House Committee Rejects DoD Budget Proposals

April 24, 2015

On April 15, MOAA chapter and council leaders from across the country visited nearly every congressional office to speak out against the DoD’s proposed changes to TRICARE, pay and benefits.  MOAA members strengthened this initiative by sending their elected officials nearly 44,000 communications reaffirming this message.

The House Armed Services Personnel Subcommittee (HASC-P) listened. On Thursday morning, the Subcommittee released their mark-up of H.R. 1735, the FY 2016 National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA). None of DoD’s proposals to cut pay and benefits were included.

"The mark provides our warfighters, retirees and their families the care and support they need, deserve and earned," said panel chair Joe Heck (R-Nev.).

The subcommittee rejected DoD's request to reduce the commissary subsidy that would have led to reduced hours and operating days. Before making changes to the commissary system, subcommittee members are waiting for a congressionally mandated study on the effects of price markups in commissaries, which is due in September.

The subcommittee also advanced measures requiring DoD to improve sexual assault response and prevention efforts for male servicemembers. Additionally, the bill included continued funding for local schools with significant numbers of military dependents.

Although the subcommittee rejected the DoD’s budget driven proposals, it did include controversial aspects of the Military Compensation and Retirement Modernization Commission’s (MCRMC) proposals to overhaul military retirement. 

The full HASC is expected to move quickly on the bill next week. The Senate is expected to address its version of the FY 2016 defense bill in the next few weeks.