LVMAC Tidbit — Veterans Choice Program about to be extended

April 10, 2017

VA Logo

S.544, a bill to amend the Veterans Access, Choice, and Accountability Act of 2014 to modify the termination date for the Veterans Choice Program, and for other purposes, headed to the President for signature on 7 April.  This was relatively easy to do as the there was still $1 billion in the account.

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As of 10 April 2017


LVMAC Tidbit — Commonwealth’s Major Veterans Organizations Unite on Legislative Goals for 2016

June 21, 2016

On 5 May 2016, the Pennsylvania War Veterans Council (PWVC), an important association of the major veterans service organizations in the commonwealth, agreed to its legislative goals for 2016-2017.  They should not be overlooked by our Governor and General Assembly,  as they are germane to improving the care of our veterans, including those of the most recent generations: Read the rest of this entry »

Forward Observer — Change 2 to the Veterans Choice Program – Further Tinkering This Time …

December 8, 2015

But Expect More to Come

LVMAC Poster Art 2005On 1 December, the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) announced that it again was making changes to its Veterans Choice Program after “learning from our stakeholders what works and what needs to be refined …” It is the second major announcement, since the program began on 5 November 2014.  As previously reported, the “as the crow flies” 40 mile rule was changed to actual driving distance on 24 April 2015.  A back story to this last announcement has been barely noticed. Read the rest of this entry »

LVMAC Tidbit — Are You Coming? Have you registered?

September 1, 2015

AO Town Hall Logo wo backgroundEditor’s Note:  It has been written about before on this blogsite, but the September 19 date for the Lehigh Valley’s first Agent Orange Seminar is nigh and we think it important that you do not miss out on a chance to educate yourselves because your children may be affected — whether or not you are a Vietnam War veteran or ever served.  It is high time to register and reserve a seat.

Expert speakers from as far away as the state of Maryland are coming to the Lipkin Theatre, the site of the seminar.  Dr. Peter Kahn of the Department of Biochemistry & Microbiology at Rutgers University; Dr. Tom Berger of the Vietnam Veterans of America’s (VVA) Veterans Health Center; Professor Kelly Allen of the Sustainability Committee of Northampton Community College; Paul Sutton, the VVA’s special advisor to the National Committee on Agent Orange and Mike Eckstein, the VVA State Council Chair for New Jersey’s Agent Orange efforts, will all speak. 

This is an unique opportunity to listen and learn about a subject constantly in the papers but not well understood.  The Press Release below tells you more: Read the rest of this entry »

LVMAC Tidbit: At Last! An Agent Orange Seminar for the General Public

July 10, 2015

VVA 415 AO Town Hall Flyer No. 2 19Sep2015Editor’s Note:  We wish to bring your attention to something we consider to be a very special event in the Lehigh Valley — a seminar on Agent Orange not only for veterans, but also their progeny and the general public.  Pennsylvania VVA Chapter 415 of the Vietnam Veterans of America is sponsoring it and is bringing in well-known, national-level speakers, some with academic credentials.  Please note we’re using the term “Agent Orange” as an umbrella term for several different kinds of herbicides used in Vietnam … and in the United States.

You may be asking yourself why invite the progeny of veterans and the general public,  for weren’t the effects of Agent Orange limited to those military veterans who served in Vietnam?   It is because, many believe, more than military veterans have been affected but also their progeny and, additionally, the general public — these products were not only used in Vietnam.  Consequently, the chapter is seeking to heighten their awareness through education and to gain their assistance in pushing needed government research studies long overdue and resisted.  The Congress, the Department of Veterans Affairs and other departments of government may have been turning a blind eye to a matter of importance to all of us.

For more information and how to register for the event, refer to the article below, which is being republished with the kind permission of its author and appeared in the June 2015 issue of Lifestyles over 50. Read the rest of this entry »

Forward Observer — Finally! Pennsylvania In-State Tuition Rate Now Applies to “State-less” Veterans

July 7, 2015

LVMAC Poster Art 2005After years of foot dragging, the General Assembly has finally acted.  The one-year residency requirement to receive the in-state tuition rate at a public institution of higher leaning in Pennsylvania is now officially waived.  Act 11 of 2015 was signed into law by the Governor on 29 June.  It amends Act 287 of 1982 by requiring community colleges and state related/state-owned institutions to provide in-state tuition rates for veterans, their spouses and dependent children wanting to use their GI Bill benefits regardless of how long they have resided in the state. Read the rest of this entry »

Forward Observer — The Spending of Your Veterans Trust Fund Donations

May 15, 2015

LVMAC Poster Art 2005In 2012 the Veterans Trust Fund was established in Pennsylvania.  We thought you might want to know how it is being used this year.

In 2015, fifty-five organizations applied for grants, the sum of which would have amounted to nearly $4.7 million in funding for veterans’ services and programs. Of these, ten grants were subsequently awarded.  Since all were competing for $350,000 in grant money, there is an implication: there are needs state government is failing to recognize through the usual means. Read the rest of this entry »

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