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Legion-backed CORE bill becomes law

Legion-backed CORE bill becomes law

Legislation that The American Legion played a role in developing - the VA Claims, Operations, and Records Efficiency (CORE) Act (H.R. 1729) - has officially become law.

The VA CORE provision, introduced by Rep. Ann Kirkpatrick, D-Ariz., and passed as an amendment to the Department of Defense reauthorization bill, directs the Secretary of Defense “to provide the service records of veterans to the Secretary of Veterans Affairs in an efficient, electronic format.”

Staff members from two of The American Legion’s divisions in Washington (Legislative and Veterans Affairs & Rehabilitation) worked with Kirkpatrick’s office in developing language for the measure, which is supported by the Legion’s resolution on the Virtual Lifetime Electronic Record (VLER).

The VA CORE measure codifies a plan that DoD and VA agreed upon in February 2013, when they cancelled a more ambitious project to develop a fully integrated health-care record system for both departments.

The law should help to reduce wait-times for veterans filing benefits claims, which are often extended by the time it takes DoD to transfer paper-based records to VA.

In May 2013, then-American Legion National Commander James E. Koutz sent a letter of support to Kirkpatrick, noting that the CORE act would help to ensure the development of electronic service records “easily transferable in an electronic format between the agencies, such that transitioning servicemembers can be assured that their records are available if and when they need VA assistance.”

Koutz wrote that The American Legion “believes that the development of an electronic records system which is capable of seamless transfer between DoD and VA is a key component of working toward the goal of eliminating the (disability claims) backlog.”

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Charles Blackburn

January 16, 2014 - 7:05pm

It is my wish that the govrement leadership start thinking about what is good for our country and place it before their self intrests. We are long over due for good, honest, leadership of our country and stop union bias and control over our budgets both national and local. We curently are letting the "fox guard the henhouse. Those receiving from the government vote for those who will provide more for them. They vote aginst those who will give them less and the long term benifits to our country are negative. Education of our children and training them to be good productive citizens should be our main goal. Retaining teachers based on time in service should be replaced with the ability to educate with stimulated intrest.

Windy, former WAC

January 16, 2014 - 5:01pm

Cutting veterans, medically disabled is a cut to the core. Cut military troops from all their bases and return them home. Send prisoners/gang-members to war -- they already seem to enjoy fighting. Forget honor, family - PEACE, GOD, church. Let all individuals have a weapon. Forget those who have died, are MIA's, are disabled, have been prisoner's of war, forget FREEDOM. WAR is NOW as we veterans must fight to receive benefits earned by all of us who have served in the military of our USA. Too many veterans are living on the streets cold/hungry with no home or benefits to sustain their life. Why? They are being dishonored. Every citizen should have to serve their country - either in the military or at home. To ask the same military members to serve multiple tours of duty in war-torn areas is asking for trouble.

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