The American Legion Washington DC Office
Thursday May 16, 2013
VA Medical Leases
The VA&R and Legislative division are working together on a Legislative Grassroots message regarding Senate Bill 412. The bill was to reauthorize medical leases for the 26 clinics that are expiring this year. In the bill's current form, it does not address the Congressional Budget Office change to their scoring methodology that required VA to submit their funding requests for leases as capital rather than operational. The original cost to renew these leases were $18 million and under the change to scoring, VA would be required to pay for the 20 year facility cost upfront at a cost of $2.5 billion. Because of the scoring change, these leases are in jeopardy of expiring as well as any future expansion of Community Based Outpatient Clinics will be affected. The Spring NEC approved Resolution 24 - Congressional Budget Office Scoring of VA Medical Center facilities two weeks ago and VA&R and the Legislative division are crafting a statement for a Legislative Action Network update to all Legion departments. Additionally, staff is working with Congress and the local media on the implications of these leases expiring and the increased travel veterans will face in driving to VA Medical Centers.
Attention All Posts: 2013 Consolidated Post Report
The Consolidated Post Report was established to document a post's activities done during the twelve-month reporting
period, June 1 through May 31. The Consolidated Post Report (CPR) may be the most important document your post will complete this year. There are several ways to complete and submit the Report.
1. The CPR form, available on the forms page, may be printed and filled manually.
2. The CPR form can be filled out electronically directly on the form since it is fillable and then printed.
3. The online version of the CPR form is available at myLegion.org. You can complete and submit your CPR information there.
When using the paper form, send the original and one copy to department headquarters
by June 1, 2013. Keep the third copy for your post records.
5th ANNUAL REMEMBRANCE RUN
June 1, 2013
AMERICAN LEGION RIDERS
POST 16 CANTON
ALL RIDERS WELCOME
RIDING IN REMEMBRANCE OF BRET DUNBLAZIER click for details.
THE AMERICAN LEGION
CERTIFICATE OF COMMENDATION
As both college tuition rates and the threats
of terrorism around the world seem to
be continuously rising, many high school
graduates are choosing to serve in the United
States Armed Forces immediately following
high school. The American Legion believes
that these young men and women who choose
to protect our freedoms deserve our respect,
admiration and gratitude. In order to allow
local posts to show their gratitude to these
young men and women, The American Legion
Flag & Emblem Sales offers "The American
Legion Military Commitment Certificate of
Register for FREE at HOH.Greatjob.net
to guarantee admission. Walk-ins welcome but space not guaranteed
A workshop for veterans and other military job seekers that focuses on resume writing, tips
for successfully navigating hiring fairs, military skill translation, and interviewing will start at
9:00 am. To register for the Hiring Our Heroes Employment Workshop, visit
When the Illinois River began cresting a few weeks ago, rising waters forced the evacuation of dozens of homes along the river in the city of Marseilles, Ill. It also caused American Legion Post 235 to spring into action.
The Illinois River crested near 30 feet, its highest level ever; flood stage is 20 feet. Several Illinois counties were classified as disaster areas. Following the April 18 flooding in Marseilles, Post 235 set up as a central location for food items to be donated. Post members, Salvation Army officials and community volunteers spent hours putting together bag lunches to take directly to flood victims who had begun the process of rebuilding their lives.
The post also started serving three hot meals a day to flood victims, police, fire and other emergency personnel, and any other volunteers who came to Marseilles to lend a hand. And it did so without hesitation, 60-year Post 235 member Gene Thompson said.
American Legion Post #235 in Marseilles, Illinois opened it's doors to flood victims in their community, offering sack lunches and hot meals to those affected.
Dear Legion Family Members and Friends,
Once again, Legionnaires have shown their unwavering sense of mutual helpfulness toward each other and their community.
Last month the Illinois River reached its highest level ever and flooded the town of Marseilles. Post 235 members, along with American Legion Family members and other volunteers helped assemble around 1,000 sack lunches every day and then delivered them throughout the community.
I am grateful for all of their hard work and perseverance during a time of crises in their community. I know it made a difference to the victims who were forced out of their homes and the emergency crews who were helping to turn things back to normal.
Sadly, tragedies like this can occur anywhere and anytime in our beloved United States of America. At this time of the year, for example, communities in the Midwest are on alert for damaging spring storms such as tornadoes. And soon, residents along the eastern seaboard and the Gulf Coast will be monitoring news for potential hurricane activity.
When disaster strikes a Legion post or a current member's primary residence, there is help available from The American Legion's National Emergency Fund.
