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We believe that the foregoing history indicates a continued congressional feeling that the rates being paid veterans within the purview of S. 1001 are adequate.
It is estimated that the first-year cost of S. 1001, 93d Congress, if enacted, would be approximately $33.9 million, benefiting about 85,600 veterans. Also, that its effect would remain about the same during the ensuing 4 years.
We fully concur with the conėlusion indicated by the Congress that the rates being paid veterans within the purview of S. 1001 are adequate. Accordingly, the Veterans' Administration opposes enactment of the bill.
Advice has been 'received from the Office of Management and Budget that there is no objection to the presentation of this report from the standpoint of the administration's program. Sincerely,
DONALD E. JOHNSON,
EXECUTIVE OFFICE OF THE PRESIDENT,
Washington, D.C., April 18, 1974.
DEAR MR. CHAIRMAN: This is in response to your request of March 1, 1973 for the views of this Office on S. 1001, a bill to amend title 38, United States Code, to increase the statutory rates for anatomical loss or loss of use.
In its report to your committee on S. 1001 the Veterans' Administration explains its reasons for recommending against favorable action on the bill. We concur in the views expressed in the report of the Veterans' Administration and, accordingly, recommend against enactment of S. 1001. Sincerely,
WILFRED H. ROMMEL, Assistant Director for Legislative Reference.
IN TIIE SENATE OF THE UNITED STATES
FEBRUARY 7, 1973 Mr. McGovern introduced the following bill; which was read twice and referred
to the Committee on Armed Services
APRIL 12, 1973 The Committee on Armed Services discharged, and referred to the Committee
on Veterans Affairs
A BILL To provide adjustment assistance to Vietnam era prisoners of war. 1
Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representa2 tives of the United States of America in Congress assembled,
3 That section 314 of title 38, United States Code, is amended
4 by adding at the end thereof the following new subsection: 5 “ (t) Any person who was detained as a prisoner of war 6 during the Vietnam era by the government of North Viet
nam or any other hostile government or group in Indochina 8 shall be deemed to be disabled within the meaning of section 9 310 of this Act. The rate of compensation therefor shall be
10 $10 per month for each year or portion thereof that such
11 person was detained as a prisoner of war, not to exceed $200
1 per month. Such compensation shall be in addition to any 2 other compensation provided in this section.”
GENERAL COUNSEL OF THE DEPARTMENT OF DEFENSE,
Washington, D.C., December 10, 1973. Hon. VANCE HARTKE, Chairman, Committee on Veterans' Affairs, U.S. Senate, Washington,
D.C. DEAR MR. CHAIRMAN: In accordance with your request, the provisions of S. 799, 93d Congress, a bill to provide adjustment assistance to Vietnam era prisoners of war, have been reviewed.
The bill would amend section 314 of title 38, relating to rates of wartime disability compensation to add a new subsection (t) which would establish a conclusive presumption that any person who was detained as a prisoner of war by the Government of North Vietnam or any other hostile government or group in Indochina, is disabled and entitled to disability compensation. The rate of compensation would be $10 per month for each year or portion thereof, that such a person was detained as a prisoner of war, subject to a maximum limit of $200 monthly.
Inasmuch as the administration and payment of disability compensation is under the jurisdiction of the Veterans' Administration, the Department of Defense recommends that the views of that agency also be secured as to the merits of this proposal. However, the Department of Defense has a deep concern for the welfare and benefits provided for all members of the Armed Forces and their dependents and accordingly, has devoted considerable attention to the matter of the special treatment which has been proposed for repatriated prisoners of war.
The Department of Defense is acutely aware of the physical hardships, privations, and mental anguish experienced during the period of their captivity by persons who were prisoners of war during the Vietnam period. Their families also experienced agony and uncertainty over the welfare and treatment of their husbands, sons, fathers, or brothers, as the case may be.
During the period of captivity of those who were prisoners of war during the Vietnam hostilities, the Department of Defense and the Congress have taken many actions to aid the families of the absent member and to provide for the day when the member and his family would be reunited. During the member's absence, his pay and allowances continued to be payable and he continued to be promoted along with his contemporaries. To the extent that it was possible to do so, the member's financial situation and the physical needs of his family were provided for in the same manner as the member would have provided for such needs had he been present. More has been done in monetary ways to aid the Vietnam prisoners of war than has ever been done before in our history for members of our Armed Forces.