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Wednesday, 31 January 2018
Topic Started: Jan 31 2018, 06:55 AM (10 Views)
michaelisam
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Michael Isam
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Thanks to Kevin Secor

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- Wednesday, 31 January 2018

- Did you know:

- More than 133,000 Vets may qualify for this tax refund windfall.
- Military, Veterans and Advocates Selected As Special Guests at The State of the Union Address.
- Trump, in State of the Union, seeks full military funding. But how?.
- Trump warns of looming threats, promises to boost military might in State of the Union address.
- Trump, reversing 2009 move, vows to keep Guantanamo open indefinitely.
- House passes stand-alone defense spending bill.
- Tillerson, Mattis call for calming tensions in Gulf dispute.
- Pentagon blocks release of key data on Afghan war: watchdog.
- State Dept. to Russia: 'No more time for excuses' on North Korea.
- ‘The Military Has Seen the Writing on the Wall’ .
- US Army Leader Tells Germany: Meet NATO Spending Goal or Weaken NATO .
- Army releases warning on dangers of ‘CBD’ vape oils.
- Army plans to roll out new Master Gunner Badge for qualified soldiers.
- Third Female Marine Now in Selection to Become MARSOC Raider.
- Adm. Moran visits Surface Warfare Officers School on mission to fix Navy readiness.
- Air Force removes tech sergeant from supervisory role after racially charged Facebook rant.
- Trump’s Message to Feds: ‘A New American Moment’ and Tougher Accountability.
- Trump wants to give every cabinet secretary authority to remove employees.
- Trump looks to expand VA’s firing authority government wide.
- Trump exaggerates VA accountability law’s impact in the State of the Union address.
- Fact-checking Trump’s first State of the Union Address.
- After A False Start, The VA’s Vet ID System Finally Works.
- VA reopens ID card applications after a two-month pause.
- DoD and VA Partner with the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention.
- VA Expands Programs to target Suicide Prevention.
- Despite threat of a years-long wait, Veterans slow to embrace new option on disability appeals.
- Coast Guard considers HER partnership with DoD, VA.
- Committee considers new eligibility standards, more land for Arlington National Cemetery.
- Ceremony honors the Four Chaplains who saved sailors in World War II.
- Veteran of the Day – David Bonner.

Did you know:

IRS announces tax season, Veteran and service member-specific filing information: The Internal Revenue Service announced recently that the nation’s 2018 tax season is underway and reminds taxpayers claiming certain tax credits that refunds won’t be available before late February. The IRS will begin accepting tax returns on Jan. 29, with nearly 155 million individual tax returns expected to be filed in 2018. The nation’s tax deadline will be April 17 this year – so taxpayers will have two additional days to file beyond April 15. Although the IRS will begin accepting both …


Military Times: More than 133,000 Vets may qualify for this tax refund windfall. More than 133,000 veterans may qualify for a refund of federal taxes they paid on disability severance pay dating back to 1991 ― taxes that shouldn’t have been collected in the first place. Within the next month, Defense Department officials will send notification letters to veterans that they may be eligible for the refund, said Army Lt. Col. David Dulaney, executive director of the Armed Forces Tax Council.

Dept of Veterans Affairs Military, Veterans and Advocates Selected As Special Guests at The State of the Union Address. At President Donald Trump’s first State of the Union address tonight in Washington, D.C., service members, Veterans and a young Veteran advocate have been invited to sit in the gallery as guests during the address. The tradition started back in 1982 when President Ronald Reagan invited Lenny Skutnik to sit with Mrs. Reagan during his speech. Skutnik had gained national attention nearly two weeks earlier when he dove into the icy waters of the Potomac River in the aftermath of the Florida Flight 90 crash to save Priscilla Tirado who had lost her grip on a helicopter life line and slipped back into the water.

