Text: H.R.4220 — 111th Congress (2009-2010)All Bill Information (Except Text)

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Introduced in House (12/08/2009)


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[Congressional Bills 111th Congress]
[From the U.S. Government Printing Office]
[H.R. 4220 Introduced in House (IH)]

111th CONGRESS
  1st Session
                                H. R. 4220

To amend title 38, United States Code, to make certain improvements in 
the laws administered by the Secretary of Veterans Affairs relating to 
   small business concerns and employment assistance, and for other 
                               purposes.


_______________________________________________________________________


                    IN THE HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES

                            December 8, 2009

    Mr. Buyer (for himself, Mr. Moran of Kansas, Mr. Brown of South 
   Carolina, Mr. Miller of Florida, Mr. Boozman, Mr. Bilirakis, Mr. 
     Buchanan, Mr. Roe of Tennessee, Mr. Bilbray, and Mr. Lamborn) 
 introduced the following bill; which was referred to the Committee on 
 Veterans' Affairs, and in addition to the Committees on Education and 
Labor and Small Business, for a period to be subsequently determined by 
the Speaker, in each case for consideration of such provisions as fall 
           within the jurisdiction of the committee concerned

_______________________________________________________________________

                                 A BILL


 
To amend title 38, United States Code, to make certain improvements in 
the laws administered by the Secretary of Veterans Affairs relating to 
   small business concerns and employment assistance, 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; TABLE OF CONTENTS.

    (a) Short Title.--This Act may be cited as the ``Promoting Jobs for 
Veterans Act of 2009''.
    (b) Table of Contents.--The table of contents for this Act is as 
follows:

Sec. 1. Short title; table of contents.
Sec. 2. References to title 38, United States Code.
  TITLE I--PROMOTING JOBS FOR VETERANS THROUGH SMALL BUSINESS PROGRAMS

Sec. 101. Promoting jobs for veterans through the reauthorization and 
                            improvement of Department of Veterans 
                            Affairs small business loan program.
Sec. 102. Promoting jobs for veterans through the use of sole source 
                            contracts by Department of Veterans Affairs 
                            for purposes of meeting the contracting 
                            goals and preferences of the Department of 
                            Veterans Affairs for small business 
                            concerns owned and controlled by veterans.
Sec. 103. Promoting jobs for veterans through the treatment of small 
                            business concerns owned and controlled by 
                            veterans as socially and economically 
                            disadvantaged.
Sec. 104. Promoting jobs for veterans through the extension of period 
                            of eligibility for certain assistance for 
                            small business concerns owned by an 
                            individual who is called or ordered to 
                            active duty.
  TITLE II--PROMOTING JOBS FOR VETERANS THROUGH EMPLOYMENT ASSISTANCE 
                                PROGRAMS

Sec. 201. Promoting jobs for veterans through the increase in the 
                            amount of subsistence allowance payable to 
                            veterans participating in vocational 
                            rehabilitation programs.
Sec. 202. Promoting jobs for veterans through the establishment of a 
                            vocational rehabilitation internship 
                            program.
Sec. 203. Promoting jobs for veterans through the payment of an 
                            employment training assistance.
Sec. 204. Promoting jobs for veterans through the payment of an 
                            assistance allowance for rural veteran 
                            teachers.
Sec. 205. Promoting jobs for veterans through the authorization of 
                            appropriations for veterans' workforce 
                            investment programs.
Sec. 206. Promoting jobs for veterans through the promotion of the 
                            VetSuccess Internet website.

SEC. 2. REFERENCES TO TITLE 38, UNITED STATES CODE.

    Except as otherwise expressly provided, whenever in this Act an 
amendment or repeal is expressed in terms of an amendment to, or a 
repeal of, a section or other provision, the reference shall be 
considered to be made to a section or other provision of title 38, 
United States Code.

  TITLE I--PROMOTING JOBS FOR VETERANS THROUGH SMALL BUSINESS PROGRAMS

SEC. 101. PROMOTING JOBS FOR VETERANS THROUGH THE REAUTHORIZATION AND 
              IMPROVEMENT OF DEPARTMENT OF VETERANS AFFAIRS SMALL 
              BUSINESS LOAN PROGRAM.

