Lawmaker Blasts Plan to Cap Military Pay Raise




From MOAA’s Website. This organization accomplishes more for our military service men and women than any other. It used to be called TROA (The Retired Officer’s Association), but changed their name to include all officers not just retired. I have been a life member since I retired and I use their site to contact my representatives almost weekly. Lindsey Graham has always been a champion of our military men and women; one of the few I would not classify as a RINO. As you read this, ask yourself, just whose side are the service chiefs on? I really can’t answer that myself. They must be drinking Attorney General Lynch’s brew — ya think?

March 11, 2016

At a Senate Armed Services Committee hearing Tuesday, Personnel Subcommittee chair Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.) told service chiefs he’s not happy DoD is proposing yet another reduced military pay raise for 2017.

“For the last three years, this administration has failed to allow service members’ pay to keep up with the private sector wage growth,” said Graham. “This is the fourth year in a row where the department is short-changing service members.”

The proposed 1.6 percent pay raise is being touted by DoD as the largest raise in the last four years. However, it is still below the average American’s 2.1 percent raise, as measured by the Employment Cost Index (ECI). If Congress doesn’t reject the Pentagon proposal, the cumulative four-year pay gap will increase to 3.1 percent.

Graham also took issue with the Pentagon’s proposal to make changes to the new blended retirement system scheduled to take effect on Jan. 1, 2018 for new entrants.

Under current law, the new system cuts military retired pay by 20 percent, but provides up to a 5 percent government match to service members’ deposits in federal Thrift Savings Plan (TSP) accounts. Government matching begins when a service member reaches three years of service. DoD’s budget proposes delaying government matching until the fifth year of service.

This proposal directly counters one of the main reasons why Congress originally approved the change to retirement: to provide a retirement benefit to more service members, especially the majority who do not stay for twenty years.

“Let me be clear. It is our commitment to the many service members who go out on deployment before reaching their fifth year of service that they, too, have earned some retirement,” said Graham.

MOAA agrees with Sen. Graham’s concern on both the pay raise and TSP matching issues.

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Please leave a comment on this post or on any subject; all are appreciated. Thank you and Semper Fi, Jim