Image copyright Sam Shore/US Army
By Patrick Dickson
Copyright 2014 Stars and Stripes
WASHINGTON — The long-feared cuts to military commissaries appear to be real: The Defense Department subsidy would drop from $1.4 billion annually to $400 million under a defense budget proposal the Obama administration plans to deliver to Congress next week, Pentagon officials announced Monday.
The commissary cut will be accomplished not by eliminating any commissary locations, but by reducing the amount of savings over civilian markets that servicemembers enjoy. The cut will be phased in over several years.
A recent study by Defense Commissary Agency, or DeCA, found that using the commissary saves shoppers an average of 30.5 percent annually when compared to other stores off base.
The savings would drop to about 10 percent, defense officials said in a briefing that covered all aspects of the 2015 defense budget, including hardware and military pay.