Legislature(2013 - 2014)CAPITOL 120

02/18/2014 01:00 PM MILITARY & VETERANS' AFFAIRS


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* first hearing in first committee of referral
+ teleconferenced
= bill was previously heard/scheduled
*+ HJR 25 VIETNAM VETS: SERVICE-RELATED DISEASES TELECONFERENCED
Moved CSHJR 25(MLV) Out of Committee
+= HB 286 VETS' RETIREMENT/LOANS/HOUSING/EMPLOYMENT TELECONFERENCED
Moved Out of Committee
+ Bills Previously Heard/Scheduled TELECONFERENCED
        HB 286-VETS' RETIREMENT/LOANS/HOUSING/EMPLOYMENT                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
1:57:26 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
CO-CHAIR FOSTER announced that the  final order of business would                                                               
be  HOUSE  BILL  NO.  286,  "An Act  relating  to  the  Teachers'                                                               
Retirement  System,  the  Judicial  Retirement  System,  and  the                                                               
Public  Employees'  Retirement   System  for  qualified  military                                                               
service; relating to the definition  of 'veteran' for purposes of                                                               
housing,  eligibility for  veterans'  loans,  and preferences  in                                                               
state employment hiring; and providing for an effective date."                                                                  
                                                                                                                                
1:57:50 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
MIKE BARNHILL,  Deputy Commissioner, Office of  the Commissioner,                                                               
Department  of Administration  (DOA), informed  the committee  HB                                                               
286 was  introduced by the request  of the governor and  is known                                                               
as the veterans' update bill.                                                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE SADDLER expressed his  appreciation of all aspects                                                               
of the  bill.  He  asked for the  amount of the  state's exposure                                                               
actuarially.                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
MR.   BARNHILL  responded   that   the   state's  actuary,   Buck                                                               
Consultants, computed the projected  number of deaths expected in                                                               
the  Public  Employees'  Retirement   System  and  the  Teachers'                                                               
Retirement  System based  on the  percentage of  military in  the                                                               
U.S. population  as a whole.   The projection over an  11-12 year                                                               
period - based  on statistics from 2003 - is  that there would be                                                               
1.13  deaths, which  would equate  to  approximately $800,000  in                                                               
benefits.  The  actuary concluded this projection  is de minimis,                                                               
therefore,  DOA  [attached  a  zero fiscal  note.]    In  further                                                               
response to  Representative Saddler,  he confirmed that  the data                                                               
was from 2003.                                                                                                                  
                                                                                                                                
2:01:01 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
CO-CHAIR FOSTER  reopened public  testimony.   After ascertaining                                                               
no one wished to testify, public testimony on HB 286 was closed.                                                                
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE SADDLER  directed attention  to lines  27-29, page                                                               
7, of the bill which read:                                                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
     day prescribed by presidential proclamation or by law                                                                      
     as the last date of Operation Iraqi Freedom, or during                                                                     
     any time period listed in 5 U.S.C.2108(1); or                                                                              
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE   SADDLER  then   asked  when   the  conflict   in                                                               
Afghanistan is likely to be  legally concluded for the purpose of                                                               
veterans' benefits.                                                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
2:02:02 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
MCHUGH    PIERRE,   Deputy    Commissioner,    Office   of    the                                                               
Commissioner/Adjutant   General,   Department   of   Military   &                                                               
Veterans' Affairs, answered:                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
     ...  This is  the  most  current up-to-date  definition                                                                    
     that the  VA is  using, and it  does cover  all current                                                                    
     conflict members. ... I would  think when the President                                                                    
     officially removes  our last troops, and  concludes the                                                                    
     conflict, which is supposed to be 2015 ....                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
2:03:39 PM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
CO-CHAIR  LEDOUX moved  to report  HB 286  out of  committee with                                                               
individual recommendations and the  attached fiscal notes.  There                                                               
being no objection, HB 286 was  reported out of the House Special                                                               
Committee on Military and Veterans' Affairs.                                                                                    

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