President Donald Trump is scheduled to sign an executive order Thursday afternoon increasing accountability for inept and corrupt employees at the Department of Veterans Affairs, and veterans advocates are pleased with the plan — even if no one’s completely sure what the plan is yet.
In the past few weeks, congressional staffers and advocates from some of the largest veterans service organizations have quietly begun work on “GI Bill 3.0,” a major revamp of service members’ educational benefits, with $3 billion in new spending planned over the next decade. But some veterans advocates say the plan would amount to a new tax on the lowest-paid service members, and they’re concerned that Congress is more interested in a photo op than in good policy.
Jamie Hanway had already served more than 20 years in the U.S. Army by the time the Post-9/11 GI Bill went into effect in 2009, but it couldn’t have come at a better time. Just as Hanway and his wife were beginning to plan for retirement, their three daughters were starting to prepare for college.