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Thread: DoD to cut BAH?

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    Senior Member BOSS302's Avatar
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    Re: DoD to cut BAH?

    Quote Originally Posted by AFcynic View Post
    The DoD is looking at ways to cut spending in any way possible. The proposed BAH decrease is just the beginning. They will eventually force AD retirement checks to go the way of the Guard/Reserve - see you at 60 years old. Tuition assistance will decrease to 50-75%, Tricare will begin co-pays for folks that don't use the clinic, and I can see them ending the combat zone tax exclusion.

    The DoD isn't going to cut their pet programs, and the military industrial complex isn't going away any time soon. It's easier to cut people than it is to cut the 22, or the 35, or the new BMT campuses on Lackland.
    To a point. Congress still holds the purse and they understand that there are certain personnel costs that they simply cannot touch too drastically lest they see their re-election chances go down in flames. Retirement is one program that is poison. It's been fiddled with as much as they can, in my opinion, without taking steps that would cause outrage. Furthermore, the military pension after 20 years is a huge recruitment/retainment tool. Turn it into something that is heavily affected - collecting at 60 years of age, for instance - and watch the morale of those serving (if they are not grandfathered in) plummet and watch the overall quality of those coming in plummet in kind.

    There are many ways the Air Force, for instance, could save big bucks. Why is the Air Force spending billions upon billions on F-35s? We have 4th-Gen platforms that are still above and beyond what the rest of the world has. Upgrade those platforms (as they did with the F-15 Silent Eagle) instead of throwing money into black hole projects.

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    Re: DoD to cut BAH?

    They can gladly look at docking me out of 20% when the Senate/Congress docks their pay and when we start making people on welfare earn their check. I'm sick of this cost cutting being on the back of the defense industry.

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    Re: DoD to cut BAH?

    Quote Originally Posted by KnuckleDragger View Post

    Post of the week.

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    Re: DoD to cut BAH?

    Quote Originally Posted by BOSS302 View Post
    One of the biggest problems in regards to BAH/OHA and Utility Allowances/COLA is that a lot of service members think it is there to help them live like the Kardashians. They think it's there to help them make payments on that BMW 5-Series that they bought from BMW Military Sales in Kaiserslauten. Obviously, it is not. It's there to help service members maintain a standard of living that is comparable to a comfortable standard of living enjoyed by their host nation counterparts. The US Air Force and other services don't want their service members living in squalor on the economy.

    The service member does nothing to help his or herself in many cases. How many times have you seen your co-workers fudging the OHA/COLA surveys?

    "Oh I do ALLLLL my shopping at Tescos and Debenhams and my electric bill is $1,000/month!" WTF? Nice integrity, huh? Luckily I think the bean counters and powers that be see through a lot of the BS in those surveys and keep money realistic. Thus why many are pissy about COLA and OHA rates...they're not getting that artificial inflation they want so they can get that BMW 7-Series or that 27-in iMac or 70" LED TV.

    What really irks me through all of this is that there is SO much more wasteful spending in the military. My office will be getting a new All-in-One printer/fax/scanner/DNA sampler/samurai sword maker to replace our current printer that works just fine. This one printer is worth three months of my Utility Allowance.

    And they want to focus on the allowances that the rank & file get?

    They can fuck off out of here. I've already renewed my AFSA membership and written to my Senators. Everyone else should do the same if you're serious about protecting benefits from the money vampires that want to reach into your pockets to pay for the next overpriced/over budget/under performing product from Military Industries, Inc.
    Just because someone has a 5 series doesnt mean they are dropping COLA on it. Unless you know everyone's situation you shouldnt comment on it. I would say more people than not get some kick back from their parents. Also many people do get money from deployments etc. I can without a doubt tell you that after I was in the UK for a year I did not shop at the commissary at all. I did all my shopping at Sainsbury's. My winter energy bill was around 500GBP for a two bedroom and two and a half people. A family of four with the spouse at home all day long could approach that price. Doesnt apply to everyone but its not that far off.

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    Re: DoD to cut BAH?

    Quote Originally Posted by Airborne View Post
    Just because someone has a 5 series doesnt mean they are dropping COLA on it. Unless you know everyone's situation you shouldnt comment on it. I would say more people than not get some kick back from their parents. Also many people do get money from deployments etc. I can without a doubt tell you that after I was in the UK for a year I did not shop at the commissary at all. I did all my shopping at Sainsbury's. My winter energy bill was around 500GBP for a two bedroom and two and a half people. A family of four with the spouse at home all day long could approach that price. Doesnt apply to everyone but its not that far off.
    True story. Know a guy that bought a $60K+ Porsche all from money he made on his multiple deployments. He's a SSgt.

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    Re: DoD to cut BAH?

    Quote Originally Posted by CJSmith View Post
    True story. Know a guy that bought a $60K+ Porsche all from money he made on his multiple deployments. He's a SSgt.
    Ya? And he is a dumbass. Never pump your money into something that will lose value...dumb.
    Quote Originally Posted by Capt Alfredo View Post
    Rules for the sake of rules makes for mindless policy and engenders a lack of respect for those who enact and enforce them.

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    Re: DoD to cut BAH?

    Quote Originally Posted by BOSS302 View Post
    To a point. Congress still holds the purse and they understand that there are certain personnel costs that they simply cannot touch too drastically lest they see their re-election chances go down in flames. Retirement is one program that is poison. It's been fiddled with as much as they can, in my opinion, without taking steps that would cause outrage. Furthermore, the military pension after 20 years is a huge recruitment/retainment tool. Turn it into something that is heavily affected - collecting at 60 years of age, for instance - and watch the morale of those serving (if they are not grandfathered in) plummet and watch the overall quality of those coming in plummet in kind.

