MARINE CORPS AIR STATION IWAKUNI -- A new investment opportunity has arisen for select service members to invest $600 and receive $5,400 in return.
Active duty service members who took advantage of the Montgomery GI Bill upon enlistment can now make an additional contribution for an increased monthly benefit.
The initial investment of $1,200 will currently have a return of $650 per month for 36 months. The buy-up will add an additional $150 per month for 36 months to the existing GI Bill return.
"This is one of the educational benefits that does not have an expiration date," said Tony Elliott, Career Resource Management Center program manager. "However, it is only applicable to those service members that are currently on active duty."
If a Marine is interested in enrolling in the buy-up, there are two ways to do it, Elliott noted.
If the applicant has the $600 and they would like to make a lump-sum payment, that payment can be made directly to disbursing. If a service member does not want to pay it all at once, they can elect to pay through payroll deduction.
No matter which method of payment the Marine chooses, the process begins at the Installation Personnel Administration Center.
"Basically, we fill out the form, and all we need from them is a payroll signature," said Cpl. Joshua Keys, IPAC pay clerk. "One thing they have to elect is how much to contribute."
If the individual wants to use the lump sum option, they take the original signed 2366 Form from IPAC to the disbursing office in Building 236, next to the Southside Mess Hall.
Individuals choosing payroll allotment must have enough time left before their end of active service to set up a payment plan. Individuals need to remember that pay stops 90 days before EAS.
Paying the lump sum must be done no later than 30 days from EAS and can be paid in a variety of ways.
Once a service member takes advantage of the program, they will receive an additional $150 a month added to the GI Bill once they become a full-time student.
For more information on the Buy Up Program contact the Transition Management Office at 253-6250, the IPAC Pay and Maintenance office at 253-5521, or the Disbursing Office at 253-6025.