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HR 1585
Old 05-13-2007, 11:51 AM   #1
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HR 1585

This week the full House Armed Services Committee approved its version of the FY2008 Defense Authorization Bill (H.R. 1585) retaining all the provisions above and adding many more.

The committee's action kicks off a flurry of defense bill activity. Next week, the full House is expected to vote on the Defense bill, and the Senate Armed Services Committee is expected to approve its own version of the bill.

Here's a summary of selected initiatives the House Armed Services Committee included in its bill this week:

TRICARE Fees - Bar any increase in fees for TRICARE Prime, TRICARE Standard and pharmacy copays before Oct. 1, 2008.

Medication Limitations - Authorize DoD to remove medications from the formulary if retail drug companies don't give DoD low cost, federal pricing.

Survivor Benefit Plan - Authorize surviving spouses that are also in receipt of the VA's dependency and indemnity compensation (DIC) a monthly payment of $40 beginning on October 1, 2007.

Military Pay Raise - Authorize a 3.5% military pay raise for 2008 - vs. the 3% proposed by the Defense Department.
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Re: HR 1585
Old 05-13-2007, 11:57 AM   #2
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Re: HR 1585

Well at least the raise is a bit more than inflation
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Re: HR 1585
Old 05-13-2007, 12:01 PM   #3
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Re: HR 1585

Quote:
Originally Posted by Mwsinron
Well at least the raise is a bit more than inflation
I think the goal is to link military pay raises to the ECI, not the CPI.

But that seems to be more of a minimum than a requirement.
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Re: HR 1585
Old 05-13-2007, 12:14 PM   #4
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Re: HR 1585

Why would the DoD only ask for 3% vs the Committee recommending 3.5% ?
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Re: HR 1585
Old 05-13-2007, 04:26 PM   #5
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Re: HR 1585

Quote:
Originally Posted by Mwsinron
Why would the DoD only ask for 3% vs the Committee recommending 3.5% ?
Politics.

DoD is probably pulling a number closer to someone's estimate of the ECI while Congress is trying to look like a hero to their constituents troops. Of course that smaller pay raise is also being defended by DoD as a necessary evil in an environment of severe fiscal austerity where they're negotiating bulk purchases of gas, bombs, & bullets. DoD would rather avoid a bigger payroll in favor of one-time retention bonuses, which I believe accounted for over $1B (that's billion) last year.

Wait until DoD & Congress square off about TRICARE premiums/reimbursements and retiree healthcare expenses. At least with Rumsfeld out of the picture the atmosphere is a tiny bit less contentious.

Working for MOAA, TMC, and the other veteran's lobbying organizations is a full-time job. Maybe that's why there are so few military ERs!
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