, up from an average of 80 stores per year in recent years.
Publix ups its game with prototype store
Look out, Whole Foods. You too, Starbucks. Publix recently opened a prototype store that aims to be much more than a typical supermarket. It offers a cooking school, shopping and delivery services, and a café. Lakeland, Fla.-based Publix is unveiling the new store at an intensely competitive time for supermarkets, which are losing market share to big-box stores, drugstores and dollar stores. At the same time, they're competing with restaurants by providing an array of prepared meals.
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Hampton Roads ALA Golf Tourney: March 5, 2014
Join us for the Hampton Roads ALA Golf Tourney at Sewells Point Golf Course in Norfolk, Va., on March 5, 2014.
Click here to register!
Please sign up by Feb. 15, 2014. Field is limited to first 144 to register.
Holiday sales rise 2.3 percent, online Christmas spending up 16.5 percent
Retail sales in holiday-related categories such as apparel, electronics and jewelry rose a "decent" 2.3 percent, according to a report from MasterCard SpendingPulse. The so-so upswing from Nov. 1 to Dec. 24 improved on the same period in 2012 and was in line with expectations, researchers said. Overall sales from all categories swelled 3.5 percent.
Behind UPS's Christmas Eve snafu
The Wall Street Journal
In the earliest hours of Dec. 24, packages poured into United Parcel Service Inc.'s main air hub in Louisville, Ky. And they were piling up. Employees responsible for sorting packages — already deep into a 100-hour week — were furiously getting them ready to be sent on to their destinations at airports around the country. But dozens of other workers responsible for loading those packages into planes to be shipped out were left standing around idle, because the unexpected glut of packages from last-minute shoppers had swamped the company's air fleet.
Is Best Buy's 'showrooming' campaign working?
Best Buy's showrooming strategy is likely paying off through increased store traffic but more could be done to encourage shoppers to actually buy its products, new research based on social-media data suggests.
Top 10 luxury brand mobile campaigns of Q4
Luxury marketers aimed to recreate the in-store experience through mobile applications that mimicked tutorials and touch points that a consumer would explore while in a physical boutique. Using apps to elevate product awareness allowed brands to expand on the traditional app to bring campaigns to life while simultaneously increasing consumer interaction.
A golden opportunity
2013 may be remembered as the year that the convergence of social and retail became serious. Retailers have built up fans and followers and return on investment is becoming a possibility, as is the ability to drive sales and engage brand ambassadors.
Retailers prepare for post-Christmas discounts, gift returns
Los Angeles Times
The post-Noel mall scene this past year wasn't just marked by the annual stream of returns from dissatisfied gift recipients — there also was earlier opening hours and deeper discounts from stores hoping to clear their inventory and pad their revenue before the end of the year.
Beyond borders: Retail lessons in global expansion
National Retail Federation
In an effort to achieve sustainable growth, many retailers are looking beyond their own borders to enhance their brand and generate sales and profits with a new set of customers. The idea of international expansion is not new, but the question of how to do it most effectively is one that many companies struggle to answer.
GasBuddy predicts 2014 gas-price rollercoaster ride
U.S. gasoline prices will see huge swings and regional volatility in 2014, but GasBuddy analysis suggests that when the final figures are calculated, the average price next year will fall by about 10 cents per gallon from 2013 numbers. That would push the yearlong average below $3.40 per gallon for the first time since 2010 when motor fuel averaged $2.78 per gallon for the year.
Florida proves faster for Wawa
Wawa Inc. CEO Chris Gheysens said that Florida builds are faster than those in its traditional territory in the Northeast. "We've made progress more quickly than we thought," he told The Tampa Bay Business Journal. Since it entered the Florida market in July 2012, the Wawa, Pa.-based convenience retailer has opened 33 stores, more than half of that in the Orlando area, according to the report.
KPMG's Mark Larson: 5 New Year's resolutions for retailers
Retail's BIG Blog
NRF Senior Vice President and Shop.org Executive Director Vicki Cantrell recently wrote, "Fundamentally, our customer has changed more in the past three years than in the past 30 and the pace of change is poised to accelerate in the coming decade." It's this kind of rapid pace in retail that serves as a catalyst for innovation. But in order to build a retail organization of the future, retailers must begin thinking how to consciously build this model today.
Coast Guard Sales November 2013
NEXCOM Sales November 2013
AAFES Sales November 2013
Exchange YTD and Monthly Summary's 2012
ALA Executive Briefing (archive link)
AAFES Press release Archive 2010-2012
AAFES sales flyers (to view click below)
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Save the dates:
March 5-7, 2014: ALA Exchange Roundtable, Norfolk Waterside Marriott in Norfolk, Va.
