INTRODUCTION OF H.R. 4175, VETERANS' COMPENSATION COST-OF-LIVING ADJUSTMENT ACT OF 2004 -- (Extensions of Remarks - April 20, 2004)
HON. CHRISTOPHER H. SMITH
OF NEW JERSEY
IN THE HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES
TUESDAY, APRIL 20, 2004
Mr. SMITH of New Jersey. Mr. Speaker, I am proud to introduce H.R. 4175, the Veterans' Compensation Cost-of-Living Adjustment Act of 2004. Veterans' Affairs Committee Ranking Member Lane Evans, as well as the Chairman and Ranking Member of the Benefits Subcommittee, HENRY BROWN and MICHAEL MICHAUD, respectively, join me as original cosponsors of the bill. H.R. 4175 would provide a cost-of-living adjustment to veterans' benefits, effective December 1, 2004.
The VA Committee periodically reviews the service-connected disability compensation and dependency and indemnity compensation (DIC) programs to ensure that the benefits provide reasonable and adequate compensation for disabled veterans and their families. Based on this review, Congress acts annually to provide a cost-of-living adjustment in compensation and DIC benefits.
Mr. Speaker, Congress has provided increases in these rates for every fiscal year since 1976. The Administration's fiscal year 2005 budget submission includes funding for a projected 1.3 percent increase.
I urge my colleagues to support this bill.