• November 28, 2014

Expanded GI Bill Funds Readied for Distribution

The largest educational-benefits payments in the 65-year history of the GI Bill will start flowing on Monday from the Treasury Department to more than 100,000 collegebound veterans.

The expanded GI Bill, signed into law last year by President George W. Bush, pays for veterans of the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan to attend in-state public colleges at no cost to them. They can also apply the funds toward the cost of an out-of-state or private college. About 130,000 veterans have applied for the new benefits, up from 87,000 a month ago.

Officials at the Department of Veterans Affairs, which has approved about 112,000 of the applications, estimate that 200,000 veterans will attend college in the fall under the new benefits.

The department has also reached 3,532 agreements with 1,176 colleges under the Yellow Ribbon Program, through which the federal government matches any financial aid that participating colleges pledge to veterans above the base educational benefits in the new GI Bill.

The program is designed to help veterans pay the cost of attending out-of-state and private colleges or graduate schools.

President Obama, along with Secretary of Veterans Affairs Eric K. Shinseki and Sen. Jim Webb, a Democrat of Virginia and sponsor of the bill, will meet at George Mason University on Monday to mark the day that the first of the expanded-benefits checks are sent out to veterans nationwide.

Comments

1. rburns - August 01, 2009 at 07:42 am

Vets beware. Don't count on the Fed. Government to honor its contract with you any more than they did with the rest of us. I enlisted with the promise of lifetime healthcare, as one example, but the US decided it wouldn't meet that obligation and so now I get no healthcare at all from the VA. Imagine the outcome if I had been the one to break the enlistment contract. So, just don't count on any GI Bill. They will leave you high and dry when it suits them or saves them a buck or two.

2. citizenship - August 03, 2009 at 01:41 pm

It is Congress that changed the rules on healthcare for retired service members. Talk to you representatives about changes to that benefit. Remember, it was ordinary people petitioning their representatives that initiated the efforts to create the original, and this latest, GI Bill. Is this new GI Bill perfect? No, but it is more encompassing and hopefully will provide more realistic levels of support for the education needs of our recent and current service personnel. Congress also needs to provide a similar level of support to veterans and reserve personnel in flights schools, on-the-job training and apprentice programs and eliminate the required $1,200.00 contribution from the active service personnel as it did for the education benefits.

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