Today, President Obama released his proposal for the 2010 defense budget. The budget proposal is usually released by a president during the month of February which allows enough time for debate in congress and signature into law by the beginning of the next fiscal year. With this late release I am concerned we may see another year that military members will have a delay in pay much like that of 2008 where pay had to be retroactively paid back.
DoD Releases Fiscal 2010 Budget Proposal
President Barack Obama today sent to Congress a proposed defense budget of $663.8 billion for fiscal 2010. The budget request for the Department of Defense (DoD) includes $533.8 billion in discretionary budget authority to fund base defense programs and $130 billion to support overseas contingency operations, primarily in Iraq and Afghanistan….
The fiscal 2010 base budget proposal includes $177.5 billion to directly compensate and support America’s military professionals and their families. This represents one-third of the department’s base budget and reflects the strong commitment to caring for our troops with an increase of more than $13 billion from the fiscal 2009 request.
Within this request, the department fully funds military health-care, which will cost more than $47 billion in fiscal 2010. The Department expects to continue to work with the Congress to look for ways to slow the growth of medical costs while continuing to provide high-quality care.
2010 BAH Rates are available now.
The fiscal 2010 budget includes a 3.4 percent military pay raise effective January 1, 2010. This pay raise, coupled with an average increase of 6.0 percent in Basic Allowance for Housing (BAH) rates and a 5.0 percent increase to Basic Allowance for Subsistence (BAS), maintains these programs at current standards and keeps military pay very competitive with other employment sectors.
Update to 2010 BAH!
The Department of Defense today (Dec. 16, 2009) released the 2010 Basic Allowance for Housing (BAH) rates (original story). Military members will receive an average housing allowance increase of 2.5 percent when the new rates take effect, Jan. 1, 2010.
For members with dependents, average increases in the BAH are approximately $37 per month. A typical junior enlisted member with dependents, for example, will find his/her BAH about $25 per month higher than last year, while a senior non-commissioned officer with dependents will receive about $42 more than last year.
Three components are included in the BAH computation: median current market rent; average utilities (including electricity, heat, and water/sewer); and average renter’s insurance.
Total housing costs are calculated for six housing profiles (based on dwelling type and number of bedrooms) in each military housing area. BAH rates are then calculated for each pay grade, both with and without dependents. An estimated $19 billion will be paid to nearly 1 million service members in 2010.
An integral part of the BAH program is the provision of individual rate protection to all members. No matter what happens to measured housing costs, an individual member in a given location will not see his/her BAH rate decrease. This assures that members who have made long-term commitments in the form of a lease or contract are not penalized if the area’s housing costs decrease.
The continued improvement in housing allowances represents the Department’s commitment to the preservation of a compensation and benefit structure that provides members with a suitable and secure standard of living to sustain a trained, experienced, and ready force in the future.
Not the 6% increase proposed originally, but an increase nonetheless. Here in Memphis, the E-5 w/dependents went from $1241 in 2009 to a 2010 BAH rate of $1263 ~roughly 1.5%
Ground Force Increase.
The proposed budget will fully protect and properly fund the ongoing growth in military ground force end strength, and it will do so in the base budget. Growth in the Army and Marines will be sustained, and reductions will be halted in the Air Force and Navy. Accomplishing this will require an increase of approximately $2.3 billion in military personnel costs above the fiscal 2009 enacted level.
Family Support and Housing.
The budget request provides $11 billion to fund military housing and support programs for single and married service members and their families. In addition to constructing new barracks and family housing and maintaining current units, this includes funding for child care centers and youth programs; morale, welfare, and recreation activities; warfighter and family services; commissaries; DoD schools; and military spouse employment programs.
Caring for Our Wounded, Ill, and Injured.
The department has no greater priority than providing the highest quality support to wounded, ill, and injured Soldiers, Sailors, Airmen, Marines, and their families. The fiscal 2010 budget recognizes this responsibility and provides $3.3 billion to support injured service members in their recovery, rehabilitation, and reintegration. This funding provides additional case managers and mental health providers, an expedited Disability Evaluation System, construction of 12 additional Army Warrior in Transition complexes, and continued implementation of Walter Reed National Military Medical Center and Fort Belvoir hospital BRAC projects within the National Capital Region. The budget also includes $0.4 billion for medical research and development for traumatic brain injury, psychological health, and other casualty care issues.
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