Skip to comments.Senate gives OK for reimbursing Stryker families
Posted on 09/09/2006 5:35:18 PM PDT by Graybeard58
WASHINGTONThe U.S. Senate has voted to let the Army reimburse families of 172nd Stryker Brigade Combat Team soldiers for unusual expenses caused by their recent Iraq service extension.
Sen. Ted Stevens, R-Alaska, said Friday he proposed the amendment at the request of the military.
Stevens said Army officials were concerned they might not have the legal authority to reimburse families. They had promised to cover the cost of hotels and airline tickets that the families had bought in anticipation of the 172nd soldiers returning to Fort Wainwright.
"With the 172nd coming home, those families had made plans for vacations, to go visit families in other states, and made hotel and transportation reservations," Stevens said.
The department said they wanted to pay those to the extent they could, and someone questioned whether they had that authority, Stevens said. So we straightened it out to make sure they had the authority to do what they said theyd do.
The amendment states the expenses must have been incurred in good faith as a direct consequence of reasonable preparation for, or execution of, military orders.
The authority only applies to soldiers of the 172nd, the amendment states.
The Stryker soldiers were told in late July they would staying in Iraq for another 120 days. The extension came just three days after the Defense Department had released the official return schedule for the bulk of the personnel and about a month after the first soldiers had already returned to Fort Wainwright.
The Senate added the reimbursement amendment, by unanimous consent, to the annual Defense Department spending bill that passed the Senate Thursday evening.
The measure, which covers the fiscal year starting Oct. 1, must still go through a conference committee with House members, be reapproved by each side of Congress and be signed by President Bush.
It should have been passed before we left in August, Stevens said. Im trying like mad to get it conferenced next week so Ill definitely get it to the president and signed before the end of the fiscal year, because there is no question the Defense Department and the other agencies need this money.
Wow, the senate actually did something useful this year.
Probably a partyline vote.
Thanks Graybeard I'll ping No. 4
Good find, Graybeard, and a noble thing to do.
However, the principle is bad. All laws are supposed to apply to all citizens equally, without discrimination. This restricts the law to the 172nd. That is good in this case but it is bad law.
Before Jim Wright got ousted as Speaker of the House, he added an amendment to a bill which exempted all persons living at a certain Ft. Worth, TX address from income taxes for that year. It saved one of his avid supporters from $4,000,000 in taxes. That should not be allowed.
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