Senators aim to protect GI benefits

What if the military gave every service member an expensive car as a reward for honorable service, but they could take delivery only at night and the headlights didn’t work? Many of those gift cars might end up damaged. Something similar is happening to thousands of veterans leaving service with Post-9/11 GI Bill eligibility worth […]

Commissioner salaries smaller than in similar-size counties

Robin Fornoff Curry County commissioners make less money than counterparts in at least two similar-size New Mexico counties. But they make far more than commissioners in Roosevelt County and the city of Clovis. And when it comes to benefits, they enjoy the same health and retirement packages as every city and county official under plans […]

Officials: Heart health important

By Shari Lopatin: TriWest Healthcare Alliance According to Harvard Health Publications, walking regularly can reduce your chance of getting a heart condition by about 30 percent. Those results came from the analysis of 18 studies conducted between 1970 and 2007. Study participants who walked 5.5 miles each week began showing benefits in heart-related health. The […]

Gays pressing for equal benefits

The dismal failure by the congressional “super committee” to deal with the nation’s debt crisis leaves the Department of Defense facing automatic $55-billion-a-year spending cuts from 2013 through 2021. This is in addition to defense cuts of near-equal size already planned across the same decade. President Obama promised before Thanksgiving to veto any attempt to […]

Bill eases GI Bill shortfall for vets

As Congress moves closer to protecting veterans at private colleges in seven states from a sharp drop in Post-9/11 GI Bill benefits, the Department of Veterans Affairs has softened its warning that the relief move will cause significant payment delays for many thousands of GI Bill users this fall. VA officials still see payment challenges […]

New state laws benefit veterans

Nine state laws and benefits aimed at military veterans take effect Friday, including disabled veteran license plates, enrollment priority for military children and tax exemptions for veterans service organizations. The laws were enacted during the 2011 legislative session and signed by the governor, according to a press release from the state Department of Veteran’s Services. […]

‘Unfunded’ benefits can hurt vets

Through a decade of war, Congress has pumped billions of additional dollars into new benefits and programs for veterans. They deserve them, lawmakers say. Helping vets also is popular with constituents. Veterans’ service organizations have lobbied for these benefits, but with the expectation that newly authorized programs would be fully funded. Last year, even as […]

VA fails to meet crucial deadline

Senior Democrats and Republicans on the veterans affairs committees have joined hands to scold the Department of Veterans Affairs over missed deadlines and restrictive language drafted for implementing new benefits for caregivers of severely wounded Iraq and Afghanistan war veterans. In an unusual letter last week to President Obama, signed by both chairmen and ranking […]

Ride-2-Recovery benefits wounded warriors

By 27th SOW Public Affairs The base Fitness and Sports Center will host Ride-2 Recovery on Saturday, a nationwide event that benefits wounded warriors’ mental and physical rehabilitation. Ride 2 Recovery is produced by the Fitness Challenge foundation, a non-profit organization in partnerships with the military and VA Volunteer Service Offices that features cycling as […]

Letters to the editor: Blame lies with elected officials

Blame lies with elected officials I just watched the news and I have a few questions for you folks who are smarter than myself. Why is it that an illegal alien needs a valid drivers license? Answer: To get the free benefits that America has to offer. Why was this law that allows the illegal […]

VA benefits provided to caregivers of veterans

American Forces Press Service WASHINGTON — Department of Veterans Affairs officials are launching the first of a series of new and enhanced services supporting family caregivers of seriously ill and injured veterans. In May 2010, President Obama signed the Caregivers and Veterans Omnibus Health Services Act of 2010 legislation authorizing VA officials to establish a […]

TRICARE benefits follow students on winter break

American Forces Press Service FALLS CHURCH, Va. — With winter break approaching, many college students will visit family or friends. Making sure their TRICARE benefits follow them during holiday travel is a simple process. To avoid higher out-of-pocket costs and point-of-service charges, students should get care before heading home or elsewhere for the winter break. […]

Veteran benefits not under attack

Some of us, when we see a proposal to raise VA health care fees for a category of veteran in a report on ways to curb federal budget deficits, jump to the conclusion that veteran benefits are under fresh attack. Bernard Rostker, former under secretary of defense for personnel and now a senior fellow at […]

Albertson’s offers benefits proposal to unions

A tentative agreement has been reached between Albertson’s and a negotiating committee representing employees in nine of the supermarket’s New Mexico locations. A release from the United Food and Commercial Workers union said after five months of negotiations, Albertson’s sent an offer that provides increases in wages, health care benefits and pension protection. Employees will […]

Don’t expect downsizing of government

Freedom New Mexico Eastern New Mexico residents who fear the Republican takeover of the U.S. House of Representatives will mean a loss of benefits probably needn’t worry. Despite all the rhetoric to that effect, the Grand Old Party traditionally has shown a grand old habit for maintaining and even expanding services — and debt — […]

Affordable Care Act impacts federal benefits

American Forces Press Service RANDOLPH AIR FORCE BASE, Texas — Several provisions of the Affordable Care Act will be implemented Jan. 1 affecting eligibility and benefits for appropriated civilian employees under the Federal Employees Health Benefits and Federal Flexible Spending Account programs. One of the provisions of Public Law 111-148 changes FEHB dependent eligibility rules. […]

Commentary: Even one suicide is too many

By Chief Master Sergeant James A. Roy: Chief Master Sergeant of the Air Force WASHINGTON, D.C. — An alarming trend is happening in our Air Force, and we need your help. We’ve had a drastic increase this year in the number of suicides among our total force airmen — active duty, guard, reserve and civilians. […]

Bond D will have positive impact

As presidents of Clovis Community College and Eastern New Mexico University, we want to outline the benefits of General Obligation Bond D in the Nov. 2 General Election, and why it makes sense to the citizens of Curry and Roosevelt counties. The cost of Bond D is very reasonable. The owner of a $100,000 assessed […]

Officials tout Post-9/11 GI Bill benefits

By Donna Miles: American Forces Press Service WASHINGTON — With more than 260,000 students attending about 6,000 colleges and universities this fall under the Post-9/11 GI Bill, officials are continuing an active outreach effort to ensure current military members and veterans don’t miss out on the new program’s education benefits. Participation is up significantly from […]

Congress passes benefits package

It’s unusual for Congress to pass a comprehensive bill to help thousands of veterans with a final legislative sprint that leaves veterans’ service organizations wondering what just happened. But that’s what the Senate and House did last week. After a burst of closed-door compromises, they agreed to and separately passed the Veterans’ Benefits Act of […]