Army Increases Bonuses for 2006

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It wasn't what they had hoped for. Last year the U.S. Army did not meet it's recruiting numbers, so they've stepped it up, starting with the signing bonuses.

Recently Congress approved a doubling of Army signing bonuses, meaning a new recruit could earn as much as 40-thousand dollars.

And it doesn't stop there, new reservists could get 20-thousand dollars, and an active duty soldier who is considered in high demand could earn up to 90-thousand.

Sgt. Sabrina Moorer says the military branch is trying to compete with the business world.

"They want to compete with the professionals out there," Sgt. Moorer said. "They have to come up with a competitive signing bonus because they're not many professional businesses that actually have such a bonus."

The bonuses will be used in certain areas, for recruits that have needed skills. They'll also depend on the length of their enlistment. And the bonuses will be paid out in installments throughout the enlistment contract.

"Now you have something a little extra a little extra boost that keeps you going and keeps you coming back," Moorer said.

And that seems to be the case. For seven straight months the army has met recruiting goals, and the number of people signing up is 25 percent higher now than this time last year. Also folks are re-enlisting, like Sgt. Moorer who has been in the army for 13 years.

"It's like a feast of ideas that you just go to the table and you decide which one you want to take from," Moorer said.

She says in the army you really can be all you can be. And that's what the army hopes to sell, or should be say buy.

Other new incentives include a referral incentive. If a soldier refers a potential recruit who actually joins they'll get 1 thousand dollars.

Plus the army will boost the amount of student loans it can repay to 65 thousand dollars.