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Cola Increase For Disabled Veterans


SSGmajik
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Question

For those who may not be familiar with the acronym BOHICA, it's what the artillery used to paint on their shells... (Bend Over Here It Comes Again).

The good news is that the Senate passed S. 2617 (a "gimme" every year) that guarantees vets a cost-of-living allowance (COLA) increase in their VA disability checks in 2009.

The bad news is that the Congressional Budget Office (CBO) projects that increase to be just 2.8%.

A 100% disabled vet now getting $2,527 a month can expect an extra $70 a month...not quite a tank of gas.

Thanks, Uncle Sugar!

Information comes from a Sen. Daniel Akaka (D-HI) press release. Akaka is the Chairman of the Senate Committee on Veterans' Affairs.

Akaka press release here...

http://www.vawatchdog.org/08/scva08/scva073108-1.htm

Press release below:

addthis_pub = 'vawatchdog';button1-share.gif

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DEMOCRATIC PRESS RELEASE

July 31, 2008

SENATE UNANIMOUSLY APPROVES COLA INCREASE FOR DISABLED VETERANS

WASHINGTON, D.C. - U.S. Senator Daniel K. Akaka (D-HI), Chairman of the Veterans' Affairs Committee, issued the following statement regarding the Senate's passage of S. 2617, the Veterans' Compensation Cost-of-Living Adjustment Act of 2008, last night by unanimous consent.

"I commend my colleagues for passing the Veterans' B&MWebAd_animNEW.gifCompensation Cost-of-Living Adjustment Act of 2008. Many veterans and their survivors count on these monthly payments to get by, and in these hard times, we must not allow rising costs to eat away at their spending power. For veterans and their survivors who rely on their compensation, including nearly 18,000 served by VA's regional office in my home state of Hawaii, this COLA is the least we can do," said Akaka.

S. 2617, introduced by Senator Akaka, will adjust veterans' compensation rates to keep pace with inflation, effective December 1, 2008. According to recent data provided by the Department of Veterans Affairs, this increase will go to 2.8 million veterans and over 300,000 surviving spouses receiving dependency and indemnity compensation.

The bill now moves to the House of Representatives for their consideration. While this year's cost-of-living increase has yet to be determined, the Congressional Budget Office has projected a 2.8 percent increase. Last year's increase was 2.3 percent.

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  • HadIt.com Elder

Personally. I'm happy with 2.8%. Many retirees don't get COLAs. I'm able to cover my living expenses, and knowing my comp will be there next month is a huge relief. I live comfortably and want for nothing, other than peace for my psyche(sp). I wish I didn't have PTSD but I do and knowing my bills are paid takes care of much stress. Could it be more, sure, but I'm not greedy. I just wish the VA cared for us properly. jmo

pr

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I agree that 2.8% increase is good, but it could be better. With the cost of everything going up I thought it should of been a little higher. I'm glad that at least it will help take care of your bills that's always a good thing. I just hope that before it is final that they really take another look before finalizing the 2.8%.

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Round it down; During the 1990s, the practice of rounding down cost-of-living increases on veterans' compensation was put into place to help balance the federal budget.

http://www.nationalpriorities.org/auxiliar...fits5-04/US.pdf

If this has been repealed, I am unaware of it.

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  • HadIt.com Elder

2.8% is good for me, too, butbeing good for me doesn't make it right. I think the need to revisit the matter and make it more in line with the cost of inflation.

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It's a cost of living increase, so it should be equal with the increase of the cost of living and 2.8% doesn't help me much. I would rather they just lower the gasoline prices. That would help me the most. Of course all the groceries and non-grocery items at the store will probably never go back down to what they were. B)

Susie

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The 2.8% is just an estimate they put into the legislation. The actual raise is tied to the change in Consumer Price Index for the final quarter of the fiscal year (I think it is July, August and September). They compare the CPI month by month to what it was last year. So, it is tied in with inflation. It will be greater than 2.8% unless prices drop drastically.

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