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Whereas, the minimum upper extremity, loss or loss of use provides a minimum 60% rating; and

Whereas, it is recognized that a loss or loss of use of a lower extremity causes an equal physical limitation as the upper extremity; and

Whereas, it is felt that an increase in the minimum rating under the 1957 Rating Schedule is in order : Now therefore, be it

Resolved by the 68th National Convention of the Veterans of Foreign Wars of the United States, That we go on record seeking legislation to amend the 1967 loose leaf edition of the Rating Schedule for rating disabilities under Section 35.), Title 38 C.S. Code, to provide a minimum schedular rating of 60% for any veterans who have suffered a loss or loss of use of a lower extremity.

Adopted at the 68th National Convention of the Veterans of Foreign Wars of the United States held at New Orleans, La., August 20 through 25, 1967.

RESOLUTION No. 107—AMENDMENT TO CHAPTER I, GENERAL SECTION 301 (3),

DEFINITIONS

Whereas, previous resolutions have been submitted seeking inclusion of lupus erythematosus as one of the chronic diseases included under the above cited Section of Title 38 U.S. Code; and

Whereas, Lupus Erythmatosus is a chronic constitutional disease: Now, therefore, be it

Resolved by the 68th National Convention of the Veterans of Foreign Wars of the United States, That we go on record to seek amendment to Title 38 U.S. Code to include Lupus Erythematosus as a chronic constitutional disease under Section 301 (3) of Title 38 U.S. Code.

Adopted at the 68th National Convention of the Veterans of Foreign Wars of the United States held at New Orleans, La., August 20 through 25, 1967.

RESOLUTION No. 119_SUPPORT FOR CHANGE IN TIME PERIOD FOR COMPENSATION

PURPOSES IN SECTION 110, TITLE 38, UNITED STATES CODE Whereas, Section 110 of Title 38, U.S. Code states that a rating of total disability which has been made for compensation, pension, or insurance purposes, that has been in force for twenty or more years, shall not be reduced thereafter, except upon a showing that such a rating was based on fraud. A disability which has been continuously rated at or above any percentage for twenty or more years for compensation purposes under the laws administered by the Veterans Administration shall not thereafter be rated at less than such percentage except upon showing that such a rating was based on fraud; and

Whereas, Mr. Saylor, Congressman from the State of Pennsylvania, introduced a bill (H.R. 5428) on February 24th, 1965 in the First Session of the 89th Congress of the United States whereby, Section 110 of Title 38 of the U.S. Code be amended by striking out “twenty years” and inserting in lieu thereof "fifteen years"; and

Whereas, Congressman Saylor's bill (H.R. 5428) died for lack of support in the 89th Congress in both sessions of the House of Representatives; and

Whereas, the Veterans of Foreign Wars of the United States supports the contents of Mr. Saylor's bill (H.R. 5428) and the importance of having this bill again submitted to the House of Representatives in the 90th Congress: Now, therefore, be it

Resolved by the 68th National Convention of the Veterans of Foreign Wars of the United States, That our organization on a District, Department and National level, make every effort to promote the resubmission of Mr. Saylor's bill (H.R. 5428).

Adopted at the 68th National Convention of the Veterans of Foreign Wars of the United States held at New Orleans, La., August 20 through 25, 1967.

Mr. STOVER. There are several bills pending before this subcommittee which would carry out some or part of one or all of these mandates. For example, H.R. 508, by Congressman Dorn; H.R. 4341, by Congressman Saylor; H.R. 16128, by Congressman Hanley; H.R. 16027,

by Chairman Teague; and H.R. 2070, by Congressman Dorn are all in line and carry out to some extent mandates of our organization.

The Veterans of Foreign Wars commends the members of this subcommittee who introduced this legislation, which, if recommended by this subcommittee and approved by the full committee and the House, will go a long ways toward helping the service-disabled veteran and his family, in carrying out the position of the VFW.

The Veterans of Foreign Wars is deeply concerned with the present $300 maximum rate for the 10-percent totally disabled service-connected veteran. Our organization is extremely hopeful that this maximum amount, which is really only $3,600 a year, will be brought in line with the more realistic standard of living which prevails for nondisabled productive and gainfully employed American families. As our Resolution No. 5 expressed it:

Whereas veterans who have suffered wounds and disabilities during wartime service deserve the highest consideration or, if deceased, their surviving widows, children, and parents; and

Whereas compensation payments reflect the loss of earning capacity and standards of living caused by the veterans' disability; and

Whereas failure to keep compensation payments on a par with the increased cost of living, which has skyrocketed during the last decade; and

Whereas the average family income of Americans is now over $6,000 per year;

Whereas, a shortened life span caused by a service-connected disability is not a factor in his loss of earning capacity; and

Whereas, with a 100 percent totally disabled veteran receiving a maximum of $300 a month, which is only $3,600 a year, the compensation program is out of joint with the $6,000 a year standard of living other Americans are enjoying : Now, therefore, be it

Resolved, by the 68th National Convention of the Veterans of Foreign Wars of the United States, That the Congress undertake a deep and comprehensive study of the compensation program to the end that compensation payments for the service-disabled shall be brought in line with the standards of living that these veterans would have been enjoying had they not suffered their servicesconnected disability.

