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Veterans Benefits

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CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
May 25, 1991 | TED ROHRLICH, TIMES STAFF WRITER
The state Court of Appeal ruled this week that California must broaden eligibility for low-cost, state-financed home loans and educational stipends to include veterans who joined the armed services while living in other states. Under California law, eligibility requirements include being a California native or having been a resident when service in the armed forces began.
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NEWS
February 10, 2014 | By Lisa Mascaro and Michael A. Memoli
WASHINGTON -- The House could vote as early as Wednesday on a bill that would raise the nation's debt ceiling and reverse a cut made to some veterans' benefits as part of the recent budget deal. House Speaker John A. Boehner (R-Ohio) unveiled the proposal at a private meeting late Monday as his party races against the clock to avoid a political showdown over the need to authorize more borrowing. Treasury has said it will run out of money by Feb. 27 if Congress fails to act. Republicans leaders have struggled to devise a way to raise the debt ceiling in the face of steep opposition from rank-and-file GOP lawmakers who want to extract a policy concession in exchange for their vote.
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NATIONAL
April 6, 2013 | By Lisa Mascaro, Washington Bureau
WASHINGTON - A few hours before midnight during a marathon budget session, Sen. Bernie Sanders of Vermont, the only member of Congress elected as a socialist, called for a vote on his proposal to oppose any cut in cost-of-living adjustments for veterans benefits. With no opposition from senators on the floor, Sanders watched as his measure was unanimously adopted. In this first salvo ahead of the next round of budget battles with the White House, score one for the real-life socialist; zero for the president who is often derided as one. President Obama, however, was not dissuaded.
NATIONAL
September 4, 2013 | By Becca Clemons
WASHINGTON - Spouses of veterans in same-sex marriages will be allowed to collect federal benefits, the Obama administration announced Wednesday in a move following the Supreme Court decision that struck down a key section of the Defense of Marriage Act in June. President Obama directed the executive branch to stop enforcing two provisions that restricted the U.S. from awarding spousal benefits to veterans in legal gay marriages. The provisions define "spouse" as a "person of the opposite sex," Atty.
NEWS
December 22, 1995 | PAUL RICHTER and JONATHAN PETERSON, TIMES STAFF WRITERS
The federal budget impasse claimed new victims Thursday as Congress' failure to enact emergency spending authority delayed benefit checks for 3.3 million veterans and survivors and threatened to do the same for 4.7 million needy families. Although veterans flooded congressional offices with their pleas, legislation to ensure prompt delivery of $1.4 billion in benefits by the new year remained bogged down in the Senate after clearing the House.
NEWS
February 25, 1992 | PHILIP HAGER, TIMES LEGAL AFFAIRS WRITER
The state Supreme Court, expanding state government aid to veterans, Monday struck down a 50-year-old law limiting home loan and other benefits to war veterans who were native Californians or residents when they entered the service. The justices held unanimously that the benefits available to 600,000 veterans must be offered to an estimated 300,000 additional veterans who came to California after their service.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
July 7, 1995 | LESLIE BERESTEIN, SPECIAL TO THE TIMES
Peping Baclig will never forget the Bataan Death March. It remains a vision as clear and cruel as the Philippine sun he and 67,000 other defeated American and Filipino troops plodded beneath in April of 1942, during the early days of World War II. "Those who couldn't make it, they were just slaughtered," said Baclig, a gentle, chubby-faced man of 73. "Those who attempted to get water were killed."
NATIONAL
July 1, 2008 | Richard Simon, Times Staff Writer
President Bush signed an emergency spending measure Monday that funds military operations in Iraq and Afghanistan into next year, along with an expansion of veterans benefits and an extension of jobless aid. The measure:h.r.02642:, enacted at a time when the troubled economy tops many voters' concerns, provides up to 13 extra weeks of unemployment assistance for people who have lost their jobs and have exhausted their typical 26 weeks of state benefits.
NEWS
March 14, 1991 | WILLIAM J. EATON, TIMES STAFF WRITER
In a maneuver apparently designed to place President Bush in a political bind, the Democrat-controlled House on Wednesday included $1.2 billion in military pay raises and new veterans benefits in a bill authorizing payment for Operation Desert Storm. The measure provides that the benefits will not be paid, however, unless the President agrees with the House Democratic leadership that they are emergency outlays and thus exempt from the spending caps imposed by last year's budget agreement.
