Federal Regulations Significant to Veterans [May 2006]
Matters Affecting the Receipt of Benefits - The Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) published a proposed rule in the Federal Register, May 31, 2006, to reorganize and rewrite in plain language regulations relating to determinations involving bars to benefits, forfeiture of benefits, and renouncement of benefits. These revisions are proposed as part of VA's rewrite and reorganization of all of its compensation and pension regulations in a logical, claimant-focused, and user-friendly format. The intended effect of the proposed revisions is to assist claimants and VA personnel in locating and understanding these regulations.
Comments Deadline: July 31, 2006.
Address: Director, Regulations Management (00REG1), Department of Veterans Affairs, 810 Vermont Avenue, NW, Room 1068, Washington, DC 20420; or fax comments to (202) 273-9026; or e-mail through: http://www.Regulations.gov. Comments should indicate that they are submitted in response to ``RIN 2900- AM05.''
Contact: Bob White, Acting Chief, Regulations Rewrite Project (00REG2), Department of Veterans Affairs, 810 Vermont Avenue, NW, Washington, DC 20420; telephone: (202) 273-9515.
Amended Delegation of Authority--Property Management Contractor - The Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) published a notice in the Federal Register on May 30, 2006, to amend its delegation of authority to the property management contractor under its housing loan program. This amendment will permit the property management contractor's Regional Managers to execute documents necessary for the management and sale of single-family properties acquired by VA under its housing loan guaranty program.
Effective Date: May 30, 2006.
Contact: William Lutes, Assistant Director for Property Management and Strategic Development (263), Veterans Benefits Administration, Department of Veterans Affairs, 810 Vermont Avenue, NW, Washington, DC 20420; telephone: (202) 273-7379.
Veterans' Disability Benefits Commission; Notice of Meeting - The Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) published a notice in the Federal Register on May 22, 2006, that the Veterans' Disability Benefits Commission scheduled a meeting for June 5, 2006, in San Diego, California. The Commission is conducting the fifth of eight fact-finding site visits throughout the United States. The San Diego area was selected based upon criteria that included the concentration of veterans, active-duty service members and National guard and Reserves, and the location of VA and Department of Defense (DoD) facilities that are particularly involved in the transition activities. The goal of this visit is to allow the commissioners the opportunity to tour local VA and DoD facilities; examine the processes in place which assist disabled veterans, service members, and survivors in their efforts to obtain benefits; and to present these individuals and the general public with an opportunity to learn about the work of the Commission in face-to-face forums.
Contact: Ray Wilburn, Executive Director, Veterans' Disability Benefits Commission, 1101 Pennsylvania Avenue, NW, Fifth Floor, Washington, DC 20004; e-mail: email@example.com.
Individuals and Groups Considered To Have Performed Active Military, Naval, or Air Service - The Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) published a final rule in the Federal Register on May 19, 2006, that the service of the group known as ``North Korean Civilian Partisans Recruited, Trained, and Commanded for Military Operations by the U.S. Eighth Army, 8240th Army Unit Far East Liaison Detachment, on the Korean Peninsula and Accompanying Islands from January 15, 1951, Through July 27, 1953'' shall not be considered ``active duty'' for purposes of all laws administered by the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA).
Section 401 of Public Law 95-202, The GI Bill Improvement Act of 1977, authorized the Secretary of Defense to determine whether the service of members of civilian or contractual groups should be considered active duty for the purposes of all laws administered by VA. In Department of Defense Directive 1000.20, September 11, 1989, the Secretary of Defense delegated this authority to the Secretary of the Air Force. In the Federal Register on October 1, 1999 (64 FR 53364-65), and October 21, 1999 (64 FR 56773-74), the Secretary of the Air Force published notices stating that the service of the members of the following three groups shall be considered ``active duty'' under the provisions of Public Law 95-202 for the purposes of all laws administered by VA:
the group described as the ``three scouts/guides,'' Miguel Tenorio, Penedicto Taisacan, and Cristino Dela Cruz, who assisted the U.S. Marines in the offensive operations against the Japanese on the Northern Mariana Islands from June 19, 1944, through September 2, 1945;
the approximately 50 Chamorro and Carolinian former native policemen, who received military training in the Donnal area of central Saipan and were placed under the command of Lt. Casino of the 6th Provisional Military Police Battalion to accompany United States Marines on active combat-patrol activity from August 19, 1945, to September 2, 1945; and
the Operational Analysis Group of the Office of Scientific Research and Development, Office of Emergency Management, which served overseas with the U.S. Army Air Corps from December 7, 1941, through August 15, 1945.