Defense News Trump, in State of the Union, seeks full military funding. But how?. President Donald Trump, in his first State of the Union, asked Congress to “fully fund” the U.S. military, but he will have to navigate the Capitol Hill cross-currents that bedeviled the last administration.

Military Times Trump warns of looming threats, promises to boost military might in State of the Union address. President Donald Trump again promised to rebuild America’s military might in the face of growing foreign threats in his State of the Union address on Tuesday, and lauded battlefield successes in Afghanistan in the Middle East under his administration’s new policies.

Washington Post Trump, reversing 2009 move, vows to keep Guantanamo open indefinitely. Executive action signals willingness to bring new prisoners to military facility

Federal Times House passes stand-alone defense spending bill. The House voted Tuesday to approve a stand-alone defense appropriations bill, but it is likely to fail in the Senate.

Reuters Tillerson, Mattis call for calming tensions in Gulf dispute. The U.S. secretaries of state and defense on Tuesday called on all sides in the dispute between Qatar, Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates to work to calm tensions, saying a united Gulf Cooperation Council bolstered regional stability.

Reuters Pentagon blocks release of key data on Afghan war: watchdog. The Pentagon has restricted the release of critical information on the progress being made in the war in Afghanistan, a move that will limit transparency, the U.S. government’s top watchdog on Afghanistan said on Monday.

Politico State Dept. to Russia: 'No more time for excuses' on North Korea. The State Department warned Russia Monday that "there is no more time for excuses" after it reportedly failed to enforce sanctions restricting exports from North Korea.

DefenseOne ‘The Military Has Seen the Writing on the Wall’ . The United States is preparing for a war with North Korea that it hopes never to have to fight, says Senator Tammy Duckworth.

Voice of America US Army Leader Tells Germany: Meet NATO Spending Goal or Weaken NATO . Failure by the next German government to fulfill a pledge to boost military spending to two percent of its economic output will weaken the NATO alliance, a senior U.S. military official said on Monday.

Army Times Army releases warning on dangers of ‘CBD’ vape oils. The Army released a public health warning on Monday about potentially dangerous side effects of vaping.

Army Times Army plans to roll out new Master Gunner Badge for qualified soldiers. Leaders have been hinting at it for over a year, and it’s finally here: If you’ve completed one of seven of the Army’s master gunner courses, there’s now a badge you can wear on your uniform to show it.

Military.com Third Female Marine Now in Selection to Become MARSOC Raider. Another female candidate has quietly made it through most of the first phase of the assessment and selection process of Marine Corps Special Operations Command in a quest to become the first female MARSOC Raider.

Navy Times Adm. Moran visits Surface Warfare Officers School on mission to fix Navy readiness. Fixing root problems in the Navy’s surface force, which contributed to numerous incidents in 2017 including the fatal collisions of the destroyers Fitzgerald and John S. McCain, is a top priority of Navy leadership.

Air Force Times Air Force removes tech sergeant from supervisory role after racially charged Facebook rant. A technical sergeant at Nellis Air Force Base in Nevada has been removed from her supervisory role and is now under investigation after posting a profane and racially charged video to Facebook.

Government Executive: Trump’s Message to Feds: ‘A New American Moment’ and Tougher Accountability. In his first State of the Union address, President Trump on Tuesday night declared “a new American moment” in a call for unity that also pushed for greater authority to fire federal employees who “fail the American people.” He combined his review of first-year economic accomplishments, which he called record-breaking, with praise for deregulation and a promise for a bipartisan effort to rebuild crumbling infrastructure. While he called out members of the military…

WFED (AM-1500): Trump wants to give every cabinet secretary authority to remove employees. President Donald Trump is calling on Congress to expand the Veterans Affairs Department Accountability Act to all of the government and end the Defense sequester. In his first State of the Union, Trump said he wants to make agencies and the government more accountable to the taxpayers.

