President Obama Signs Buchanan Bill
Latest initiative from Florida Lawmaker to help veterans
WASHINGTON – U.S. Rep. Vern Buchanan’s bill allowing all veterans in America to receive an official identification card from the VA was signed into law by President Barack Obama today.
“Every veteran – past, present, and future – will now be able to prove their military service without the added risk of identity theft,” Buchanan said. “It’s the least we can do for the brave men and women in uniform who put it all on the line for us.”
Buchanan noted that millions of veterans are unable to document their service to our country without carrying around their official military service records and many of them have expressed their frustration to him personally over the years.
These records, referred to as DD-214 forms, contain sensitive personal information including social security numbers and service history that leave veterans at a higher, unnecessary risk for identity theft.
The Veterans Identification Card Act (H.R. 91) was passed unanimously by the United States House of Representatives and Senate earlier this month. It was endorsed by the Vietnam Veterans of America, Veterans for Common Sense, AMVETS and the Association of the United States Navy.
Buchanan served six years in the Michigan Air National Guard and four years on the House Veterans Affairs Committee.
Throughout his tenure in Congress, Buchanan has passed a number of measures aimed at helping veterans in Florida and across the nation:
- Soldier Patient Tracking System: Congressman Buchanan wrote the bill to create a standard soldier patient tracking system to make available important information regarding the status of a patient’s care and help cut through the red tape to ensure that wounded soldiers get first-class care in a timely manner. (Included in the 2008 NDAA which was signed into law PL 110-181 §1611e(10))
- Job-training for Veterans: Congressman Vern Buchanan introduced the “SBA Veterans’ Programs Act of 2007” (H.R. 2366), bipartisan legislation to provide greater resources and training for veterans hoping to become business entrepreneurs. Passed by voice vote in the U.S. House on June 18, 2007. Later rolled into a larger veterans bill (H.R. 4253) that passed the House on December 6, 2007. Finally signed into law on February, 14 2008 (No: 110-186).
- Sarasota Veterans Cemetery: Congressman Buchanan fought successfully for $27 million in funding for the new national veterans cemetery in Sarasota, allowing more than 150,000 area veterans to be buried close to home with the honor and dignity they deserve.
- Co-Chair of Florida Delegation: As co-chairman of the 29-member Florida congressional delegation, Buchanan held an emergency meeting on June 12, 2014 to address the VA health care system in Florida. Buchanan later sent a letter to the VA expressing deep concerns over the massive backlog at St. Petersburg Regional Benefits Office.