NewsBytes November 10, 2023
In this issue:
Senate Confirms Military Nominees
SCOTUS Upholds Deadline for Retroactive VA Benefits
Veterans’ Day/FRA 99th Birthday/Marine Corps Birthday
Senate Confirms Some Military Nominees
Senator Tommy Tuberville's (Ala.) hold on military appointments over
the Pentagon's changes to abortion policy, the Senate confirmed three
top military nominees. Navy Adm. Lisa Franchetti was confirmed as the
Chief of Naval Operations 95-1. The Senate also approved Air Force Gen.
David Allvin as the service's next chief of staff, which fills the
positions on the Joint Chiefs of Staff for the first time since July 10.
Furthermore, Senators voted 86-0 to promote Marine Corps Lt. Gen.
Christopher Mahoney to general and confirm him as the Marine Corps
Assistant Commandant. Gen. Mahoney's confirmation took on added urgency
following news that Commandant Gen. Eric Smith had a heart attack. More
than 375 appointments are still pending Senate confirmation.
SCOTUS Upholds 1-year Deadline for Retroactive VA Benefits
U.S. Supreme Court unanimously confirmed the Department of Veterans
Affairs (VA) one-year limit for veterans to apply for retroactive
disability benefits. In the case, Arellano v. McDonough, Adolfo Arellano
was discharged from the United States Navy in 1981. As a result of his
service, he suffered from a severe mental health condition that, for
many years, left him unable to understand his eligibility for disability
benefits. In 2011, 30 years after his military service, he applied for
benefits, and the VA granted him benefits, effective on the date the
agency received his claim. Arellano appealed the effective date, arguing
that he should receive retroactive benefits dating back to when he was
discharged from the military. The court's decision emphasizes the
importance of veterans filing for benefits as soon as they are able and
demonstrates the importance of the military's role in providing service
members with VA benefits information as they are separating from the
Veterans' Day/FRA 99th Birthday/Marine Corps' 248th Birthday
Saturday will mark the 105th anniversary of the armistice ending the
First World War, on Nov. 11, 1918. Today, November 11th, is recognized
as Veterans Day. It is a long-standing tradition for many FRA shipmates
to participate in Veterans' Day ceremonies all across the country. This
November 11th also marks FRA's 99th anniversary. The FRA National
President John S. Handzuk (Branch 126) will attend a White House
breakfast. Later, NP John Handzuk will participate in the ceremonies at
Arlington National Cemetery with the special wreath-laying ceremony.
Phillip Reid will participate in a ceremony at the Navy Memorial in
Washington, DC. Recently, ADLP Theo Lawson attended Mack's Marines
luncheon at the Commandant of the Marine Corps' residency in observance
of the 248th anniversary of the Marine Corps.
thanks members for their service in defending our Nation and also for
their continued membership. Please note FRA National Headquarters will
be closed on Friday, November 10, in observance of Veterans' Day.