The Veterans of Foreign Wars has supported the principle that the more seriously disabled should receive the greater assistance. Part of our justification for this policy is that the more disabled a veteran, the more he must rely on his disability compensation to earn a living.

Even where a veteran is earning a good livelihood and is seriously service-connected disabled, he has done so in spite of his handicaps and disabilities caused by his service. No veteran should be penalized because he has rehabilitated himself. Even more, no veteran should be penalized because he has had the courage and fortitude to overcome his disabilities.

Accordingly, the Veterans of Foreign Wars recommends that the 100-percent disabled should receive a substantial increase of at least $150 a month will proportionate increases in compensation rates of less than 100 percent for at least the more seriously disabled who are rated less than 100 percent.

In the alternative, the Veterans of Foreign Wars recommends a 15-percent across-the-board cost-of-living increase in all compensation rates.

Further, our organization strongly recommends that there be an additional' 10-percent increase in compensation rates where a veteran served overseas or in combat during a period of war. This would be in line with the recognition given a serviceman who receives combat

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pay or hostile-fire pay while in combat areas. The continuing of this principle would be recognized by paying the additional 10 percent in disability compensation for a veteran who was entitled to extra activedutv service pay while in combat art as.

Mr. Chairman and members of the subcommittee, the Veterans of Foreign Wars also strongly recommends that the statutory awards be given at least a cost-of-living increase. It has been some years now since the $47 a month which is granted for certain losses in addition to the basic compensation pay has been increased. Admittedly, a great majority of these veterans are among the seriously disabled, but if the statutory award is to continue to be a meaningful one, it must keep up with the cost-of-living increase. The $47 a month statutory awards should be increased by at least 20 percent.

In the same category, the Veterans of Foreign Wars has viewed with great alarm the continuing recommendation by the Bureau of the Budget that the $67 a month statutory award for arrested tuberculosis be eliminated. It seems incongruous to the Veterans of Foreign Wars that during this Vietnam war the Bureau of the Budget wants to save money at the expense of service-connected disabled veterans. The Veterans of Foreign Wars not only is vehemently opposed to the elimination of this award but, to the contrary, recommends that it be substantially increased to keep up with the increased cost of living.

Tuberculosis is a disease which, to say the least, has caused many a veteran to lose out on employment and other social and economic advantages, once it has become known that he has suffered from such a malady. The Veterans of Foreign Wars, therefore, strongly opposes any legislation to eliminate statutory award for arrested tuberculosis and urgently recommends that the statutory award of $67 a month be brought in line with the cost-of-living increases which have occurred since this award was last increased.

As was stated in the beginning, the Veterans of Foreign Wars has held to the principle that the service-connected disabled deserve the highest consideration. It is our strong conviction that these views and recommendations of the VFW as reflected in our national resolutions and priority legislative program substantially carry out this principle.

It is our strongest recommendation that any bill approved and advanced by this subcommittee to your full committee will incorporate the VFW position as presented to you this morning.

Thank you again for the privilege of appearing before this distinguished subcommittee concerning this most important legislation.

Mr. KORNEGAY. Thank you very much, Mr. Stover, for coming and presenting your views and the views of the Veterans of Foreign Wars. We are grateful to you for a very fine statement.

Mr. Saylor.

Mr. SAYLOR. Thank you, Mr. Chairman. Mr. Stover, I appreciate your statement in behalf of the Veterans of Foreign Wars. Mr. Stover, I notice that you were listed as one of the technical consultants to the U.S. Veterans Advisory Commission, and the Veterans of Foreign Wars was represented by yourself, Cooper Holt, and Norman D. Jones. Is there any significance, do you believe, in the fact that your organization had three representatives and the American Legion had 15? Is this to show that the American Legion was to advise, give more technical consultation to the Advisory Commission, than the VFW?

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Mr. STOVER. I don't know how these consultants were selected. I would like to think that we three did as well as the 15 did for the American Legion.

Mr. SAYLOR. Well, I can only tell you that the Veterans' Administration had four, American Legion had 15, the American Veterans Committee had five, the American War Mothers had one, the Amvets had four, and the Blind Veterans Association, two, the Catholic War Veterans, four, the Disabled American Veterans, three, the Disabled Officers Association, two, Fleet Reserve Association, three, ItalianAmerican War Veterans, six, Jewish War Veterans, two, Legion of Valor, two, Military Order of the Purple Heart, three, the National Yeoman F, one, Paralyzed Veterans of America, two, Polish Legion of American Veterans, five, Retired Officers Association, two, Veterans of Foreign Wars, three, Veterans of World War I, one, and WAC Veterans Association, three.

