Congressmen Miller, Garamendi Announce Extension of Retroactive Pay Deadline for Soldiers Affected by Stop Loss Orders
Servicemembers, Veterans and their Beneficiaries will Have
until December 3, 2010 to Apply for Special Stop Loss Pay
WASHINGTON, DC - Rep. George Miller (D-Martinez), Chairman of the Education and Labor Committee, and Rep. John Garamendi (D-Walnut Creek), Member of the Armed Services Committee, today reminded local service members whose service was extended under “stop loss” orders in Iraq and Afghanistan to apply to receive retroactive special pay for their service if they have not done so already. The Congressmen represent districts in Solano County, which is home to Travis Air Force Base, the largest Air Force base in California. Over 120,000 residents within 50 miles of Travis Air Force Base are active military, military retirees, veterans, or their family members.
Congress passed the special stop loss provision to ensure that service members who were ordered to spend additional stop loss time in Iraq or Afghanistan are reimbursed appropriately for that time. Stop loss orders involuntarily extends troops’ service or suspends their retirement in order to keep sufficient forces on the battlefield. Defense Secretary Robert Gates announced a plan last year to eliminate the use of stop loss orders by March 2011 and provide sufficient personnel through the normal deployment process.
Service members have until December 3rd of this year to apply for retroactive pay, which is designated for these troops due to their extraordinary sacrifice on behalf of our country. Troops eligible for retroactive pay will receive $500 a month for each month that their service was extended. The Defense Department estimates that approximately 80,000 of the roughly 145,000 eligible service members have claimed this benefit.
"Our brave men and women have made tremendous sacrifices for our country," said Congressman Miller. "Congress passed legislation to provide well-deserved compensation for service members for tours that were involuntarily extended in Iraq and Afghanistan. I strongly encourage any active duty personnel, veterans or beneficiaries in our community to apply soon to ensure that they do not miss out on pay that they’ve earned."
"Our soldiers worked overtime and risked their lives for our country," Congressman Garamendi said. "I urge them to file early for this payment, so they can collect what they are owed. This compensation will help our soldiers better afford their mortgages, their groceries, and other day-to-day expenses."
The lawmakers also asked that the community help spread the word to make sure that no deserving service man or woman is left out.
Last year, Congress voted to provide retroactive stop loss pay, which allows troops whose service was involuntarily extended between September 11, 2001 and September 30, 2009 to file claims in order to receive retroactive pay if eligible. Congress last week extended the deadline for submissions to December 3, 2010. The average benefit is $3,800.
For more information or to submit a claim please visit https://www.defense.gov/stoploss.