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Air Force Adds Bonus For Airmen Who Switch To New Retirement System
Airmen approaching 12 years served who convert to the new Blended Retirement System will be eligible for a continuation pay bonus, but those planning on retiring after 20 years may benefit more from the current system.
Active-duty airmen who commit to 48 months of additional service will receive a one-time bonus of 2.5 times their monthly basic pay, according to an Air Force statement issued on Nov. 27. Reservists will receive 50 percent of their base pay.
If reserve airmen are on active-duty orders when they convert to the new system, they’ll earn the active-duty payment rate.
Airmen must elect to receive continuation pay before the start of their 12th year of service. They can choose to receive the payments in a lump sum or yearly installments, subject to tax withholding, and will be required to pay it back if they don’t complete their service.
Each of the services will offer a continuation bonus for converting to the blended system, but the law gives them the discretion to make the offer to servicemembers between eight and 12 years of service.
Currently, servicemembers who retire after 20 years each month receive 50 percent of the average of their highest three years of base pay, plus 2.5 percent more for each year of active duty after 20 years.
Under the new blended plan, the payout is reduced to 40 percent and 2 percent more for each year of active duty after 20 years.
However, the new plan includes matching contributions to the Thrift Savings Plan, a program similar to a traditional 401(k). Servicemembers can choose to invest their money in different funds, with varying risk.
All current servicemembers are grandfathered into the current retirement plan, but those with less than 12 years of service can opt into the new plan throughout 2018. Starting Jan. 1, all new servicemembers are automatically enrolled in the new plan.
Mandatory training at the Joint Knowledge Online website directs servicemembers to a retirement calculator that can help them decide whether to switch plans. The difference in benefits could amount to hundreds of thousands of dollars.
©2017 the Stars and Stripes. Distributed by Tribune Content Agency, LLC.
University of Phoenix to pay $191 million for lying to troops about its close ties with major companies
WASHINGTON (Reuters) - The University of Phoenix, which is owned by Apollo Education Group, has agreed to pay $191 million to settle charges that it falsely advertised close ties with major U.S. companies that could lead to jobs for students, the Federal Trade Commission said on Tuesday.
The University of Phoenix will pay $50 million to the FTC to return to consumers and cancel $141 million in student debt.
Some of the advertisements targeted military and Hispanic students, the FTC said.
As UCF research associate Shane Reynolds guides his avatar over a virtual minefield using his iPad, small beeps and whistles reveal the location of the scourge of the modern war zone: Improvised Explosive Devices, or IEDs. He must take his time to sweep every last inch of the playing field to make sure his character doesn't miss any of the often-deadly bombs.
Despite his slow pace, Reynolds makes a small misstep and with a kaboom! a bomb blows up his player, graphically scattering body parts.
The Navy has posthumously awarded aviator and aircrewman wings to three sailors killed in last week's shooting at Naval Air Station Pensacola.
"The selfless acts of heroism displayed by these young Sailors the morning of Dec. 6 are nothing short of incredible," Chief of Naval Air Training Rear Adm. Daniel Dwyer said in a statement.
Clint Eastwood still loves his role as Gunny Highway in ‘Heartbreak Ridge’ — ‘I’m proud I got to play a Marine’
Ah, Heartbreak Ridge, the creme de la' creme of moto-movies that gave us such gems as: "Recon platoon kicks butt!" and the tried-and-tested method of firing a bunch of AK rounds at your Marines and calling it a teachable moment.