Text: H.R.1460 — 108th Congress (2003-2004)All Information (Except Text)

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Referred in Senate (06/25/2003)

 
[Congressional Bills 108th Congress]
[From the U.S. Government Printing Office]
[H.R. 1460 Referred in Senate (RFS)]

  1st Session
                                H. R. 1460


_______________________________________________________________________


                   IN THE SENATE OF THE UNITED STATES

                             June 25, 2003

Received; read twice and referred to the Committee on Veterans' Affairs

_______________________________________________________________________

                                 AN ACT


 
    To amend title 38, United States Code, to improve education and 
entrepreneurship benefits, housing benefits, and certain other benefits 
                 for veterans, and for other purposes.

    Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives of the 
United States of America in Congress assembled,

SECTION 1. SHORT TITLE.

    This Act may be cited as the ``Veterans Entrepreneurship and 
Benefits Improvement Act of 2003''.

SEC. 2. AUTHORIZATION FOR STATE APPROVING AGENCIES TO APPROVE CERTAIN 
              ENTREPRENEURSHIP COURSES.

    (a) Approval of Entrepreneurship Courses.--Section 3675 of title 
38, United States Code, is amended by adding at the end the following 
new subsection:
    ``(c)(1) A State approving agency may approve the entrepreneurship 
courses offered by a qualified provider of entrepreneurship courses.
    ``(2) For purposes of this subsection, the term `entrepreneurship 
course' means a non-degree, non-credit course of business education 
that enables or assists a person to start or enhance a small business 
enterprise.
    ``(3) Subsection (a) and paragraphs (1) and (2) of subsection (b) 
do not apply to--
            ``(A) an entrepreneurship course offered by a qualified 
        provider of entrepreneurship courses; and
            ``(B) a qualified provider of entrepreneurship courses by 
        reason of such provider offering one or more entrepreneurship 
        courses.''.
    (b) Business Owners Not Treated as Already Qualified.--Section 3471 
of such title is amended by inserting before the last sentence the 
following: ``The Secretary shall not treat a person as already 
qualified for the objective of a program of education offered by a 
qualified provider of entrepreneurship courses solely because such 
person is the owner or operator of a business.''.
    (c) Inclusion of Entrepreneurship Courses in Definition of Program 
of Education.--Subsection (b) of section 3452 of such title is amended 
by adding at the end the following: ``Such term also includes any 
course, or combination of courses, offered by a qualified provider of 
entrepreneurship courses.''.
    (d) Inclusion of Qualified Provider of Entrepreneurship Courses in 
Definition of Educational Institution.--Subsection (c) of section 3452 
of such title is amended by adding at the end the following: ``Such 
term also includes any qualified provider of entrepreneurship 
courses.''.
    (e) Definition of Qualified Provider of Entrepreneurship Courses.--
Section 3452 of such title is further amended by adding at the end the 
following new subsection:
    ``(h) The term `qualified provider of entrepreneurship courses' 
means--
            ``(1) a small business development center described in 
        section 21 of the Small Business Act (15 U.S.C. 648), and
            ``(2) the National Veterans Business Development 
        Corporation (established under section 33 of such Act (15 
        U.S.C. 657c)) insofar as the Corporation offers or sponsors an 
        entrepreneurship course (as defined in section 3675(c)(2) of 
        this title).''.
    (f) Effective Date.--The amendments made by this section shall 
apply to courses approved by State approving agencies after the date of 
the enactment of this Act.

SEC. 3. PROCUREMENT PROGRAM FOR CERTIFIED SMALL BUSINESS CONCERNS OWNED 
              AND CONTROLLED BY QUALIFIED SERVICE-DISABLED VETERANS, 
              ETC.

    (a) Establishment of Program.--The Small Business Act (15 U.S.C. 
631 et seq.) is amended by redesignating section 36 as section 38 and 
by inserting after section 35 the following new sections:

``SEC. 36. PROCUREMENT PROGRAM FOR CERTIFIED SMALL BUSINESS CONCERNS 
              OWNED AND CONTROLLED BY QUALIFIED SERVICE-DISABLED 
              VETERANS.

