Home    Upcoming Events    Links of Interest    Ladies Auxiliary
Webmaster    Newsletters    VFW Documents    VFW NSFA Updates
Agent Orange    Contact Us    Stories    Friends of the Post
Let Them Not Go In Silence    Photo Gallery    Flag Rules and Regulations
Listen Up!: Commander’s Message    Freedom is NEVER Free!
 
 

VFW WASHINGTON WEEKLY

November 4, 2011



In This Issue:
1. Budget Battle Impacts Troop Morale
2. Super Committee Holds Hearing on Debt Proposals
3. House Passes COLA Bill
4. Burn Pits Legislation Introduced
5. VFW Joins House Dems for Veterans' Roundtable
6. Nisei Units Receive Congressional Gold Medal
7. National Military Families, Caregivers Month
8. Military Family Survey
9. Korean War MIA Identified


1. Budget Battle Impacts Troop Morale: VFW National Commander Richard DeNoyer returned home from Afghanistan earlier this week extremely concerned that White House and congressional proposals to eliminate or reduce military pay and benefits is impacting the morale of 190,000 deployed American troops. "They see it as a breach of faith and a complete lack of support, understanding and appreciation for what it is they do daily for the rest of America," he said. "Theyalso cannot comprehend why anyone would even propose such measures while our nation is still engaged in two wars." Help the VFW to protect military pay and benefits by contacting yourcongressional members today. Urge them to protect the current military retirement and pay and allowance system, all TRICARE programs for military families and retirees, and all VA healthcare programs for wounded, ill and injured veterans. Click here to contact your members of Congress. Read more about the VFW national commander's trip here.


2. Super Committee Holds Hearing on Debt Proposals: The Joint Select Committee on Deficit Reduction held a hearing to review the work of previous debt reduction commissions. Witnesses from the President's Commission on Fiscal Responsibility and Reform and the Bipartisan Policy Center were on hand to review some of the recommendations that came out of their policy debates. The authors of those plans former Clinton chief of staff Erskine Bowles and former Republican Sen. Alan K. Simpson (WY), who led President Obama's fiscal commission, and former Clinton budget director Alice Rivlin and formerRepublican Sen. Pete V. Domenici (NM), who produced a plan from the Bipartisan Policy Center answered questions about cuts in entitlement programs and discretionary spending, as well as revenueincreases. Only three weeks remain until the deadline for the committee to produce legislation to cut the deficit by at least $1.2 trillion over 10 years.
To view the recorded webcast, visit the committee website at: http://www.deficitreduction.gov/public/index.cfm/hearings


3. House Passes COLA Bill: This week, the House passed legislation that would increase the rates of VA disability compensation and dependency and indemnity compensation for surviving spouses and children. S. 894, which passed the Senate a few weeks ago, authorizes the increase which is based on the Bureau of Labor Statistics Consumer Price Index. As in the past, Congress must pass a bill allowing the increase to ensure disabled veterans and their families are also included in theCOLA raise Social Security and military retirees receive. The bill has been sent to the President for his signature. The COLA is expected to be a 3.6% increase.
For the House VA Committee Press Release click here: http://veterans.house.gov/


4. Burn Pits Legislation Introduced: VFW was on hand Thursday for a media event unveiling the Open Burn Pit Registry Act of 2011, a bill that would require the Secretary of Veterans Affairs to establish and maintain a registry for individuals who may have been near or exposed to a burn pit in Iraq or Afghanistan. The VFW fought for decades to raise awareness of the health problems associated with Agent Orange exposure, and this registry willhelp identify who may be entitled to healthcare and benefits from toxic inhalation in the future. To learn more, click here: http://www.vfwonthehill.org/2011/11/vfw-applauds-burn-pit-legislation.html


5. VFW Joins House Dems for Veterans' Roundtable: On Wednesday, VFW Legislative Director Ray Kelley attended a roundtable with the House Democratic leadership at the U.S. Capitol to discuss issues ranging from survivor benefits to veterans employment. VFW's primary concerns included preserving military benefits and retirement, protecting the Post-9/11 G.I. Bill from caps and reductions and finding alternative treatments for Post Traumatic Stress and Traumatic Brain Injury. Two members of the Joint Select Committee on DeficitReduction attended and spoke broadly on their progress, saying they believe Veterans Affairs will be protected from across-the-board cuts if Congress is unable to meet its own mandate of findingat least $1.2 trillion dollars in reductions. The committee members also said that all other areas are on the table, meaning VFW members must continue our calls asking our Senators and members of Congress to leave military benefits and retirement alone.


6. Nisei Units Receive Congressional Gold Medal: Congress awarded its highest civilian honor Wednesday to Japanese-Americans who served and fought in World War II as members of the 100th Infantry Battalion, the 442nd Regimental Combat Team and the Military Intelligence Service. The Nisei, who are American-born to Japanese immigrants, were known as the "Go For Broke" units for their willingness to do whatever it took to succeed. Read more at http://www.defense.gov/news/newsarticle.aspx?id=65949


7. National Military Families, Caregivers Month: Calling on the nation to celebrate military families' service and sacrifice, President Obama signed proclamations on Tuesday that designated November as Military Family Month and National Family Caregivers Month. "With every step we take on American soil, we tread on ground made safer for us through the invaluable sacrifices of our service members and their families," the president said in his proclamation. Read more at http://www.defense.gov/news/newsarticle.aspx?id=65910.


8. Military Family Survey: Blue Star Families has asked VFW to help distribute their 2012 Military Family Lifestyle Survey to active-duty, Guard, Reserve and veteran families. You can access the survey at http://tiny.cc/surveyVFW.


9. Korean War MIA Identified: The Defense POW/Missing Personnel Office announced the identification of remains belong to Army Cpl. Eugene M. Morelli, 21, of Santa Ysabel, CA In February 1951, Morelli and elements of the 2nd Infantry Division were forced to withdraw during the Battle for Hoengsong in South Korea. Morelli was captured but died in captivity due to malnutrition. Read more about his recovery and identification here.

 

Home    Upcoming Events    Links of Interest    Ladies Auxiliary
Webmaster    Newsletters    VFW Documents    VFW NSFA Updates
Agent Orange    Contact Us    Stories    Friends of the Post
Let Them Not Go In Silence    Photo Gallery    Flag Rules and Regulations
Listen Up!: Commander’s Message    Freedom is NEVER Free!