A new proposal in Congress would impose a new $2,400 fee on troops who want to sign up to get the GI Bill after discharge

“Congress must stop nickeling and diming America’s service members and veterans.” Haven’t they paid enough already?

VFW has started a hashtag campaign #NoTaxOnTroops

A proposal in Congress would impose a new $2,400 fee on troops who want to sign up to get the GI Bill after discharge.

The Veterans of Foreign Wars ripped the House Veterans Affairs Committee last Tuesday for considering a proposal to slap troops with a so-called “enrollment fee” for access to GI Bill education benefits.

The plan, draft legislation from House Veterans Affairs Committee Chairman Phil Roe, Republican -Tenn., would deduct $2,400 from future service members’ paychecks to establish eligibility for revamped post-military education benefits.

The idea is being considered by the House Veterans Affairs Committee next Wednesday (April 26, 2017) at a hearing. (See update below.)

The nation’s veterans groups appear to be steaming about the proposed change.

“This new tax on troops is absurd,” said Veterans of Foreign Wars National Commander Brian Duffy in a statement. “Ensuring veterans are able to successfully transition back to civilian life after military service is a cost of war, and not a fee that Congress can just pass along to our troops.”

“Congress must stop nickeling and diming America’s service members and veterans.”

The money collected would amount to a fraction of the overall cost of the veterans education benefit. Congressional staff estimate the move would bring in about $3.1 billion over the next 10 years, while total GI Bill spending is expected to total more than $100 billion over the same decade.

“We are still a nation at war. We have troops actively engaged in Iraq, in Afghanistan, and now in Syria,” said Brian Duffy, in an issued statement.

“The war on terrorism is not over! Congress’ focus should be on defeating our enemies and ending the war, not cutting the benefits of those who are fighting it.”

The folks over at Iraq and Afghanistan Veterans of America — who are enjoying the current version of the generous post-9/11 GI Bill — are equally irate.

“Yep. Just when you thought things in DC couldn’t get any stupider! #IAVA will again fight like hell to #DefendTheGIBill,” wrote Paul Reickhoff, chief executive of the Iraq and Afghanistan veterans group, on his Facebook page.

“Especially in a time of war. Join us and spread the word. This is shameful,” he added.

Update, April 21:

The House veterans’ committee announced that it postponed the April 26 subcommittee hearing where this proposal was scheduled to be discussed.

Links to this story:

San Diego Union Tribune – Congress considering new ‘tax’ on troops for GI Bill

military.com – VFW Blasts Proposed GI Bill Enrollment Fee as ‘Tax on Troops’

militarytimes – There’s a plan in Congress to start charging troops for their GI Bill benefits

#TrumpsAlternateUniverse #HoldHimAccountable #HoldTrumpAccountable #ConnectTheDots #NoTaxOnTroops #DefendTheGIBill