Pentagon wants to slash commissary budget

Matt Saintsing
March 15, 2019 - 2:43 pm
Pentagon wants to cut commissary budget by more than 20 percent

Photo by Lt. Cmdr Jim Rennington

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The Defense Department is looking to cut its commissary budget by 21 percent starting in 2020, a continuation of a series of cuts that began in fiscal 2016.

It's currently unclear what these cuts will mean for those who shop at commissaries worldwide, but if 2016 is any indication it could mean reducing operating days and hours in an effort to save money. 

The Defense Department is proposing Congress slash funding for commissaries by $271 million. 

That’s just the start. 

Over the next three years, commissaries would see a 30 percent cut in grocery discounts. 

These proposed cuts come at a time when the DoD is looking to save money by combining the military exchange and commissary systems. A move that has yet to be approved.

Under the proposal, there would also be fewer commissary workers, with some 14,000 employees going down to about 12,500 worldwide. 

RELATED: The Commissary wants to earn back your business

This budget request is also yet to be approved by Acting Deputy Secretary of Defense David Norquist. 

RELATED: Should we expand commissary access? The VFW says yes!

In 2018, the annual defense spending bill included language to allow any veteran with a service-connected disability to shop at a commissary or exchange starting in 2020. “For veterans whose ability to work is impacted by a service-connected disability, the cost savings associated with access to base commissary..will be a significant benefit," said Disabled American Veterans National Commander Dennis Nixon.

More details on that expansion is expected in September of this year. 

RELATED: Congress wants more oversight into commissary-exchange fusion

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