Dec 04 2014
Man, I am late to the party – I just learned about the #KeepYourPromise movement started by MOAA and other military related organizations. The hashtag movement came about in response to the Senate Armed Services Committee proposing tightening the Pentagon’s budget on the backs of service members and retirees (again).
You know the drill – proposals such as cutting housing allowances, increased Tricare fees, adjustments to the health plan. And I’m sure in there somewhere is the idea of changing the retirement plan into a 401K program similar to the private sector (never mind that civilian government employees, including our elected officials, enjoy a pension based retirement program or that the vast majority of 401K programs leave retirees woefully unprepared financially for retirement).
One result of the #KeepYourPromise campaign was a pretty funny picture of former Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel asking members to do more but accept less – you can see it here.
MOAA is again working hard to stave off the cuts on members. And it appears to be working. The Hill has an article on milfams bombarding Congress on this issue.
And, the House, per MOAA President, retired Navy Vice Adm. Norb Ryan, “helped blunt the blow to military families and retired beneficiaries.” The House apparently didn’t want to take the military for granted. MOAA has a good article on this action here.
But, the proposed cuts aimed at individuals keep coming. Per the Military Times, Congress has decided to cut funding to the commissary by $100,000,000 next year. As a result:
“… the plan would shrink the commissary savings compared with average off-base grocery prices to about 10 percent from the current 30 percent, with shoppers having to cover the difference out of pocket.”
As MOAA Spouse asks on their Facebook page: Will you continue to shop the commissary? Will you? Go to their Facebook page and let them know (scroll down a bit for this item – but do peruse the other bits of info posted).
I’m a little baffled at these proposals because I side with MOAA on these types of actions. MOAA has pointed out in the past that these proposed cuts and attempts to make military job benefits the same as a civilian (even given the obvious differences) will just hurt recruitment and retainment.
Who knows though, maybe newly elected Congressmen like Seth Moulton will step up and speak for the service member and retiree. He’s a former Marine officer and a “veteran of four tours of duty in the Iraq war “ and has three degrees from Harvard (wow!). Seth says he wants “to shake up the system.” A good place to start is stop putting the cost burden on military members and families.
And with MOAA keeping up the good fight, we should be encouraged. But do go to the MOAA Spouse Facebook page and answer their question about your further commissary usage given the upcoming loss of savings.