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105th Congress                                                   Report
 2nd Session            HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES                105-458
_______________________________________________________________________


 
           ARLINGTON NATIONAL CEMETERY BURIAL ELIGIBILITY ACT

                                _______
                                

 March 24, 1998.--Committed to the Committee of the Whole House on the 
              State of the Union and ordered to be printed

                                _______
                                

   Mr. Stump, from the Committee on Veterans' Affairs, submitted the 
                               following

                              R E P O R T

                        [To accompany H.R. 3211]

      [Including cost estimate of the Congressional Budget Office]

  The Committee on Veterans' Affairs, to whom was referred the 
bill (H.R. 3211) to amend title 38, United States Code, to 
enact into law eligibility requirements for burial in Arlington 
National Cemetery, and for other purposes, having considered 
the same, reports favorably thereon with an amendment and 
recommends that the bill as amended do pass.

  The amendment is as follows:
  Strike out all after the enacting clause and insert in lieu 
thereof the following:

SECTION 1. SHORT TITLE.

  This Act may be cited as the ``Arlington National Cemetery Burial 
Eligibility Act''.

SEC. 2. PERSONS ELIGIBLE FOR BURIAL IN ARLINGTON NATIONAL CEMETERY.

  (a) In General.--Chapter 24 of title 38, United States Code, is 
amended by adding at the end the following new section:

``Sec. 2412. Arlington National Cemetery: persons eligible for burial

  ``(a) Primary Eligibility.--The remains of the following individuals 
may be buried in Arlington National Cemetery:
          ``(1) Any member of the Armed Forces who dies while on active 
        duty.
          ``(2) Any retired member of the Armed Forces and any person 
        who served on active duty and at the time of death was entitled 
        (or but for age would have been entitled) to retired pay under 
        chapter 1223 of title 10.
          ``(3) Any former member of the Armed Forces separated for 
        physical disability before October 1, 1949, who--
                  ``(A) served on active duty; and
                  ``(B) would have been eligible for retirement under 
                the provisions of section 1201 of title 10 (relating to 
                retirement for disability) had that section been in 
                effect on the date of separation of the member.
          ``(4) Any former member of the Armed Forces whose last active 
        duty military service terminated honorably and who has been 
        awarded one of the following decorations:
                  ``(A) Medal of Honor.
                  ``(B) Distinguished Service Cross, Air Force Cross, 
                or Navy Cross.
                  ``(C) Distinguished Service Medal.
                  ``(D) Silver Star.
                  ``(E) Purple Heart.
          ``(5) Any former prisoner of war who dies on or after 
        November 30, 1993.
          ``(6) The President or any former President.
  ``(b) Eligibility of Family Members.--The remains of the following 
individuals may be buried in Arlington National Cemetery:
          ``(1) The spouse, surviving spouse, minor child, and, at the 
        discretion of the Superintendent, unmarried adult child of a 
        person listed in subsection (a), but only if buried in the same 
        gravesite as that person.
          ``(2)(A) The spouse, minor child, and, at the discretion of 
        the Superintendent, unmarried adult child of a member of the 
        Armed Forces on active duty if such spouse, minor child, or 
        unmarried adult child dies while such member is on active duty.
          ``(B) The individual whose spouse, minor child, and unmarried 
        adult child is eligible under subparagraph (A), but only if 
        buried in the same gravesite as the spouse, minor child, or 
        unmarried adult child.
          ``(3) The parents of a minor child or unmarried adult child 
        whose remains, based on the eligibility of a parent, are 
        already buried in Arlington National Cemetery, but only if 
        buried in the same gravesite as that minor child or unmarried 
        adult child.
          ``(4)(A) Subject to subparagraph (B), the surviving spouse, 
        minor child, and, at the discretion of the Superintendent, 
        unmarried adult child of a member of the Armed Forces who was 
        lost, buried at sea, or officially determined to be permanently 
        absent in a status of missing or missing in action.
          ``(B) A person is not eligible under subparagraph (A) if a 
        memorial to honor the memory of the member is placed in a 
        cemetery in the national cemetery system, unless the memorial 
        is removed. A memorial removed under this subparagraph may be 
        placed, at the discretion of the Superintendent, in Arlington 
        National Cemetery.
          ``(5) The surviving spouse, minor child, and, at the 
        discretion of the Superintendent, unmarried adult child of a 
        member of the Armed Forces buried in a cemetery under the 
        jurisdiction of the American Battle Monuments Commission.
  ``(c) Spouses.--For purposes of subsection (b)(1), a surviving spouse 
of a person whose remains are buried in Arlington National Cemetery by 
reason of eligibility under subsection (a), who has remarried is 
eligible for burial in the same gravesite of that person. The spouse of 
the surviving spouse is not eligible for burial in such gravesite.
  ``(d) Disabled Adult Unmarried Children.--In the case of an unmarried 
adult child who is incapable of self-support up to the time of death 
because of a physical or mental condition, the child may be buried 
under subsection (b) without requirement for approval by the 
Superintendent under that subsection if the burial is in the same 
gravesite as the gravesite in which the parent, who is eligible for 
burial under subsection (a), has been or will be buried.
  ``(e) Family Members of Persons Buried in a Group Gravesite.--In the 
case of a person eligible for burial under subsection (a) who is buried 
in Arlington National Cemetery as part of a group burial, the surviving 
spouse, minor child, or unmarried adult child of the member may not be 
buried in the group gravesite.
  ``(f) Exclusive Authority for Burial in Arlington National 
Cemetery.--Eligibility for burial of remains in Arlington National 
Cemetery prescribed under this section is the exclusive eligibility for 
such burial.
  ``(g) Application for Burial.--A request for burial of remains of an 
individual in Arlington National Cemetery made before the death of the 
individual may not be considered by the Secretary of the Army or any 
other responsible official.
  ``(h) Register of Buried Individuals.--(1) The Secretary of the Army 
shall maintain a register of each individual buried in Arlington 
National Cemetery and shall make such register available to the public.
  ``(2) With respect to each such individual buried on or after January 
1, 1998, the register shall include a brief description of the basis of 
eligibility of the individual for burial in Arlington National 
Cemetery.
  ``(i) Definitions.--For purposes of this section:
          ``(1) The term `retired member of the Armed Forces' means--
                  ``(A) any member of the Armed Forces on a retired 
                list who served on active duty and who is entitled to 
                retired pay;
                  ``(B) any member of the Fleet Reserve or Fleet Marine 
                Corps Reserve who served on active duty and who is 
                entitled to retainer pay; and
                  ``(C) any member of a reserve component of the Armed 
                Forces who has served on active duty and who has 
                received notice from the Secretary concerned under 
                section 12731(d) of title 10, of eligibility for 
                retired pay under chapter 1223 of title 10.
          ``(2) The term `former member of the Armed Forces' includes a 
        person whose service is considered active duty service pursuant 
        to a determination of the Secretary of Defense under section 
        401 of Public Law 95-202 (38 U.S.C. 106 note).
          ``(3) The term `Superintendent' means the Superintendent of 
        Arlington National Cemetery.''.
  (b) Publication of Updated Pamphlet.--Not later than 180 days after 
the date of the enactment of this Act, the Secretary of the Army shall 
publish an updated pamphlet describing eligibility for burial in 
Arlington National Cemetery. The pamphlet shall reflect the provisions 
of section 2412 of title 38, United States Code, as added by subsection 
(a).
  (c) Clerical Amendment.--The table of sections at the beginning of 
chapter 24 of title 38, United States Code, is amended by adding at the 
end the following new item:

