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KILLEEN

Future troops may see reduced benefits

KILLEEN, TX (KXXV) -

As of January 2013, entry level enlisted troops only make around $1,500 dollars a month, but the GOP is looking to cut this. As well as cut retirement pay and health benefits for future troops.

Republican Rep. Rob Whittman of Virginia, who oversees 40% of the defense budget, says the cuts would be necessary to protect other programs.

However, the lower pay doesn't seem to deter one future troop.

"It can't be worse than a lot of jobs out here," said Delvion Wilborne.

Wilborne wants to enlist in the Air Force, because he says the economy has been crazy.

"Because of the instability of the economy, it's definitely making me want to join more."

Recruiters are happy to sign enthusiastic troops, like Wilborne, because they say the military is always hiring.

The promise of a steady paycheck and education benefits doesn't hurt either.

The GOP has concerns about the proposal.  The lowered pay, which is still up for discussion, could result in high turnover as troops leave and people don't enlist.

The trade off may be worth it to Whittman, because he says reducing benefits could be a better solution than kicking people out of the military and shutting down military installations.

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