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Settling myths regarding BRAC

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An estimated 1,400 government jobs coming to post

By The Staff

If there are still any BRAC doubters out there, you should have seen the turn out for the Fort Knox Job Information Sessions at the Urban League Economic Empowerment Tour and Career Fair in Louisville earlier this month. We had hundreds of folks show up to learn more about the employment opportunities coming to the installation. Believe me, most were plenty interested in finding out how to qualify and apply for these future positions. 

While we’ve participated in many information and training events with our Army partners and post information to our Web site, we still constantly receive inquiries and know that there are many BRAC-related “myths” in the community concerning what kinds of jobs these will be, who will be qualified, how much they pay and more.

The two things we know for sure are that many people will not be making the move to Knox from St. Louis, Fort Monroe, Alexandria and Indianapolis; and, that because of that there probably will be around 1,400 job openings for government jobs, and a yet undetermined, amount for contractors.

Several of those positions may be advertised by the end of the year, as the Human Resources Command adds employees to its advance party operations at their leased facility near Fort Knox.   

To help clear up these other myths, we’ve again turned to our subject matter experts at the Fort Knox Civilian Personnel Advisory Center. I posed the following myths to Sheree Welch, CPAC director, and she was kind enough to provide her expert advice. 

BR: Myth #1 — All of these jobs will be in the Human Resources field. 

SW: While we estimate that many of the vacant positions will be either human resource specialists or assistants, there will still be many opportunities for information technology experts, administrative workers and a wide variety of other disciplines.

BR: Myth #2 — Specific college degrees or certifications will be required for these jobs. 

SW: Some positions have a specific education requirement while others allow education to substitute for experience to meet the minimum qualifications requirements. To review the qualifications requirements, applicants should visit www.opm.gov/qualifications.

BR: Myth #3 — Incoming jobs will pay extremely high or extremely low salaries. 

SW: Salaries run the gamut and we anticipate seeing job openings at all pay grades. Salaries for GS-12 and higher pay grades range from $67,613 to $145,290.  Salaries for mid-level jobs, GS-8 to GS-11 range from $42,214 to $73,329. The GS-3 to GS-7 jobs pay ranges from $24,499 to $49,553.  Most new hires will begin as a Step 1 (lowest salary) in whatever pay grade at which they are hired. To see the full government pay scale for our region, you can visit www.oneknox.com/jobs and the 2009 salary table is available as a hyperlink or pdf download in the section titled “Federal Hiring Symposiums.”

BR: Sheree, thanks so much. We have a few more myths we’d like to address with you, but we’ll save it for part 2 of this column.

We will work to continually provide information on Fort Knox’s transformation and the opportunities it offers this region. We encourage you to frequently check www.oneknox.com for updates.

Guest columnist Brad Richardson is executive director of One Knox.