Key details of the budget agreement passed by Congress:
• Establishes overall non-war-related discretionary spending at $1.012 trillion for the current fiscal year and $1.014 trillion for fiscal 2015. Fiscal 2013 spending was $986 billion.
• Eases across-the-board “sequester” spending cuts by $63 billion over two years, split between defense and domestic programs.
• Raises airline security fees from $5 to $11.20 for a typical round-trip ticket starting July 1, 2014. That will raise $13 billion over 10 years.
• Reduces retirement benefits for working-age military retirees, including those who retire early because of disability. Starting Dec. 1, 2015, the cost-of-living adjustment for pensions received by people under 62 would be modified to equal inflation minus 1 percent. Upon reaching 62, retirees would receive a “catch-up” increase that would restore their pensions to levels as if the cost-of-living adjustment had been the full consumer price index in all previous years.
• Increases by 1.3 percentage points the pension contributions paid by federal civilian workers hired after Jan. 1, 2014. The change would raise $6 billion.
• Raises premiums paid by corporations to the Pension Benefit Guarantee Corp. to guarantee pension benefits, a change that would raise $8 billion.
sponsored According to two 2015 surveys, 62 percent of Americans do not have enough savings to handle an unexpected emergency, much less any long-term plans.