``2412. Arlington National Cemetery: persons eligible for burial.''.
  (d) Technical Amendments.--Section 2402(7) of title 38, United States 
Code, is amended--
          (1) by inserting ``(or but for age would have been 
        entitled)'' after ``was entitled'';
          (2) by striking out ``chapter 67'' and inserting in lieu 
        thereof ``chapter 1223''; and
          (3) by striking out ``or would have been entitled to'' and 
        all that follows and inserting in lieu thereof a period.
  (e) Effective Date.--Section 2412 of title 38, United States Code, as 
added by subsection (a), shall apply with respect to individuals dying 
on or after the date of the enactment of this Act.

SEC. 3. PERSONS ELIGIBLE FOR PLACEMENT IN THE COLUMBARIUM IN ARLINGTON 
                    NATIONAL CEMETERY.

  (a) In General.--Chapter 24 of title 38, United States Code, is 
amended by adding after section 2412, as added by section 2(a) of this 
Act, the following new section:

``Sec. 2413. Arlington National Cemetery: persons eligible for 
                    placement in columbarium

  ``(a) Eligibility.--The cremated remains of the following individuals 
may be placed in the columbarium in Arlington National Cemetery:
          ``(1) A person eligible for burial in Arlington National 
        Cemetery under section 2412 of this title.
          ``(2)(A) A veteran whose last period of active duty service 
        (other than active duty for training) ended honorably.
          ``(B) The spouse, surviving spouse, minor child, and, at the 
        discretion of the Superintendent of Arlington National 
        Cemetery, unmarried adult child of such a veteran.
  ``(b) Spouse.--Section 2412(c) of this title shall apply to a spouse 
under this section in the same manner as it applies to a spouse under 
section 2412.''.
  (b) Clerical Amendment.--The table of sections at the beginning of 
chapter 24 of title 38, United States Code, is amended by adding after 
section 2412, as added by section 2(c) of this Act, the following new 
item:

``2413. Arlington National Cemetery: persons eligible for placement in 
columbarium.''.
  (c) Effective Date.--Section 2413 of title 38, United States Code, as 
added by subsection (a), shall apply with respect to individuals dying 
on or after the date of the enactment of this Act.

SEC. 4. MONUMENTS IN ARLINGTON NATIONAL CEMETERY.

  (a) In General.--Chapter 24 of title 38, United States Code, is 
amended by adding after section 2413, as added by section 3(a) of this 
Act, the following new section:

``Sec. 2414. Arlington National Cemetery: authorized headstones, 
                    markers, and monuments