As I say, these are some of the things that cause me to wish I could have been present when the Commission made its report. I think they exposed themselves to showing that they might not have been impartial in arriving at their conclusions. Mr. Scott. Will you yield. Are you putting the VFW on a par

with the WAC's? Mr. SAYLOR. I don't know. I am not putting them on a part with them. I want to know whether or not the Advisory Commission put them on the same par.

Mr. JONES. Mr. Saylor, I would like to comment that the Veterans' Administration representatives had far more opportunities to exercise the power of persuasion than did we.

Mr. SAYLOR. All right, now, this recommendation which they make, recommendation 1, is that the basic compensation for total disability be increased by $100 a month. Then, as I mentioned before, recommendation 2 is, that the 10 through 90 percent be given a cost-of-living increase.

Now, the thing that disturbs me is how you can look at a man who is 90-percent disabled and tell him he is entitled to a 71/2-percent cost-ofliving increase whereas a fellow who is just a little more disabled will get a minimum of $100 a month increase. It just seems to me this is completely inconsistent.

Would your organization support, do you believe, a recommendation that all disabilities from 10 percent to 100 percent be on a graduated scale based upon the amount paid for 100 percent?

Mr. STOVER. You are referring to an increase at the present time? Mr. SAYLOR. No; I mean revise the whole structure.

Mr. Stover. The VFW—you are talking about parity, 10 percent of 100 percent.

Mr. SAYLOR. In other words, let us take your recommendation of $150 a month for a totally disabled veteran, a 10-percent disabled veteran would get $45 a month.

Mr. STOVER. We would not oppose it, although, as a matter of priority, we do not advocate it, because in order to accomplish that purpose, as I understand it, the amount of money involved would be far beyond what could ever be expected to be approved by the Congress and recommended and approved by the administration; so, as a matter of practicality, we are to some extent in support of this present system,

which gives more to the more seriously disabled than it does to those at the bottom of the rating scale, in the tens, twenties, and thirties.

We don't advocate compounding the disparity. We feel that if you give the 100 percenters the sum of $150 if the committee thought advisable in its wisdom and a proportionate increase be given those on down—80 percent of $150, 70 percent of $150, on down to 10 percent.

Mr. SAYLOR. Do you believe this committee should look at the groups who are rated at 50 percent or more and determine whether or not they should receive a proportion of the total given to 100-percent disabled ?

Mr. STOVER. We would be very much in favor of such a proposition and support it to the fullest extent.

Mr. SAYLOR. I would like to commend you for your statement with regard to the statutory award for arrested tuberculosis. It seems to me that not only the Bureau of the Budget but the Veterans' Administration is completely off on the wrong foot when they say that the award for arrested tuberculosis should be eliminated completely. It is perfectly possible so doctors tell me, to arrest tuberculosis and leave a person with only one lung. Certainly this severe, disability leaves a person with impaired health and it must be taken into consideration by the Veterans Administration. Very competent doctors, just as competent as they have in the Veterans Administration, have informed me that nobody knows when tuberculosis can break out again and that care must be exercised throughout a person's life once he has had tuberculosis and it has been arrested.

I would like to commend you and your association for this particular stand which you have taken. Mr. STOVER. Thank

you,

sir.
Mr. SAYLOR. Thank you, Mr. Chairman.
Mr. ROBERTS (acting chairman). Mr. Scott.
Mr. Scott. I have no questions. It is good to see you here.

Mr. ROBERTS. Thank you for a fine statement, and I see one or two points I would like to try to make. What is our situation and what is your recommendation with reference to the widows of servicemen killed in the service?

Mr. STOVER. Well, we have resolutions and are hoping the Congress will be giving them a substantial increase.

Mr. ROBERTS. You stated, and I think correctly, it would be very difficult to get the amount of money appropriated or approved that would be necessary if we set this on a graduated scale, as Mr. Saylor mentioned, and as, frankly, I favor; yet we seem to be able to get money for everything else.

There are two cases that were recently brought to my attention of not widows but unmarried women, one with seven illegitimate and one with five illegitimate children, and one was getting $300 a month and the other $400 a month; and what would a widow of a veteran killed in Vietnam draw who is a law-abiding citizen who has seven children; what would she draw?

Mr. STOVER. She would get the basic $130 a month.
Mr. ROBERTS. $130 plus $30 for each child.
Mr. Jones. There is no additional DIC for children.

Mr. ROBERTS. If she is drawing welfare, she gets $30 for each additional, plus social security.

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