    (a) Reauthorization.--
            (1) In general.--Chapter 37 is amended by striking section 
        3751.
            (2) Clerical amendment.--The table of sections at the 
        beginning of such chapter is amended by striking the item 
        relating to section 3751.
            (3) Conforming amendment.--Section 3749 is amended by 
        striking subsection (e).
    (b) Expansion of Eligibility for Small Business Loans.--Chapter 37, 
as amended by subsection (a), is further amended--
            (1) in section 3741--
                    (A) by striking paragraph (2);
                    (B) by striking ``this subchapter--'' and all that 
                follows through ```disabled veteran''' and inserting 
                ``this subchapter, the term `disabled veteran'''; and
                    (C) by striking ``30 percent'' and inserting ``10 
                percent''; and
            (2) in section 3742(a)(3)(A), by striking ``of the Vietnam 
        era or disabled veterans''.
    (c) Repeal of Authority To Make Direct Loans.--Chapter 37, as 
amended by subsections (a) and (b), is further amended--
            (1) in section 3742--
                    (A) in subsection (a)--
                            (i) in paragraph (2), by striking ``(A) 
                        loan guaranties, or (B) direct loans'' and 
                        inserting ``loan guarantees''; and
                            (ii) in paragraph (3)(A), by striking ``and 
                        that at least 51 percent of a business concern 
                        must be owned by disabled veterans in order for 
                        such concern to qualify for a direct loan'';
                    (B) in subsection (b)--
                            (i) by striking paragraph (1) and 
                        redesignating paragraphs (2) through (4) as 
                        paragraphs (1) through (3), respectively; and
                            (ii) in paragraph (2), as so redesignated, 
                        by striking ``make or'';
                    (C) in subsection (c), by striking ``made or'';
                    (D) in subsection (d)--
                            (i) by striking paragraph (2);
                            (ii) by striking ``(1) Except as provided 
                        in paragraph (2) of this subsection, the'' and 
                        inserting ``The''; and
                            (iii) by striking ``make or''; and
                    (E) in subsection (e)--
                            (i) in paragraph (1)--
                                    (I) in the first sentence, by 
                                striking ``or, if the loan was a direct 
                                loan made by the Secretary, may suspend 
                                such obligation''; and
                                    (II) in the second sentence, by 
                                striking ``or while such obligation is 
                                suspended'';
                            (ii) by striking ``or suspend'' each place 
                        it appears;
                            (iii) by striking ``or suspension'' each 
                        place it appears
                            (iv) by striking ``or suspends'' each place 
                        it appears; and
                            (v) in paragraph (4)(B), by striking ``or 
                        suspended'';
            (2) in section 3743--
                    (A) by striking ``that is provided a direct loan 
                under this subchapter, or'';
                    (B) by striking the comma between ``subchapter'' 
                and ``shall'';
                    (C) by striking ``direct or''; and
                    (D) by striking ``for the amount of such direct 
                loan or, in the case of a guaranteed loan,'';
            (3) in section 3746, by striking ``made or'' both places it 
        appears;
            (4) in section 3749(b), by striking ``and direct loan''; 
        and
            (5) in section 3750, by striking ``made or''.
    (d) Increase of Maximum Guaranty Amount.--Section 3742(b)(2), as 
redesignated by subsection (c)(1)(B)(i), is amended by striking 
``$200,000'' and inserting ``$500,000''.
    (e) Authority To Enter Into a Contract.--Section 3742, as amended 
by subsection (c), is further amended by adding at the end the 
following new subsection:
    ``(f) The Secretary shall enter into a contract with an appropriate 
entity for the purpose of carrying out the program under this 
subchapter.''.
    (f) Authority of Secretary To Subsidize Interest Rates of 
Guaranteed Loan.--Section 3745 is amended by striking subsection (b) 
and inserting the following new subsection (b):
    ``(b) For any loan guaranteed under this subchapter, the Secretary 
may pay to the lender such amounts as may be required to reduce the 
rate of interest payable by the veterans' small business concern by up 
to one-half of one percent, except that the rate of interest payable by 
such concern shall not be less than one-half of one percent.''.
    (g) Preference for Members of National Guard and Reserves Activated 
in Support of Global War on Terrorism.--Section 3748 is amended--
            (1) by striking ``and, second'' and inserting ``second''; 
        and
            (2) by inserting before the period at the end ``, and, 
        third, to veterans' small business concern in which veterans 
        who, as members of a reserve component, are activated in 
        support of the Global War on Terrorism have a significant 
        ownership interest''.
    (h) Authorization of Appropriations.--Section 3749(c)(1) is amended 
by striking ``a total of $25,000,000'' and inserting ``$1,000,000,000 
for each fiscal year''.