  ``(a) Gravesite Markers Provided by the Secretary.--A gravesite in 
Arlington National Cemetery shall be appropriately marked in accordance 
with section 2404 of this title.
  ``(b) Gravesite Markers Provided at Private Expense.--(1) The 
Secretary of the Army shall prescribe regulations for the provision of 
headstones or markers to mark a gravesite at private expense in lieu of 
headstones and markers provided by the Secretary of Veterans Affairs in 
Arlington National Cemetery.
  ``(2) Such regulations shall ensure that--
          ``(A) such headstones or markers are of simple design, 
        dignified, and appropriate to a military cemetery;
          ``(B) the person providing such headstone or marker provides 
        for the future maintenance of the headstone or marker in the 
        event repairs are necessary;
          ``(C) the Secretary of the Army shall not be liable for 
        maintenance of or damage to the headstone or marker;
          ``(D) such headstones or markers are aesthetically compatible 
        with Arlington National Cemetery; and
          ``(E) such headstones or markers are permitted only in 
        sections of Arlington National Cemetery authorized for such 
        headstones or markers as of January 1, 1947.
  ``(c) Monuments.--(1) No monument (or similar structure as determined 
by the Secretary of the Army in regulations) may be placed in Arlington 
National Cemetery except pursuant to the provisions of this subsection.
  ``(2) A monument may be placed in Arlington National Cemetery if the 
monument commemorates--
          ``(A) the service in the Armed Forces of the individual, or 
        group of individuals, whose memory is to be honored by the 
        monument; or
          ``(B) a particular military event.
  ``(3) No monument may be placed in Arlington National Cemetery until 
the end of the 25-year period beginning--
          ``(A) in the case of commemoration of service under paragraph 
        (1)(A), on the last day of the period of service so 
        commemorated; and
          ``(B) in the case of commemoration of a particular military 
        event under paragraph (1)(B), on the last day of the period of 
        the event.
  ``(4) A monument may be placed only in those sections of Arlington 
National Cemetery designated by the Secretary of the Army for such 
placement.''.
  (b) Clerical Amendment.--The table of sections at the beginning of 
chapter 24 of title 38, United States Code, is amended by adding after 
section 2413, as added by section 3(b) of this Act, the following new 
item:

``2414. Arlington National Cemetery: authorized headstones, markers, 
and monuments.''.
  (c) Effective Date.--The amendment made by subsection (a) shall apply 
with respect to headstones, markers, or monuments placed in Arlington 
National Cemetery on or after the date of the enactment of this Act.

SEC. 5. PUBLICATION OF REGULATIONS.

  Not later than one year after the date of the enactment of this Act, 
the Secretary of the Army shall publish in the Federal Register any 
regulation proposed by the Secretary under this Act.

                              Introduction

    On February 12, 1998, the Chairman of the Veterans' Affairs 
Committee, the Honorable Bob Stump, along with the Honorable 
Lane Evans, the Honorable Terry Everett, the Honorable James 
Clyburn, the Honorable Jack Quinn, the Honorable Bob Filner, 
the Honorable Mike Bilirakis, the Honorable Luis Gutierrez, the 
Honorable John Cooksey, the Honorable Corrine Brown, the 
Honorable Asa Hutchinson, the Honorable Mike Doyle, the 
Honorable J.D. Hayworth, the Honorable Frank Mascara, the 
Honorable Ray LaHood, the Honorable Collin Peterson, the 
Honorable Julia Carson, the Honorable Sylvestre Reyes, the 
Honorable Ciro Rodriguez, the Honorable Gerald Solomon, the 
Honorable Richard Baker, and the Honorable Helen Chenoweth, 
introduced H.R. 3211, to enact into law eligibility 
requirements for burial in Arlington National Cemetery.
    The Subcommittee on Oversight and Investigations met on 
January 28, 1998, to receive testimony regarding waivers of 
regulations governing burial at Arlington National Cemetery. 
The Subcommittee on Benefits met on February 24, 1998, to 
receive testimony on the bill. On March 5, 1998, the 
Subcommittee on Benefits met and ordered H.R. 3211 reported 
favorably with an amendment in the nature of a substitute to 
the full Committee by unanimous voice vote. The full Committee 
met on March 11, 1998, and ordered H.R. 3211 reported favorably 
with an amendment in the nature of a substitute to the House by 
unanimous voice vote.

                      Summary of the Reported Bill

    The bill would codify, with exceptions discussed below, 
existing regulatory eligibility criteria for burial at 
Arlington National Cemetery. Other than the persons 
specifically enumerated in the proposed legislation, no other 
person could be buried at Arlington. In general, eligible 
persons would include:

    a) members of the Armed Forces who die on active duty;
    b) retired members of the Armed Forces, including Reservists 
       who served on active duty;
    c) former members of the Armed Forces who have been awarded the
       Medal of Honor, Distinguished Service Cross, Air Force Cross,
       or Navy Cross, Distinguished Service Medal, Silver Star, or
       Purple Heart;
    d) former prisoners of war;
    e) the President or any former President;
    f) members of the Guard/Reserves who served on active duty and
       are eligible for retirement, but who have not yet retired;
    g) the spouse, surviving spouse, minor child and at the discretion
       of the Superintendent of Arlington, unmarried adult children
       of a) through f).

    The bill would also eliminate the current practice of 
granting eligibility to Members of Congress and other high-
ranking government officials who are veterans but who do not 
meet the distinguished military service criteria outlined 
above. It also provides that this law would be the exclusive 
authority for burial eligibility.
    Additionally, the bill codifies existing regulatory 
eligibility standards for interment of cremated remains in the 
columbarium at Arlington. Generally, this includes all veterans 
with honorable service and their dependents.
    Finally, the bill clarifies that only memorials honoring 
military service or events may be placed at Arlington and 
establishes a 25-year waiting period for such memorials.

                               Background

    This background is derived from material provided to the 
Committee by the Department of the Army, the General Accounting 
Office, and the Congressional Research Service.

