WASHINGTON — If Congress approves what was asked for in the
Fiscal Year 2018 defense budget request, Soldiers can expect to see a
bump in their paycheck come January.
The FY18 budget request, released by the Army on May 23, includes
$58.3 billion for military personal funding to support an Army of
1,018,000 Soldiers across the total force. This increase is $2.8 billion
over last year’s enacted budget, and that extra money will not only pay
for sustaining the additional Soldiers authorized in the 2017 National
Defense Authorization Act, but will also pay for an increase in Soldier
The FY18 budget asks for a 2.1 percent increase in Soldier basic pay,
a 2.9 percent increase in basic allowance for housing, and a 3.4 percent
increase in basic allowance for subsistence. If enacted, those increases
will go into effect Jan. 1, 2018.
Maj. Gen. Thomas A. Horlander, director of the Army budget, provided
highlights of the Army’s $137.2 billion FY18 base budget request May
23 at the Pentagon.
“The funding levels of the recently enacted FY17 budget and this FY18
base request are consistent with the administration’s goals for the U.S.
Army to rebuild readiness, reverse end strength reductions and prepare
for future challenges,” Horlander said, adding that this year’s budget
request is designed to provide combatant commanders with the “best
trained and ready land forces that we can generate.”
A $38.9 billion request for operation and maintenance dollars in the
FY18 budget — a $2.7 billion increase over the enacted budget last
year — is designed to “resource a more balanced readiness across
the force,” Horlander said.
That includes funding for 19 combat training center rotations for both
the regular Army and the National Guard, as well as funding for
increased home station training that will focus on both decisive action
and counter-insurgency operations.