The U.S. Department of Veteran Affairs is a buzz with anxious energy as they await news from President Obama. A comprehensive veteran benefits package was just sent to him for review.
The excitement is understandable. Once approved, the bill could improve insurance, compensation, employment, and disability benefits for service members.
“If signed into law, this bill will expand insurance options for disabled veterans, upgrade compensation benefits and employment protections, authorize VA construction projects, and allow VA to keep using private physicians to quickly and accurately provide veterans with disability evaluations,” a release from the Chairmen of Veteran Affairs U.S Sen. Daniel Akaka’s (D-Hawaii) office said.
Akaka went on to applaud his colleagues for continued support of the bill.
“I commend my colleagues for supporting this bill to upgrade the benefits that veterans have earned through their honorable service,” said Akaka.
In more detail, the Veterans’ Benefits Act of 2010, or H.R. 3219) includes the following changes, according to the release:
- Raises automobile assistance benefit for disabled veterans from $11,000 to $18,900.
- Authorizes federal grants to provide job training, counseling, placement, and childcare services to homeless women veterans and homeless veterans with children.
- Substantially increases the maximum levels of supplemental insurance for totally disabled veterans, as well as Veterans’ Group Life Insurance and Veterans’ Mortgage Life Insurance.
- Provides retroactive Servicemembers’ Group Life Insurance benefits for troops who were traumatically injured between Oct. 7, 2001 and Nov. 30, 2005, regardless of where their injury occurred.
- Clarifies that the Uniformed Service Employment and Reemployment Rights Act prohibits wage discrimination against members of the Armed Forces.