CONGRESSWOMAN ELISE STEFANIK
H.R. 1513 is being considered on the floor under suspension of the rules, requiring a two-thirds majority vote for passage. This legislation was introduced by Representative Ann Kirkpatrick (D-AZ) on March 16, 2009.
H.R. 1513 would increase the amounts paid to veterans for disability compensation and to their survivors for dependency and other compensation by the same cost-of-living adjustment (COLA) payable to Social Security recipients. These compensations include clothing allowances and indemnity compensation. The increase would take effect on December 1, 2009.
Congress annually reviews veterans' service-connected disability compensation, and other compensation programs for surviving spouses and dependent children to ensure that such benefits provide reasonable and adequate compensation. Each year since 1976, Congress has provided a cost-of-living adjustment (COLA) for these veterans' programs. The exact percentage will be calculated as of September 30, 2009, and will match the COLA increase for Social Security recipients.
This year, the Department of Veterans Affairs estimates that it will provide disability compensation to just over three million veterans with service-connected disabilities.
According to the Congressional Budget Office (CBO), the COLA authorized by H.R. 1513 is assumed in its baseline. Therefore, CBO estimates that enacting this bill would not amount to new spending.