Your GSW Government Relations Committee met November 16th. If you have any questions or concerns, be sure to contact your GRC Region Liaison. Not sure who it is? Check the tab on the website that lists the GRC Committee, and underneath there is a tab that reads “Legislation”.
Lars Report: While the current emphasis has been on the Infrastructure Bill, the Toxic Exposure Omnibus Bills in the U.S. Senate and the U.S. House of Representatives are still being discussed. The “CBO” Congressional Budget Office score (cost) for The Cost of War and the Honoring our Pact Act of 2021 are over $400 Billion.
We are still waiting for a comprehensive Remarriage Bill to drop. While there are a couple of bills out there right now, they are not inclusive of everyone. Once there is a bill we can support, we will let you know.
Of course, our main objective is the passage of the Caring for Survivors Act of 2021 - S. 976 and HR. 3402, which will give us a long overdue increase in the DIC. We submitted written testimony at the House Legislative Subcommittee on Disability Assistance and Memorial Affairs hearing on October 20th. The good news is that there is a lot of support for this bill. MOAA -Military Officer Association of America has announced that the Caring For Survivors Act of 2021 is their main goal this year. As we know, DAV is also very supportive of the bills. The estimated score/cost for this bill is $14 Billion.
GRC Report: The GRC created a packet of letters asking for support which you may mail or email, the Fact Sheet for the bill, and a suggested message you may use by telephone. Your Region Liaison and Region President will work to get this out to you, plus we have sent out information in a recent eblast. Contacting YOUR Senator and Representative and letting them know you are a constituent is so important. Please tell them about your spouse, and why this increase is so important to you.
Please reach out to your Region Liaison/representative with questions you may have; and let them know if you have met with your Senator or Representative.
Veterans Day: Donna gave a report of the events in DC. We had GSW members at the Amphitheatre at Arlington Cemetery, where National President, Tamra Sipes, and Capital View Chapter President, Raina Taylor, placed the wreath. Board Chair, Crystal Wenum, placed the wreath at the Korean Memorial, and at the Wall, all the GSW members placed the wreath together. This was followed by a wreath laying at WIMSA--Women in Military Service of America Memorial at Arlington, by Tamra and Deb Skeldon. It was a very full and long day for everyone. As you know, Veterans Day was the 100th Anniversary of the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier. What an honor to be part of this Centennial.
Judy Woodall gave us a report of Veterans Day in Birmingham, AL. Although our Vice President was unable to attend due to COVID concerns, we had a three GSW members plus guests in attendance this year. Next year will be the 75th Anniversary for Veterans Day. The first celebration using the term “Veterans Day” occurred in Birmingham, Alabama, in 1947. Raymond Weeks, a World War II Veteran, organized "National Veterans Day," which included a parade and other festivities, to honor all Veterans. Each year, we join members of the Weeks family at a special remembrance of Raymond Weeks. Please consider coming to Birmingham next year for the 75th Anniversary.
If you have any questions or comments, please let us know. We do not have a scheduled GRC meeting in December so that our members may spend more time with family and friends as we enjoy the holiday season. May everyone enjoy a wonderful Holiday Season.