Gen. Ray Odierno, speaking to attendees of a National Press Club event, said it will be six years before the Army “digs its way out of the military readiness problems sequestration caused.” He said the Army will be out of balance for the next three years. The reason? Odierno explained that taking people out of the service to make dollars available for readiness and modernization doesn’t equate. In a ridiculous twist, if he takes out more than 20,000 troops a year, it costs more to remove them than it would to keep them in the service, resulting in a reduction in savings. He stated that the budget relief for this year will help, but in 2015, unless there’s a fix, that relief won’t be sustained. There’s uncertainty as to whether soldiers sent into harm’s way would be fully prepared, and whether an operation could continue as long as needed. Odierno stated that until 2020 the issues are readiness and modernization. After that, the issue is the size of the force.
Personnel Programs for All Services
Under threat is the annual $20 billion Basic Housing Allowance for servicemembers to help pay their rent. One possibility is for the Pentagon to cover only 80 percent of average costs, with servicemembers making up the difference.