    Until the Civil War, the nation's attention to interment of 
veterans was haphazard. The massive casualties resulting from 
that conflict required the government to establish procedures 
to make and preserve records of deceased soldiers and provide 
places for their burial. Congress' initial legislation to 
establish a national cemetery system, the Act of July 17, 1862, 
Sec. 18, 12 Stat. 594, 596, provided that ``the President of 
the United States shall have the power, whenever in his opinion 
it shall be expedient, to purchase cemetery grounds and cause 
them to be securely enclosed, to be used as a national cemetery 
for the soldiers who shall die in the service of their 
country.'' At the conclusion of the War, Congress directed the 
Secretary of War to engage in a program to find, collect and 
identify the remains of the war dead. The task was completed in 
1870 with the reinterment of nearly 300,000 remains in 73 
national cemeteries.
    The grounds of Arlington Mansion, the home of Martha 
Washington's grandson, George Washington Parke Custis, and his 
son-in-law, General Robert E. Lee, were appropriated by the 
federal government in May, 1861, for a fortification to defend 
Washington, D.C. Arlington National Cemetery was established on 
the estate on May 13, 1864, as one of the first national 
cemeteries because burial areas in the other previously 
designated national cemeteries - the Soldiers' Home in 
Washington, D.C., and at Alexandria, Virginia - were rapidly 
filling. On June 15, 1864, Secretary of War Stanton formally 
designated Arlington Mansion and the 200 acres surrounding it 
as a cemetery for the burial of soldiers dying in the vicinity 
of Washington.
    The cemetery only gradually developed its aura as an 
historic national shrine with the burials of famous Civil War 
generals such as Phillip H. Sheridan in the 1880's, the burials 
of General Pershing and President William Howard Taft in the 
1920's, and then with the dedication in 1932 of the Tomb of the 
Unknown Soldier. The mystique of the cemetery was heightened 
substantially after the assassination of President John F. 
Kennedy and his emotional funeral and burial there beside an 
eternal flame in November 1963. President Kennedy's gravesite 
and the cemetery generally became major public attractions and 
pressure increased for interments in the limited space 
available. Arlington has a total capacity of 263,639 
gravesites, with about 60,700 remaining available in 1998.
    From the Civil War until 1973, the primary responsibility 
for the ``care and maintenance'' of most national cemeteries, 
including Arlington, was vested in the Secretary of the Army or 
the Secretary of War. Administration of other cemeteries was 
placed under the supervision of agency heads, such as the 
Secretary of the Interior.
    In 1948, Congress for the first time codified all previous 
precedent, practices, and legislation affecting eligibility for 
burial in national cemeteries. Under the law, four general 
classifications of persons were accorded the privilege of 
burial in a national cemetery: (1) those who die while serving 
honorably in the Armed Forces of the United States (2) former 
members of the Armed Forces (3) citizens of the United States 
who have served, or may serve, in the Armed Forces of a nation 
allied with the United States during war and (4) the wife, 
husband, widow, widower, minor children, and, at the discretion 
of the Secretary of the Army, adult, unmarried children of 
those otherwise eligible. Adult, unmarried children generally 
have been deemed eligible if at the time of death they were 
incapable of self-support by reason of physical or mental 
condition.
    In 1959, Congress expanded burial eligibility to any member 
of a reserve component of the Armed Forces, the Army and Air 
National Guards, and the Reserve Officers Training Corps of the 
Army, Navy and Air Force, whose death occurred under honorable 
conditions while serving on active duty. It also added the 
requirement that the Secretary of the Army seek the approval of 
the Secretary of Defense prior to issuing or amending 
regulations pertaining to national cemeteries under his 
jurisdiction.
    Restrictive rules for in-ground burial at Arlington were 
first imposed in 1967. The Secretary of the Army was responding 
to concerns that the combination of increased interest in 
Arlington resulting from President Kennedy's burial and an 
aging veteran population would result in the rapid depletion of 
burial spaces. From 1962-1966, Arlington's interment rate rose 
from 4,000 to 7,000 per year. Had the trend continued, the 
cemetery would have been full by 1968.
    The restrictive rules, now codified in federal regulations 
at 32 CFR 553.13 (1997), limited eligibility to those members 
of the Armed Forces who served the nation in an especially 
distinguished manner. These criteria have remained essentially 
unchanged since 1967 and provide for the in-ground Arlington 
burial of the following categories of persons:

     Active duty members of the Armed Forces, except 
those members serving on active duty for training;
     Retired members of the Armed Forces who have 
served on active duty, are on a retired list and are entitled 
to receive retirement pay;
     Former members of the Armed Forces discharged for 
disability before Oct. 1, 1949, who served on active duty and 
would have been eligible for retirement under 10 U.S.C. 1202 
had the statute been in effect on the date of separation;
     Honorably discharged members of the Armed Forces 
awarded the Medal of Honor, Distinguished Service Cross, Air 
Force Cross or Navy Cross, Distinguished Service Medal, Silver 
Star, or Purple Heart;
     Former prisoners of war who served honorably and 
who died on or after November 30, 1993;
     Provided they were honorably discharged from the 
Armed Forces, elected federal officials (the president, vice-
president, and members of Congress), federal cabinet 
secretaries and deputies, agency directors and certain other 
high federal officials (level I and II executives); Supreme 
Court justices, and chiefs of certain diplomatic missions;
     The spouse, widow or widower, minor child (under 
21 years of age) and, at the discretion of the Secretary of the 
Army, an unmarried adult child of any of the above, (a 
surviving spouse who has remarried and whose subsequent 
marriage is void, terminated by death, or dissolved by 
annulment or divorce by a court; an unmarried adult child may 
be interred in the same grave in which the parent has been or 
will be interred, provided that the child was incapable of 
self-support up to the time of death because of physical or 
mental condition);
     Surviving spouses of service members who are 
interred in the cemetery as part of a group burial, but not in 
the same grave as the deceased spouse;
     The surviving spouse, minor child, and at the 
discretion of the Secretary of the Army, the unmarried adult 
child of any person already buried at the cemetery;
     The parents of a minor child or unmarried adult 
child whose remains are already buried at the cemetery on the 
basis of the eligibility of a parent.

