Military and Family Support Centers are part of the network of agencies, programs, services and partnerships which supports the overall well-being of military families. Military and Family Support Centers provide information, education and support programs to help balance the demands of military life. The Military and Family Support Center should be one of your first stops once you arrive at a new installation to connect with key programs, services and support systems. Programs and services may vary across services and installations.
- Deployment support provides information, education and support to assist you and your family during all phases of the deployment cycle.
- Relocation assistance provides an array of services during the relocation process to meet your moving needs.
- Personal financial management provides information, education and one-on-one financial counseling to assist you and your family in maintaining your financial readiness.
- Employment assistance offers comprehensive information, tools and resources to support career exploration, training and licensing, and employment readiness.
- Family life education provides information and education to assist you and your family in developing resilience skills that can help as you navigate your mobile military lives.
- Information and referral can assist you in identifying and clarifying needs to determine appropriate forms of assistance and in locating services and programs available both on and off your installation.
- The Transition Assistance Program prepares separating, retiring and demobilizing service members (and their families) with the information, skills and knowledge necessary for a successful transition from military to civilian life. The first step in your transition process is to complete the congressionally mandated pre-separation counseling session, which furnishes detailed information on the various benefits and services available.
Military and Family Support Centers may provide other programs, such as the Exceptional Family Member Program, Family Advocacy Program and the New Parent Support Program. These services vary by location.
Installation Specific Information
Our Fleet and Family Support Center provides other services, such as individual, couples, family, and child counseling, Family Advocacy, New Parent Support, Sexual Assault Prevention and Response (SAPR), volunteer, and exceptional family member support. We also have broadband internet connected computers, printers, scanners, fax machine, copier, and notary services. All available free of charge.
Family Deployment Support
Prior to deployment contact the Fleet and Family Support Center (FFSC). The FFSC can provide workshops and class that address the many issues before, during and after deployment for single and married couples and their children.
Some of the issues are: Deployment Readiness, Financial Readiness, Managing Separation, Homecoming, Return and reunion, Consumer Awareness, and Car Buying.
Discuss deployment issues with your Personal Property Shipping Office when you are reporting to a deployed command as you may need or want to put household goods into storage before you deploy.
Current Support Groups
Family Readiness Group (FRG) - The New York Capital District FRG (Saratoga Springs, Albany) provides resources and support to all Navy personnel and their families, as well as other military families in the area. Members are comprised of spouses from NPTU, NSA and other local commands. Contact the FRG through Facebook at New York Capital District FRG or through the Fleet and Family Support Center at 518-886-0200 Ext 146.
The Stratton Air Guard Base (Schenectady, NY) 109th Airlift Wing Family Support Group. The Air Guard Family Readiness Group provides resources and supports all 109th service members and their families and provides a networking opportunity. They can be contacted at 518-344-2357, or DSN 312-344-2357.
Upstate New York is an expensive place to live. However, settling in costs may not be as high as some other areas. Most utilities do not charge for deposits, but hook-up charges are common. Off-base housing varies with the town or city you desire to live in. Contact your sponsor for assistance.
Naval Support Activity's Saratoga Springs, Fleet and Family Support Center (FFSC) offers a variety of financial services/seminars on Money Management Skills, Budgeting Skills, Mutual Funds Basics and Advanced, Checkbook Management, Car/Home Buying Seminars and Smooth Move workshops. In addition, individual financial counseling is provided by appointment. Contact the FFSC at 518-886-0200 x142, or contact your Command Financial Specialist.
Temporary Lodging Expense
Temporary Lodging Expense (TLE) - For use in the Continental United States (CONUS) to partially reimburse temporary living expenses, maximum of ten days (for days not covered by per diem), keep receipts and discuss maximum daily allowance under TLE with your Travel Clerk. Currently the maximum TLE amount for a hotel in this area is approximately $110.00 per day. Make sure you save all of your travel receipts.
Current TLE rates and all of your travel entitlements, including your new BAH rates can be found on the following website.
Cost of Living
The average cost of housing rentals in the Saratoga area is $1300.00. The average cost of housing purchases in the Saratoga area is $218,000.00.
All temporary housing is off base. The local hotel rates vary from $90.00 - $250.00 per night. In July and August (Horse Racing season), hotel rates range from $300.00 to $400.00 per night.
The average monthly utility (electric/natural gas) bill for housing is $250.00. Many homes use fuel oil. The cost of fuel oil is approximately $400.00 per month in the winter months and is separate from your electric bill.
Requirements for motor vehicle liability insurance coverage in NYS A motor vehicle registered in NYS must have liability insurance. Insurance coverage must be a minimum of $25,000/50,000 for injury, $50,000/100,000 for death, and $10,000 for property damage caused by any one accident. New York State is a no-fault state.