We are including these three groups in 38 CFR 3.7(x).
Effective Date: May 19, 2006.
Contact: Bill Russo, Chief, Policy and Regulations Staff, Compensation and Pension Service, Veterans Benefits Administration, 810 Vermont Avenue, NW, Washington, DC 20420; telephone: (202) 273-7210.
Remarriage of a Surviving Spouse - The Department of Veterans Affairs published a final rule in the Federal Register on May 19, 2006, amend its adjudication regulations regarding benefits for surviving spouses to reflect statutory changes that affect the eligibility of those surviving spouses who remarry after ages 55 and 57.
Effective Date: May 19, 2006.
Contact: Maya Ferrandino, Consultant, Compensation and Pension Service, Policy and Regulations Staff, Veterans Benefits Administration, 810 Vermont Avenue, NW, Washington, DC 20420; telephone: (202) 273-7211.
Health Services Research and Development Service Merit Review Board; Notice of Meeting - The Department of Veterans Affairs published a notice in the Federal Register on May 18, 2006, that the Health Services Research and Development Service Merit Review Board will meet on August 28 through 30, in Boston, Massachusetts. The following subcommittees will convene:
Implementation and Management Research Science
Chronic Disease Management & Long Term Aging
General Health Services Research
Nursing Research Initiative
Equity/Women's Health review group
The purpose of Board is to review research and development applications concerned with the measurement and evaluation of health care services, the testing of new methods of health care delivery and management, and nursing research. Applications are reviewed for scientific and technical merit.
Contact: Scientific Merit Review Program Manager (124R), Health Services Research and Development Service, Department of Veterans Affairs, 1722 Eye Street, NW, Washington, DC 20420; telephone: (202) 254-0207.
Advisory Committee on Women Veterans; Notice of Meeting - The Department of Veterans Affairs published a notice in the Federal Register on May 15, 2006, that the Advisory Committee on Women Veterans will meet conduct a site visit on June 12 through 16, 2006, at the North Chicago VA Medical Center. The agenda will include briefings and updates from key leadership of the Medical Center and Veterans Integrated Services Network (VISN) 12; from the VISN 12's Women Veterans Program Managers, VISN Seamless Transition Coordinator, and a VISN 12 official on mammography services. The Committee will receive briefings and updates on resident training at the VAMC and Rosalind Franklin University of Health Sciences; Chicago Regional Office operations to include women veterans activities, the Illinois State Department of Veterans Affairs Office; and the National Cemetery Administration; polytrauma services at the Hines VAMC, inpatient/outpatient mental health services for women; the Evanston Vet Center, domiciliary and substance abuse programs, and the acute psychiatry unit. The Committee will also tour the Naval Hospital Great Lakes in Great Lakes, Illinois. On June 16, there will be an open forum and town hall meeting with the women veterans' community.
Contact: Rebecca Schiller at the Department of Veterans Affairs, Center for Women Veterans (OOW), 810 Vermont Avenue, NW, Washington, DC 20420; telephone: (202) 273-6193; fax: (202) 273-7092, or e-mail: OOW@mail.va.gov.
Research Advisory Committee on Gulf War Veterans' Illnesses; Notice of Meeting - The Department of Veterans Affairs published a notice in the Federal Register on May 2, 2006, that the Research Advisory Committee on Gulf War Veterans' Illnesses scheduled a meeting for May 15 and 16, 2006, in Washington, DC. The Committee will review VA program activities related to Gulf War veterans' illnesses and updates on scientific research on Gulf War illnesses published since the last committee meeting. Additionally, there will be presentations and discussion of background information on the Gulf War and Gulf War illnesses, application of proteomic and genomic research to the study of Gulf War illnesses, physiological mechanisms potentially underlying chronic symptoms affecting Gulf War veterans, and discussion of committee business and activities.
Contact: Dr. William J. Goldberg, Designated Federal Officer, Department of Veterans Affairs (121E), 810 Vermont Avenue, NW, Washington, DC 20420; telephone: (202) 254-0294.
The numbers listed in this document are not toll-free.
Veterans and their family members who wish to contact the Department regarding a claim, benefits, or services, may call VA Toll-Free at 1 (800) 827-1000 or 1 (800) 829-4833 [TDD], or Contact the VA via the web.