Military/Veteran Transitionnews for 2/11/14

Military transition and veterans affairs news of the day for 2/11/14

Good news story of the day

Wounded Warriors set sights on Sochi gold  (Army.mil)  Three wounded warriors who recovered at Brooke Army Medical Center, are aiming to glide to gold in Sochi, Russia, next month.

Military Transition

Hiring Our Heroes Job Fair Set for Feb. 13  (San Diego Business Journal)  A job fair for veterans and military spouses will be held Feb. 13 from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. at University of Phoenix campus, 9665 Granite Ridge Road in San Diego

Construction industry pledges to hire 100,000 veterans  (The Washington Post)  First lady Michelle Obama and Labor Secretary Thomas Perez on Monday will announce a pledge from construction companies to hire 100,000 veterans over the next five years as part of an initiative seeking to encourage non-government support for former troops.

St. Louis aldermen pass veterans jobs bill  (Fox2now.com)  A veteran’s jobs bill is one step closer to reaching the St. Louis City ballot in time for Veterans Day 2014.

Big business: Vets should start transition process early  (Military Times)  Bigwigs at some of America’s largest corporations agree: Troops need to start planning much earlier to have a smooth and successful transition from the military to the private sector.

Job fair aims to get more military into workforce  (WISTV.com)  Military leaders in the Midlands are putting the finishing touches on a huge event Tuesday aimed at reducing the unemployment rate when it comes to our nation’s veterans and their spouses.

Veterans

Fake ‘My Army Benefits’ Site Scams Service Members  (Mashable)  Military investigators are alerting members of the Army about an unofficial benefits site that purports to offer users unclaimed benefits and then bags their credentials.

MI Social Workers Bridging the Gap Between Veterans and Civilians  (PublicNewsService.org)  While it’s good to come home to family and friends after military deployment, getting back into the swing of daily life can be difficult for armed services members, and social workers in Michigan are helping to ease the transition for many veterans.

After War, a Failure of the Imagination  (The New York Times)  “I COULD never imagine what you’ve been through,” she said.

SFC pitches idea for ‘Army Retirement Medal’  (Army Times)  When Sgt. 1st Class Steven Janotta first floated his idea for a retirement medal, some of his peers thought he was joking and wasting their time.

Veterans Affairs

VA national cemeteries continue to lead country in satisfaction survey  (Army.mil)  For the fifth consecutive time, the Department of Veterans Affairs’ National Cemetery Administration has bested the nation’s top corporations and other federal agencies in a prestigious, independent survey of customer satisfaction.

Progress stalls on cutting VA claims backlog  (Army Times)  Veterans Affairs Department officials expected to see significant progress in
the effort to reduce their disability claims backlog again this month.

Congress Is Getting Tougher on the VA  (The Wall Street Journal)  Congress is poised to tighten its leash on the Department of Veterans Affairs over its response to what lawmakers say are management and medical errors, just as VA facilities are flooded with a new generation of injured troops.

Surgical problems at VA hospital in South Carolina leave veterans at risk  (The Washington Times)  Care at one Veterans Affairs hospital was so disorganized that officials didn’t  inform some patients they were scheduled for surgery, while doctors planned for  surgeries they knew would never take place.

Helping the VA help L.A.’s homeless vets  (Los Angeles Times)  For years, the effort to establish housing for chronically homeless veterans on  the VA’s sprawling West Los Angeles campus has been painfully, shamefully slow,  as mistrust and inertia have impeded progress at the same time that two wars  have dramatically increased the need for action.

Benefits

Congress moves to reverse budget cuts to veterans’ benefits  (Los Angeles Times)   The House could vote as early as Wednesday on a bill that would raise the  nation’s debt  ceiling and reverse a cut made to some veterans’ benefits as part of the  recent budget deal.

Last-Minute Flip Opens Window for Veterans’ Benefits Bill  (National Journal)  Just hours before a sure-to-fail vote to restore more than $6 billion in funding for military benefits, Senate Democrats and Republicans now appear ready to move the measure forward.

Downstate assemblyman says state should reimburse school district taxes lost to new veterans exemption  (Syracuse.com)  Update: Legislators did not look at the impact a law expanding property tax breaks to veterans would have on school districts before passing the legislation last year, a Downstate assemblyman said Monday afternoon.

House GOP homes in on debt-ceiling plan tied to military pension benefits  (The Washington Post)  House Republican leaders spent Monday trying to finalize a plan to increase the Treasury’s borrowing authority and avoid a federal default by urging GOP lawmakers to rally behind a proposal that ties a debt-ceiling increase to a plan to restore full pension benefits for some military veterans.

Hill report puts dollar figures on military retiree COLA limit  (The Washington Post)  The average military enlisted person retiring in the future would lose $69,000 in lifetime benefits and the average future retired officer would lose $87,000 if a recently enacted limit on military retiree payments is left in place, according to a new analysis done for Congress.

House Republicans Seek to Trade Debt Deal for Repeal on Military Pensions  (The New York Times)  The House is likely to vote Wednesday on a plan to extend the government’s borrowing authority into 2015 in exchange for reversing a cut to the pensions of working-age military veterans that Congress approved just two months ago to try to trim the budget deficit.

GOP Leaders in New Push to Reach Debt Deal  (The Wall Street Journal)  House Republican leaders tried Monday to build support for raising the federal debt limit by linking it to a reversal of planned cuts in some military pensions, working to overcome vocal opposition from conservatives in hopes of bringing it to a vote Wednesday.

Budget deal needs real Pentagon reforms: Column  (USA Today)  magine a combat infantryman with 25 years of military service, through times of war and peace. Now retired, this veteran struggles with back pain and arthritis, warranting a disability rating and modest compensation for decades of grueling service.

House GOP looks at longer sequester  (The Hill)  House Republican leaders are thinking about extending the sequester to pay the $6 billion cost of reversing a cut to military pensions.

House Republicans Seek to Trade Debt Deal for Repeal on Military Pensions  (The New York Times)  The House is likely to vote Wednesday on a plan to extend the government’s borrowing authority into 2015 in exchange for reversing a cut to the pensions of working-age military veterans that Congress approved just two months ago to try to trim the budget deficit.

Bill to restore COLA for military retirees clears Senate hurdle  (Military Times)  The Senate cleared a key procedural hurdle Monday on a bill that would undo the cuts to military retirement pay introduced by the Bipartisan Budget Act.

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Have a great day!

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