We hope you and your loved ones enjoy the Holiday Season
Dept of MA AMVETS
We hope you and your loved ones enjoy the Holiday Season
Dept of MA AMVETS
December 2018 AMVETS EXECUTIVE REPORT
For AMVETS official Use only, forward to your members
AMVETS in the News……
AMVETS demands White House, VA reject a resurfaced proposal to cut benefits for disabled, unemployed veterans: https://www.stripes.com/news/vets-group-demands-white-house-va-reject-a-resurfaced-proposal-to-cut-benefits-for-disabled-unemployed-veterans-1.561091
As you can see from the attached report at the end of November we renewed 58% of our annual members. Take a look at your Depts. renewal percentage on page 9. It’s a good time of year to reach out and ask members how they are doing. Fold the membership list over and get your post involved making Christmas calls. Please wish our former 2016 members who were dropped a Merry Christmas. The list is attached.Ring Ring
Commander Riley’s Project is to raise funds to repair the dock to the Arizona Memorial. Let’s keep the 200 coins in AMVETS. AMVETS and Elvis are responsible for building the memorial. Let’s fix it! We are the keepers. See the attachment.
We are sending cards to all new joins. At the end of each month we pull a list of all new joins and send a welcome letter and a membership card. New members in November should have their cards. What is your Dept plans for next Veterans day, Memorial Day and Flag Day.==================================================================
Look at page 16 and 17 of the attached report. It is designed to help you track how many new members joined your Dept online. This allows analysis of state and National initiatives and will help us determine if they are effective in getting the word out. Positive messaging will resonate with veterans and lead to online exploration of AMVETS and possible new members. When our ED is interviewed or Posts on Facebook, when your Dept has special Veterans Day, Memorial Day and Flag Day events, or we set up near the Wall in DC we might see a spike in online MAL joins. We shake a lot of hands, talk to a lot of Vets and get some new members. Contact your MALs if you don’t who will?
6 AM November, Veterans day on the Mall Each pin was placed by a Vietnam Vet remembering.
Everybody Loves a Parade. Find yours below!
When is Flag Day and what is Flag day? It is the day AMVETS should get the word out. We all love a parade be in one!
Flag Day is celebrated on June 14. It commemorates the adoption of the flag of the United States on June 14, 1777 by resolution of the Second Continental Congress. In 1916, President Woodrow Wilson issued a proclamation that officially established June 14 as Flag Day. In August 1946, National Flag Day was established by an Act of Congress, then in July 1947 they Chartered AMVETS. Flag Day is not an official federal holiday. It is at the president’s discretion to officially proclaim the observance. John did you know on June 14, 1937, Pennsylvania became the first state to celebrate Flag Day as a state holiday. New Yorkstatutes designate the second Sunday in June as Flag Day, a state holiday. Glen,Fairfield Washington has held a flag day parade since 1910. Angela did you know AppletonWisconsin has held National Flag Day parade since 1950? Steve I wasn’t even born whenQuincy, Massachusetts had started its annual Flag Day parade in 1952. The largest Flag Day parade is held annually in Troy, New York, which bases its parade on the Quincy parade and typically draws 50,000 spectators.Rich are you seeing this? Carol, the Three Oaks, MichiganFlag Day Parade is held annually on the weekend of Flag Day and is a three-day event. Do you need brochures? In Washington, D.C., Flag Day is celebrated heavily through the 7th and 8th Wards in DC. It is said that Clyde Thompson is the “Godfather of Flag Day”. It is tradition in these wards to slow smoke various meats and vegetables. Johnny, let me know the address of the smoked meat vendors, I’ll bring my hat. Who is Clyde Thompson? If there isn’t a Flag Day parade in your town start planning one now. Let’s get expert in Flags. (Thanks to WIKI for some of the information above)
Recruit 5 Membership Drive
The first drawing will be 7 January. Get your green hat forms in ASAP! (attached)
How can I get veterans interested in AMVETS???
Call the library and ask for the conference room in March for a Vet seminar.
Call the university and get a student aid GI Bill Expert to speak for ½ hour.
Call Long and Foster and get an agent to talk about the VA home loan, pitfalls to qualifying.
Get a VSO in to talk about claims.
Call chick filet and ask them to sponsor chicken bits tell them pizza hut is participating.
Advertise to all the vets in town Saturday March 2st come to RM 6 at the library and learn about Using your GI Bill, buying a house and filing a claim. Free chicken and beer. Call and let me know you will be there so we have enough free food.
When you buy a bottle of Three Philosophers use this credit card and you will be supporting AMVETS and the only insurance company built to insure veterans when no other company would. The actuarial tables show combat is hazardous to a soldier’s health.
What’s in your pocket?
Is it an
AMVETS Challenge Coin
AMVETS (American Veterans) was founded by WWII Veterans. We continue to serve veterans today. Lady Liberty walks on one side of our coin. She represents your service clearing a path for her walk around the world.
“Challenge Coin Check” Rules for Veterans & Military
Carry your coin as a reminder of your commitment and connection to something larger in your daily life. Liberty walks on the path American Veterans clear. You can Login and purchase a coin (my shopping cart) as a christmas gift or recruit 5 members to join and we will give you one!
January marks AMVETS’ 75th Anniversary and we will be sharing our accomplishments throughout the year. We also want to assist you in your community outreach and fundraising efforts. In February we will launch our first quarterly open call with Christine Kirkley, AMVETS National Service Foundation’s Chief Development Officer. Stayed tuned for more details in the upcoming newsletters.
Thanks for all you do to help veterans!
Merry Christmas from National Headquarters and the Membership Staff
Harry, Carolyn and Linda.
