Washington Update for Friday, October 22, 2021
We are proud to report several legislative updates on behalf of servicemembers, veterans, caregivers, and their families. Over the past few weeks, TREA has supported several pieces of legislation on your behalf in Washington. Most notably:
The Military FATIGUES Act
Yesterday, U.S. Senators Maggie Hassan (D-NH) and Joni Ernst (R-IA) introduced bipartisan legislation to help address inequity in the military. The bipartisan legislation would reduce out-of-pocket costs for military uniforms for all service members and would help address the cost disparity for women service members, who often pay more for uniform items.
TREA’s President, Justin Jump, was quoted in Senator Hassan’s Press Release below:
"The report from the Government Accountability Office clearly identifies the inequities and out-of-pocket costs our members encounter when simply trying to adhere to uniform standards," said Justin Jump, National President at TREA: The Enlisted Association. "Our mission is to enhance the quality of life for uniformed services enlisted personnel, which is exactly what this bill helps achieve. We thank Senator Hassan and Senator Ernst for introducing this commonsense legislation and urge Congress to pass it without delay."
The Advancing Toward Impact Aid Full Funding Act
Recently, TREA was mentioned as a proud supporter by U.S. Representatives Mike Levin (D-CA) and Don Young (R-AK) when they introduced H.R. 5255 to fully fund the federal Impact Aid program, which supports K-12 public schools on federal land. The bipartisan bill creates a five-year plan to fund Impact Aid with $1.1 billion that would:
- Split Impact Aid’s $1.1 billion request evenly over five years, across three main categories for funding: Basic Support, Federal Property, and Children with Disabilities.
- Increase Basic Support funding by $190 million annually, meeting Impact Aid’s 2019 funding requests.
- Increase Federal Property funding proportionally to Basic Support by allocating an additional $11 million annually.
- Increase funding for Children with Disabilities by $9 million annually, funding $2,000 per eligible student.
- Advance national K-12 school systems to become more equitable and meet educational needs.
Support military families and Native American communities that are especially impacted by federally tax-exempt land.
Veterans’ Prostate Cancer Treatment and Research Act
This week, U.S. Senators Jerry Moran (R-KS) and Jon Tester (D-MT) introduced legislation to expand treatment and research of prostate cancer to help diagnose and treat veterans through the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA). TREA joined members of The Toxic Exposures in the American Military Coalition by writing a letter of support to the Chairman and Ranking Member of the Senate Committee on Veterans Affairs.
The Veterans’ Prostate Cancer Treatment and Research Act would:
- Expand upon the current VA and Prostate Cancer Foundation partnership.
- Require the VA to establish and publish an interdisciplinary clinical diagnosis and treatment pathway in the VA National Surgery Office, in collaboration with the VA National Program Office of Oncology, the VA Office of Research and Development and VA Primary Care for all stages of prostate cancer, from early detection to end of life care.
- Give the VA the authority to collaborate with other research entities on creation of clinical pathway including the National Institutes of Health, National Cancer Institute, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services, U.S. Food and Drug Administration, Patient-Centered Outcomes Research Institute (PCORI) and the Department of Defense.
- Require the VA to establish a prostate cancer program utilizing the clinical pathway mandated in this legislation, which will receive direct oversight from the VA Undersecretary of Health, include yearly program implementation evaluation, be metric and data driven, and include an education plan for patients and providers.
- Direct the VA to produce a plan to Congress detailing funding through the VA Office of Research and Development for supporting prostate cancer research to make certain no funding included is duplicative.
- Direct the VA to submit a report to Congress on the barriers and challenges associated with creating a national prostate cancer registry to include recommendations for centralizing data about veterans with prostate cancer in an effort to improve outcomes and research.
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