SEC. 102. PROMOTING JOBS FOR VETERANS THROUGH THE USE OF SOLE SOURCE 
              CONTRACTS BY DEPARTMENT OF VETERANS AFFAIRS FOR PURPOSES 
              OF MEETING THE CONTRACTING GOALS AND PREFERENCES OF THE 
              DEPARTMENT OF VETERANS AFFAIRS FOR SMALL BUSINESS 
              CONCERNS OWNED AND CONTROLLED BY VETERANS.

    (a) In General.--Section 8127(c) is amended by striking ``may'' and 
inserting ``shall''.
    (b) Deadline for Interim Policy Guidance.--By not later than 30 
days after the date of the enactment of this Act, the Secretary of 
Veterans Affairs shall issue interim policy guidance to carry out the 
amendment made by subsection (a).

SEC. 103. PROMOTING JOBS FOR VETERANS THROUGH THE TREATMENT OF SMALL 
              BUSINESS CONCERNS OWNED AND CONTROLLED BY VETERANS AS 
              SOCIALLY AND ECONOMICALLY DISADVANTAGED.

    Section 8128 is amended--
            (1) by redesignating subsection (b) as subsection (c); and
            (2) by inserting after subsection (a) the following new 
        subsection:
    ``(b) Treatment as Socially and Economically Disadvantaged.--The 
Secretary may evaluate a bid submitted by a small business concern 
owned and controlled by veterans and award a contract to such a concern 
on the same basis as the Administrator of the Small Business 
Administration may evaluate a bid submitted by a socially and 
economically disadvantaged small business concern and award a contract 
to such a concern under section 8(a) of the Small Business Act (15 
U.S.C. 637(a)).''.

SEC. 104. PROMOTING JOBS FOR VETERANS THROUGH THE EXTENSION OF PERIOD 
              OF ELIGIBILITY FOR CERTAIN ASSISTANCE FOR SMALL BUSINESS 
              CONCERNS OWNED BY AN INDIVIDUAL WHO IS CALLED OR ORDERED 
              TO ACTIVE DUTY.

    Section 7(j)(15) of the Small Business Act (15 U.S.C. 636(j)(15)) 
is amended to read as follows:
    ``(15)(A) Subject to the provisions of paragraph (10)(C), a small 
business concern may receive developmental assistance under the Program 
and contracts under section 8(a) for a total period of not longer than 
nine years, measured from the date of its certification under the 
authority of such section, of which--
            ``(i) no more than four years may be spent in the 
        developmental stage of Program Participation; and
            ``(ii) no more than five years may be spent in the 
        transitional stage of Program Participation.
    ``(B) Notwithstanding subparagraph (A), a small business concern 
that is owned by an individual who is called or ordered to active duty 
for a period of more than 30 days (as defined in section 101(d)(2) of 
title 10, United States Code) may receive developmental assistance 
under the Program and contracts under section 8(a) for a total period 
of not longer than the sum of--
            ``(i) 9 years, as measured from the date of the 
        certification of such concern under the authority of such 
        section; and
            ``(ii) the length of time such individual is called or 
        ordered to active duty for a period of more than 30 days during 
        the 9-year period described in clause (i).''.

  TITLE II--PROMOTING JOBS FOR VETERANS THROUGH EMPLOYMENT ASSISTANCE 
                                PROGRAMS

SEC. 201. PROMOTING JOBS FOR VETERANS THROUGH THE INCREASE IN THE 
              AMOUNT OF SUBSISTENCE ALLOWANCE PAYABLE TO VETERANS 
              PARTICIPATING IN VOCATIONAL REHABILITATION PROGRAMS.

    (a) Increase in Subsistence Allowance.--Section 3108(b) is amended 
by striking paragraph (1) and inserting the following new paragraph 
(1):
    ``(1) Except as otherwise provided in this section, the Secretary 
shall determine the subsistence allowance to be paid to a veteran under 
this chapter. Such amount shall be the greater of the following 
amounts:
            ``(A) The amount equal to the amount equal to the monthly 
        amount of the basic allowance for housing payable under section 
        403 of title 37 for a member of the Armed Forces with 
        dependents in pay grade E-5 residing in the military housing 
        area that encompasses all or the majority portion of the ZIP 
        code area in which the veteran is pursuing the program under 
        this chapter.
            ``(B) The amount determined by the Secretary in accordance 
        with the following table, which shall be the monthly amount 
        shown in column II, III, IV, or V (whichever is applicable as 
        determined by the veteran's dependency status) opposite the 
        appropriate type of program being pursued as specified in 
        column I:

