House Committee on Veterans’ Affairs Passes 18 Bills Out of Committee
WASHINGTON, D.C. – Today, the House Committee on Veterans’ Affairs held its first full committee markup passing all of the 18 bills on the agenda and continuing its work to deliver clear results for veterans on suicide prevention, homelessness, and finally delivering justice for our Blue Water Navy veterans. Chairman Mark Takano’s opening remarks and a full list of the 18 bills passed can be found below:
I would like to thank everyone here this morning. The 18 bills we have before us today represent considerable time and hard work by the members of this Committee on both sides of the aisle. Four of our five subcommittees are being led by freshmen chairs this Congress, and four members of the minority are also new to Congress. I want to thank each of you for your bipartisan efforts and leadership.
Your work has produced an impressive number of bills which will improve the quality of veterans’ lives. We will consider H.R. 299, the Blue Water Navy Vietnam Veterans Act to finally right an incredible injustice for veterans who are suffering and dying from conditions related to Agent Orange exposure and who have been unfairly denied disability and health benefits for more than 40 years. When this bill is reported out of Committee today, I will ask the Speaker to put it on the House Floor before Memorial Day—these veterans have waited far too long, and the Ranking Member and I are committed to working with our Senate colleagues to get this bill passed into law. As I said last week, If I have to stand in the Senate gallery every day until this bill is passed, I will.
The Committee is determined to address the national public health crisis of veteran suicide. That’s why I’m proud to highlight 4 bipartisan bills written by Vice Chairman Lamb, Representative Brindisi, Representative Rose, and Representative Underwood that address mental health and suicide prevention. It’s clear we need to do more to reduce veteran suicide and these bills will help us better understand the crisis at hand.
Last but not least, I thank Congresswoman Luria for introducing the Veterans’ Compensation Cost-of-Living Act. Congress passes the COLA bill every year to make sure veterans’ disability benefits keep pace with the rising cost of living.
Full list of passed legislation:
- A.N.S. to H.R. 299 (Rep. Takano) the Blue Water Navy Vietnam Veterans Act of 2019
- A.N.S. to H.R. 2372 (Rep. Underwood) Veterans’ Care Quality Transparency Act
- A.N.S. to H.R. 2340 (Rep. Rose) FIGHT Veteran Suicides Act
- A.N.S. to H.R. 2359 (Rep. Lamb) Whole Veteran Act
- H.R. 1947 (Rep. Roe) To exempt transfers of funds from Federal agencies to the Department of Veterans Affairs for nonprofit corporations established under subchapter IV of chapter 73 of such title from certain provisions of the Economy Act.
- H.R. 1812 (Rep. Roe) Vet Center Eligibility Expansion Act
- H.R. 2385 (Rep. Lamb) to permit the Secretary of Veterans Affairs to establish a grant program to conduct cemetery research and produce educational materials for the Veterans Legacy Program.
- A.N.S. to H.R. 1988 (Rep. David Scott), the Protect Affordable Mortgages for Veterans Act
- H.R. 2045 (Rep. Wenstrup), the VET OPP Act
- H.R. 2333 (Rep. Brindisi) Support for Suicide Prevention Coordinators Act
- H.R.1200 (Rep Luria), the Veterans’ Compensation Cost-of-Living Adjustment Act
- H.R. 95 (Rep. Brownley), the Homeless Veteran Families Act
- H.R. 1199 (Rep. Luria), The VA Website Accessibility Act
- H.R. 2109 (Rep. Rice), the BRAVE Act
- H.R. 2196 (Rep. Barr), to amend title 38, United States Code, to reduce the credit hour requirement for the Edith Nourse Rogers STEM Scholarship program of the Department of Veterans Affairs.
- H.R. 2326 (Rep. Levin) the Navy SEAL Chief Petty Officer William Bill Mulder (Ret.) Transition Improvement Act of 2019
- H.R. 2398 (Rep. Peters), the Veteran HOUSE Act
- H.R. 2399 (Rep. Peters), the Home for Our Heroes Act of 2019
All bill language can be found on the Committee Repository here.