Tuesday, November 2, 2010

Veterans Report (from

Print & Post: Week of November 01, 2010

Applebee's Salutes Veterans 
Once again this Veterans Day, Thursday, Nov. 11, Applebee's Neighborhood Grill and Bar will thank our nation's veterans and active duty military by inviting them to their neighborhood Applebee's for a well-deserved free meal. A selection of complimentary entrees will be available for veterans on Veterans Day as dine-in guests at all Applebee's restaurants throughout the United States. For more information, including the proof or military service that is required, visit the ( Applebee's website.

View other great Veterans Day discounts and free offers for military servicemembers on the ( Veterans Day Discounts page.

Use it or Lose it: GI Bill Benefits 
Your GI Bill benefits expire, and the clock starts ticking as soon as you leave the service. That's the bad news. The good news is that as of October 2010, the GI Bill rate increased to more than $51,000. Many schools and programs accept the GI Bill as payment for tuition -- ( start your search today.

Still Confused about the GI Bill and what you are entitled to?'s Benefit Expert, Terry Howell, has a set of five videos that can walk you through getting started to the do's and don'ts of using the GI Bill on active duty. ( Click here to start watching these free videos.

Spouse Tuition Assistance -- MyCAA Update 
According to the DoD, the response to the reopening of MyCAA has been "great." So great in fact, that the DoD is asking spouses to use the MyCAA online messaging system due to demand and volume of calls. The downside is that it may take up to 5 business days to get an answer to their questions. ( Read More.

Day Off for all Vets in Iowa 
The State of Iowa is honoring all veterans this Veterans Day, Nov. 11, 2010, by requiring every one of its employers, public and private, to grant veterans holiday time off if they would otherwise be required to work that day. The requirement is in Iowa's Veterans Day law, House File 2197, which was signed by Gov. Chet Culver on April 27 and is available on the ( Iowa Legislature's website.

Find ways to support and honor U.S. military servicemembers and veterans who protect our security and freedom. Visit the ( Support our Troops web page.

Medical Study of VA Surgical Procedures 
A Department of Veterans Affairs study published Oct. 20 in the Journal of the American Medical Association concludes that a concept called Medical Team Training improves communication, teamwork, and efficiency in VA operating rooms, resulting in significantly lower mortality rates. The nationwide study involved the analysis of more than 100,000 surgical procedures conducted at 108 of VA's hospitals from 2006 to 2008.  MTT had been introduced at 74 of these hospitals. An abstract of the study is available on the ( JAMA website. To find out more about Medical Team Training, contact VA's National Center for Patient Safety at 734-930-5884.

South Dakota Veteran Bonuses 
South Dakota offers a bonus to members of the Armed Forces and veterans who were legal residents of the state for no less than six months immediately preceding their period of active duty and who served on active duty during one or more of the following periods: (1) Aug. 2, 1990 to March 3, 1991 -- All active service counts for payment; (2) March 4, 1990 to Dec. 31, 1992 -- Only service in a hostile area qualifying for the Southwest Asia Service Medal counts for payment; (3) Jan. 1, 1993 to Sept. 10, 2001 -- Only service in a hostile area qualifying for any United States campaign or service medal awarded for combat operations against hostile forces counts for payment; (4) Sept. 11, 2001 to a date yet to be determined -- All active service counts for payment. In addition, Veterans with qualifying service before Dec 31, 1992 and after Jan 1, 1993 may receive two separate bonuses of up to $500.00 each!
Veterans may apply through the nearest County or Tribal Veterans Service Officer. Those living outside of South Dakota may apply by e-mail at ( Be sure to include military branch and dates of service. Veterans may also request an application and instructions by calling 605-773-7251.

Watch Videos on Updated Look, More Explosive Videos's Shock and Awe section is now easier to navigate with a cleaner look and better organization. Check out the new look and feel along with the huge library of video content -- member submitted and original content. If you have some video that your fellow members might be interested in, it's now easier to submit that too. ( Visit the new Shock and Awe.

