In the modern media era, fake news leads to confusion and frustration. Not only is false information inconvenient, it also has real effects on people’s lives. Over the past few weeks, there has been considerable confusion about the military time pay raise.

Service members want to make sure they will be fairly compensated, but worry about their futures in this political climate.

Keep reading to learn the facts on how service members will be compensated for their military time and demystify the information about what their future raises include.

Fiction: 2018 Saw the First Military Pay Raise in 10 Years

While this year’s military pay raise is significant, it’s not the first raise in the past decade. On May 9, President Trump misspoke when he said this is the first time the military has received a raise in the past decade. The comments were later backtracked by the White House as Trump spokespeople worked to clarify their meaning.

Not only is this not the first pay raise in the past decade, but it’s also not the largest. The Defense Department shares annual military pay raises dating back through the past decade. In January of 2010, military pay increased 3.4% and was increased 3.9% in January of 2009. In 2018, the military time pay raise was only 2.4%.   

Interestingly, the President himself cannot claim credit for the pay increase. Trump originally had presented a number below the automatic adjustment for 2018 at 2.1%. It took a Congressional effort to override his proposal, which is why members of the military are receiving the expected 2.4% raise this year.

In the grand scheme of things, this is a minor lie that most service members will immediately realize is untrue, especially if they noticed raise in their own paychecks over the past few years.

While this year’s 2.6% military pay raise is significant, it’s not the first raise in the past decade. On May 9, President Trump misspoke when he said this is the first time the military has received a raise in the past decade.Click To Tweet

Fact: The White House and Congress Are In Agreement for the 2019 Budget

In late April, The Hill reported that The House Armed Services Committee and White House are in agreement for the proposed pay increase for military time. Members of the armed forces are expected to receive a 2.6% pay increase if the current budget goes through.

Along with increasing pay, both parties are in agreement that the United States should take steps to increase its military size. This includes an increase of 4,000 troops in the Army, 7,500 for the Navy, 4,000 for the Air Force, and 100 for the Marines.

If both Congress and the White House can agree that the armed forces need to increase their numbers and increase their pay, then that particular part of the budget is likely to pass this year. 

Military Pay Raise

Fiction: Military Personnel Are At Risk of Losing Their Military Pay Raise

One of the main concerns that military families and service members have is that their future pay raises will be rejected in the 2019 budget. As you read earlier, Congress is already working on assembling and passing next year’s budget, with military pay taking a central role.

In politics, no one wants to look like they don’t support the troops by denying a pay raise, which makes military pay a popular weapon of choice for partisan fighting.

However, the idea that military pay will be cut or the annual raises will be denied is fiction, the Military Times explains. Regardless of what budget Congress and the President agree to, military pay is secure. This has everything to do with how military pay is determined and how it is protected by Congress.     

Military pay raises are determined by changes to the Labor Department’s annual Employment Cost Index, or ECI. These raises are adjusted automatically to match average increases in pay in the private sector. This keeps the military competitive as an employer. It’s up to the President and Congress to determine if service members receive more — and how much — based on the budget.

If you are a member of the military or considering joining the armed forces, don’t let threats of paychecks or withheld raises change your decisions. This conversation shouldn’t affect your paycheck in the long-run.

Prepare For the Future During Your Military Time

Regardless of the political partisanship that frays the nerves of service members and federal employees, you can still prepare for your future even if your future salary is uncertain. Take advantage of your current military time to check your benefits and make sure you are getting the most out of your salary.

MyFedBenefits offers free services to members of the military to help you save for your future. Whether you plan to leave the armed forces in a few years or hope to have a long-term career in the military, we have you covered. Look up a local specialist near youand set up a consultation to review your financial situation to prepare for the future.

From retirement planning to healthcare, we’re here to support the military as a way to thank you for supporting us. Contact us today. 

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