Click here to view flier.
2014 Exchange Roundtable
March 5-7, 2014
Norfolk Waterside Marriott
Why do I need to be there for this event?
Attend the March 2014 Roundtable in Norfolk to better understand The critical significance of the Military Resale Exchanges in a new Defense budget era and how you too can help by participating in an all-new panel and town hall format.
Military resale and VCS programs meet critical criteria for Defense and Veterans programs, providing a model to emulate, not a program to decimate. In short, we are all part of the solution to present and future challenges, to increase the benefit and not reduce the benefit for our service members and their families.
Exchanges, Canteens and Commissaries provide this model because it offers the ability to produce and support a highly valued benefit with high personnel support, retention, and compensation value, all at little net cost and a significant financial ROI return to the Department of Defense and Veterans Administration.
What will you do and how can you help support the tremendous sacrifice of our military personnel and their families? Please join us in Norfolk.
The headquarters hotel for this meeting is the Marriott Norfolk Waterside located at 235 E Main Street, Norfolk, VA 23510. The Marriot is offering a discounted group rate to industry attendees: $112 single, plus taxes. To take advantage of this discount, contact the Marriott at 1-800-228-9390 or 757-627-4200, and mention the "American Logistics Association 2014 Exchange Roundtable." This discounted rate will be offered through 5pm eastern, Feb. 12, 2014, or until the ALA room block fills. Hotel rooms are reserved on a first come, first served basis and attendees are encouraged to make reservations as soon as possible for best availability.
Government/Military Partner Reservations:
The Government Per Diem room block secured by ALA is reserved for those persons employed by AAFES (The Exchange), MCCS, NEXCOM, CGES, VCS, DOD or DeCA. The Marriott will require proper ID upon checking in. To reserve a room at the GPD rate, please complete the GPD Hotel Reservation Form and return it to ALA no later than COB Feb. 10, 2014. Reservations will be made on a first come first served basis and, once the GPD block is full, ALA cannot guarantee that a reservation at the GPD rate will be available.
Cancellation requests must be submitted in writing. Cancellations received by Feb. 3, 2014, will receive a full refund. Cancellations received between Feb. 4-21 will be subject to a $250 processing fee. No refunds will be issued for cancellations received after February 21st or for "no-shows". Cancellation refunds will be processed by original method of payment. All refunds will be processed post-meeting and mailed directly to the individual on the registration form. Cancelled registrations may be transferred to individuals within the same company, upon written request. Cancelled registrations may not be transferred to another ALA meeting. Any cancellations resulting due to a family or medical emergency must be submitted in writing by within three days of the start of the meeting to receive a refund.
Click here for the Industry Registration Form (for check payments only)
Click here for the GPD Hotel Reservation Form
Go to: www.ALA-National.org, sign in and CHECK OUT the information.
Army Family Action Plan 2013: Conference aims to improve quality of life
The Army Family Action Plan is one of the Army's principle programs to ensure that standards of living in the Army keep pace with changing times. It gives soldiers, families, retirees and civilian employees the opportunity to influence their own standards of living at the local as well as at the "Big" Army level.
McGregor Range upgrades: Post improvements come from donated equipment, existing labor
El Paso Times
Fort Bliss continues to make improvements at McGregor Range to turn it into one of the top training areas in the Army. In addition to the new state-of-the-art $20 million dining facility which opened in July, a series of projects designed to improve the quality of life for service members who train there have been done "on the cheap" in recent months, said Lt. Col. Craig Cox, the commander for the McGregor Range Complex.
DynCorp will support JTF-Bravo at Soto Cano
Base operational support services for US defense forces in Honduras are to be provided by DynCorp International LLC of Falls Church, Va., under a contract worth as much as $22 million. The services at Soto Cano Air Base, in support of Joint Task Force Bravo, include engineering; laundry; supply support; morale, welfare and recreation; equipment maintenance; and food service.
LGBT military families celebrate historic event
Members of the Oregon Air National Guard, friends and family met on base for the lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender potluck June 8, 2013. This event, a first for the Air National Guard, was designed to create a bridge in the military community.
Small changes make big differences in reducing chances of alcohol-related problems
It's a new year and the idea of making a resolution or two may have crossed your mind. Many sailors take this time to reflect on the past year and look forward to the coming year. If you've thought over the last year that your drinking may be an issue, small changes can make a big difference in reducing your chances of a future alcohol-related problem occurring.
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