----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
                            ``Column I                              Column II    Column    Column IV   Column V
------------------------------------------------------------------------------    III    -----------------------
                                                                              -----------              More than
                         Type of program                               No         One         Two         two
                                                                   dependents  dependent  dependents  dependents
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                                                   ..........  .........  ..........  The amount
                                                                                                       in column
                                                                                                        IV, plus
                                                                                                             the
                                                                                                       following
                                                                                                        for each
                                                                                                       dependent
                                                                                                       in excess
                                                                                                         of two:
Full-time........................................................      $1,200     $1,500      $1,800        $120
Three-quarter time...............................................        $900     $1,125      $1,350         $90
Half-time........................................................        $600       $750        $900      $60''.
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

    (b) Effective Date.--The amendment made by subsection (a) shall 
apply with respect to a payment made for the third month beginning 
after the date of the enactment of this Act and each subsequent month.

SEC. 202. PROMOTING JOBS FOR VETERANS THROUGH THE ESTABLISHMENT OF A 
              VOCATIONAL REHABILITATION INTERNSHIP PROGRAM.

    (a) In General.--Chapter 31 is amended by inserting after section 
3116 the following new section:
``Sec. 3116A. Internship program
    ``(a) Internship Program.--The Secretary shall carry out an 
internship program through which the Secretary shall award internships 
to up to 2,000 veterans each year in accordance with this section. The 
recipient of an internship under this section shall be employed in the 
Veterans Benefits Administration for the duration of the internship.
    ``(b) Eligibility.--To be eligible to receive an internship under 
this section a veteran shall have completed a rehabilitation program 
under this chapter. In awarding internships under this section, the 
Secretary shall give a preference to a veteran who has completed a 
program of long-term education or training, as determined by the 
Secretary.
    ``(c) Salary; Benefits.--(1) Each recipient of an internship under 
this section shall be paid at a rate determined by the Secretary, 
except that such rate shall be at least the maximum annual rate of 
basic pay payable for grade GS-3 of the General Schedule under section 
5332 of title 5, United States Code, and shall not exceed the maximum 
annual rate of basic pay payable for grade GS-5 of such schedule.
    ``(2) Each such recipient shall be entitled to leave on the same 
basis as employees of the Department who are paid at the same annual 
rate, except that such recipient may not be reimbursed for any unused 
leave at the end of the internship.
    ``(3) The Secretary shall furnish hospital care, medical services, 
and nursing home care to each recipient of an internship under this 
section on the same basis as a veteran described in subsection (B) of 
paragraph (2) of subsection (a) of section 1710 of this title unless 
the recipient is eligible for such care and services under subparagraph 
(A) of such paragraph or under paragraph (1) of such subsection.
    ``(4) The recipient of an internship under this section may receive 
an allowance under section 3108 of this title if such recipient is 
entitled to such an allowance.
    ``(d) Duration.--No internship under this section shall exceed 12 
months in duration.
    ``(e) Outreach.--The Secretary shall notify each participant in a 
rehabilitation program under this chapter of the internship program 
under this section.''.
    (b) Clerical Amendment.--The table of sections at the beginning of 
such chapter is amended by inserting after the item relating to 3116 
the following new item:

``3116A. Internship program.''.

SEC. 203. PROMOTING JOBS FOR VETERANS THROUGH THE PAYMENT OF AN 
              EMPLOYMENT TRAINING ASSISTANCE.

    (a) In General.--Chapter 36 is amended by inserting after section 
3687 the following new section:
``Sec. 3687A. Additional training assistance for unemployed veterans 
              pursuing apprenticeships or other on-job training.
    ``(a) Monthly Training Assistance Allowance.--A covered veteran 
shall be paid a monthly training assistance allowance under this 
section for each month that the veteran is enrolled in a program of 
apprenticeship described in paragraph (1) of subsection (a) of section 
3687 of this title or a program of other on-job training described in 
paragraph (2) of such subsection.
    ``(b) Amount.--The amount of the monthly training assistance 
allowance under this section is the amount equal to the monthly amount 
of the basic allowance for housing payable under section 403 of title 
37 for a member of the Armed Forces with dependents in pay grade E-5 
residing in the military housing area that encompasses all or the 
majority portion of the ZIP code area in which the veteran resides.
    ``(c) Duration.--A covered veteran may receive training assistance 
under this section for a single period of not more than 12 months.
    ``(d) Covered Veteran Defined.--In this section, the term `covered 
veteran' means a veteran who is--
            ``(1) unemployed for a period of not less than four 
        consecutive months at the time of applying for training 
        assistance under this section;
            ``(2) 59 years of age or younger; and
            ``(3) except as provided under this section, ineligible for 
        education or training assistance under this title.
    ``(e) Authorization of Appropriations.--There is authorized to be 
appropriated to carry out this section $100,000,000 for each fiscal 
year.''.
    (b) Clerical Amendment.--The table of sections at the beginning of 
such chapter is amended by adding at the end the following new item:

