House Committee on Education and Labor
U.S. House of Representatives

Rep. Howard P. “Buck” McKeon
Ranking Member

Fiscally responsible reforms for students, workers and retirees.



Dear Colleague

March 6, 2008

CONTACT: Alexa Marrero
(202) 225-4527

Support Veterans in National Service: VOTE YES on the McKeon Amendment to H.R. 2857

Dear Colleague,

Later today, the House will vote on the Generations Invigorating Volunteerism and Education (GIVE) Act, a bipartisan renewal of our national service programs. The legislation makes long overdue reforms to increase program accountability and refocus national service to benefit targeted populations and meet key national priorities.  One of our greatest national priorities is to support the brave men and women who have served in the military, and that’s why I plan to offer an amendment that will increase support for veterans in our national service programs.

The GIVE Act already reflects a bipartisan commitment to supporting our veterans by working to increase the number of national service programs responding to the needs of veterans under AmeriCorps.  My amendment enhances that effort by prioritizing services for and service by veterans throughout all of our national service programs.

Under my amendment, the Corporation for National and Community Service will be required to place a priority on applications that serve veterans or recruit veterans to serve.  The Corporation is already required to establish priorities when funding national service initiatives in order to ensure a targeted, effective investment.  Under my amendment, included among those priorities would be an emphasis on programs that recruit veterans into service opportunities, promote community-based efforts to meet the unique needs of military families while a family member is deployed, and promote community-based efforts to meet the unique needs of military families when a member of the family returns from a deployment.

In addition, my amendment requires the Corporation to report to Congress on its efforts to increase the number of veterans serving in AmeriCorps and other positions that are eligible for the education award.  Veterans, particularly those recently deployed to Afghanistan and Iraq, deserve opportunities to reintegrate into their communities through service programs funded under the national service laws.  Without this amendment, we will not have the necessary information to effectively increase veteran participation in national service positions that provide an educational award in exchange for citizen service.

The GIVE Act includes important reforms to national service programs that allow neighbors to come together in service of individuals, communities, and our nation.  I urge you to vote yes on my amendment to enhance the bill’s support for veterans and vote yes on passage of these important reforms.  For more information, contact the Education and Labor Committee Republican staff at x5-6558.



Howard P. “Buck” McKeon (R-CA)
Senior Republican Member
Education and Labor Committee