President Donald Trump signed spending legislation Friday afternoon that will fund the Defense Department through FY 2019 and prevent a government shutdown.
The bill includes nearly $675 billion in military spending and will pay for a FY 2019 military pay raise of 2.6 percent, one of several MOAA priorities met by the new law; others include language that would provide death gratuities to the families of fallen servicemembers in the event of a future federal shutdown, and would provide $34.4 billion for defense health requirements.
The raise is the largest servicemembers have received since 2010.
The legislation does not address the expansion of concurrent receipt or the dollar-for-dollar deduction of DoD's Survivor Benefit Plan from the VA's Dependency and Indemnity Compensation, better known as the widows tax, which remain key MOAA legislative priorities. Click here for a more complete breakdown of the spending bill.
The bill also does not include funding for the president's proposed wall at the Mexican border. That created some concern in Washington about whether he would sign the legislation, which includes about $855 billion in overall spending: Outside of money for defense, the law provides about $180 billion combined for the departments of Education, Health and Human Services, Labor, and related agencies.
The president signed separate legislation Sept. 21 that funded the VA, along with other federal agencies.