Allowance rises in parts of mainland Japan, Okinawa
January 9, 2009
Post allowance rates shot up for Department of Defense civilians in parts of mainland Japan and Okinawa, according to new figures posted this week on the State Department’s Office of Allowances Web site.
The allowance also resurfaced across South Korea after being eliminated in November.
The increase for U.S. civilians follows another significant cost-of-living allowance boost for U.S. troops in mainland Japan, Okinawa and a few South Korea locations in the new year.
Post allowance jumped eight points on Okinawa and some areas in mainland Japan, including Yokota Air Base, Camp Zama, Naval Air Facility Atsugi, Sasebo Naval Base, Marine Corps Air Station Iwakuni and Misawa Air Base. The rate held steady in Tokyo and at Yokosuka Naval Base.
In South Korea, it went back up to 5 percent of expendable income, which is considered pay left over after housing, savings and health care costs.
The increases will show up in Jan. 28 paychecks.
Civilian allowances are updated biweekly by the State Department. They vary based on salary, location and family size.
For example, a single civilian at Osan Air Base in South Korea making $40,000 annually will now get an extra $36 during the next pay period. The same worker at Yokota, however, can expect almost $60 more.
Post allowance changes were based on foreign currency exchange rate adjustments. Rates are set about eight days before the effective date of the new allowance.
On Wednesday, the dollar’s exchange rate against the yen was 90 yen at military banking facilities, up from 88 yen for much of the past week. It was worth 1,272 South Korean won.
The extra money supplements paychecks and is meant to offset the cost of living overseas.
Allowance tables can be found at the State Department Web site: http://aoprals.state.gov