Thanks to NEF, more than $425,000 was distributed to 450 individuals and posts affected by Superstorm Sandy. Those funds come from generous donations to NEF throughout the year. To assist those in need with a tax-deductible contribution, please visit this webpage or mail to The American Legion, National Emergency Fund, P.O. Box 6141, Indianapolis, IN 46206
Thank you for what you do every day for veterans, their families and the communities in which they live.
James E. 'Jim' Koutz
The American Legion
For God and Country,
James E. Koutz
The American Legion
For God and country
NATIONAL HEADQUARTERS P.O. BOX 1055 INDIANAPOLIS, IN 46206-1055
(317) 630-1253 Fax (317) 630-1368
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Kansas City Youth Sweeps to Victory, Earns $18K Scholarship in American Legion Oratorical Contest
INDIANAPOLIS (April 21, 2013) - A senior from Oak Park High School in Kansas City, Mo., capped a busy weekend of competition in Indianapolis by earning an $18,000 college scholarship and first place in The American Legion High School Oratorical Scholarship Program - "A Constitutional Speech Contest". Her winning oration was titled "Let's Talk About Pennsylvania".
Agnes Rieger started the weekend as one of 53 state or territorial champions in the 76th annual contest. She advanced to the championship through three rounds of intense competition.
Elizabeth Scannell, a high school senior from Goose Creek, S.C., earned a $16,000 college scholarship with a second place finish, while Rachel Schartz of Humboldt, S.D. earned a $14,000 scholarship and finished third. The scholarships account for a small portion of post-secondary scholarships that The American Legion, the nation's largest veterans organization, awards annually.
In her prepared oration, Rieger pointed out that Pennsylvania was misspelled above one of the signatures on our nation's founding document but it's the overall message of the Constitution rather than the alternate spelling of a state that is important. She cited studies that revealed, "62 percent of respondents failed to name the branches of our government and "only 5 percent of the American population could correctly answer 10 simple questions about our Constitution - a pathetic cry for help.
She implored Americans to study the Constitution so they could impact current issues. "The amount of laws that are currently being debated over for their constitutionality is high: bargaining laws, voter-ID laws, immigration bills, gun control and the Affordable Care Act, to name a few. We can't be engaged in these important conversations if we don't know our constitution. Instead, we leave our government in the hands of others, and we exclude ourselves from developing the future of our great nation.
In each round of the weekend competition, orators delivered a rehearsed 8- to 10-minute address and a randomly assigned 3- to 5-minute oration on a constitutional topic, each without the benefit of notes and in front of a live audience, including the judges. The 2.4-million member American Legion developed the contest to encourage young people to improve their communications skills and to study the U.S. Constitution. More than $3 million in scholarships have been awarded over the history of the contest.
Media Contacts: Joe March (317) 748-1926 or John Raughter (317) 441-8847.
Retirement Planner: Special Extra Earnings For Military Service
Source: Social Security Administration
Since 1957, if you had military service earnings for active duty (including active duty for training), you paid Social Security taxes on those earnings. Since 1988, inactive duty service in the Armed Forces reserves (such as weekend drills) has also been covered by Social Security.
Under certain circumstances, special extra earnings for your military service from 1957 through 2001 can be credited to your record for Social Security purposes. These extra earnings credits may help you qualify for Social Security or increase the amount of your Social Security benefit.
Special extra earnings credits are granted for periods of active duty or active duty for training. Special extra earnings credits are not granted for inactive duty training.
If your active military service occurred
From 1957 through 1967, we will add the extra credits to your record when you apply for Social Security benefits.
From 1968 through 2001, you do not need to do anything to receive these extra credits. The credits were automatically added to your record.
After 2001, there are no special extra earnings credits for military service.
Note: In January 2002, Public Law 107-117, the Defense Appropriations Act, stopped the special extra earnings that have been credited to military service personnel. Military service in calendar year 2002 and future years no longer qualifies for these special extra earnings credits
How You Get Credit For Special Extra Earnings
The information that follows applies only to active duty military service earnings from 1957 through 2001. Here's how the special extra earnings are credited on your record:
Service in 1957 Through 1977
You are credited with $300 in additional earnings for each calendar quarter in which you received active duty basic pay.
Service in 1978 through 2001
For every $300 in active duty basic pay, you are credited with an additional $100 in earnings up to a maximum of $1,200 a year. If you enlisted after September 7, 1980, and didn't complete at least 24 months of active duty or your full tour, you may not be able to receive the additional earnings.