Wednesday, March 10, 2010

Legislative Update

CAPT Marshall Hanson
Legislative Director

ROA recently had a series of meetings on Capitol Hill.

MG David Bockel, USA, ROA Executive Director met with Rep. Joe Wilson (R-S.C.). The first topic of discussion was how ROA could support Rep. Wilson's efforts to correct the current law on early retirement back to Sept 11, 2001, which was introduced as H.R. 208 last year. One of the top priorities of ROA, MG Bockel discussed with the Congressman ways of offsetting the $2.1 billion that it would cost over the next 10 years. "Pay Go" continues to dominate the rules on passing legislation in the House.

Several meetings were held on Rep. Tim Walz's (D-Minn.) bill, H.R. 3787, that would authorize veteran status to National Guard and Reserve members who qualify for retirement after 20 years, but never were activated long enough to meet federal statute as a veteran. The meeting, where ROA joined other Guard and Reserve associations, was held with staff members of Rep. Walz's office to discuss strategies to offset the $5 million cost over ten years which has stymied the bill. Several new approaches were suggested in the meeting. A follow-up meeting was held with Rep. Steve Buyer's (R-Ind.) office to discuss the congressman's support the legislation.

On the Senate side, ROA and other associations in The Military Coalition Guard and Reserve subcommittee met with the staff of Senator Blanche Lincoln's (D-Ark.) to discuss their version of the veterans status bill, S. 1780, and also improvements to the Post 9/11 GI Bill.


Anonymous said...

The fact that there is not Reserve retirement PARITY (after 20 years of service) with the AD, continues to portray the path of least resistance chosen by the ROA through their weak resolutions on this topic over the past 40 plus years since the points system was established. Where has the ROA's drive and representation been all these years? Even now, those "gap" reservists/guardsmen who served between 9/11/2001 and early retirement passage are adversely impacted, as compared to others who served after passage. Pitiful! Embarrassing! Reflective!!! Until there is PARITY, the ROA needs to consider their reserve retirement initiative(s) a failure.

Ralph Butera (LTC (R)) said...

The retirment issue is long overdue- reservists already take the % penalty based on the points system. To grant early collection at 55 is consistant with any federal retirment and a lot better thab 60 since AD personnel are collecting at 48. Congressmen can collect immediately upon their minimum years and don't even need 20 years- If you want to talk stats- look at the stat that says most retired reservists never get the opportunity to collect retirement for various reasons- THis would also be an incentive for senior experienced reservist to stay in rather than leave early- look at the stats for reservist that retire within 10 years. The shortage of Cpts is proof of that.