Dear MOAA Members,
“Put me in coach, I’m ready to play.”
More than just a lyric from John Fogerty, these words accentuate the theme of summer and the pent-up desire to get in the game. And now, more than ever, we need everyone to grab their glove and head out to the field.
This summer, as legislators return home to engage their constituents, we need you to be ready to visit, call, or email your representative and senators on their home field with our MOAA messages seeking support for the FY 2020 National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA). This is our Summer Storm opportunity, and we want as many participants as possible.
This may seem routine — but it is not. As many of you already know, this NDAA contains several provisions supportive of MOAA members, currently serving troops, and their families and survivors. But to keep the message focused, we want to highlight two of the more pressing issues:
Repeal of the Widows Tax. The language from the two bills seeking this repeal, H.R. 553 and S. 622, is captured in the House version of the NDAA. If Congress passes this bill with the language intact, and if the NDAA is signed into law, the Widows Tax will be repealed. And with overwhelming support already (372 cosponsors from the House and 75 from the Senate) we cannot afford to let Congress off the hook — they need to hear from you.
18,000 medical billet cuts initiated by DoD. MOAA worked hard to get language into this NDAA calling for a halt to the proposed cuts until DoD provides a thorough analysis and accounting of all the impacts to readiness, the Military Health System, and support to the beneficiaries. The anticipated changes are significant to our military and anyone who uses TRICARE. Congress needs to hear your concerns.
There are two ways for you to get in the game:
1. You can access our supporting materials atwww.moaa.org/SummerStorm and work this individually, or
2. You can contact your local MOAA chapter to join their efforts and help grow a louder voice within the community or district. To find your nearest MOAA chapter, click here.
MOAA’s Summer Storm starts right now and goes through Sept. 15. When you engage your representative and senators you will likely get a response ranging from an email acknowledgement toa letter like this one, which I just got back from Rep. Jennifer Wexton.
Continue the dialogue with your members of Congress and their staffs – never underestimate the impact these grassroots relationships have on our advocacy efforts.
Thank you for all you do, and for your willingness to get involved to make a difference in the lives of many who, like you, will “never stop serving.”
Lt. Gen. Dana T. Atkins,
USAF (Ret), President