national defense authorization act by BeunaventuraLongjas

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                                        LEGISLATIVE UPDATE

President Signs the FY2008 National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA).

The House and Senate removed the unrelated Defense issue from the NDAA that had weeks earlier
caused the President to issue a Pocket Veto of the original legislation. The provisions previously
announced by NCOA as of special interest to the Association and its members have been approved.

House Armed Services Committee Chairman Ike Skelton quickly commented on the passage of this
legislation.

       “This is a great day for our troops, their families, and our nation. In spite of the delay caused by
the President’s unexpected veto, it is gratifying to see this defense bill finally signed into law,” said
Skelton.

       “I am very proud of this legislation, which may be the best defense bill in decades. This new
law provides a 3.5 percent military pay raise, prevents fee increases for health care, and includes the
Wounded Warrior Act to ensure that our injured forces receive the best care we can provide. The law
also authorizes critical funds to restore readiness and protect our forces in the field, making sure that
our service members have the equipment and training they need to meet current and future threats.
The law also increases accountability to the American people through additional oversight of our
operations in Iraq and Afghanistan, reforms to the contracting process, and a review of the military
services’ roles and missions,” said Skelton.

NCOA agrees that the FY08 NDAA takes many small steps in the right direction and simultaneously
recognizes that there are still many inequities that remain to be resolved. Notable issues that remain
among a list of others are the Widow’s Tax (DIC Offset of SBP entitlement), Concurrent receipt of
both VA Disability Compensation and earned Retirement Pay, and reform of the Former Spouse
Protection Act.

NCOA also reminds members that new and extended entitlements, with the exception of the pay
raise, take time to implement in the system. This column will reflect updates as they occur.



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