    Veterans who do not meet these requirements may qualify for 
placement in Arlington's columbarium for cremated remains. Any 
honorably discharged veteran, spouse and dependent children may 
be inurned in the same family niche at the columbarium. Since 
1980, the Army has built four columbaria at the cemetery. 
Eventually, 50,000 niches capable of holding two urns each will 
be available. Additional columbaria could be built in the 
future to further increase the capacity for cremated remains.
    After the Army imposed the restrictive eligibility 
requirements in 1967, the number of burials at Arlington 
declined sharply and then remained relatively constant until 
1988. Since that time, the number of burials has gradually 
increased, with the cemetery averaging 2,887 burials per year. 
Given the expected burial rates, the Army projects that all 
gravesites will be full by 2025 unless the cemetery is 
expanded.
    In 1973, Congress addressed the need for a coherent 
national burial policy and management system for national 
cemeteries. The National Cemeteries Act of 1973 (Pub. L. No. 
93-43) established within the Veterans Administration (VA) a 
National Cemetery System consisting of cemeteries already under 
the VA's jurisdiction and national cemeteries transferred to 
the VA from the Department of the Army. The legislation 
exempted Arlington National Cemetery and those cemeteries 
located at the military service academies, which were left 
under the authority of the Department of the Army.
    The 1973 Act adopted nearly identical requirements for the 
cemeteries as called for under the 1959 Act, but transferred 
jurisdiction to the VA. The law also made one significant 
addition by authorizing exceptions to the eligibility rules for 
``[s]uch other persons or classes of persons as may be 
designated by the Secretary,'' (38 U.S.C. 2402(6)). In 
explaining this addition, the Senate and House reports stated:

          This additional category is consistent with authority 
        currently based on VA Regulation 6200 (C), as revised 
        June 2, 1966. Similar authority apparently resides in 
        the Secretary of the Army pursuant to 32 C.F.R. 
        553.18(b)(1) which authorizes ``burial in National 
        cemeteries under such regulations as the Secretary may, 
        with the approval of the Secretary of Defense, 
        provide.''

    The 1973 Act also preserved the previously exercised 
authorities of the military department secretaries with respect 
to cemeteries, memorials and monuments remaining under their 
jurisdiction.
    Finally, Congress ordered that a joint study be conducted 
by the Veterans Administration and the Department of Defense on 
(1) the advisability of including Arlington National Cemetery 
within the National Cemetery System to be administered by the 
Veterans Administration, and (2) the appropriateness of 
maintaining the present eligibility system for burial at 
Arlington. The study submitted to Congress on January 21, 1974, 
recommended that Arlington remain under Department of Army 
jurisdiction and that the existing regulatory criteria be 
maintained. Congress took no further legislative action.

