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Pentagon to cut cost of living allowances for thousands of US troops in 2022

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Pentagon to cut cost of living allowances for thousands of US troops in 2022

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The Department of Defense (DoD) announced last week that troops in 15 metropolitan areas and 21 non-metropolitan counties in the continental United States will be deprived of a cost-of-living allowance starting Jan. 1.

According to Stars and Stripes, the change will result in the loss of approximately 48,000 troops on the United States Cost of Living Allowance (CONUS COLA).

About 6,000 military personnel will remain the beneficiaries of the $ 8.5 million the Pentagon has allocated for the allowance, which is given to troops stationed in excessively expensive locations in the Lower 48.

U.S. Army soldiers prepare to patrol from a remote combat outpost on May 25, 2021, in northeastern Syria. (Photo by John Moore / Getty Images)

The 2022 list includes 20 non-metropolitan counties and six metropolitan areas, including New York, Long Island, and Staten Island in New York; Nantucket, Massachusetts; Boulder, Colorado; and San Francisco, California.


The COLA rate is based on information gathered by a contractor, who analyzes the cost of transportation, goods and services, federal income taxes, sales taxes, and miscellaneous expenses, according to the DoD.

A location becomes eligible for COLA when non-housing costs exceed 8% of the national average.

Among the places that were cut in 2022 is the Washington, DC area, where troops received an additional 1% in 2021. Allocations for troops in Boston and Worcester, Mass., Also had the chopped.

Troops located in New York will receive the highest allocation at 6%, up from 7% in 2021.

The amount of COLA a service member earns depends on the geographic location of the service, level of pay, years of service, and dependency status. The Pentagon explained that the monthly payments for each percentage point of CONUS COLA range from $ 33 to $ 59 per month for troops with dependents, and from $ 22 to $ 45 per month for those without dependents.

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