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Long-Term Implications of the 2013 Future Years Defense Program

Costs of Military Pay and Benefits in the Defense Budget, November 14, 2012

  • “Of DoD’s $150 billion request for compensation in 2013, more than $90 billion would go to basic pay, food and housing allowances, bonuses, and various types of special pay. Another $16 billion would go to accrual payments that account for the future pensions of current service members who will retire from the military (generally after at least 20 years of service). In 2012, DoD paid 34 cents for each dollar of basic pay for active personnel and 24 cents for each dollar of basic pay for reserve personnel. The remainder of DoD’s request for compensation in 2013—roughly $40 billion—would cover health benefits. Whereas 1.4 million military personnel serve on active duty, a total of nearly 10 million people are eligible for military health benefits. In addition to active-duty military personnel, the people who have access to health benefits include eligible family members of those personnel, retired military personnel and their eligible family members, survivors of service members who died while on active duty, and some members of the reserves and National Guard.”
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