18 January 2010

New Division Blog

Blog posts here on have been a bit sparse over the past month as I have been ramping up our new Division blog -

So what does this mean for the Flotilla blog? My intent is to continue to post Flotilla specific news as directed by our leadership Ron Marconi, FC and Tim Young, VFC. My general communications on issues relevant to the Auxiliary will mostly appear on the Division blog, with occasional reposts here for the most important items. 

There has always been, and remains, an open invitation to other members to contribute. The blog is an excellent way to talk about your work and the programs you manage. 

Division blog announcement:
A number of you are likely aware of the new Blog we've developed for the Division to highlight news, events and activity. Now that we have two weeks of content up on the blog I'd like to formally invite the membership to visit the site.
If you like what you see you can subscribe via email (see the right hand side for email subscription information) or by RSS feed if you use a feed reader (a tool we'll cover in an upcoming post).
I hope you find the blog a useful tool to find out what is happening in other Flotillas, the Division, the District and at "National".
If you have something to contribute, a topic, or a question you'd like to see answered on the blog please send me an email. 
Thank you for your service,
Daren Lewis

05 January 2010

Reporting your hours: A new 7029 for 2010

FL76 Shipmates,
This is cross posted from our new blog. If you have not already done so I suggest visit (and subscribe to) for all the latest news from our Division.

Note: This is video content - if it does not display please visit YouTube:

Over the weekend the Auxiliary announced a replacement for our ANSC 7029 form. This form is the catchall form for hours not reported in other places and often accounts for the majority of hours reported by members. But it isn’t the form that is important rather it is the change in philosophy form represents. Personally I’ve been less than satisfied having so many of the hours I contribute to the Coast Guard lumped as administrative – it simply did not represent the complexity and value of some of the work undertaken, be it leading my Flotilla or studying to pass Navigation Rules.

This work is now broken into 5 categories.
99-A Auxiliary Leadership
99-B Recreational Boating Safety Support
99-C Marine Safety Support
99-D Training Support
99-E Auxiliary Administrative and Logistical Support

These categories give the Auxiliary a much better understanding of how we spend our time and gives the Coast Guard much better data to use when seeking funding for our activities from the Executive branch and Congress. Perhaps more importantly, this approach will give you as a member a better understanding of how you use the time you contribute to the Auxiliary and the Coast Guard. In future you’ll be able to view your member record and see those 60 hours of class participation and study time it took to become crew qualified.

You can also list any non-reimbursed mileage and out of pocket expenses related to your Auxiliary activity.

The tradeoff could have been additional complexity in the record keeping… but the team on the National Staff did the opposite and simplified the reporting so you only report your total hours in each of the 5 categories rather than reporting each activity separately as on the previous form. This is a welcome focus meeting our organizational objectives while at the same time improving the member experience.

The leaders and staff responsible have my thanks, Bravo Zulu.

I encourage you to continue to track your time, by whatever method works for you. There is a second, optional page in the 7029 which looks similar to the old form. I have a simple alternate technique which I will share at some point in the near future.

As a Nation we are in a period where resources are tight. There is no better value to the Nation than the Coast Guard Auxiliary. We can’t prove that if you don’t submit your time.  It’s easier than ever. If you regularly turn in your 7029s please start using the new form for January. If you’ve gotten behind on your reporting please consider the New Year and the new 7029 as an opportunity to get started.

New member note: Most of your activities as a new member will be reported on this new 7029 form. All your meeting attendance, preparation of membership forms, ICS training, and working with your mentor will be reported here. Please be sure to discuss time reporting with your mentor, it is critical to assure we get financial support for the Auxiliary and to assure your contributions are recognized.

Visit for two useful versions of this form.
New 7029 - with instructions
New 7029 - without instructions (recommended after you have read and understood the instructions)

03 January 2010

Operational Excellence Award

Head on over to the Flotilla73 site and read FC Brian Rollins' excellent post on the Operational Excellence Award.

Brian has challenged his members to pursue this opportunity to demonstrate operational excellence. If you participate in surface operations please consider building a team to pursue this award.