Friday, September 28, 2012

Veterans Cost of Living Adjustment (COLA) Blocked

Senator Patty Murray (D-Wash) said on Thursday that an unnamed Republican Senator last week
blocked a bill that would have provided an annual cost of living adjustment, which means that payments of the new COLA could be delayed.

Senator Murray brought the bill, H.R. 4114 (which passed the House in July) to the Senate floor
on Sept. 21. The bill was cleared by Senate Democrats but was blocked by this unnamed Republican
Senator. So the Senate went into recess without passing the bill.

Once again Congress has stepped on our nation's veterans and one more time shown how little
our Congress thinks of those who served our country.

The bill as passed by the House would have given a cost-of-living-adjustment to 3.9 million veterans
and their survivors a raise in their disability compensation and benefits which is supposed to offset
inflation. Similar bills are usually passed each year with no controversy.

So, now with Congress not scheduled to return to work until Nov. 13, in order for the increase to
show in Jan. 1 checks the bill will have to be passed almost immediately.

Thursday afternoon the Department of Veterans Affairs stated that Congress must pass the
COLA no later than Nov. 13 if the increase is to be included in the Jan 1 checks. If the bill is
passed any later than that the VA would not be able to make all the changes to programming
of their system. Which means the increase would have to be paid retroactively.

This follows the move last week that saw the Veterans Job Corps Act fail to pass. A bill that
would have provided $1 billion to help veterans find employment. Their is now a bill in
the House that would direct the VA to create a Veterans Job Corps.

And so it continues, the ongoing disregard and disrespect for the brave men and women who
have served in our Armed Forces. The Veterans who sacrificed so much for our nation are again
left to hang in the winds of ill will.

America, it is time to say enough! Time to give our veterans what they were promised and what
is fair and just. If your elected officials are not standing up and voting for veterans and our military,
vote them out of office.

---- Jerald Terwilliger Former Chairman American Cold War Veterans "We Remember" ---------------- "And so the greatest of American triumphs... became a peculiarly joyless victory. We had won the Cold War, but there would be no parades." -- Robert M. Gates, 1996