                                Waivers

    The Army regulations for Arlington have never contained an 
explicit provision allowing for waivers or exceptions to the 
eligibility requirements. Since 1967, however, the Secretary of 
the Army and the President have granted what the Army has 
termed ``exceptions'' to the general eligibility requirements 
in individual cases. Unfortunately, such a practice has 
generally not been well known or commonly understood.
    In May, 1997, the majority staff of the Committee was 
provided anonymous information which called the waiver process 
into question. The Subcommittee on Oversight and Investigations 
held a public hearing on January 28, 1998, to receive testimony 
on burial waivers at Arlington. At the request of the Chairman 
and Ranking Member of the Oversight Subcommittee, and the 
Ranking Democratic Member of the full Committee, GAO conducted 
an expedited review of the waiver process in December, 1997 and 
January, 1998. GAO presented its findings at the January 28 
hearing, and outlined policy options concerning possible 
improvements to the eligibility process for burial at 
Arlington. The findings revealed a flawed waiver process marked 
by unclear standards and inconsistent application of waiver 
criteria.
    According to GAO, there have been a total of 340 documented 
waiver requests since 1967, 196 of which have been granted. GAO 
confirmed previous findings of Committee investigators that 
numerous waivers have been informally sought through the 
Superintendent's office, but were never documented in cemetery 
records. The review also found that the cemetery's responses to 
such requests from the general public were varied and 
inconsistent, adding to the confusion concerning eligibility 
standards for burial at Arlington.
    GAO reviewed both Presidential and Secretary of the Army 
waivers: President Lyndon Johnson granted the first two 
Arlington waivers; President Richard Nixon granted three 
waivers; President Gerald Ford granted six; President Jimmy 
Carter individually granted 16 waivers, while the Army granted 
two more during his term of office; the Ronald Reagan 
Administration granted a total of 63 waivers, 21 by 
Presidential action; during the Administration of President 
George Bush the Secretary of the Army granted 32 waivers, none 
were Presidential; and the William Clinton Administration has 
granted 73 waivers, five by Presidential action.
    At the Committee's request, both the American Law Division 
of the Congressional Research Service (CRS) and GAO counsel 
have conducted a legal analysis of such waiver authority. 
Although no express secretarial or presidential waiver 
authority was found, both CRS and GAO agreed with the Army's 
long-standing position that it has such authority. Support can 
be found for this argument in the legislative history of the 
National Cemeteries Act of 1973.
    In reporting the 1973 bill, the committees addressed the 
express waiver authority provided to the VA, and noted that 
``similar authority'' apparently resided with the Secretary of 
the Army with respect to Arlington National Cemetery (Sen. 
Report No. 93-55 at 36; House Report No. 93-131 at 16). The 
Committee's Report accompanying the 1973 Act appears to have in 
effect approved the six waivers granted between 1967 and 1973. 
But the question of whether the Army should retain authority 
over Arlington was left open for further study since the 1973 
Act made clear that all other national cemeteries fell within 
the VA's jurisdiction. As noted previously, the study submitted 
to the Congress in January, 1974, recommended that existing 
regulations and practices should be maintained, and that the 
Army should retain jurisdiction over Arlington Cemetery. 
Congress took no further action on this issue at that time.
    Prior to the January 28, 1998, Subcommittee on Oversight 
and Investigations hearing, the Department of Defense, 
Department of the Army and Arlington National Cemetery provided 
extensive information and documentation regarding secretarial 
and presidential waivers. Limited cooperation and few available 
documents and information from the White House restricted the 
ability of the Committee and GAO to review presidential waivers 
granted since 1993. The White House also did not respond to the 
Subcommittee's invitation to testify at its January 28 hearing 
regarding waivers granted during the current Administration. 
White House counsel asserted claims of executive privilege and 
refused to provide the Committee copies of several documents 
relating to waivers. Due to time constraints and limited 
Committee resources, the Committee was unable to extensively 
research the records of presidential libraries regarding 
waivers by previous presidential administrations.
    Despite these obstacles, the Subcommittee was able to 
acquire extensive information concerning Arlington National 
Cemetery eligibility criteria and the waiver process since 
1967. The Subcommittee's review found that most of the 196 
waivers for burial at Arlington have been granted for family 
members of veterans (or members of the Armed Forces) eligible 
for burial at Arlington. In most cases, such waivers have not 
resulted in the displacement of an eligible veteran because the 
family members have been buried in the same plot as the 
veterans. A total of 59 Army or presidential waivers have been 
granted for persons who are veterans but who did not meet the 
restrictive eligibility criteria for burial at Arlington. Given 
existing space limitations, the effect of such waivers has been 
to displace eligible veterans from burial at Arlington. Such 
waivers for individuals not meeting the ordinary eligibility 
criteria have been largely based on outstanding contributions 
to the nation or the military, or deaths under tragic 
circumstances while serving the nation in some noteworthy 
capacity. In all, thirteen waivers have been granted to persons 
with no military service, one of whom is still living. The 
living waiver recipient subsequently announced the withdrawal 
of his request for burial at Arlington.
    Some waivers resulting in the displacement of an eligible 
veteran have been for essentially ``humanitarian,'' highly 
subjective reasons, and some appear to lack any compelling 
basis. GAO's testimony on this point highlighted ``seemingly 
contradictory decisions and recommendations'' by Army officials 
and ``often undocumented'' rationale for waiver decisions prior 
to 1991, when the tenure of the current cemetery Superintendent 
began. GAO also found that ``the reasons for presidential 
waiver decisions are generally not explained,'' and that 
``presidential decisions are typically made without explicit 
reference to criteria.''

                               Discussion

    H.R. 3211, as amended, would provide no express or implied 
waiver or exception authority to any person. Thus, it would 
eliminate the authority to grant exceptions which resides in 
the Secretary of the Army and would also eliminate the 
authority of any other officer in the Executive Branch, 
including the President, to authorize the burial of persons who 
do not meet the statutory criteria. The bill would establish 
clear-cut criteria for primary eligibility under subsection (a) 
of section 2412 of title 38, United States Code, on which the 
Superintendent of Arlington could make ministerial decisions 
without the need for higher level discretionary decisions.
    The Superintendent would also have a limited discretionary 
authority regarding burial of certain family members under 
subsection (b) of section 2412. The existing Army regulations 
governing Arlington place such discretion in the Secretary of 
the Army. The Committee believes such discretion is 
appropriate, albeit better placed with the Superintendent 
rather than the Secretary of the Army. As in the past, the 
Secretary of the Army would retain overall responsibility for 
the administration and operation of the cemetery.
    The bill would prohibit the Secretary and the 
Superintendent from considering any request for burial in 
advance of the death of the individual. It would also require 
the Secretary to maintain a public record of all individuals 
buried in Arlington. Finally, the bill would require the 
Secretary to publish an updated pamphlet describing eligibility 
criteria within 180 days of enactment and establishes the date 
of enactment as the effective date for changes in eligibility 
made by the bill.
    Section 2 codifies regulations governing placement in the 
columbarium at Arlington National Cemetery. Generally, any 
veteran eligible for burial in a national cemetery operated by 
the Department of Veterans Affairs as defined in section 2412 
of title 38 is eligible for the columbarium, including the 
spouse, minor child, or at the discretion of the Superintendent 
of Arlington National Cemetery, the unmarried adult child of an 
eligible veteran.
    Section 3 adds a new section 2414 to codify regulations 
governing gravesite markers. It directs that graves be marked 
in accordance with section 2404 of title 38, which describes 
the types of markers which may be used in national cemeteries. 
Section 3 also prescribes the conditions under which a private 
marker may be placed on a gravesite in Arlington. In general, 
private markers are restricted to areas authorized as of 
January 1, 1947 for such markers. It also requires the private 
party to provide for the maintenance of such markers, limits 
the Secretary's liability in case of damage, and requires the 
markers to be aesthetically compatible with Arlington National 
Cemetery.
    Finally, section 3 requires that all monuments commemorate 
a military event or the military service of an individual or 
group of individuals. Monuments may not be placed in Arlington 
until 25 years have elapsed after the service or event.

