Wednesday, August 06, 2008

Add HR 6798 & 5892 to your agenda!

More Legislation of Great Interest!

We have received word today of two more bills that originated in the House that will have a profound effect on Blue Water Navy Veterans once HR 6562 is passed.

Introduced just a few days ago by Congressman Steve Kagen of Wisconsin's 8th District is HR 6798, which will add cancers of the gastro-intestinal tract to the list of Agent Orange diseases. These include pharyngeal, esophageal, stomach, liver/biliary, and pancreatic cancer, cancer of the bowel, and colorectal cancer. These cancers have been left off the list for far too long.

HR 6798 has been referred to the House Committee on Veterans Affairs.

Another recent bill, HR 5892, is much more complex. HR 5892, known as the `Veterans Disability Benefits Claims Modernization Act of 2008', takes care of a lot of administrative stuff within the DVA, such as training of claims processors, and some areas of the courts. Two areas are especially important and very beneficial to all vets, not just AO Veterans.

First, it expands the jurisdiction of the US Court of Appeals for Veterans Claims to include this:

"The Court shall have power to affirm, modify, reverse, remand, or vacate and remand a decision of the Board after deciding all relevant assignments of error raised by an appellant for each particular claim for benefits. In a case in which the Court reverses a decision on the merits of a particular claim and orders an award of benefits, the Court need not decide any additional assignments of error with respect to that claim."
This means the Court can reach out to include matters of the merits of the claim, not just procedural matters, or interpretations of rules, policy and regulations.

The second big items in this bill, is this:

"If a veteran who is a claimant dies while a claim for any benefit under a law administered by the Secretary, or an appeal of a decision with respect to such a claim, is pending and awaiting adjudication, the person who would receive any accrued benefits due to the veteran under section 5121(a)(2) of this title shall be treated as the claimant for the purposes of processing the claim to completion, except that such person may only submit new evidence in support of the claim during the one-year period beginning on the date of the death of the veteran."
No more will a widow have to go back and file a new claim when the Veteran dies with a claim pending. Now widows can pick up where the claim stands at the time of death, and can offer new evidence for a year.

Both items in this bill, are very big gains, and very big changes.

HR 5892 has passed the House, been accepted, read twice, and referred to the Senate Committee on Veterans Affairs.

We strongly urge you to get copies of these bills, and take them with you when seeing your representatives and Senators this month about HR 6562. Add these to the list [don't waste time on HR 5892 with your Reps, they already passed it, but hit your Senators heard to sponsor it!]

Click here to read a copy of HR 6798 when it is available.

Click Here to read and print a copy of HR 5892


We'll add links to these two bills, plus the trackers on the right sidebar shortly.

Get your legislators on board with these two bills IN ADDITION to HR 6562, the Agent Orange Fair Equity Act. Let's get all three passed in this session! Going to be tough, but let's shoot for the moon!

VNVets

”It is a stain on this nation's honor that the Department of Veterans Affairs has become a deadlier and more difficult adversary to the American veteran than any they have ever faced on a battlefield."-- VNVets

"The concept that Agent Orange, and its effects, stopped dead in its tracks at the shoreline is simply too illogical, and too ludicrous to accept. What does that say about the Bush Administration and his Department of Veterans Affairs?"--VNVets

"With malice toward none; with charity for all; with firmness in the right, as God gives us to see the right, let us strive on to finish the work we are in; to bind up the nation's wounds; to care for him who shall have borne the battle, and for his widow, and his orphan--to do all which may achieve and cherish a just and lasting peace, among ourselves, and with all nations." --President Abraham Lincoln

"Without a decisive naval force we can do nothing definitive, and with it, everything honorable and glorious."--President George Washington

Copyright © 2005-2008: VNVets Blog; All Rights Reserved.

2 comments:

  1. Dick16:26

    Why don't you recognize the USAF VNVets as well? AO and other defoliants were used on the bases in Thailand..Thank You.

    ReplyDelete
  2. Dick, you are 8 months behind in your reading. We do indeed include the TLC AF Vets in our efforts.

    Why not join us at VASVW? Click the orange logo on the left sidebar. We have a couple of AF Veterans in the membership.

    VNVets

    ReplyDelete