The Dillard Doctrine

Urban Conservative Commentary on Politics & Life

On Not Raising Taxes and the Military’s Pay Raise

Couple of interesting nuggets found in the FY-10 budget recently submitted by President Obama.

The first comes from Reuters (via American Thinker):

The Obama administration’s proposed 2010 budget seeks to significantly boost the user fees the U.S. government charges holders of public airwaves held by many telephone and wireless companies.

Yearly fees for spectrum licenses are proposed to rise to $200 million in 2010, from $50 million in 2009, according to the document posted on the Office of Management and Budget’s Web site.

After that, the fees eventually increase to $550 million per user per year, totalling $4.8 billion over the next decade.

(For those non-believers, it’s on page 127 of the budget, along with other user fees)

Of course, the users of these specturms-most noticably, cell phone companies-aren’t going to absorb these costs without passing them on to their customers. I’d recommend keeping a close eye on your cell phone bill starting, oh, January 2010.

Here’s some other examples of fee increases that I found in the budget:

  • An increase on the Aviation Passenger Security Fee beginning in 2012 (pg. 71; that’s commonly referred to as the “Sept. 11 Fee” on your airplane ticket),
  • Charging user fees on oil companies that process their drilling permits on Federal lands (pg. 79),

All together, these increased fees are estimated to bring in $7.1 billion over the next 10 years.

Why raise taxes when it’s easier to just increase the fees on things that affect us all?

Oh, yeah, and on that military pay raise that is often touted. Again, from the budget ( page 54):

The 2010 Budget includes funding for a 2.9 percent pay raise for men and women in uniform, an amount that will improve their purchasing power.

According to the Congressional Research Service, the military has recieved between a 3-4% increase in pay from 1998 (FY-99) to 2005 (FY-06). Raises from 2006 (FY-07) to 2008 (FY-09) were 2.2, 3.0, and 3.4%. Those numbers cover the administrations of a Democratic president (Clinton) and a Republican (Bush 43).

So, except for one year in the past 10, President Obama’s pay raise request is the lowest the military will recieve.

That might make his plan to increase the strength of the Army and Marines (same page) a little bit difficult.

My friend Jonn at This Ain’t Hell says this amounts to a pay cut for the military. I agree.




Written by Coby Dillard

March 1, 2009 at 1:30 pm

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