Photo: Marine Corporal Jonathan D. Porto bids goodbye to his wife Rachel and their unborn daughter Ariana. Corporal Porto was killed in action in Afghanistan.
Despite the US Congress sending to the White House a pay raise for the Uniformed Services in keeping with the formula utilized the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), Barack Obama has decided to bypass Congress and almost halve the recommended 1.8 percent hike for the military, as reported by the right-of-center news portal the Cybercast News Service on Sept. 3, 2013.
In one of the Administration's famous Friday "document dumps," the news of the cutting a rise in base pay for the Uniformed Services from the proposed 1.8 percent to a barely noticeable 1.0 percent was made public in the closing hours Friday before the start of the long Labor Day Weekend.
Per federal law, all military pay increases must based upon the BLS formula tying military pay to changes in private sector pay growth.
Defending his presidential privilege of dispensing of the law that determines military pay, Obama wrote to the Congress:
As our country continues to recover from serious economic conditions affecting the general welfare, however, we must maintain efforts to keep our Nation on a sustainable fiscal course.
This effort requires tough choices, especially in light of budget constraints faced by Federal agencies.
The Family Obama is figuratively still shaking the sand out of their shoes from last month's Martha's Vineyard vacation, and two short months prior to that, the clan enjoyed a $100 million African holiday.
What A 1% Pay Raise Looks Like…
If approved, a 1.0 percent raise equals $3.79 a week more (before taxes) for a newly joined member of the Armed Forces.
According to the Defense Finance and Accounting Service official website, the base pay for Pay Grade E-1 in all branches of the Armed Forces is $1,516.20 per month.
The Department of Health and Human Services' Assistant Secretary for Planning and Evaluation (APSE) official website lists the poverty line for a single person at $11,490.00 per month.
As cited by USmilitary.about.com, the highest pay raise the uniformed services received between 1976 and 2009 was during the Reagan presidency, the 1982 pay raise of 14.3 percent. During his administration, the smallest pay raise he ever approved as 2.0 percent in 1988.
During the Obama years, his pay raise approvals for the Services have seen a steady decline as cited by CNSNews.com:
- 2009 - 3.9%
- 2010 - 3.4%
- 2011 - 1.4%
- 2012 - 1.6%
- 2013 - 1.7%
- 2014 - 1.0%