STORMING THE HILL FOR THE SBP/DIC OFFSET on July 17, 2013
MOAA hosted this event for MOAA members, their Auxiliary Member Advisory Committee members, SMW members, Gold Star Wives and interested participants.
Tuesday evening a buffet dinner was hosted by MOAA for all the teams to meet, receive a briefing, and plan their routes for the Congressional visit. To prepare us for the 17th; folders with fact sheets about the SBP/DIC offset were provided for each state storming team to give to their Members of Congress and staff on the 17th.
MOAA hosted a Congressional Breakfast at Room B339 in the Rayburn House Office Building. Two buses and several taxicabs (for the handicapped women) were provided by MOAA to take us to the Capitol. Admiral Ryan, President of MOAA, spoke to the group, welcoming everyone and introducing the legislators and congressional staff.
Congressman Joe Wilson (SC) spoke about his support to eliminate the SBP/DIC offset. He is the one who sponsored H.R. 32.
Two military widows talked about how the SBP/DIC offset has affected their lives.
Mike Hayden and Phil Odom from Government Relations at MOAA presented a slide presentation and answered questions.
A group photo was taken inside the Rayburn House Office Building, and then each team left together to "Storm the Hill" to request co-sponsors of S.734 and H.R.32, and to thank those who already co-sponsored the bills, plus requesting their votes when the bills are discussed and voted-on in Congress.
We had over 100 people visit Congress that day, teams divided so that most of the time could be spent inside one building. Washington was having a heat wave that week, so people either visited a House or a Senate Building My team had a list of 17 offices to visit for Texas, along with 2 other Texas teams.
We feel that we did a good job of providing each Representative’s Office with the information needed to have the issue understood by the Staff. Of course, the big problem is finding the money to remove the offset, which doesn’t seem to be a high priority for this Congress .The Widows are at the bottom of the list for compensation.
Pat Shecter, SMW Webmaster