By MOAA Staff
As the 2019 legislative calendar evaporates, the FY 2020 National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) remains, like other critical pieces of legislation, unfinished.
While the looming budget crisis remains in the headlines, MOAA and other military advocates won’t let the issues at the core of the NDAA languish. Some of the improvements under consideration have been years in the making, while others address critical needs faced by multiple generations of military families.
If Congress cannot agree on a robust NDAA, this work must restart as part of the 2020 legislative cycle. Act now to ask your legislators to support an NDAA that will:
- Provide the long-sought repeal of the Survivor Benefit Plan-Dependency and Indemnity Compensation offset, better known as the “widows tax.” Ending this unfair practice will restore proper benefits to more than 65,000 military survivors.
- Ensure DoD plans that would cut 18,000 medical billets receive proper scrutiny, and that the voices of all those who rely on these providers for their care are heard.
- Protect military families staying in privatized housing from unsafe and unsanitary living conditions by giving them the rights and resources they need to have their concerns respected and answered appropriately.
- Require an independent review of plans to merge the commissary and exchange systems, a move that, if executed improperly or without full study, could degrade a hard-earned benefit for servicemembers past and present, and their families.
The path forward for a positive result on these issues, and others, is clear: House and Senate NDAA conferees must agree to legislation that includes this language, the full bodies in each chamber must pass that legislation, and President Donald Trump must sign it. At all stages, your voice is critical to ensure elected representatives don’t neglect these duties and do what’s right.