President Obama Signs Budget, Defense Bills

by Scott Neuman

December 26, 2013 4:50 PM

President Obama speaks to current and retired members of the U.S. military and their families as they eat a Christmas Day meal in the Anderson Hall mess hall at Marine Corps Base Hawaii on Wednesday.President Obama speaks to current and retired members of the U.S. military and their families as they eat a Christmas Day meal in the Anderson Hall mess hall at Marine Corps Base Hawaii on Wednesday.

Getty Images

President Obama on Thursday signed the bipartisan budget bill agreed upon earlier this month, setting the stage for an easing of mandatory spending cuts over the next two years.

The , following its passage in the Republican-dominated House.

The president also signed the National Defense Authorization Act for fiscal 2014.

As The Associated Press reports:

“Obama signed the bill Thursday while vacationing in Hawaii. The deal reduces across-the-board cuts already scheduled to take effect, restoring about $63 billion over two years. It includes a projected $85 billion in other savings. Continue reading “President Obama Signs Budget, Defense Bills”

Congress, with the clock ticking, nears deals on defense and budget bills

Congress, with the clock ticking, nears deals on defense and budget bills

Andrew Harrer/Bloomberg – The U.S. Capitol stands in Washington, D.C., U.S., on Thursday, Nov. 14, 2013.
 

By and , Published: December 9 E-mail the writers

After compiling a reed-thin record of achievement for 2013, the House and Senate began their final week of the year together in Washington on the verge of breakthroughs on a new defense policy bill and budget agreement, deals that could permit lawmakers to boast of modest year-end successes and enjoy their first extended Christmas break since at least the start of the Obama presidency.

Speaker John A. Boehner (R-Ohio) is determined to adjourn the House for the year on Friday. The Senate plans on remaining in town until Dec. 20. It is a short schedule that forced leaders of the House and Senate armed-services committees Monday to scale back their ambitions and agree to move ahead with a modified version of the National Defense Authorization Act, one of the few “must pass” measures left for the divided Congress.

Video

@TheBudgetGuy Stan Collender tells Chris Cillizza what the much-anticipated budget deadline has in common with the hit nineties television show.

@TheBudgetGuy Stan Collender tells Chris Cillizza what the much-anticipated budget deadline has in common with the hit nineties television show. Continue reading “Congress, with the clock ticking, nears deals on defense and budget bills”

Forget the Pay Freeze: Start Worrying About Health Care Costs

Pay & Benefits Watch

Forget the Pay Freeze: Start Worrying About Health Care Costs

Buried in the news over the extended federal pay freeze, the impending fiscal cliff and the umpteenth continuing resolution to avoid a government shutdown is this fact: Many military retirees will be paying a little more for their health care as of Oct. 1.

Day 1 of fiscal 2013 means that some TRICARE Prime beneficiaries now will have to pay $39 to $79 more than they currently do in annual enrollment fees. Specifically, TRICARE Prime military retirees who enrolled in the health care program before Oct. 1, 2011, will pay an annual fee of $269.28 for individual coverage as of Oct. 1, 2012; those with the family plan will pay $538.56 per year under the adjustment. Those beneficiaries — all under the age of 65 — currently pay $260 per year in enrollment costs for the individual plan and $460 for family coverage. The 2012 National Defense Authorization Act allows for the annual increase of TRICARE Prime enrollment fees for most retired beneficiaries based on the annual cost-of-living increase. Continue reading “Forget the Pay Freeze: Start Worrying About Health Care Costs”