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Veterans Benefits Information

Legion thanks Tennessee senator's support in closing 90-10 loophole

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American Legion National Commander James W. “Bill” Oxford issued a statement thanking Sen. Lamar Alexander, R-Tenn., for his support in closing the 90-10 loophole.

“The time for equivocation on 90-10 is over," Oxford said. "We are thrilled to see partisanship set aside to do the right thing for our nation’s veterans. Sen. Alexander’s leadership and guidance in pushing this matter forward is a pivotal step toward securing access to quality education for the veterans of today and for generations to come. The American Legion looks forward to working with Sen. Alexander’s office to secure a Reauthorization of the Higher Education Act that is in the best interest of our nation’s veterans and their families.”

The 90-10 rule mandates for-profit schools obtain at least 10 percent of their revenue from sources other than Title IV education funds, which are the primary source of student aid. GI Bill benefits fall with the 10 percent category, making them valuable to for-profit institutions and leaving veterans vulnerable to predatory institutions.

Congress’ bipartisan push to close the 90-10 loophole has coincided with The American Legion’s study of the topic during last month's Fall Meetings of the National Executive Committee. The study resulted in the passage of Resolution 15: Support Greater GI Bill Outcomes By Closing 90-10 Loophole.


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American Legion OCW grant provides respite for wounded servicemembers

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Leadership from the Department of Virginia recently delivered a $10,000 American Legion Operation Comfort Warrior (OCW) grant to the Warrior Retreat at Bull Run in Haymarket, Va. The grant will provide a week’s stay at the retreat for five recovering wounded servicemembers and their families.

The Warrior Retreat at Bull Run is an 11,000-square foot, five-bedroom home on 37 acres in the historic and picturesque Virginia countryside in Prince William County. The retreat, operated by the nonprofit organization Serve Our Willing Warriors, provides activities, special events and camaraderie for its guests.

Every dollar donated to OCW goes toward the comfort items and services that help servicemembers in their recovery. For donations to OCW, visit www.legion.org/donate.


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Bill introduced to build DC monument for Medal of Honor recipients

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A Washington monument to honor Medal of Honor recipients was proposed Tuesday in legislation introduced by two Texas congressmen.

The National Medal of Honor Monument Act, filed by Reps. Marc Veasey, a Democrat, and Ron Wright, a Republican, tasks the National Medal of Honor Museum Foundation with the creation of a monument in Washington to honor the more than 3,500 recipients of the nation’s highest award for military service. The bill also recognizes Arlington, Texas, as the new home of the National Medal of Honor Museum, also under the management of the foundation.

Last month, the north Texas city, located 20 miles west of downtown Dallas, was named as the home of the future museum by the Medal of Honor Museum Foundation.

“We look forward to working with the bipartisan contingent of elected officials to make sure we are doing all that we can to honor the more than 3,500 Medal of Honor recipients and get this great piece of legislation passed," said Joe Daniels, CEO and president of the National Medal of Honor Museum Foundation.

The foundation has identified potential sites for a monument and is working with a bipartisan group of members in Congress to build the monument in an ideal location as quickly as possible, according to a spokesperson for the foundation. Information related to the rendering and cost of the monument is not yet available, but will use private and public donations.

The measure has gained 18 cosponsors, 12 of which are from Texas. After introduction, it was referred to the House Committee on Natural Resources, according to the lower chamber’s website. The full text of the bill is not yet available.

“I am honored to introduce this legislation that will honor these brave men and women for risking their lives to protect our democracy,” Veasey said in a statement. “I am also proud to join my fellow North Texan, Congressman Wright, to ensure that the city of Arlington, Texas, will be the forever home of this new Medal of Honor Museum.”

Wright expressed similar sentiments in a statement. These service members’ contributions “deserve to be memorialized with a monument,” he said.

"These men and women went above and beyond the call of duty on the battlefield in order to preserve our values and way of life," Wright said.

The Arlington museum is scheduled to open to the public in 2024 and will be located near two professional sports stadiums also located in the city. It will feature permanent, interactive experiences and rotating exhibitions and an education center.

Members of The American Legion can receive 50 percent discounts on annual subscriptions to the Stars and Stripes digital platform of exclusive military news, topics of interest to veterans, special features, photos and other content, including the daily e-newspaper, job listings and history. American Legion members can subscribe for $19.99 a year by visiting legion.stripes.com and using the coupon code LEGIONSTRONG when filling out the online form.


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An American Legion keepsake gift for the holidays

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The holiday gift-buying and giving season is getting underway as the month of December approaches. And The American Legion's 100th Anniversary Coin series makes the perfect gift if you're looking for a keepsake that pays tribute to the nation’s largest veterans service organization and its impact on communities across the country.

But don't wait to buy your coin. Hurry now because sales and production of the coin series ends after Dec. 31.

"We should maximize the esteem and recognition that this country has bestowed upon our American Legion in honor of our centennial,” said American Legion National Commander Bill Oxford. "As we think about who we are and what we do as stakeholders, as the future of this organization, we are building the foundation for the future of the organization for the next 100 years. And The American Legion's 100th Anniversary coins are a reminder of who we are, where we've been, and why we must remain the voice of veterans in our second century."

The proceeds from this year’s coin sales from the U.S. Mint help fund American Legion programs that support veterans, servicemembers, their families and the communities in which they live.

Visit www.legion.org/coin for purchases, pricing details and more information.


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Albuquerque event brings resources to veterans and community

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Veterans in and around Albuquerque, N.M., received resources on suicide prevention, healthcare, college tuition and employment at the first Student-Veterans Resource Fair on Nov. 15 at American Legion Post 13.

Paul Espinoza, the Department of New Mexico National Executive Committeeman and Post 13 commander, said this event was important “because we have a tremendous number of veterans coming in asking for these resources.”

The event at Post 13 hosted 25 employers and 21 resource agencies and organizations. Planning for the event began in June with a committee including members of Post 13; veterans resource centers at the University of New Mexico and Central New Mexico Community College; and the state Departments of Veterans Services and Workforce Solutions.

The event also included breakout sessions on adaptability and funding resources available to veterans; free passes for veterans, active duty, National Guard and reservists to the Freedom to Ride Rail Runner, a public transportation system across the state; and a celebration of The American Legion’s centennial.

While veteran-focused, the event was also open to the community.

“I think the event worked out tremendously,” Espinoza said.


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