Sep 30 2013
WASHINGTON – U.S. Senator John Boozman (R-AR) today released the following statement after Congress passed legislation to ensure that members of the military are paid in the event of a government shutdown.
“A government shutdown has real implications for seniors, veterans and hardworking Arkansas families who rely on the services provided by federal agencies. If Majority Leader Reid continues to refuse to compromise with the House, he will drive the government to shut down. If that happens, it is only right to ensure that the men and women who are fighting to protect our freedoms do not suffer. They already have enough to worry about without added the stress a government shutdown would create on their families,” Boozman said.
The Pay Our Military Act (H.R. 3210) appropriates to the U.S. Treasury whatever sum of money is needed to cover pay and allowances for active and reserve personnel. It also covers pay and allowances for federal civilians determined by the Defense secretary as “providing support” to active and reserve members and also provides money for the pay and allowances of defense contractors providing support to military members. The pay for federal civilians and contractors would also extend to those working for the Department of Homeland Security for Coast Guard-related duties.
The House of Representatives passed this legislation over the weekend. The Senate passed it under unanimous consent this afternoon.
This is not a permanent exemption, as it expires on Jan. 1, 2015, and does not appear to guarantee full pay in a situation where the U.S. runs out of cash to pay its bills, something that could happen as a result of the separate debt ceiling crisis.