From Chuck Weber, your Veteran Service Officer...

House Passes Veterans Bills

Under suspension of the rules, the House has passed five bills impacting veterans. The bills include:

The “Boosting Rates of American Veteran Employment Act” (H.R. 1382), sponsored by Rep. Kathleen Rice (N.Y.) would allow the VA to give preference to government contractors who employ veterans on a full time basis when awarding procurement contracts. Rep. Rice said, “We need businesses in the private sector to recognize the benefit of having veterans in their workforce. We need businesses to recognize that it is in their best interest to actively seek out and employ veterans—not as an act of charity, but because they are excellent workers who know how to get the job done.”

The “Service Disabled Veteran Owned Small Business Relief Act” (H.R. 1313), sponsored by Jerry McNerney (Calif.), would allow a surviving spouse of a veteran who has a service-connected disability rating of less than 100 percent, and who does not die due to their service-connected disability, to retain the veteran’s small business status through VA’s “Vets First” program for up to three years following the veteran’s death.

The “Ensuring VA Accountability Act” (H.R. 1038), sponsored by Ryan Costello (Penn.), would require the VA to maintain all written reprimands and admonishments that a VA employee receives in the VA employee’s file as long as they are an employee of the department.

The “Homeless Veterans’ Reintegration Programs Reauthorization Act” (H.R. 474), sponsored by Brad Wenstrup (Ohio), would reauthorize the Homeless Veteran Re-Integration Program until FY 2020.

The “Veteran’s I.D. Card Act” (H.R. 91), sponsored by Rep. Vern Buchanan (Fla.), would direct the VA to provide an ID card to any honorably-discharged veteran who is not a retired member of the Armed forces or who is enrolled in the VA healthcare system.

These bills now go to the Senate for further consideration.

Source:  FRA NewsBytes, May 22, 2015

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