Veterans Resource Fair - Chicago 
Roosevelt University's Veterans Upward Bound (VUB) program office will be hosting a Veterans Resource Fair on Nov. 19, 2010 from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. at their Chicago campus located at 430 South Michigan Ave., Chicago, IL. All veterans are invited to attend this free resource fair. The event will feature resources and information on veteran job training, health care, education, and housing.
For more details visit: (

Get DIY Brake Tips in the Auto Center 
You don't have to take the car into the shop and pay labor costs. The Auto Center has "Do it Yourself" tips and step-by-step instructions on: ( checking brake fluid, ( checking and replacing brake lines, ( bleeding your brakes, ( inspecting and replacing discs and brake pads, and more.  -- Sponsored by AutoZone.

What Comes After SGLI? 
SGLI coverage ends 120 days after you leave active duty service. Do you have plans for how you are going to meet your life insurance needs once your SGLI expires? Get $800k of coverage for just $35 a month (to age 50). ( Contact AAFMAA to learn more.

10 Years of Serving Our Members is celebrating its 10-year anniversary by saluting the military community. ( Click over to our Celebration pages to learn about featured members, archive of the most popular stories of the last 10 years, slideshows and more.

GI Bill Reform Too Costly? 
The CBO cost estimate on S 3447, released Oct. 6, is $236 million the first year, $2.3 billion over the first decade. The big hurdle to passing GI Bill reform will be finding money to pay for enhancements. Because this is an entitlement program, lawmakers theoretically can only pay for ( GI Bill reform by reducing other mandatory spending programs or raising taxes.
(,15202,221753,00.html) Read more in Tom Philpott's Military Forum
( Let your elected officials know how you feel about GI Bill reform and offsetting the cost.

Featured Job: Military-Friendly Employers 
Employers are actively seeking veterans and those with military experience. For a complete listing of an organization's available job opportunities use's ( Veteran Job Search. members have access to CareerExpos. Events where members, like yourself, have the opportunity to talk face to face with recruiters from military-friendly employers such as Northrop Grumman, Mac Tools and more. ( Sign up today for one of the remaining 2010 Expos or the newly announced 2011 CareerExpos.

Deal of the Week: You Serve, You Save 
Save up to 20% on all your calls with new reduced rates on AT&T Global PrePaid Cards. It's for you and all you. ( Click here to buy yours now.

Grand Canyon Waives Fees for Vets 
Grand Canyon National Park will be joining other national park units around the country as they waive entrance fees on Veterans Day in recognition of current and former servicemembers. Visitors and commercial tours that arrive at Grand Canyon National Park on Veterans Day, Nov. 11, 2010, will be allowed free entry into the park. "User fees" and fees for other activities will not be waived. For more information, call 928-638-7951 or -7954 or visit the ( Grand Canyon National Park website. For information on NPS sites that commemorate the service of American veterans, visit the ( NPS website.

National Veterans Creative Arts Festival 
Held in La Crosse, WI this year, the National Veterans Creative Arts Festival is a culmination of talent competitions in art, creative writing, dance, drama and music for Veterans treated in the VA national health care system. ( Watch video from the event.

Veterans Day Discount in Tennessee 
Tennessee State Parks are offering veterans a discount on camping and golf on Veterans Day every year. The offer applies only to Tennessee residents who are veterans. The policy will allow the Tennessee veterans to camp for one night free of charge and play one 18-hole round of golf free of charge on the Veterans' Day holiday each year. To find a Tennessee State Park, visit the ( Tennessee State Parks website.

VA Claims Process Streamlined 
The Department of Veterans Affairs has released three new disability benefits questionnaires for physicians of Veterans applying for VA disability compensation benefits. For Veterans who receive their care from private physicians, VA has placed the disability benefits questionnaires on the ( Department of Veterans' Affairs website with instructions for physicians to submit examination results on Veterans' behalf. For additional information on the VA disability compensation program or additional presumptive disabilities for Veterans exposed to herbicide agents, contact VA at 800-827-1000 or visit the ( VA website.

For more on veteran benefits, visit the (,14972,,00.htm? Benefits Channel.

SpouseBuzz Live Coming to Schofield Barracks, HI 
Every year SpouseBUZZ LIVE brings hundreds of military spouses together to celebrate the women and men who serve on the home front. Join us in 2010 for a day of celebration and share your experiences, make friends and win incredible prizes. ( Register Now.

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