Wednesday, March 29, 2017

Conservative Group Calls for Curbing Troops' Housing Allowances |

Conservative Group Calls for Curbing Troops' Housing Allowances |

An influential conservative think tank is calling for reducing the cost of troop housing allowances as part of the fiscal 2018 budget.

The Heritage Foundation, based in Washington, D.C., proposed reforming the Basic Allowance for Housing to more closely match actual spending as part of a report released Tuesday, called "Blueprint for Balance: A Federal Budget for Fiscal Year 2018." The blueprint provides guidance on how to curb the $20 trillion federal debt in part by eliminating the annual deficit.

"This allowance is designed to help service members pay for housing," the report states. "This is not military compensation. Housing allowances should be based on the amount of money that service members must pay to obtain adequate housing."

It continues, "Service members are not entitled to, nor should they have any expectation, that money above what they pay for housing can be retained as 'extra compensation.' "

Specifically, the document cited the potential value of previous, though so far unsuccessful, attempts by Congress to base BAH on proof of a lease or mortgage in the amount a service member spends on housing and consolidate allowances for married couples -- changes estimated to save $116 million in the fiscal year beginning Oct. 1.