On Wednesday September 19th, the House of Representatives passed H.R. 5948, the Veterans Fiduciary Reform Act of 2012. This legislation was an omnibus bill that included Congressman Jon Runyan's (R-NJ) bill H.R. 5881, the Access to Veterans Benefits Improvement Act. Congressman Runyan's legislation would improve access to veterans' case information for certain government employees and county veterans' service officers.
"I am pleased that my legislation passed the House of Representatives today as part of H.R. 5948," said Congressman Runyan. "The State and county officials that tirelessly work to ensure that our veterans receive their proper benefits should be given every resource needed to ensure problems are solved in a timely manner. I would implore the United States Senate to quickly take up this critical legislation so that our nation's veterans will not be forced to wait for the benefits they have more than earned defending the United States."
H.R. 5948 also contains provisions that were brought to light and passed by the Veterans Affairs Subcommittee on Disability Assistance and Memorial Affairs, which is chaired by Congressman Runyan. The bill includes sections that would make improvements to the Department of Veterans' Affairs (VA) national cemetery program and burial process. This includes making the VA responsible for ensuring proper burial for indigent or homeless veterans with no relatives.
Congressman Runyan has had 3 stand-alone pieces of legislation passed by the House of Representatives and 5 pieces of legislation that have been included in omnibus bills. This includes the first bill introduced by the freshman Congressman, H.R. 1407, the Veterans' Compensation Cost-of-Living Adjustment Act of 2011, which gave disabled veterans their first cost-of-living adjustment (COLA) in three years.
In addition to Congressman Runyan's position on the House Veterans' Affairs Committee and chairmanship of the Subcommittee on Disability Assistance and Memorial Affairs; Congressman Runyan is a member of the House Armed Services Committee and the Natural Resources Committee.