CONGRESSWOMAN ELISE STEFANIK
On Monday, May 23, 2016, the House will consider H.R. 3715, the Final Farewell Act of 2015, under suspension of the rules. The bill was introduced October 8, 2015, by Rep. Corinne Brown (D-FL) and was referred to the Committee on Veterans’ Affairs, which ordered the bill reported, as amended, on May 18, 2016 by voice vote.
H.R. 3715 directs the Secretary of Veterans Affairs to permit interments, funerals, memorial services, and ceremonies of deceased veterans at national cemeteries during weekends, other than Federal holiday weekends, at the request of next-of-kin. The bill would require that any grant to a State to assist such State in establishing a veterans’ cemetery shall be made on the condition that such cemetery shall permit weekend interments or funerals, memorial services, or ceremonies of a deceased veteran.
Veterans discharged from active duty (under conditions other than dishonorable), service members who die while on active duty, active duty training, or inactive duty training, and spouses and dependent children of veterans and active duty service members may be eligible for VA burial and memorial benefits. Burial in a VA national cemetery is available for eligible veterans, spouses, and dependents at no cost and includes the gravesite, grave-liner, opening and closing the grave, a headstone or marker, and perpetual care. For veterans, benefits may also include a burial flag and military funeral honors. Currently, the VA does not normally conduct burials on weekends.
A Congressional Budget Office (CBO) estimate is currently unavailable.
For questions or further information please contact Jake Vreeburg with the House Republican Policy Committee by email or at 50190.