    There are many ways the Air Force, for instance, could save big bucks. Why is the Air Force spending billions upon billions on F-35s? We have 4th-Gen platforms that are still above and beyond what the rest of the world has. Upgrade those platforms (as they did with the F-15 Silent Eagle) instead of throwing money into black hole projects.

    Talks of cutting BAH, COLA, changing retirements, raising Tricare rates, cutting end-strength, mothballing jets and ships, etc...all at the same time Congress gets Obama to basically get them out of the requirements of ObamaCare that THEY passed...all on the taxpayers dime. Unions will be the next ones let off the hook. The fix is in folks and it has been for awhile.

    http://www.reuters.com/article/2013/...areNews&rpc=22

    U.S. Congress wins relief on Obamacare health plan subsidies

    Congress, staff, to keep federal health premium payments


    By David Lawder

    WASHINGTON, Aug 7 (Reuters) - Congress has won some partial relief for lawmakers and their staffs from the "Obamacare" health reforms that it passed and subjected itself to three years ago.

    In a ruling issued on Wednesday, U.S. lawmakers and their staffs will continue to receive a federal contribution toward the health insurance that they must purchase through soon-to-open exchanges created by President Barack Obama's signature healthcare law.

    The decision by the Office of Personnel Management, with Obama's blessing, will prevent the largely unintended loss of healthcare benefits for 535 members of the Senate and House of Representatives and thousands of Capitol Hill staff.

    When Congress passed the health reform law known as Obamacare in 2010, an amendment required that lawmakers and their staff members purchase health insurance through the online exchanges that the law created. They would lose generous coverage under the Federal Employees Health Benefits Program.

    The amendment's author, Republican Senator Charles Grassley, argued that if Obamacare plans were good enough for the American public, they were good enough for Congress. Democrats, eager to pass the reforms, went along with it.

    But it soon became apparent the provision contained no language that allowed federal contributions toward their health plans that cover about 75 percent of the premium costs.

    This caused fears that staff would suddenly face sharply higher healthcare costs and leave federal service, causing a "brain drain" on Capitol Hill.

    But Wednesday's proposed rule from the OPM, the federal government's human resources agency, means that Congress will escape the most onerous impact of law as it was written.

    The OPM said the federal contributions will be allowed to continue for exchange-purchased plans for lawmakers and their staffs, ensuring that those working on Capitol Hill will effectively get the same health contributions as millions of other federal workers who keep their current plan.

    The problem surrounding the Obamacare language for Capitol Hill staff was the subject of intense negotiations in recent weeks between House and Senate leaders and the Obama administration.

    Some Republicans immediately slammed the OPM decision, using it as fuel for their campaign to turn public opinion against Obamacare just as its core provisions are due to go into effect.

    "While the administration has handed out waiver after waiver and exemption after exemption for the well-connected in Washington, they have done nothing to lower health care costs for families in Michigan," said Dave Camp, chairman of the tax-writing House Ways and Means Committee.

    Camp said the OPM ruling is the "latest proof" of impending failure for the reforms and pledged that Republicans would keep trying to repeal them.

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    Re: DoD to cut BAH?

    Quote Originally Posted by fufu View Post
    Ya? And he is a dumbass. Never pump your money into something that will lose value...dumb.
    Meh, to each their own. While I would never buy a car like that and agree with your statement, he's a pretty smart dude and manages his money pretty well. He paid for the car in cash and has no monthly payments. For him, it was a long time dream to own one and after 4+ years of an almost 1:1 dwell deployment cycle, he felt he deserved it. More power to him.

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    Senior Member BOSS302's Avatar
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    Re: DoD to cut BAH?

    Quote Originally Posted by Airborne View Post
    Just because someone has a 5 series doesnt mean they are dropping COLA on it. Unless you know everyone's situation you shouldnt comment on it. I would say more people than not get some kick back from their parents. Also many people do get money from deployments etc. I can without a doubt tell you that after I was in the UK for a year I did not shop at the commissary at all. I did all my shopping at Sainsbury's. My winter energy bill was around 500GBP for a two bedroom and two and a half people. A family of four with the spouse at home all day long could approach that price. Doesnt apply to everyone but its not that far off.
    Known of too many examples of this, to include close friends of mine. If it never happened I would not have made that comment. Alas, it does happen and it happens quite frequently. If it touched a nerve with you, I hope it wasn't too bad. Obviously I did not intend to convey that every single service member in Europe uses COLA/UA to buy BMWs...

    I too shopped off-base; it cost more but I think the quality of groceries in Europe far exceeds that of the US. I love the UK's free-range eggs, milks, cheeses, and butcher shops. Even UK "junk food" tastes far superior to US junk food - Walker's Crisps are so good. It did cost more than the commissary but not by all that much.

    Energy bills will depend upon the type of house one lives in. My home in the UK was in one of the worst bands of energy usage due to its age. Many of the new homes built since the 90s have double-glazed windows, condensing boilers, better insulation, etc. I wish I had lived in one of those, it would have saved on energy costs.

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    Re: DoD to cut BAH?

    Quote Originally Posted by Airborne View Post
    Just because someone has a 5 series doesnt mean they are dropping COLA on it. Unless you know everyone's situation you shouldnt comment on it. I would say more people than not get some kick back from their parents.
    Back in the 80s, we had a SrA Comm job controller go on leave suddenly. He came back with a Porsche. One of my Maintenance co-workers gestured to the car and asked him "who died?"

    "My parents," he replied.

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