What Congress Has in Store for You

What Congress Has in Store for You

The yearly Defense Appropriations Act provides the funding for the military services to operate, and the Defense Authorization Act tells the Department of Defense exactly what they are allowed to spend that money on.

So, what does Congress have in store for our military troops?

The military pay has various significant components that add up the total monthly salary each servicemember earns. The basic pay and allowances are the two most important elements of compensation in the military. Allowances are available for housing (BAH), cost of living, childcare, clothing, etc

The military payment is added in military allowances and special pay, military discounts, etc. These all serve to stretch military paycheck and help servicemembers receive the maximum financial rewards inherent in today's military pay system.
  • Basic Pay.

    Known as well as Base pay. It is given to servicemembers of the active duty military on a monthly basis. It is the same for all the services. It varies depending on the servicemember's pay grade or rank and years of service in the military. In 2011, Military base pay has been increased by an across-the-board raise of only 1.4 percent.
    See DOD Financial Management Regulation (Chapter 1)

  • Basic Allowance for Housing (BAH).

    Servicemembers receive Basic Allowance for Housing unless they reside in military housing. There are numerous types of BAH to satisfy a variety of housing situations that occur among military members. The amount varies, depending on geographic duty location, pay grade, and dependency status. Under most circumstances, servicemembers receive BAH for the location where they are assigned, not where they live.
    BAH Rate lookup: http://www.defensetravel.dod.mil/perdiem/bah.html

  • Basic Allowance for Subsistence (BAS).

    The servicemembers without meal cards receive BAS. This year, 2010, the amount is $223.04 per month for officers, and $323.87 per month for enlisted.
    See DOD Financial Management Regulation (Chapter 25)