IAVA | September 30, 2016
Read: Legislative SitRep: Victories on IVF, GI Bill, VA Extenders, and Homeless Veterans
After several delays Congress on Wednesday finally passed legislation to avert a government shutdown and fund federal agencies until December 9. The Continuing Resolution (CR) was signed into law by the President yesterday. In a major win for IAVA, the legislation authorizes the VA for the first time to provide in-vitro fertilization (IVF) to veterans with combat-related trauma to their reproductive organs. IAVA fought hard with other organizations to make this a reality.
The President also signed into law other legislation supported by IAVA, including H.R. 5985 that extends 27 vital VA programs and assists veterans at closed for-profit schools, and H.R. 5936 that provides housing for homeless veterans at the West Los Angeles VA campus.
#DefendtheGIBill:NO GI Bill cuts were included in the CR, which was considered the last opportunity for Senate Veterans Committee leadership to pass the so-called Veterans First Act before Congress left for the election recess. Veterans First contains the $3.4B cut to the Post-9/11 GI Bill that IAVA has successfully fought off for months, a fight that included sending over 33,000 messages to Congress.
IAVA’s DC team closely monitored developments around the CR to ensure vets’ education benefits were protected. The fight to #DefendTheGIBill isn’t over though. Supporters of the Veterans First Act will no doubt push to pass the bill — and its GI Bill cuts — after the elections.
We’ll be ready for them though. We’re just getting started!