February 17 2017
Eliminating Concurrent Receipt
SBP/DIC Offset Repeal
VA Secretary Nominee
New Dental Plan for
Active Duty and Reserves
FRA Participates in
Shore Sailor of the Year Week
FRA NHQ Closed for
CBO Recommends Eliminating Concurrent Receipt
Budget Office (CBO), the federal agency within the legislative branch of
government that provides budget and economic information to Congress, recently
issued a report with options for reducing the federal deficit. One of the
options provided by the CBO, is the elimination of concurrent receipt of
retirement pay and disability compensation for disabled former service members.
This was not a recommendation, but one of many options provided to Congress in
the report. There is no move in Congress to implement this CBO option.
means to receive both the full amount of the service-earned military retired
pay and the full amount of the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) disability
compensation. Up until FY 2001, however, any retired service member who
received VA disability compensation had that amount of VA compensation deducted
from their military retired pay. This is referred to as an "offset."
FRA supports payment of full military retired pay and veterans' disability
compensation for all disabled retirees.
Since 2001 FRA
has made progress in achieving its goal of comprehensive concurrent receipt
reform. There are two separate Department of Defense programs for disability
compensation: Combat Related Special Compensation (CRSC) and Concurrent
Retirement and Disability Pay (CRDP). All those who receive CRSC receive
concurrent receipt. Military retirees receiving CRDP with 20 or more years of
service, and a 50 percent or higher service-connected disability rating, have
concurrent receipt. CRDP beneficiaries with less than 50 percent disability
rating and also those medically retired with less than 20 years of service
(Chapter 61), are not eligible for concurrent receipt. Legislation has been
introduced to provide comprehensive concurrent receipt reform (H.R. 333 &
S. 66). Members are urged to use the FRA
Action Center to ask their legislators to support these legislative
SBP/DIC Offset Repeal Introduced
(Fla.) introduced legislation (S. 339) and Congressman Joe Wilson (S.C.)
introduced identical legislation in the house (H.R. 846) that repeals the
SBP/DIC Offset for survivors, sometimes referred to as the "Military
Program (SBP) and Dependency and Indemnity Compensation (DIC) payments are paid
for different reasons. SBP is purchased by the retiree and is intended to
provide a portion of retired pay to the survivor. DIC is a special indemnity
compensation paid to the survivor when a member's service causes his or her
premature death. In such cases, the VA indemnity compensation should be added
to the SBP the retiree paid for, not simply substituted. It should be noted as
a matter of equity, that surviving spouses of federal civilian retirees who are
disabled veterans and die of military-service-connected causes can receive DIC
without losing any of their federal civilian SBP benefits.
Members are urged
to use the FRA Action Center to ask their legislators
to support this important legislation.
VA Secretary Nominee Approved
The U.S. Senate
unanimously approved (100-0) the nomination of Dr. David J. Shulkin as
Secretary of Veterans Affairs (VA). In a rare demonstration of bi-partisanship
he was approved unanimously by the Senate. Many other cabinet nominees have had
their nominations bogged down and delayed by bitter partisan bickering. The VA
is the second largest federal agency that has been plagued by scandal and
mismanagement. Dr. Shulkin, a holdover from the Obama administration, served as
the VA Under Secretary for Health since 2015. He is a physician, a former
health care executive, and is the first VA Secretary to never have served in
the military, although his father was an Army psychiatrist. FRA is looking
forward to working with the new VA Secretary on issues of mutual concern.
Dental Plan for Active Duty and Reserves
dental contract for active-duty family members, Reserve Component members and
their families will switch from MetLife to United Concordia on May 1, 2017.
Military retirees and their families are covered by a separate contract
with Delta Dental, which is not affected. Dental benefits are staying the same
or expanding, while children will be automatically enrolled in the system as
beneficiaries starting at one year old rather than four years old. Among the
expansions is an increase to the annual maximum benefit from $1,300 to $1,500
and a change that makes sealants free instead of requiring a 20 percent co-pay.
Participates in Shore Sailor of the Year Week
FRA was very
active with the Shore Sailors of the Year event held this past week in
Washington DC. NED Thomas J. Snee spearheaded the week-long event on Monday
with an office visit and FRA brief given to FLTCM Russell Smith. An "ice
breaker" presentation titled, What is the FRA, was given Wednesday at the
Residence Inn in Arlington, Va., followed by a tour of the U.S. Capitol and
lunch. NED Snee closed the week, participating in the reception, lunch and
awards ceremony at the Navy Memorial, where the final announcement was made
Thursday. Snee closed his presentation with the words, "Pay it forward and
seek out all sailors to optimize their fullest potential."
Wilson, Recruit Training Command, Great Lakes, Ill.
PS1 Michael Rangel, Chief of Naval Personnel, Washington, DC
IC1 Daniel Cordel, Navy Recruiting Command, Millington, Tenn.
ABH1 Sylvester Williams, Detailer Naval Personnel Command, Millington, Tenn.
Fleet and Force
Master Chiefs asked each sailor a number of questions about the Navy,
leadership practices and their individual community involvement. The overall
Shore Sailor of the Year winner was, Petty Officer Wilson who will move onto
the Navy Sailor of the Year held May 15 to 19, 2017.
FRA was the
keystone initiator 44 years ago and continues to support the Sailor of the Year
Program, which highlights sustained superior demonstrations in military and
Closed for Presidents' Day
The FRA NHQ
office will be closed on Monday, February 20, for the Presidents' Day holiday.
We will reopen at 0800 on Tuesday, February 21.
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