MyVFW Social Network    Latest MyVFW Photos   Latest MyVFW Videos    MyVFW Groups    Latest Network News

Author Topic: Government Shutdown Update  (Read 2020 times)

0 Members and 1 Guest are viewing this topic.

Offline DoggyDaddy

  • Administrator
  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 5187
  • Have Dog Will Travel
    • VFW Post 1716, Freedom CA
    • Email
Government Shutdown Update
« on: March 14, 2011, 09:06:18 pm »
Government Shutdown Update 01:   If the government shuts down on 18 MAR over unresolved differences in a spending bill, the impact may be felt more by the families of aged veterans than on government workers or military troops. That's because the Department of Veterans Affairs office responsible for burying veterans will close up shop if the cash stops coming, putting a halt to the internments of thousands of deceased vets. Just how many would be effected is hard to guess – it would depend on how long a shutdown dragged on. According to a Congressional Budget Office projection, the VA could be burying up to 100,000 veterans in 2011. "All memorial affairs [operations] should halt," said Tom Tarantino, senior legislative associate for the Iraq and Afghanistan Veterans Association. "If you're in the Midwest or the Northeast they're not doing burials anyway because the ground is frozen." The difference is they will stop accepting applications for new burials, he said. But in parts of the country not under a deep freeze, burying vets will stop until any shutdown is over, he said. VA spokesman Drew Brookie said he couldn't comment or speculate on the impact of a shutdown on VA operations. In addition to burials, the VA's National Cemeteries Administration inters eligible family members, marks veterans' graves with government furnished headstones or markers and provides survivors with a Presidential Memorial Certificate recognizing the service of their deceased veteran. The agency also maintains national cemeteries as shrines and administers grants to establish or expand state veterans cemeteries, according to its website.
But for vets who are still alive and kicking, all healthcare services will be available despite a shutdown since money was already put toward VA healthcare in advance. Disability and pensions also are protected, Tarantino said, because the Justice Department concluded back in the 1990s that these payments are "property" that belongs to the veteran or eligible dependent. He said Justice made that ruling during a similar government shutdown in 1995. David Tucker, deputy staff director and chief minority counsel on the House Committee on Veterans Affairs, said a shutdown would mean no new benefit claims – such as new GI Bill applications or disability petitions -- would be processed for as long as the feds are off the clock. Throughout the government, including the Defense Department, officials are keeping shutdown contingency plans close to their chest. DoD spokesman Col. Dave Lapan told reporters 24 FEB that there is a process for notifying civilians and contractors of a shutdown but offered no details.
In the event of a government shutdown, commissary customers are asked to check their local military installation news outlets before, during and after the event to determine if stores serving their area are open. As a matter of course, the Defense Commissary Agency plans for any event that could affect the operation of its stores," said Joseph H. Jeu, DeCA director and CEO. "We are currently updating existing plans to adjust commissary operations in case of a government shutdown. If this action does occur, we will use all available media to notify our customers of any specific changes in commissary operations. Customers should also stay abreast of the news that affects services on their installations." If a shutdown occurs, commissary customers also should monitor the Department of Defense website http://www.defense.gov for any breaking news that affects service members and government civilians. During that time, customers can attempt to access the Commissary website http://www.commissaries.com, but the agency's website could be down.
In response to a claim by House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-CA), that a shutdown would cause troops not to be paid, the Pentagon said in a statement that it would "do everything we have to do to continue to support the deployed troops. The Department must also continue many other operations for the safety of human life and protection of property," the statement said. "These types of activities will be 'exempt' from cessation. All other activities would need to be shut down in an orderly and deliberate fashion." In fact, military service is exempt from consequences of a government shutdown, as are most emergency and law enforcement operations. During the 1995 shutdown, about 571,000 Defense Department civilian employees, nearly 70%, remained on the job, while 258,000 other Pentagon workers were furloughed. Eighty-five percent of VA employees stayed on the job, as did 70% of Transportation Department workers, according to The Associated Press. White House spokesman Jay Carney recently referred reporters to the Office of Management and Budget for information on shutdown contingency plans, but the OMB keeps a lid on those. In an email, an OMB official said the plans are for internal and deliberative purposes. Still, according to reports, much of the government would continue as usual even with a shutdown.
[Source: Military.com Bryant Jordan article 25 Feb 2011 ++]
Joe Kleinsmith
All State VFW Post 1716 Cmdr (1998-2000)
Cpt, VFW Post Honor Guard, Retired (1991-2009)
SC-SB County Council Cmdr (1996-1997)
SFC, US Army, Retired (1971-1991)
Full Time RV'er
www.vfwwebcom.org/ca/post1716
http://vfwwebcom.org/ca/Post1716HonorGuard/