                      Section-By-Section Analysis

    Section 1 states the title of the Act is the ``Arlington 
National Cemetery Burial Eligibility Act''.

    Section 2 would amend chapter 24 of title 38 United States 
Code, by adding a new section 2412.

    Proposed section 2412(a) establishes the primary 
eligibility for burial at Arlington. Persons eligible are 
members of the Armed Forces who die on active duty; veterans 
who are retired and receiving retired pay, or would be eligible 
for retired pay but for their age, or are eligible for 
retirement but remain in an active reserve status; certain 
former members of the Armed Forces who were separated for 
disability prior to October 1, 1949; former members of the 
Armed Forces who were awarded any one of the following military 
awards: the Medal of Honor, Distinguished Service Cross, Navy 
Cross, Air Force Cross, Silver Star or Purple Heart; any former 
POW who dies after November 30, 1993; the President or any 
former President.

    Proposed section 2412(b) establishes the eligibility 
criteria for family members of those eligible for burial under 
2412(a) and the conditions of burial.

    Subsection (b)(1) of section 2412 authorizes burial of the 
spouse, surviving spouse, minor child or, at the discretion of 
the Superintendent of Arlington National Cemetery, the 
unmarried adult child of a veteran described in subsection (a) 
above.

    Subsection (b)(2)(A) of section 2412 authorizes burial of 
an active duty member's dependents.

    Subsection (b)(2)(B) of section 2412 authorizes burial of a 
former member whose dependents were buried at Arlington 
National Cemetery while the member was on active duty.

    Subsection (b)(3) of section 2412 authorizes burial of the 
parents of a child buried at Arlington based on the eligibility 
of a parent.

    Subsection (b)(4)(A) of section 2412 authorizes burial of 
certain dependents of a member of the Armed Forces whose body 
was not recovered or was officially determined to be missing or 
missing in action.

    Subsection (b)(4)(B) of section 2412 denies burial of 
dependents authorized in (A) if a memorial already exists 
elsewhere in the National Cemetery System, but authorizes 
relocation of any such memorial to Arlington National Cemetery, 
thus making such dependents eligible.

    Subsection (b)(5) of section 2412 authorizes the burial of 
certain dependents of members of the Armed Forces buried in a 
cemetery operated by the American Battle Monuments Commission.

    Section 2412(c) sets the conditions for burial of a 
surviving spouse who has subsequently remarried. It also denies 
eligibility to a spouse of the surviving spouse whose 
eligibility is based solely on burial of the surviving spouse.

    Section 2412(d) authorizes burial of disabled unmarried 
adult children who are incapable of self-support up to the time 
of death without approval by the Superintendent.

    Section 2412(e) provides that dependents of those listed in 
subsection (a) who are buried in a mass grave may not be buried 
in the group gravesite, but may be buried elsewhere in the 
cemetery.

    Section 2412(f) states that the exclusive authority for 
burial eligibility is section 2412 of title 38, United States 
Code.

    Section 2412(g) prohibits the Secretary of the Army from 
considering a request for burial at Arlington National Cemetery 
prior to the death of the individual for whom burial is 
requested. The intent of this provision is to prohibit any 
advance reservation of burial sites.

    Section 2412(h) would require the Secretary of the Army to 
establish and maintain a public register of those buried at 
Arlington National Cemetery and the authority under which they 
were interred. While the Committee understands the difficulties 
that may arise in compiling the names and locations of all 
those previously interred at Arlington, the Committee intends 
the register to be as complete a database as possible.

    Section 3(a) would add a new section 2413 to title 38, 
United States Code, titled: ``Persons Eligible for Placement in 
the Columbarium in Arlington National Cemetery.''

    2413(a)(1) states that the cremated remains of anyone 
eligible for burial under section 2412 of title 38, United 
States Code, in Arlington National Cemetery is eligible for 
placement in the columbarium.

    2413(a)(2)(A) authorizes placement of any veteran whose 
last active duty ended honorably.

    2413(a)(2)(B) authorizes placement of the cremated remains 
of the spouse, minor child and (at the discretion of the 
Superintendent of Arlington National Cemetery) an unmarried 
adult child of such a veteran.

    2413(b) applies the same eligibility rules for placement of 
the remains of remarried surviving spouses as are applicable to 
applications for in-ground burial at Arlington.

    Section 4(a) would add a new section 2414 to title 38, 
United States Code, titled: ``Arlington National Cemetery: 
authorized headstones, markers and monuments.''

    Section 2414(a) directs that gravesite markers conform to 
those issued by the Secretary of Veterans Affairs.

    Section 2414(b)(1) directs the Secretary of the Army to 
prescribe regulations for privately furnished gravesite 
markers.

    Section 2414(b)(2)(A) specifies general design criteria for 
privately furnished headstones or markers.

    Section 2414(b)(2)(B) requires that the person furnishing a 
private marker provide for maintenance.

    Section 2414(b)(2)(C) stipulates that the Secretary of the 
Army is not responsible for any maintenance or damage to 
privately furnished headstones or markers.

    Section 2414(b)(2)(D) requires privately furnished markers 
to be aesthetically compatible with Arlington National 
Cemetery.

