2018 U.S. Military Basic Pay Raise
September 18, 2017, as expected, the full Senate, by a vote of 89 to 8, passed its version of the National Defense Authorization Act for fiscal year 2018. The Senate's bill supports President Trump's pay raise of 2.1 percent for uniformed members of the military. The House's version supports a full 2.4 percent raise. The two versions of the bill must now go to conference where the details will be hammered out and a final bill developed which will be presented to the President for final approval.
August 31, 2017, President Trump sent the appropriate documentation to Congress, as required by section 1009, subsection (e), of United States Code Title 37, to support his alternative pay raise proposal of 2.1 percent for Fiscal Year 2018 (effective, January 1, 2018). His proposal is 0.3 percent lower than 2.4 percent raise based on the mandated Employment Cost Index increase. For the full 2.4 percent raise to be implemented for 2018, both houses of Congress would need to find the money. Currently, the House's bill pays for a 2.4 percent raise, and the Senate's bill supports the President's 2.1 percent.
July 14, 2017, the full House of Representatives, by a vote of 344-81, passed their version of the 2018 National Defense Authorization Act which includes a 2.4 percent military pay raise. The 2.4 percent is at odds with President Trump's proposal of 2.1 percent, but is in-line with Title 37's statutory increase based on the Employment Cost Index. The Senate bill, so far, contains a 2.1 percent raise. If the Senate keeps the raise at 2.1 percent, it will be a point of contention that must be reconciled with the House before it could be sent to the President for final approval.
June 29, 2017, just a few minutes before midnight, last night, the House Armed Services Committee introduced their initial mark-up for 2018's national defense authorization. Within the bill, they are calling for a 2.4 percent military pay raise which is in-line with U.S.C. Title 37. The 2.4 percent raise is 0.3 percent higher than proposed by both the Senate Armed Services Committee and that of President Trump.
June 28, 2017, the Senate Armed Services Committee introduced their initial mark-up for 2018's national defense authorization. Within the bill, they are calling for a 2.1 percent military pay raise which is in-line with President Trump's proposal.
May 23, 2017, President Trump released his budget proposal, and it contains a 2.1 percent pay raise proposal for 2018 military basic pay. The proposal is 0.3 percent less than the amount called for by U.S. Code Title 37, and equals the same raise percentage approved by President Obama for 2017.
May 18, 2017, in a speech delivered yesterday by the Director of the Office of Management and Budget, Mick Mulvaney, to the Federalist Society, he indicated President Trump's budget proposal for Fiscal Year 2018 will be released on Tuesday, May 23rd. Although no mention of a potential military pay raise was made, it is likely that the President's proposal for a raise will be in-line with current law, a 2.4 percent raise for 2018.
January 31, 2017, the Secretary of Defense, James Mattis, released a memorandum entitled, "Implementation Guidance for Budget Directives in the National Security Presidential Memorandum on rebuilding the U.S. Armed Forces". The memo places a deadline for releasing the Fiscal Year 2018 budget request by May 1, 2017. Although no indication of what may be proposed as a pay raise percentage for 2018, the memo does remind those working to establish the 2018 budget request to "keep faith with our Service members and their families." It is expected for the first time since the 2013 pay raise, the 2018 military pay raise will be the full amount as prescribed by U.S. Code Title 37; a minimum of a 2.4 percent increase to 2017 basic pay for 2018.
October 28, 2016, at 0830EST, the United States Employment Cost Index (ECI) was released. The releasing of the ECI by the United States Bureau of Labor Statistics is an eagerly awaited quarterly economic indicator for those in the stock market and politics; but what makes this morning’s release important to our military is that it is the first indicator used to determine the actual pay raise amount for 2018. For 2018, the pay raise increase should be 2.4 percent based on U.S.C. Title 37.
March 24, 2016, the Department of Defense (DoD) made available (originally generated on March 11th) the Fiscal Year 2017 Green Book, and it projected a 1.6 percent pay raise for FY-2018. The 1.6 percent projection is one tenth higher than last year's DoD projection for 2018.