Federal Computer Week: Trump looks to expand VA’s firing authority government wide. In his first State of the Union, President Donald Trump touted the Department of Veterans Affairs' use of new power to terminate low-performing employees, and wants Congress to expand the measure to cover all agencies. Trump praised the VA Accountability Act, passed by Congress last June, which gives expedited firing authority to the VA chief.

Military Times: Trump exaggerates VA accountability law’s impact in the State of the Union address. — In his first State of the Union speech Tuesday, President Donald Trump boasted that his administration has begun cleaning up the Department of Veterans Affairs by getting rid of problematic workers thanks to new accountability legislation passed by Congress last summer. But the numbers he cited don’t match up with official VA records.

CBS News: Fact-checking Trump’s first State of the Union Address. "Last year, Congress also passed, and I signed, the landmark VA Accountability Act. Since its passage, my administration has already removed more than 1,500 VA employees who failed to give our veterans the care they deserve. And we are hiring talented people who love our vets as much as we do."

Task & Purpose: After A False Start, The VA’s Vet ID System Finally Works. Late last year, the Department of Veterans Affairs announced that it would officially launch the veteran ID card program Nov. 29. Gone would be the days of stuffing a laminated DD-214 into your back pocket before scoring hardware discounts at Home Depot discounts or free grub from Applebees on Veterans Day. Finally, there’d be proof of one’s service in the form of a glossy white ID card.

Military Times: VA reopens ID card applications after a two-month pause. The Department of Veterans Affairs is once again accepting applications for new Veteran ID cards after a series of technical problems that forced a two-month halt to the program. But they still aren’t sure what the cards will look like. VA officials are now promising recipients will begin receiving the new cards in March, two months after the original delivery goal and more than 30 months after Congress passed legislation creating the cards.

PR Newswire DoD and VA Partner with the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention. On Saturday, at its annual Chapter Leadership Conference, the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention (AFSP) announced a milestone partnership with the U.S. Department of Defense (DoD) and the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs ...

KPBS (PBS-15): VA Expands Programs to target Suicide Prevention. The Veterans Health Administration has tried a number of ideas to drive down the suicide rate among veterans. The VA is about to start automatically enrolling most new veterans in mental health care, starting in March. People who work with veterans say the program, mandated by an executive order from the White House, is a great idea, but they worry about the impact on an already strained system.

Military Times: Despite threat of a years-long wait, Veterans slow to embrace new option on disability appeals. A new program designed to help clear the Department of Veterans Affairs’ massive backlog of disability claims appeals has so far received little interest from veterans, despite promises it could trim years off their wait times. Less than 3 percent of veterans invited into the program — about 330 individuals — have opted into the Rapid Appeals Modernization Program, launched in November and billed as an “more efficient” review process that could provide final decisions within a month.

WFED (AM-1500): Coast Guard considers HER partnership with DoD, VA. More than seven years later, and with nearly $60 million sunk into the project, the Coast Guard has nothing show for an electronic health record contract it killed for falling behind schedule and going over its budget. And the bills are still coming due.

Stars and Stripes Committee considers new eligibility standards, more land for Arlington National Cemetery. Arlington National Cemetery — a place long-viewed as a shrine to America’s fallen heroes — is nearing the end of its lifespan, but a group of people with a lead role in deciding its future got one step closer Tuesday to reviving it.

Stars and Stripes Ceremony honors the Four Chaplains who saved sailors in World War II. As hundreds of panicking sailors scurried in fear for their lives, Rabbi Alexander D. Goode, Father John P. Washington and the Revs. George L. Fox and Clark V. Poling gave up their life jackets and helped calm the soldiers on a sinking transport ship.

Dept of Veterans Affairs Veteran of the Day – David Bonner. Air Force Veteran David Bonner. David commissioned into the Air Force after graduating from Texas Christian University in 2003. He served as a missile combat crew officer. After serving four years with the Air Force, David earned his master’s degree in business administration. He now works as a pharmaceutical executive. He enjoys traveling and training in martial arts in his free time. Thank you for your service, David!

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