The liability coverage must remain in effect while the registration is valid, even if the vehicle is not used (except motorcycles).
- The liability coverage must be NYS insurance coverage, issued by a company authorized to do business in NYS and licensed by the NYS Insurance Department. Out-of-state insurance coverage of any type is NEVER acceptable or valid. If your vehicle is registered in NYS, the liability insurance coverage must be NYS insurance coverage.
- Liability coverage must be issued in the name of the registrant and must remain in the name of the registrant at all times. A change on the insurance to a name different from the registrant causes a lapse in insurance coverage, and the driver license of the registrant and the registration is suspended.
- You must show a NYS Insurance Identification Card when you apply for a vehicle registration. Your insurance company, agent or broker must issue two original NYS Insurance Identification Cards to you. The Insurance Identification Cards must have the same name as the registration application and must have a bar code.
- The insurance company must also file an electronic notice of insurance coverage with the DMV to verify the liability coverage. (The agent or broker cannot file this notice.) Your Insurance Identification Card and the electronic notice of insurance coverage together verify your insurance coverage. An Insurance Identification Card only does not prove liability coverage.
- An Insurance Identification Card must be presented within 45 days of the effective date of the insurance coverage. Bring the cards to the DMV office when you apply for the registration. The DMV office will keep one card. Keep the other card with the vehicle. If a police officer requests your proof of insurance, you must show your Insurance Identification Card.
- The DMV does not accept any out-of-state insurance documents.
All vehicles registered in NYS must have NYS liability coverage. There are no exceptions. If you replace your NYS insurance coverage with out-of-state insurance, a lapse in valid insurance coverage occurs. The NYSDMV suspends your registration, and the NYSDMV can suspend your driver license. The NYSDMV must take actions against your NYS registration and driver license even if you move outside of NYS. This action can affect your ability to hold a valid driver license in your new state. If you register your vehicle in another state, immediately surrender your NYS vehicle plates to the NYSDMV by mail.The insurance company must notify the DMV if you cancel your liability insurance. Your insurance company is also required to notify DMV if your insurance coverage is reinstated or you get new insurance coverage. If the insurance company does not file an electronic notice about your new or reinstated liability insurance, the DMV sends you a letter about your insurance. Read the insert mailed with the letter, and follow the instructions in the letter. You are given 10 days from the date of the DMV letter to prove that you have insurance coverage, prove that you sold the vehicle, or show other proof that insurance coverage was not required in NYS. If you do have insurance coverage, also ask your insurance company (do not ask your agent or broker) to file an electronic notice of insurance coverage with the DMV. If you do not have liability insurance, you must surrender your vehicle plates to the NYSDMV immediately. Make sure you get a receipt. You must respond to the letter you receive from the DMV or surrender your license plates to prevent the suspension of your registration and driver license. If your liability insurance is about to lapse and you do not plan to replace it with other insurance, surrender your vehicle plates to the DMV before your insurance coverage lapses. Any amount of time that your vehicle is registered but not insured can cause a lapse in your insurance coverage and the suspension or revocation of your registration. A lapse in insurance coverage can occur:
- between the date your insurance is canceled and the effective date of your new insurance;
- between the date your insurance is canceled and the date you surrender your license plates or the date your registration expires;
- between the date your insurance is canceled and the effective date of "other proof" (for example, a vehicle registered in another state, or a vehicle repossessed or impounded);
- between the date you register your vehicle and the effective date of your new insurance coverage;
- between the date the insurance is canceled and the date the same insurance company reinstates your insurance coverage.
If the lapse in the insurance coverage exceeds 90 days, your driver license is also suspended.
If you are enroute to your next duty station and have a financial emergency, any Red Cross can help you. If you are near a Military base it is possible to receive help from the Air Force Aid Society and/or the Army Emergency Assistance office. If you need financial assistance in the local area, contact NMCRS at 518-886-0200- x146.
Advance Pay and Travel Allowances
Drawing of advance pay may not be the best option when you transfer. Advance pay will automatically be withdrawn from your pay monthly, reducing your income.
Ensure you talk to your travel clerk about advance travel allowances. They do not have to be repaid.
Family Advocacy Program
The Family Advocacy Program is the congressionally designated program responsible for the prevention of, and response to, child abuse and neglect and domestic abuse/intimate partner violence in military families. The Family Advocacy Program works in collaboration with military and civilian medical providers, social service agencies, law enforcement, legal personnel, chaplains, and child and youth programs to provide a coordinated community response. The goal of the Family Advocacy Program is to promote the prevention, early identification, reporting and treatment of child and spouse abuse.
