After spending Memorial Day with American service members in Afghanistan, Congressman Patrick Murphy announced three new bills designed to benefit service members, Veterans and military families.
Rep. Murphy, from Florida’s 18th District, unveiled the House bills on May 30th. The first bill, H.R. 4793, is known as the “Reducing Barriers for Veterans Education Act of 2014.” Most schools charge application fees to potential students. These fees can total more than $100, and students trying to attend major universities and graduate programs usually apply to multiple schools in the hopes that at least one will accept them. If approved, anyone enrolling in college using the Post-9/11 GI Bill will not have to pay application fees to the colleges, universities or vocational schools they apply to.
Another bill is intended to reduce the VA appeals claims backlog and speed up the appeals process by grouping Veterans with similar appeals together to be heard as a class action. The current appeal process is so backed up that hearing each appeal one by one only impedes Veterans from receiving their benefits. Veterans who have already been waiting for care before their appeals process began shouldn’t be put off from receiving care any longer.
The third bill is meant to expand the Military Spouse Career Advancement Accounts program (MyCAA) so that it actually covers the cost of tuition for those whose spouses are overseas on active duty.
Hopefully, these bills will be passed by Congress and improve the support and care provided to service members, Veterans and their families.
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Military Connection: Veteran-Friendly Legislation: By Debbie Gregory