AMVETS National Membership Director
US Army Infantry
|December 18, 2018|
Inside this issueTREA “The Enlisted Association” Washington Update• To Shut Down – or Not to Shut Down• Veterans’ Bill Edging Close to the Goal Line but Still Not There• Vietnam Blue Water Navy Bill Stuck in the Senate• North Dakota Considers Tax Exemption for Military Pay and Pensions TREA “The Enlisted Association” Washington Update To Shut Down – or Not to Shut Down From now until the end of the week the biggest question in Washington is likely to be whether the President and the Congress will be able to reach an agreement on keeping the government open after midnight this coming Friday. This morning it appeared that there would be no effort to come to an agreement but even as this is being written a report has come out that the White House has signaled the President won’t shut the government down after all, even if he doesn’t get the $5 billion he wanted for his border wall. So we shall see.In the meantime, Congress has other legislation to deal with. The question there is whether they will be totally consumed with keeping the government open and therefore fail to pass other important legislation they have in front of them.Here’s what we support and urge Congress to pass before they adjourn for the final time this year. Top Veterans’ Bill Edging Close to the Goal Line but Still Not There A bill with provisions for veterans, active-duty members and military dependents is still waiting for Senate action. If it does not pass before the Senate adjourns for the year it will be dead which means starting all over next yearAmong the provisions in the bill is a measure that would block schools from penalizing student veterans for Department of Veterans Affairs delays in GI Bill educational benefits. Other items include burial and memorial benefits, expansions of the Servicemembers Civil Relief Act (SCRA) and changes to VA’s debt collection practices.Here are the details:Education BenefitsAfter the public relations fiasco caused by VA’s late GI Bill payments this fall, Congress set out to ensure that it protects veterans from repercussions against them due to VA’s negligence. The new legislation would:Make schools ineligible for GI Bill tuition payments if they placed penalties or burdens on students as a result of the VA failing to pay GI Bill payments on time.Block schools from kicking veterans out of classes if their GI Bill payments are late.Require the VA to tell veterans exactly how much their monthly housing allowance rather than require more guessing.Burial and Memorial BenefitsUnder the legislation:Spouses and children would be eligible for government provided headstones if they are buried in a VA cemetery.Spouses and children of veterans buried in tribal cemeteries would get all the same benefits as the veteran.Servicemembers’ Civil Relief Act (SCRA)The bill would make changes in SCRA rules to legal and debt collection rights held by veterans and their spouses. Included in the bill is:The ability for a surviving spouse to terminate a lease under the SCRA if their partner dies on active duty.The right of a military member who is mobilized or gets PCS orders to terminate their video programming and internet bills without any late charges. Previously only telephone bills were covered.Give a military spouse the right to claim the same state of legal residence as their partner for state taxes. Previously, the spouse could only claim the state they were living in or go through the hassle of setting up residence in the military member’s state of legal residence.The ability for the spouse to maintain their state of legal residence for voting even if they live out of state while accompanying the military member. Some states require you to actually live in the state for a certain amount of time in an election year to be able to vote.VA Debt CollectionUnder the bill, VA would have to re-format all debt-related letters into “plain language” with a clear explanation, according to the proposed legislation. It also would allow VA to communicate with veterans via both mail and electronic means.Homeless Veteran ReintegrationHomeless veterans programs would expand to veterans transitioning from incarceration to civilian life, and to those getting assistance under the Native American Housing Assistance Program.Expansion of VA Dental ProgramThe bill also would give VA one year to report to Congress on the costs, enrollment estimates and feasibility of expanding the dental program. Top Vietnam Blue Water Navy Bill Stuck in the Senate We have been reporting the last few weeks on the Blue Water Navy Bill that would give presumption of exposure to Agent Orange to Navy veterans who were off shore but never set foot on land in Vietnam and who nonetheless have come down with diseases presumed by the VA to have been caused by Agent Orange. Presumption of exposure has already been given to those who were on Vietnamese soil.Tragically, the bill is stalled in the Senate because of just a few Senators.Sen. Mike Enzi (R-Wyo.) is saying lawmakers need to “have a better idea of the costs” of Blue Water navy legislation. Enzi, who heads the Senate Budget Committee, says the bill will cost at least $1.3 billion more than the original estimate and that VA analysis suggests it could be nearly five times what Congress assumed when the House passed it. “The bill’s sponsors have paid for their cost estimates by increasing home loan fees for veterans, but even that doesn’t offset the true cost of the bill,” according to EnziSenate Veterans Affairs Committee Chairman Johnny Isakson (R-Ga.) however is pledging to get the bill, which would expand benefits for veterans who say they were exposed to Agent Orange, across the finish line despite opposition. Sen. Kirstin Gillibrand (D-N.Y.) said at a press conference last week to expect more unanimous consent requests to pass the bill on the Senate floor. Top North Dakota Considers Tax Exemption for Military Pay and Pensions The governor of North Dakota is proposing to exempt military pay and pensions from North Dakota income taxes, with the idea that doing so would help keep retiring veterans in North Dakota and thereby help the state fill thousands of open jobs.As in so many states where similar proposals have been considered the argument used in opposition is the loss of tax revenue to a state.The argument in favor of the proposal is that the economic benefits of keeping veterans in the state would more than make up for lost revenue.North Dakota currently has more than 13,000 unfilled advertised jobs and the state is one of only eight that fully taxes military retirement pay.A separate bill by a state representative would go even further by prohibiting the state from collecting income tax from military members on active duty, in the Guard or in the reserves. The bill would include exemptions for surviving spouses but would not cover civilian employees of the military.TREA Past National President Arthur Cooper has been working on this issue in his state of Maryland for a long time. He and his colleagues have been able to get a partial exemption of military retired pay from the state income tax but not the entire amount. However, they continue to work on it.This is a project that TREA members and chapters might want to consider in their own states if they are still subject to state income tax. Top