Offline Redmaxx

  • Administrator
  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 2928
  • Past Department of Michigan District 4 Commander
    • Email
Re: Government Shutdown Update
« Reply #1 on: March 18, 2011, 08:13:53 am »
Well, I believe that the extention ends today and I haven't heard any news. So far we haven't been told not to show up for work on Monday, but the day is still young. I have looked on CNN and there is nothing about it on there.
Department of Michigan
District 4 Commander 11-12
National Aide-de-Camp 10-11
District 4 Sr. Vice  10-11
District 4 Jr. Vice 09-10
Post Commander 08-09
District 4 Employment/Homeless Vet Chair 08-11
Post Sr. Vice 07-08 12-13
District 4 Service Officer 06-07
Post Jr. Vice 06-07

Offline Redmaxx

  • Administrator
  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 2928
  • Past Department of Michigan District 4 Commander
    • Email
Senate passes short-term spending bill
« Reply #2 on: March 18, 2011, 09:11:46 am »
By: CNN's Ted Barrett and Dana Bash
 
Washington (CNN) - The Senate easily passed a spending bill Thursday to keep the government funded for three more weeks as lawmakers and the White House work to bridge their deep divide on a larger spending package that will run through September 30, the end of the fiscal year.

The vote was 87 to 13. Four Democrats and nine Republicans voted against it.

The House already passed the stopgap bill, which - at the insistence of Republicans - cuts $6 billion from current funding levels. Now it will go to President Barack Obama to be signed into law.

With support waning for additional short-term spending bills, lawmakers on both sides of the aisle vowed to make this the last temporary measure before striking agreement on a longer-term bill.

For several weeks - and as recently as Wednesday - top aides to the president and congressional leaders have met quietly behind the scenes to resolve their differences over that longer-term bill. Vice President Joe Biden, who was in the Capitol Thursday for a St. Patrick’s Day lunch, stayed on the Hill afterwards to discuss the budget with lawmakers, his spokeswoman told CNN. However, a deal appears unlikely until closer to April 8, when this three-week spending measure expires, according to officials on both sides of the aisle.

Republicans are pushing for about $61 billion in cuts overall while Democrats say they will only accept a fraction of that. Complicating the disagreement over spending levels is the insistence by conservative Republicans that a host of controversial policy changes be included in a long-term bill. The changes would block funding for Planned Parenthood, prevent the implementation of the new health care law, and impose other restrictions opposed by most Democrats.

Despite the stark policy disagreements, Senate Democratic leaders went out of their way to praise House Speaker John Boehner for passing the three-week bill despite a backlash from many conservatives.

“I have to hand a bouquet to Speaker Boehner. He realized he didn’t have enough votes to pass it with Republicans. Rather than pull the bill he went to Democrats and said I need votes and got 85 of them,” Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid said. “That’s the attitude we need to keep moving forward.”

The Democrats who voted against the bill are liberals concerned the cuts are too deep.

Sen. Sherrod Brown, D-Ohio, voted for the bill. He complained, however, that Republicans are demanding “unconscionable” cuts from programs for vulnerable Americans including homeless veterans, poor children and pregnant women, while allowing millionaires to enjoy low tax rates.

The nine Republicans who voted no are conservatives who wanted deeper cuts.

Sen. Jeff Sessions of Alabama is the conservative ranking Republican on the Senate Budget Committee. He voted for bill, calling the $2 billion per week reduction in the short-term spending bill “significant.” However, he said people in Washington remain “in denial about the reality of the crisis we face” in terms of debt.

http://politicalticker.blogs.cnn.com/2011/03/17/breaking-senate-passes-bill-to-fund-the-government/?hpt=Sbin
Department of Michigan
District 4 Commander 11-12
National Aide-de-Camp 10-11
District 4 Sr. Vice  10-11
District 4 Jr. Vice 09-10
Post Commander 08-09
District 4 Employment/Homeless Vet Chair 08-11
Post Sr. Vice 07-08 12-13
District 4 Service Officer 06-07
Post Jr. Vice 06-07