    ``(a) Sole Source Contracts.--In accordance with this section, a 
contracting officer may award a sole source contract to any certified 
small business concern owned and controlled by qualified service-
disabled veterans if--
            ``(1) such concern is determined to be a responsible 
        contractor with respect to performance of such contract 
        opportunity and the contracting officer does not have a 
        reasonable expectation that 2 or more certified small business 
        concerns owned and controlled by qualified service-disabled 
        veterans will submit offers for the contracting opportunity;
            ``(2) the anticipated award price of the contract 
        (including options) will not exceed--
                    ``(A) $5,000,000, in the case of a contract 
                opportunity assigned a standard industrial 
                classification code for manufacturing; or
                    ``(B) $3,000,000, in the case of any other contract 
                opportunity; and
            ``(3) in the estimation of the contracting officer, the 
        contract award can be made at a fair and reasonable price.
    ``(b) Restricted Competition.--In accordance with this section, a 
contracting officer may award contracts on the basis of competition 
restricted to certified small business concerns owned and controlled by 
qualified service-disabled veterans if the contracting officer has a 
reasonable expectation that not less than 2 certified small business 
concerns owned and controlled by qualified service-disabled veterans 
will submit offers and that the award can be made at a fair market 
price.
    ``(c) Enforcement; Penalties.--Rules similar to the rules of 
section 31(c) shall apply for purposes of this section.
    ``(d) Collection of Data Regarding Small Business Concerns Owned 
and Controlled by Service-Disabled Veterans.--
            ``(1) Survey.--Not later than 2 years after the date of the 
        enactment of this section and each 3 years thereafter, the 
        Administrator, in consultation with the Secretary of Veterans 
        Affairs, shall complete a survey of service-disabled veterans 
        receiving benefits under title 38, United States Code, to 
        determine the number, identity, and primary industry 
        classification of small business concerns owned and controlled 
        by service-disabled veterans.
            ``(2) Report to Congress.--The Administrator, in 
        consultation with the Secretary of Veterans Affairs, shall 
        report to Congress on the results of each survey conducted 
        under paragraph (1). Such report shall include the total number 
        of small business concerns owned and controlled by service-
        disabled veterans.
    ``(e) Contracting Officer.--For purposes of this section and 
section 37, the term `contracting officer' has the meaning given such 
term in section 27(f)(5) of the Office of Federal Procurement Policy 
Act (41 U.S.C. 423(f)(5)).

``SEC. 37. PRIORITY OF SMALL BUSINESS PROCUREMENT PREFERENCES.

    ``(a) In General.--A contracting officer may not make a procurement 
from a source on the basis of a preference provided under any provision 
of this Act referred to in subsection (b) unless the contracting 
officer has determined that such procurement cannot be made on the 
basis of a preference provided under another provision of this Act with 
a higher priority under such subsection.
    ``(b) Order of Priority.--For purposes of this section, the 
following provisions of this Act are listed in order of priority from 
highest to lowest:
            ``(1) Section 8(a).
            ``(2) Section 36(b).
            ``(3) Section 36(a).
            ``(4) Section 31(b)(2)(B).
            ``(5) Section 31(b)(2)(A).
            ``(6) Section 8(m).
    ``(c) Priority of Certain Other Procurement Preferences.--A 
procurement may not be made from a source on the basis of a preference 
provided under any provision of this Act referred to in subsection (b) 
if the procurement would otherwise by made from a different source 
under section 4124 or 4125 of title 18, United States Code, or the 
Javits-Wagner-O'Day Act (41 U.S.C. 46 et seq.).''.
    (b) Certified Small Business Concern Owned and Controlled by 
Service-Disabled Veterans.--Subsection (q) of section 3 of the Small 
Business Act (15 U.S.C. 632) is amended by adding at the end the 
following new paragraph:
            ``(5) Certified small business concern owned and controlled 
        by qualified service-disabled veterans.--
                    ``(A) Qualified service-disabled veteran.--The term 
                `qualified service-disabled veteran' means any veteran 
                who--
                            ``(i) has one or more disabilities that are 
                        service-connected (as defined in section 
                        101(16) of title 38, United States Code) and 
                        rated at 10 percent or more by the Secretary of 
                        Veterans Affairs; or
                            ``(ii) is entitled to benefits under 
                        section 1151 of title 38, United States Code.
                    ``(B) Small business concern owned and controlled 
                by qualified service-disabled veterans.--The term 
                `small business concern owned and controlled by 
                qualified service-disabled veterans' means a small 
                business concern--
                            ``(i) not less than 51 percent of which is 
                        owned by one or more qualified service-disabled 
                        veterans or, in the case of any publicly owned 
                        business, not less than 51 percent of the stock 
                        of which is owned by one or more qualified 
                        service-disabled veterans; and
                            ``(ii) the management and daily business 
                        operations of which are controlled by one or 
                        more qualified service-disabled veterans or, in 
                        the case of a veteran with permanent and severe 
                        disability, the spouse or permanent caregiver 
                        of such veteran.
                    ``(C) Certified small business concern owned and 
                controlled by qualified service-disabled veterans.--The 
                term `certified small business concern owned and 
                controlled by qualified service-disabled veterans' 
                means any small business concern owned and controlled 
                by qualified service-disabled veterans that is 
                certified by the Administrator as being such a 
                concern.''.
    (c) Conforming Amendments.--Paragraph (2) of section 31(b) of the 
Small Business Act (15 U.S.C. 657a(b)) is amended--
            (1) by striking ``Notwithstanding any other provision of 
        law'' and inserting ``In accordance with this section'';
            (2) in subparagraph (B)--
                    (A) by striking ``a contract opportunity shall be 
                awarded pursuant to this section'' and inserting ``a 
                contracting officer may award contracts''; and
                    (B) by striking ``; and'' at the end and inserting 
                a period; and
            (3) by striking subparagraph (C).
    (d) Department of Veterans Affairs Pilot Program.--
            (1) In general.--In the case of a contracting officer of 
        the Department of Veterans Affairs, the provisions of the Small 
        Business Act referred to in paragraphs (1), (2), and (3) of 
        section 37(b) of such Act shall be treated as being equal in 
        priority for purposes of applying section 37 of such Act.
            (2) Termination.--Paragraph (1) shall not apply with 
        respect to procurements made after September 30, 2007.

