AFA Urges Strengthening Montgomery GI Bill
Arlington, VA – The Air Force Association today urged improvements to the Montgomery GI Bill, including those proposed in S. 22 by Sen. Jim Webb (D-VA).
The Montgomery GI Bill has been an extraordinarily successful and useful benefit for members of the United States Armed Forces for years, but has not been updated recently to reflect current educational costs.
Updating the bill to tie it to the current costs as proposed in S. 22 will help Airmen achieve a complete four-year education and thus a better quality of life after serving, while bolstering recruitment efforts throughout the military and helping lower post-military unemployment rates of veterans.
AFA also urges the more robust support for cost-of-living and books as proposed in S. 22 because it ensures that proceeding with a college education after service is a practical opportunity for Airmen. S. 22 allows more service members to access this benefit, and is more flexible, allowing them to use this benefit up to 15 years after leaving the service.
AFA urges that these benefits not be limited to service after September 11, 2001, because the Air Force has been in continuous combat for nearly 18 years, including Kosovo, Desert Shield/Storm, and Operations Southern/Northern Watch.
AFA also urges the following improvements to the Montgomery GI Bill:
- The benefit should be transferable to a spouse or child.
- The funds should be usable to pay off school loans.
- The bill should provide the full benefit to anyone who has served three years active duty or equivalent Guard and Reserve duty.
- The bill should include some benefits to Airmen who do not qualify for the new benefits as the Air Force is approaching 18 years continuous combat conditions.
AFA is a 501(C)(3), nonprofit organization promoting public understanding of aerospace power and the pivotal role it plays in the security of the nation. AFA has more than 200 chapters nationally and internationally representing more than 125,000 members. Visit AFA at http://www.afa.org.
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