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to members of the Armed Forces in making the transition and adjustment to civilian life;

(2) review the allocation under law of responsibility for the administration of veterans transition assistance and benefits programs among the various departments and agencies of the Government and determine the feasibility and desirability of consolidating such administration

(3) evaluate proposals for improving such programs, including proposals for alternative means of providing services delivered by such programs; and

(4) make recommendations to Congress regarding the need for improvements in such programs. (b) REVIEW OF PROGRAMS TO ASSIST MEMBERS OF THE ARMED FORCES AT SEPARATION.-(1) While carrying out the general duties specified in subsection (a), the members of the Commission appointed under subparagraphs (C) and (D) of section 701(b)(1) and the member specified in subparagraph (B) of section 701(b)(3) shall review primarily the programs intended to assist members of the Armed Forces at the time of their separation from service in the Armed Forces, including programs designed to assist families of such members.

(2) In carrying out the review, those members of the Commission shall determine the following:

(A) The adequacy of the programs referred to in paragraph (1) for their purposes.

(B) The adequacy of the support of the Armed Forces for such programs.

(C) The adequacy of funding levels for such programs.

(D) The effect, if any, of the existence of such programs on military readiness.

(E) The extent to which such programs provide members of the Armed Forces with job-search skills.

(F) The extent to which such programs prepare such members for employment in the private sector and in the public sector.

(G) The effectiveness of such programs in assisting such members in finding employment in the public sector upon their separation from service.

(H) The ways in which such programs could be improved. (3) In carrying out the review, the Commission shall make use of previous studies which have been made of such programs.

(c) REVIEW OF PROGRAMS TO ASSIST VETERANS. -(1) While carrying out the general duties specified in subsection (a), the members of the Commission appointed under subparagraphs (A) and (B) of section 701(b)(1) and the members specified in subparagraphs (A) and (C) of section 701(b)(3) shall review the following programs:

(A) Educational assistance programs.

(B) Job counseling, job training, and job placement services programs.

(c) Rehabilitation and training programs.
(D) Housing loan programs.

(E) Small business loan and small business assistance programs.

(F) Employment and employment training programs for employment in the public sector and the private sector, including employer training programs and union apprenticeship programs.

(G) Government personnel policies (including veterans' preference policies) and the enforcement of such policies.

(H) Programs that prepare the families of members of the Armed Forces for their transition from military life to civilian

life and facilitate that transition. (2) In carrying out the review, such members of the Commission shall determine the following:

(A) The adequacy of the programs referred to in paragraph (1) for their purposes.

(B) The adequacy of the support of the Department of Veterans Affairs for such programs.

(C) The adequacy of funding levels for such programs.

(D) The extent to which such programs provide veterans with job-search skills.

(E) The extent to which such programs prepare veterans for employment in the private sector and in the public sector.

(F) The effectiveness of such programs in assisting veterans in finding employment in the public sector upon their separation from service.

(G) The ways in which such programs could be improved. (d) REPORTS.(1) Not later than 90 days after the date on which all members of the Commission have been appointed under section 701(b)(1), the Commission shall submit to the Committees on Veterans Affairs and Armed Services of the Senate and the Committees on Veterans' Affairs and National Security of the House of Representatives a report setting forth a plan for the work of the Commission. The Commission shall develop the plan in consultation with the Secretary of Defense, the Secretary of Veterans Affairs, the Secretary of Labor, and the heads of other appropriate departments and agencies of the Government.

(2)(A) Not later than 18 months after the date of the first meeting of the Commission, the Commission shall submit to the committees referred to in paragraph (1), and to the Secretary of Defense, the Secretary of Veterans Affairs, and the Secretary of Labor, a report setting forth the activities, findings, and recommendations of the Commission, including any recommendations for legislative action and administrative action as the Commission considers appropriate.

(B) Not later than 90 days after receiving the report referred to in subparagraph (A), the Secretary of Defense, the Secretary of Veterans Affairs, and the Secretary of Labor shall jointly transmit the report to Congress, together with the Secretaries' comments on the report. SEC. 703 (38 U.S.C. 545 note). POWERS OF COMMISSION.

(a) HEARINGS.—The Commission may hold such hearings, sit and act at such times and places, take such testimony, and receive such evidence as the Commission considers advisable to carry out the purposes of this title.

(b) INFORMATION FROM FEDERAL AGENCIES.-The Commission may secure directly from the Department of Defense, the Department of Veterans Affairs, and any other department or agency of the Government such information as the Commission considers necessary to carry out its duties under this title. Upon request of the chairman of the Commission, the head of such department or agency shall furnish such information expeditiously to the Commission. SEC. 704 (38 U.S.C. 645 note). MISCELLANEOUS ADMINISTRATIVE PRO

VISIONS. (a) POSTAL SERVICES.—The Commission may use the United States mails in the same manner and under the same conditions as other departments and agencies of the Government.

(b) GIFTS.—The Commission may accept, use, and dispose of gifts or donations of services or property.

(c) MISCELLANEOUS ADMINISTRATIVE SUPPORT.-The Secretary of Defense, the Secretary of Veterans Affairs, and the Secretary of Labor shall, upon the request of the chairman of the Commission furnish the Commission, on a reimbursable basis, any administrative and support services as the Commission may require. SEC. 706 (38 U.S.C. 645 note). COMMISSION PERSONNEL MATTERS.