SEC. 4. AUTHORIZATION TO PROVIDE ADAPTED HOUSING ASSISTANCE TO CERTAIN 
              DISABLED MEMBERS OF THE ARMED FORCES WHO REMAIN ON ACTIVE 
              DUTY.

    Section 2101 of title 38, United States Code, is amended by adding 
at the end the following new subsection:
    ``(c)(1) The Secretary may provide assistance under subsection (a) 
to a member of the Armed Forces serving on active duty who is suffering 
from a disability described in paragraph (1), (2), or (3) of that 
subsection if such disability is the result of an injury incurred or 
disease contracted in or aggravated in line of duty in the active 
military, naval, or air service. Such assistance shall be provided to 
the same extent as assistance is provided under that subsection to 
veterans eligible for assistance under that subsection and subject to 
the requirements of the second sentence of that subsection.
    ``(2) The Secretary may provide assistance under subsection (b) to 
a member of the Armed Forces serving on active duty who is suffering 
from a disability described in subparagraph (A) or (B) of paragraph (1) 
of that subsection if such disability is the result of an injury 
incurred or disease contracted in or aggravated in line of duty in the 
active military, naval, or air service. Such assistance shall be 
provided to the same extent as assistance is provided under such 
subsection to veterans eligible for assistance under that subsection 
and subject to the requirements of paragraph (2) of that subsection.''.

SEC. 5. REINSTATEMENT OF MINIMUM REQUIREMENTS FOR SALE OF VENDEE LOANS.

    (a) In General.--Section 3733(a) of title 38, United States Code, 
is amended--
            (1) by striking paragraph (2) and redesignating paragraphs 
        (3), (4), (5), and (6) as paragraphs (2), (3), (4), and (5), 
        respectively; and
            (2) in subparagraph (B)(i) of paragraph (3), as so 
        redesignated, by striking ``paragraph (5) of this subsection'' 
        and inserting ``paragraph (4)''.
    (b) Increase in Maximum Percentage.--Section 3733(a)(1) of such 
title is amended--
            (1) by striking ``65 percent'' in the first sentence and 
        inserting ``85 percent''; and
            (2) by striking the second sentence.
    (c) Stylistic Amendment.--Section 3733 of such title is amended by 
striking ``paragraph (1) of this subsection'' each place it appears and 
inserting ``paragraph (1)''.

SEC. 6. PAYMENT OF ACCRUED BENEFITS.

    (a) Repeal of Limitation on Payment.--Subsection (a) of section 
5121 of title 38, United States Code, is amended by striking ``for a 
period not to exceed two years'' in the matter preceding paragraph (1).
    (b) Effective Date.--The amendment made by subsection (a) shall 
take effect with respect to deaths occurring on or after the date of 
the enactment of this Act.

            Passed the House of Representatives June 24, 2003.

            Attest:

                                                 JEFF TRANDAHL,

                                                                 Clerk.