NATIONAL
June 20, 2008 | Richard Simon, Times Staff Writer
The House on Thursday approved a new GI Bill, with a significant expansion of veterans' education benefits, as part of a war-spending measure that will pay for military operations in Iraq and Afghanistan into next year and also provide aid for the jobless.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
July 13, 2013 | By Tony Perry
As a liberal Democrat, San Diego Mayor Bob Filner has long been a leader in the gay rights movement, which he likens to the civil rights struggle of the 1960s where he learned his activist style. He marched in the annual LGBT Pride Parade when it was not a politically safe thing for a local politician to do. But not this year: Filner issued a statement saying that "with great regret" he will not participate in Saturday's parade lest the controversy over sexual harassment allegations against him becomes a distraction to the importance of the event.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
April 30, 2013 | By Tony Perry
A military appeals court Monday overturned the attempted-suicide conviction of a former Marine from Oceanside. The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Armed Forces ruled that the military did not prove that the suicide attempt of Pvt. Lazzaric Caldwell disrupted good order and discipline or brought discredit on the armed forces, conditions necessary for a finding of guilty. Caldwell had been diagnosed with post-traumatic stress disorder and depression. He slashed his wrists in 2010 while serving in Okinawa and was given six months in the brig and a bad-conduct discharge.
NATIONAL
April 6, 2013 | By Lisa Mascaro, Washington Bureau
WASHINGTON - A few hours before midnight during a marathon budget session, Sen. Bernie Sanders of Vermont, the only member of Congress elected as a socialist, called for a vote on his proposal to oppose any cut in cost-of-living adjustments for veterans benefits. With no opposition from senators on the floor, Sanders watched as his measure was unanimously adopted. In this first salvo ahead of the next round of budget battles with the White House, score one for the real-life socialist; zero for the president who is often derided as one. President Obama, however, was not dissuaded.
OPINION
March 31, 2013 | By The Times editorial board
It is shameful that veterans of the United States military have to wait months, and sometimes more than a year, to begin receiving the benefits they are owed after their years of service. Yet that is the case. Almost 900,000 veterans across the country currently have claims pending for disability, pension or education benefits; nearly 600,000 of those claims are considered backlogged by the Department of Veterans Affairs - meaning they have already taken more than 125 days to process.
NEWS
December 18, 2012 | By David Lauter
Forget the 47%. A new study finds that 71% of Americans live in a household in which at least one member has benefited from one of the federal government's major entitlement programs. The new data, based on a survey by the Pew Research center, underscore the wide reach of the spending programs that make up the lion's share of the federal budget. More than half of Americans (55%) have personally benefited from one of the government's six best-known entitlement programs, including 53% of  people who voted for Mitt Romney in November's election and 59% of those who voted for President Obama.
NEWS
September 27, 2012 | By Michael A. Memoli
VIRGINIA BEACH, Va. -- Speaking before President Obama at a campaign rally here, Democratic Sen. Jim Webb delivered a sharp attack of Mitt Romney over military issues, playing to a key constituency in a part of the swing state that has emerged as a major campaign battleground. Webb, a Marine veteran and former secretary of the Navy in the Reagan administration, alluded to the secretly recorded video in which Romney dismisses Obama voters as feeling entitled. Addressing donors at a May fundraiser, Romney characterized the 47% of Americans who backed the Democrat as depending on government, paying no income tax and believing they are victims.
NEWS
January 24, 1991 | WILLIAM J. EATON, TIMES STAFF WRITER
In an indirect show of support for U.S. forces in the Persian Gulf, the House voted Wednesday to approve a 5.4% cost-of-living increase in benefits paid to disabled veterans and their survivors. The vote was 421 to 0. Several advocates said that passage of the bill would send a reassuring message to the troops participating in Operation Desert Storm that Congress will not forget them when the war with Iraq is over.
NATIONAL
July 16, 2012 | David Zucchino and Carla Rivera
After Moses Maddox left the Marine Corps in 2006, he took a sales job with the for-profit University of Phoenix, making up to 100 calls a day to persuade veterans to enroll using their GI Bill benefits. Only after he enrolled himself did the former corporal discover that the state university he wanted to attend didn't accept the nine course credits he'd earned at Phoenix. "Basically, I wasted my GI Bill benefits -- just like a lot of other veterans I talk to," said Maddox, who until recently was a veterans benefits counselor at Palomar College in San Diego County.
NATIONAL
July 16, 2012 | David Zucchino and Carla Rivera
After Moses Maddox left the Marine Corps in 2006, he took a sales job with the for-profit University of Phoenix, making up to 100 calls a day to persuade veterans to enroll using their GI Bill benefits. Only after he enrolled himself did the former corporal discover that the state university he wanted to attend didn't accept the nine course credits he'd earned at Phoenix. "Basically, I wasted my GI Bill benefits -- just like a lot of other veterans I talk to," said Maddox, who until recently was a veterans benefits counselor at Palomar College in San Diego County.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
April 26, 2012 | By Tony Perry, Los Angeles Times
SAN DIEGO - A Marine sergeant who criticized President Obama on Facebook was notified Wednesday that he is being dismissed from the service with an other-than-honorable discharge. Gary Stein, 26, a nine-year veteran who served in Iraq, will be demoted to lance corporal, and his discharge status will make him ineligible for most federal veterans benefits, after Brig. Gen. Daniel Yoo accepted the unanimous recommendation of an Administrative Separation Board. The panel found that he made disparaging comments about Obama that were detrimental to good order and discipline and violated military law. Civilian lawyers for Stein said they would continue to fight in federal court to prevent Stein from being dismissed or to win his reinstatement.
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