(a) COMPENSATION OF MEMBERS. Each member of the Commission may be compensated at a rate equal to the daily equivalent of the annual rate of basic pay prescribed for level IV of the Executive Schedule under section 5315 of title 5, United States Code, for each day (including travel time) during which such member is engaged in performing the duties of the Commission.

) TRAVEL AND TRAVEL EXPENSES.—(1) Members and personnel of the Commission may travel on military aircraft, military vehicles, or other military conveyances when travel is necessary in the performance of a duty of the Commission except when the cost of commercial transportation is less expensive.

(2) The members of the Commission may be allowed travel expenses, including per diem in lieu of subsistence, at rates authorized for employees of agencies under subchapter I of chapter 57 of title 5, United States Code, while away from their homes or regular places of business in the performance of services for the Commission.

(c) STAFF.—(1) The chairman of the Commission may, without regard to civil service laws and regulations, appoint and terminate an executive director and up to five additional staff members as may be necessary to enable the Commission to perform its duties. In appointing an individual as executive director, the chairman shall, to the maximum extent practicable, attempt to appoint an individual who is a veteran. The employment of an executive director shall be subject to confirmation by the Commission.

(2) The chairman of the Commission may fix the compensation of the executive director and other personnel without regard to the provisions of chapter 51 and subchapter III of chapter 53 of title 5, United States Code, relating to classification of positions and General Schedule pay rates, except that the rate of pay for the executive director and other staff members may not exceed the rate payable for level V of the Executive Schedule under section 531 of such title.

(d) DETAIL OF GOVERNMENT EMPLOYEES.-Upon request of the chairman of the Commission, the head of any department or agen cy of the Government may detail, on a nonreimbursable basis, any personnel of the department or agency to the Commission to assis the Commission in carrying out its duties.

(e) PROCUREMENT OF TEMPORARY AND INTERMITTENT SERVICES. The chairman of the Commission may procure temporary and intermittent services under section 3109(b) of title 5, United States Code, at rates for individuals which do not exceed the daily equiva lent of the annual rate of basic pay prescribed for level İv of the Executive Schedule under section 5316 of such title. SEC. 706 (38 U.S.C. 645 note). TERMINATION OF COMMISSION.

The Commission shall terminate 90 days after the date on which it submits its report under section 702(a)2). SEC. 707 (38 U.S.C. 646 note). DEFINITIONS.

For the purposes of this title:

(1) The term "veterans transition assistance and benefits pro gram” means any program of the Government the purpose of which 18

(A) to assist, by rehabilitation or other means, members o the Armed Forces in readjusting or otherwise making the tran sition to civilian life upon their separation from service in the Armed Forces; or

(B) to assist veterans in making the transition to civilian life (2) The term "Armed Forces" has the meaning given term in sec tion 101(10) of title 38, United States Code.

(3) The term "veteran” has the meaning given such term in sec tion 101(2) of title 38, United States Code.

(4) The term "veterans service organization" means any organiza tion covered by section 5902(a) of title 38, United States Code. SEC. 708 (38 U.S.C. 645 note). FUNDING.

(a) IN GENERAL.—The Secretary of Defense shall, upon the re quest of the chairman of the Commission, make available to the Commission such amounts as the Commission may require to carry out its duties under this title. The Secretary shall make such amounts available from amounts appropriated for the Department of Defense, except that such amounts may not be from amounts ap propriated for the transition assistance program (TAP) the Army career alumni program (ACAP), or any similar program.

(b) AVAILABILITY. Any sums made available to the Commission under subsection (a) shall remain available, without fiscal year limitation, until the termination of the Commission.

BVA APPEALS REGULATIONS AND RULES OF PRACTICE, 38 C.F.R. PART 19, WITH AMENDMENTS THROUGH AU. GUST 20, 1996

This is a "red-lined" version of the Appeals Regulations and Rules of Practice incorporating the changes published in the Federal Register on May 7, June 7, and August 20, 1996. 61 Fed. Reg. 20,447–53, 29,027–28, and 43,008–09. (Prepared by the staff of the Board of Veterans' Appeals.) PART 19 BOARD OF VETERANS' APPEALS: APPEALS

REGULATIONS

SUBPART A-Operation of the Board of Veterans' Appeals $19.1 Establishment of the Board

The Board of Veterans' Appeals is established by authority of, and functions pursuant to, title 38, United States Code, chapter 71. $19.2 Composition of the Board.

The Board consists of a Chairman, Vice Chairman, Deputy Vice Chairmen, Members and professional, administrative, clerical and stenographic personnel. Deputy Vice Chairmen are Members of the Board who are appointed to that office by the Secretary upon the recommendation of the Chairman. (Authority: 38 U.S.C. 501(a), 512, 7101(a))

$19.3 Assignment of proceedings.

(a) Assignment. The Chairman may assign a proceeding instituted before the Board, including any motion, to an individual Member or to a panel of three or more Members for adjudication or other appropriate action. The Chairman may participate in a proceeding assigned to a panel of Members. (Authority: 38 U.S.C. 7102)

(b) Inability to serve. If a Member is unable to participate in the disposition of a proceeding or motion to which the Member has been assigned, the Chairman may assign the proceeding or motion to another Member or substitute another Member (in the case of a proceeding or motion assigned to a panel).

Authority: 38 U.S.C. 7101(a), 7102) $ 19.4 Principal functions of the Board.

The principal functions of the Board are to make determinations of appellate jurisdiction, consider all applications on appeal properly before it, conduct hearings on appeal, evaluate the evidence of

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