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Army opts to cut, end special pay for host of soldiering jobs
The Army has decided to eliminate Special Duty Assignment Pay for some soldiers who perform jobs that are especially demanding or require unusual degrees of responsibility.
“As the Army moves into a more resource-constrained environment, we must fully evaluate each of our compensation programs by weighing total costs and benefits of the current programs,” Army spokesman George Wright said.
Special Duty Assignment Pay will be reduced for some jobs and added to others, Mr. Wright said. The changes will begin Jan. 1 and be implemented over the following 12 months. The pay ranges from an additional $75 to $450 a month.
The changes were announced last week in a memo issued by Army Chief of Staff Gen. Raymond T. Odierno.
Soldiers who will see special pay eliminated include those assigned to the Defense Courier Service, the On-site Inspection Agency and the Defense Threat Reduction Agency, as well as career counselors, “transition non-commisioned officers” and some recruiters.
Reduced special pay will apply to soldiers who serve in White House support activities, as Criminal Investigative Division special agents, air traffic controllers, foreign attaches and some recruiters.
The Defense Department has been forced to cut its budget by $500 billion over the next 10 years under an automatic spending reduction law.
“The decision to restructure the [Special Duty Assignment Pay] program was not taken lightly, and we spent significant time evaluating all relevant factors with the understanding that our final decision would affect soldiers and families,” Mr. Wright said.
The pay will be added to some jobs for soldiers, such as Ranger course instructors.
“These eliminations in no way reflect the individual soldier’s importance the Army, but reflect our changing mission priorities,” Mr. Wright said. “Ultimately, to be good stewards of our resources while continuing to support and care for soldiers and their families, we have made tough decisions on compensation.”
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About the Author
Kristina Wong is a national security reporter for The Washington Times, covering defense, foreign policy and intelligence affairs. She can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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