Lawmakers want military benefits restored

Several bills have been introduced in the House this week that would restore cuts made to military retirees’ benefits.

Lawmakers have complained that a provision in the Bipartisan Budget Agreement, H.J. Res. 59 — which was passed into law last week — reduces the cost of living adjustment (COLA) by 1 percent for military retirees under the age of 62.

The reduction was made to replace $6 billion in sequester cuts to the Department of Defense’s budget.

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Rep. Julia BrownleyJulia BrownleyHouse caucus to focus on business in Latin America House votes to restrict IRS hires and funding EMILY's List names incumbent Dems it will fundraise for MORE (D-Calif.) introduced H.R. 3804, which would completely repeal that provision.

“I believe our service members, veterans, and their families must receive the benefits they have earned and deserve,” Brownley said. “These benefits are owed to them without equivocation. That is why I have introduced legislation to repeal the military retiree COLA reduction.”

Rep. Ted PoeTed PoeCameras go dark during House Democrats' sit-in Democrats stage sit-in on House floor to push for gun vote Congress should stop government hacking and protect the Fourth Amendment MORE (R-Texas) introduced a similar bill, H.R. 3807.

Senate Budget Committee Chairwoman Patty MurrayPatty MurrayBlame game begins on Zika funding McConnell pledges redo vote on Zika after break Senate Democrats want new round of Zika talks MORE (D-Wash.), who drafted the deal with her House counterpart Rep. Paul RyanPaul RyanOvernight Finance: Trump threatens NAFTA withdrawal | Senate poised for crucial Puerto Rico vote | Ryan calls for UK trade deal | Senate Dems block Zika funding deal Overnight Defense: Benghazi report fallout | Nearly 50 dead after Istanbul attack Lobbying world MORE (R-Wis.), said lawmakers would work to at least fix a “technical glitch” that also cut the benefits for veterans with disabilities.

House Budget Committee ranking member Chris Van Hollen (D-Md.) took Murray’s words to heart and introduced H.R. 3808, which would provide that the annual adjustment of military retiree benefits under the Bipartisan Budget Act shall not apply to service members retired for disability and to retired pay used to compute certain Survivor Benefit Plan annuities.

All the bills were introduced before the House passed an adjournment resolution Thursday. Lawmakers will return early next month to begin legislative work.

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