In a letter sent to House Speaker Paul Ryan on Thursday, President Trump announced that a majority of civilian federal employees will not receive pay increases next year, undoing the original 2.1% pay increase that was set to take effect in 2019.
The details: The president explained the change is an effort "to put our Nation on a fiscally sustainable course, and Federal agency budgets cannot sustain such increases." No change has been announced for pay increases of military troops, which are still on track to receive a 2.6% bump according to the Military Times, marking their biggest pay raise since 2009.
Now we go to military pensions. Two parts:
- military pension, if increased, is increased annually based on inflation
- what is the inflation number for 2019?
The 2019 Cost of Living Adjustment (COLA) is heading towards a 3% increase based on July’s inflation data. July’s CPI-W rose by 3.16% on an adjusted basis over the previous 12-month period. July is the first of three months the does count towards 2019 COLA measurement. COLA increases are based on the inflation measurement period of the 3rd quarter (July, August, and September).
The 2019 COLA is expected be announced in mid-October 2018. There are still two months go but all signs point to the biggest COLA increase in 7 years.One wonders if the decision to scrap the civilian federal employee raise was "necessary" to cover the military? Just rhetorical.
I believe the COLA affects the following on these dates:
- Retired military veterans, VA rates for compensation and pension for disabled veterans and surviving families will be effective December 1, 2018 and will be reflected on the first check to be paid on December 31, 2018.
- Social Security benefits will be effective beginning with December 2018 benefits, which are payable in January 2018.
- Federal SSI payment levels will begin on December 29, 2018.