``3687A. Additional monthly training assistance allowance for 
                            unemployed veterans.''.
    (c) Effective Date.--Section 3687A of title 38, United States Code, 
as added by subsection (a), shall apply with respect to months 
beginning on or after the first day of fiscal year 2011.

SEC. 204. PROMOTING JOBS FOR VETERANS THROUGH THE PAYMENT OF AN 
              ASSISTANCE ALLOWANCE FOR RURAL VETERAN TEACHERS.

    (a) In General.--Chapter 36 is amended by adding at the end the 
following new section:
``Sec. 3698. Assistance allowance for rural veteran teachers
    ``(a) Reducing Administrative Burden.--The Secretary may pay to a 
rural veteran teacher a monthly assistance allowance of $500.
    ``(b) Duration.--The aggregate period for which the Secretary may 
pay a rural veteran teacher a monthly assistance allowance under 
subsection (a) may not exceed 24 months.
    ``(c) Rural Veteran Teacher Defined.--In this section, the term 
`rural veteran teacher' means a veteran who--
            ``(1) is discharged from service in the Armed Forces under 
        honorable conditions;
            ``(2) is employed to teach full-time at an accredited 
        elementary or secondary school that is located in a rural area 
        (as determined by the Bureau of the Census);
            ``(3) on the date on which the veteran applies for a 
        monthly assistance allowance under subsection (a), is enrolled 
        in an accredited course leading to certification as a teacher; 
        and
            ``(4) has not been previously employed to teach full-time 
        at an accredited elementary or secondary school.
    ``(d) Authorization of Appropriations.--There is authorized to be 
appropriated to carry out this section $25,000,000 for fiscal year 2011 
and each fiscal year thereafter.''.
    (b) Clerical Amendment.--The table of sections at the beginning of 
such chapter is amended by inserting after the item relating to section 
3697A the following new item:

``3698. Assistance allowance for rural veteran teachers.''.

SEC. 205. PROMOTING JOBS FOR VETERANS THROUGH THE AUTHORIZATION OF 
              APPROPRIATIONS FOR VETERANS' WORKFORCE INVESTMENT 
              PROGRAMS.

    Section 168 of the Workforce Investment Act of 1998 (29 U.S.C. 
2913) is amended by adding at the end the following new subsection:
    ``(c) Authorization of Appropriations.--There is authorized to be 
appropriated for each fiscal year $20,000,000 for programs authorized 
under this section.''.

SEC. 206. PROMOTING JOBS FOR VETERANS THROUGH THE PROMOTION OF THE 
              VETSUCCESS INTERNET WEBSITE.

    (a) Inclusion of Hyperlink.--Not later than 60 days after the date 
of the enactment of this Act, the Secretary of Veterans Affairs shall 
include on the main page of the Internet website of the Department of 
Veterans Affairs a new hyperlink with a drop-down menu entitled 
``Veterans Employment''. The drop-down menu shall include a direct 
hyperlink to the VetSuccess Internet website, the USA Jobs Internet 
website, the Job Central website, and any other appropriate employment 
Internet websites, as determined by the Secretary, especially such 
websites that focus on jobs for veterans.
    (b) Advertisement of Internet Website.--Subject to the availability 
of appropriations for such purpose, the Secretary of Veterans Affairs 
shall, in accordance with section 532 of title 38, United States Code, 
purchase advertising in national media outlets for the purpose of 
promoting awareness of the VetSuccess Internet website to veterans.
    (c) Outreach to Veterans of Operation Iraqi Freedom and Operation 
Enduring Freedom.--The Secretary of Veterans Affairs shall conduct 
outreach to veterans of Operation Iraqi Freedom and Operation Enduring 
Freedom to inform such veterans of the VetSuccess Internet website.
    (d) VetSuccess Internet Website Defined.--In this section, the term 
``VetSuccess Internet website'' means www.vetsuccess.gov or any 
successor Internet website maintained by the Department of Veterans 
Affairs.
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