Air Force

Drone pilot? Air Force offering up to $175G retention bonus

A U.S. airman guides an MQ-9 Reaper drone as it taxis to the runway at Kandahar Airfield, Afghanistan, in March.

A U.S. airman guides an MQ-9 Reaper drone as it taxis to the runway at Kandahar Airfield, Afghanistan, in March.  (REUTERS/Josh Smith/File)

The U.S. Air Force announced Friday that it's offering experienced drone pilots a bonus worth up to $175,000 illustrating the military’s focus on the evolution of unmanned warfare.

The Air Force Times reported that the payout would be $35,000 per year for qualified pilots who agree to a five year commitment.

The report of the military’s offer came just before the Pentagon controversially sought to recover some hefty reenlistment bonuses. Military officials revealed nearly 10,000 California Army National Guard soldiers were paid too much to go fight in Iraq and Afghanistan, according to an audit first reported by The Los Angeles Times.

The paper reported widespread overpayments by California Guard officials under pressure to meet enlistment targets at the height of the wars 10 years ago.

To be eligible for the Air Force bonus, the drone pilot should have a background with Remote Piloted Aircraft, or RPA. The beefed-up bonus was mandated as part of President Obama’s 2016 National Defense Authorization Act.

The Air Force reported that interested applicants could refer to the myPers website.

Click for more from the Air Force Times.