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Government Affairs, May/June 2024 -   -  

The Latest Member of the Team: GA Director James McCormick

We are entering Spring on a strong note with a new VVA Government Affairs Director, Retired U.S. Army Capt. James L. McCormick II. He comes to our team with extensive experience in combat in the Persian Gulf War and the Iraq War, and as the leader of many veteransí organizations and initiatives, including having served as national commander of the Military Order of the Purple Heart. He is unquestionably dedicated to our mission and is already proving to be an invaluable asset to VVA.

James L. McCormick II

The GA teamís primary focus is recognition of service. As we mentioned in the last issue, we are advocating for the renaming of the West Palm Beach, Florida, VA Medical Center in honor of former VVA National President Thomas H. (Tom) Corey. There is tremendous support in Congress for H.R. 7333 and S.3822 and things appear to be going well.

We are also advocating for a bill, H.R. 1015, that would award the Congressional Gold Medal to U.S. Army Dustoff crews who served in the Vietnam War and for H.R. 3592, the Donut Dollies Congressional Gold Medal Act, which would honor those Red Cross workers who flew into forward positions to provide relief to troops in Vietnam. Please call your representatives or stop by their offices to show your support for these bills.

As this issue went to press, the House Veteransí Affairs Committee continued to negotiate the Veterans Benefits Improvement Package. We are waiting for additional details about the packageís contents and will keep you posted.

On the toxic exposure front, we are collaborating with legislative staffers to advance S. 3958, the Molly R. Loomis Research for Descendants of Toxic Exposed Veterans Act of 2024. The bill calls for an interagency task force to research impacts of toxic exposure on veteransí descendants. You may recall that this research was supposed to have been conducted after the passage of the Toxic Exposure Research Act in 2016. If enacted, S. 3958 will circumvent the Department of Veterans Affairs to ensure that we receive the information necessary for our children and grandchildren to make informed health decisions.

Please join me in congratulating James McCormick on joining our team and be sure to greet him if you see him in the office or at the National Leadership & Education Conference in Reno in August.




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