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thedrifter
01-28-09, 05:35 AM
Alaska: Reconsider pay for WWII militia
The Associated Press
Posted : Tuesday Jan 27, 2009 21:58:58 EST

JUNEAU, Alaska — State lawmakers will consider asking the U.S. Department of Defense to restore retirement pay for members of a World War II Alaska militia.

The pay was discontinued after a military analysis determined a law recognizing the Alaska Territorial Guard’s service as federal active duty had been misinterpreted.

The Army recently announced it was ending benefits for 26 surviving members. It also suspended applications for 37 others. The benefits amount to as much as $557 a month.

Sen. Charlie Huggins, R-Wasilla, is proposing that the state cover the benefits at least until they can be reinstated — roughly $10,000 a month for the 26 surviving members.

Sens. Lisa Murkowski, R-Alaska, and Mark Begich, D-Alaska, also plan to introduce legislation clarifying that territorial guard service counts as active duty and is therefore eligible for retirement benefits. Gov. Sarah Palin has sent a letter to President Obama asking that he reconsider the department’s decision and reinstate the benefits.

Ellie