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Airmen can ask for interest-free loans if shutdown delays pay

Sep. 27, 2013 - 06:00AM   |  
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If mid-October paychecks are delayed by a government shutdown, the Air Force Aid Society will offer interest-free loans, the organization said this week. (Jewel Samad/AFP/Getty Images)
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Airmen who need help paying for essential supplies such as food and gas during a possible government shutdown will be able to request expedited, interest-free loans from the Air Force Aid Society.

The aid society posted a message on its website this week outlining assistance available to airmen, as Congress struggles to come to an agreement on a continuing resolution to keep the government operating after the current fiscal year ends Sept. 30. Unless Congress provides funding for the government before Oct. 9, mid-October paychecks will likely be delayed.

The aid society won’t be able to replace entire lost paychecks, but will provide interest-free loans that airmen will have to start repaying 30 days after the Defense Department reimburses them for their lost pay. The loan must be repaid three months after that.

The society said on-base airman and family readiness centers will likely be minimally manned during a shutdown, but will have at least a few personnel on hand to process emergency aid requests.

Title 10 reservists or Air National Guard members who have been active duty for more than 15 days will also be able to receive those loans, the society said.

Airmen requesting assistance will need to show an identification card and leave and earning statement. The society will cut airmen checks, but does not yet have the capability to electronically deposit funds into their bank accounts.

The aid society will handle other emergency assistance requests, such as for emergency travel or car repairs, under their normal processes.

The aid society recommended airmen alert their creditors, landlord, utility companies, or other organizations to which they owe money that the shutdown is likely to affect them, and ask if they can make smaller payments or defer payments until their full pay is restored.

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