Good day everyone,
So I’ve gotten word from a few Marines that we’re getting a raise. The number seems to be 1.6 percent, while others say 2.1 percent. There will also be a boost of military end strength of 27,000.
Congress reached a budget deal with the White House last year. From there the defense spending bill was set to $580 billion.
** Pay Raise
The pay raise matches the expected jump in private sector jobs for 2017. It actually goes against the the White House’s plan for a 1.6 percent increase next year.
Lawmakers feel there is a possibility for the president to override the higher figure. It is also thought that the president would go with the Pentagons preferred raise.
A 1.6 percent pay raise in 2017 would be the highest for troops since 2013. It would also continue a six year continuation of military pay hikes below 2.0 percent. Defense officials are rather ok with the lower than expected raise. It will save the department more than $300 million in 2017, that’s equivalent to $2.2 billion for the next five years.
It’s said that lower level troops, will see bigger salaries starting January of 2017. 1.6 percent raise is an increase of $400.00 yearly for enlisted, and up to $1500.00 for officers. The difference in the pay plans will have a major effect on families finances. The gap within the White House pay raise plan as well as the 2.1 percent boost for those of E-4 rank with three years service will be about $130.00 a year. An E-7 with 10 years will be about $220.00.
Military pay wont keep up with private sector wages and cost. Advocates predict that the pay gap between civilian paychecks and military salaries will increase to 5% if this plan with the White House actually becomes law.
** End strength
The U.S. Marine Corps, Army, Air Force will all see end strength boosts over current levels.
Under the House plan, Army end strength will increase from 475,000 to 480,000 soldiers. Many have scrutinized the drawdown, saying the military will be potentially unprepared.
Our brothers in the Marine Corps will increase by 1,000 troops under the House, rather than dropping from 184,000 to 182,000 under White House proposals. Air Force will increase by 285 individuals rather than drop nearly 4000 to 317,000.
Navy is expected to drop from 329,000 to 322,900 by fall of 2017.
There is also a Pentagon-led overhaul of the Uniform Code of Military Justice. This includes changes that expand the statute of limitations for child abuse offenses.
Changes are also in effect for the code. This includes improper use of government computers and even more penalties for individuals who victimize recruits and trainees.
A provision was included to develop more advanced personal protective equipment systems. This includes gender-appropriate sizing of body armor.
Language was added which would allow Women Airforce Service Pilots. Who served honorably during World War II, to have their remains buried at Arlington National Cemetery.
The full House is expected to vote on the authorization bill early May. Senate lawmakers are expected to offer their first drafts of the legislation around the same time. (should be interesting)
Leaders from both chambers have shown optimism due to a final authorization bill being sent to the president before the end of the fiscal year. (Sept. 30) However, that has only happened a few times in the last three decades.
Isaac J. Hall II