Program services vary by installation and generally include the following:
- Public awareness campaigns, education and support for couples and parents
- Parenting support at every age and stage, including New Parent Support Program home visits for expectant parents, new parents and families with young children
- Safety planning, advocacy and support for domestic abuse victims
- Clinical treatment for offenders and all affected family members, as appropriate
To check out a loan closet kit you need a military ID and a copy of your orders. Loan closets can be borrowed for 30 day increments at no charge. Contact the Fleet and Family Support Center at 518-886-0200,
New Parent Support Program
The New Parent Support Program offers information, support and guidance to military families who are expecting a child or have a child 3 years old or younger. Services are provided free of charge to eligible families. Program staff provides support in the areas of pregnancy, labor and delivery, infant and toddler care and safety, growth and development, parenting and family relationships through home visits, classes, support groups and referrals to community services. New Parent Support Program staff understands the impact that military life can have on expectant and new families and assists families in coping with these special situations. Program services are tailored to each family's unique circumstances and can help with preparing for parenthood, parenting skills, understanding growth and development, couple communication and stress management.
If you are approaching a permanent change of station, or PCS, you may have questions about your upcoming move. As part of the Military and Family Support Center, the relocation assistance program provides services and resources to help make this transition as smooth as possible. NPTU Staff Family Newcomer Orientation/Indoctrination sessions are scheduled monthly at the Fleet and Family Support Center (FFSC) at 4:00 pm with a date announced upon arrival. Below is a listing of resources.
- PCS planning— Most relocation assistance programs offer counseling/consultations to assist in the moving process. Those making their first military move, those making their first overseas move or those with challenging or complex situations should contact their installation relocation assistance office as soon as possible for information and assistance.
- Loan Closet — Loan Closet offers basic household goods while your personal property is in transit. Typical items include pots and pans, dishes, silverware, irons, ironing boards and infant or toddler car seats. Generally, towels and bed linens are not available, so these should be packed in your express shipment. This service varies by service and installation.
- Workshops and briefings — Workshops vary from installation to installation, but you may find classes on housing options, moving with children, moving with pets or general moving preparation and resources.
- Pre-departure briefings — These briefings may be called Smooth Move or PCS Briefing and provide essential information about your next duty station. These briefings can be critical in setting you up for success during the transition to your next duty station.
- Settling-in services — Welcome Wagon services or local area tours may be a part of your installation’s settling-in services. Overseas arrival services may include introductory language classes and cultural awareness training.
- Foreign-born spouse support — Whether you have questions or concerns about immigration and naturalization, learning the English language or how to use local transportation, the relocation program provides assistance, classes and referrals.
- Emergency assistance — From time to time, emergencies occur while moving. The Relocation Assistance Program office has the resources to provide emergency financial assistance and referrals.
Installation Specific Information
Relocation assistance is available at the Fleet and Family Support Center (FFSC), located in Building 104 on board NSA Saratoga Springs. Detailed local information available from our knowledgeable and seasoned staff. Please visit the NSA Saratoga Springs Facebook page for additional information.
A "Newcomer's Brief" is provided to all newly arriving Staff Members and their families on a monthly basis in the evening in building 106 on board NSA Saratoga Springs. A departure brief is provided to all NPTU classes prior to graduating. Individual relocation guidance is available for staff, students, and their families.
A full range of arrival and departure services are available. If you need assistance to find information regarding the local area, or want to know about the base you are going to, stop by or call for an appointment.
Moving is a way of life for military personnel, find out how to survive in the "mobile lifestyle" and how to reduce the stress involved with your move. Attend a "Smooth Move" class to learn your entitlements and other tools to make your move as smooth as possible.
NSA Saratoga Springs is not designated as a separation location. Any personnel stationed in this area, or are planning on moving to this area, are welcome to use all FFSC programs to assist them in the separation process.
Ombudsman Program -- The Ombudsman is a volunteer, appointed by the commanding officer, to serve as an information link between command leadership and Navy families. Ombudsmen are trained to disseminate information both up and down the chain of command, including official Department of the Navy and command information, command climate issues, local quality of life (QOL) improvement opportunities, and "good deals" around the community.
They also provide resource referrals when needed. They are instrumental in resolving family issues before the issues require extensive command attention. The command ombudsman program is shaped largely by the commanding officer's perceived needs of his/her command. The command ombudsman is appointed by and works under the guidance of the commanding officer who determines the priorities of the program, the roles and relationships of those involved in it, and the type and level of support it will receive.
Contact your Ombudsman prior to your PCS move to upstate New York:
- Ombudsman, NPTU Ballston Spa; 518-281-9907
- Ombudsman, NOSC Schenectady; 518-399-2134
- Ombudsman, NRD New England; 518-788-2961
- Ombudsman, NBHC 518-810-36878