New budget cuts retirement pay for veterans

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WASHINGTON -- With the new federal budget passed Wednesday, members of the military will see a major cut to their retirement benefits.

The deal reduces the cost-of-living adjustment for military retirees. They will lose 1 percent of their pension every year until they turn 62-years-old.

Estimates show a retiree who joined the military in his or her twenties and retired in his or her forties could lose more than $100,000 over 20 years until they turn 62.

On the other hand, the adjustment will save the government $6 billion.

Military groups across the country say the cutback targets veterans and financially harms those who risked their lives for our country.

FOX8 spoke to Scott Matthews of Greensboro, who considers the provision a breach of faith.

Matthews retired in 2008 as a Lieutenant Colonel in the Marine Corp after serving active and reserve duty for 30 years.

"We all knew what the benefits were when we started working," he explained. "We knew what the retirement was so we could do our proper planning just like anybody else working for a company and gets involved with a 401K or some other pension plan."

He added, "I'm definitely one that's going to be affected. I'm not 60 yet and as a reservist, a retired reservist, we receive our pension at the age of 60."

Under the new budget, Matthews would lose pension money for two years. But he knows other veterans who will lose much more.

"It is a breach of faith in terms of what our expectations were in the beginning," Matthews continued. "If you have to cut, make it across the board. In other words -- everybody gets the same pain."

Senator Kay Hagan responded to FOX8's request for comment today by saying in an email, "I am opposed to the provision in the budget agreement that reduces COLA for military retirees and will be looking at legislative solutions to restore those cuts for the men and women who have served our country with honor and distinction."

Hagan continued, "No bill is perfect, and I made the decision to vote for this bipartisan budget after hearing from military leaders in North Carolina, who urged me to support the agreement because they are concerned about the effect of sequestration on military readiness and the safety of our troops."

Matthews concluded, "We're definitely going to feel it if this goes through."


  • Joe Cool

    Kay Hagan, Congress, Senators, Obama and all the other political waste of space people in Washington D.C.; once again a poor excuse for a Senator, North Carolina rep and most of all, your just the kind of women who would need me in a time of danger and then stab me in the back when I turned around. You didn’t get my vote and will not get my vote!!!

    • stinger90

      Every one of them have lost sight. Greed is blinding in what’s right and wrong now more so then it’s ever been. They’re all so divided in their own agenda’s that they are not thinking about what’s right for America.

      They are also cutting the middle outta the middle man. We help to keep businesses of all kinds going and starting.

      It used to be an honor to represent one’s state. Now it’s who steals the most lollipops.

    • Maryanne Marshall

      Don’t forget ALLL the Democrates and some Republicans voted for this, it’s unspeakable!!! Hopefully the families and friends of the affected retirees will remember those who voted for this atrocity and oust them as they should be. A campaign specifically against those voters should be started state by state to tell them what we really feel out here. I’m appalled, can you tell?

  • stinger90

    What a shame. I didn’t know freedom was getting cheaper. Our color’s are fading and the wings of liberty keeps losing her feather’s by the day.

    I still want to THANK all the people who have served this country, and the one’s that are standing tall now protecting each day/night for us.


  • Victoria

    Lets make life harder for the Military members who have already had a hard life. Most of Americans will not see the details of war and hardship on their family. The least the government can do is provide to those who have given everything and start cutting from the people who have given nothing. Make some cuts in welfare and keep Military benefits!

  • scott

    Correct me If I am wrong. President Obama never seems to amaze me through his ignorance. As a “lame duck” president, he has first and foremost completely off thrown the healthcare systems amongst the population and now this!? The cut isn’t even benficial because it is being redirected towards HELPING ILLEGAL IMMIGRATION WELFARE!! I believe I recall hearing during Obama’s first presidental campaign that there would be a so called “crackdown” on illegal immigration…what’s happening to our nation everyone?

  • Dick pfluger

    Since the government no longer is required to live up to their side of the enlistment contract, then I assume military members can now opt out of combat or other hardship assignments when the government tasks them. Fair is fair.


    Whats going in our country, the president, the congress, and the entire
    federal goverment seem to be holding americans at bay as they steel
    from us? Taking from veterans past and future is just plain wrong.

  • Anna Bromley

    I would be interested to see how many of the congress/senate actually SERVED in our military. I’m willing to bet that it’s a very small amount, and that they were opposed to this.

  • Ray

    So they are cutting the military’s pay and wanting to bump minimum wage to $15 for a burger flipper. I wonder how much of a pay cut the politicians will vote on for them selfs

  • mon

    Well its boud to happen and they who are in charge DO NOT CARE. They do not put their lives on the line nor do they care about those that do however if you are a drag on society and do nothing for the average person/citizen you get all sorts of bennies….

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