    Section 2414(b)(2)(E) restricts placement of privately 
furnished headstones or markers to areas designated for such 
headstones or markers as of January 1, 1947.

    Section 2414(c)(1) prohibits placement of monuments at 
Arlington National Cemetery unless the monument meets 
provisions in either subsection (c)(2) or (c)(3) of section 
2414.

    Section 2414(c)(2) requires that a memorial must honor the 
military service of an individual or group or a military event.

    Section 2414(b)(3) requires a 25-year waiting period 
between the military service or event and placement of a 
monument at Arlington National Cemetery.

    Section 2414(b)(4) restricts placement of monuments to 
areas designated by the Superintendent.

    Section 5 directs the Secretary of the Army to publish any 
regulations related to this Act in the Federal Register within 
one year of enactment.

                           Oversight Findings

    No oversight findings have been submitted to the Committee 
by the Committee on Government Reform and Oversight.

                      Views of the Administration

Statement of The Honorable John P. McLaurin, Deputy Assistant 
Secretary of the Army (Military Personnel Management and Equal 
Opportunity Policy) and Mr. John C. Metzler, Jr., 
Superintendent of Arlington National Cemetery, before the 
Subcommittee on Benefits on February 24, 1998, pertaining to 
H.R. 3211.

    Thank you, Mr. Chairman, I am glad to be here to discuss 
the proposed legislation regarding eligibility criteria for 
burial at Arlington National Cemetery (ANC). As you are aware, 
the Secretary of the Army has designated the Assistant 
Secretary of the Army for Manpower and Reserve Affairs (ASA 
(M&RA;)) as the individual responsible for oversight of burial 
policy at ANC. Today, I am representing the acting ASA (M&RA;) 
who was unexpectedly hospitalized over the weekend. In my 
capacity as the Deputy Assistant Secretary for Military 
Personnel Management and Equal Opportunity Policy, I am here to 
provide the Army's comments on the proposed legislation. Seated 
next to me is Mr. John C. Metzler, Jr., the Superintendent of 
Arlington National Cemetery, who is also available to answer 
any questions you may have.
    Arlington National Cemetery is America's most prominent 
National Cemetery and serves as a shrine honoring the men and 
women who have served in the Armed Forceas and those Americans 
who have made extraordinary contributions to the nation. It is 
a visible reflection of America's appreciation for those 
individuals whose acts and accomplishments reflect the highest 
service to the country.
    Since its founding in 1864, the cemetery has functioned 
primarily as a military burial ground. Over the years, the 
symbolic significance of Arlington National Cemetery has 
evolved. The cemetery has become recognized as the nation's 
foremost national memorial to its military members and is the 
final resting place of presidents and other leading public 
figures. It has also become the site of major memorial events 
and ceremonies, as well as a significant attraction for 
visitors to the Washington area.
    As an initial matter, we support the Committee's effort to 
set forth in law many of the rules that have governed 
eligibility criteria for burial in ANC for the past 30 years. 
As you know, rules governing burial in ANC are set forth in 
title 32 of the Code of Federal Regulations. We also support 
your effort to make these rules readily accessible to the 
American public in the form of enacted laws. This legislation 
will continue the practice of allowing active members of the 
Armed Forces, retired members of the Armed Forces, highly-
decorated veterans, former prisoners of war, and certain 
veterans discharged due to disability, to be buried in ANC.
    We also support your effort to identify in law those 
categories of persons entitled to burial in the cemetery who 
were routinely granted exceptions allowing them to be interred 
in ANC. These exceptions took into account humanitarian 
considerations and, as a matter of practice, were granted in 
cases involving the burial of disabled, adult, unmarried 
children in the same gravesite as their parent(s) and, in 
certain instances, cases allowing the burial of the former 
spouse of an individual eligible for ground burial in the same 
grave. We approve of the provisions in the bill that provide 
burial entitlements to these individuals.
    We are troubled, however, with two aspects of this 
legislation. First, this bill eliminates an entitlement that 
presently exists for former members of the Armed Forces whose 
superior contributions to the nation are reflected in the high 
legislative, judicial and executive offices they hold. For 
example, Robert Kennedy served in the Navy during World War II 
and later distinguished himself as the Attorney General of the 
United States and as a Senator from New York before he was 
assassinated. This bill would preclude his burial in Arlington 
today. Similarly, Oliver Wendell Holmes is buried at Arlington. 
Holmes served in the Army during the Civil War, and was later 
confirmed as an Associate Justice of the Supreme Court. As in 
the case of Robert Kennedy, the proposed legislation would 
preclude Chief Justice Holmes' burial despite his brilliant 
combat and public service records.
    Under the current regulations governing burial at ANC, 
individuals such as Robert Kennedy and Oliver Wendell Holmes 
would be allowed to be buried in ANC based on their 
distinguished service to the nation. They would not be eligible 
for burial based on their military service alone, unless they 
were highly decorated. Changing this rule constitutes a radical 
departure from current burial policies and fundamentally 
changes the character of the cemetery. Under this legislation, 
war heroes will no longer lie next to our nation's most revered 
statesmen and supreme court justices, an attribute of the 
cemetery which distinguishes it as the nation's most revered 
burial grounds.
    Second, the legislation creates a set of immutable rules 
that limit any discretion to grant exceptions in those 
circumstances that historically have warranted burial in this 
hallowed cemetery. For example, former Supreme Court Justice 
Thurgood Marshall did not have military service. Yet, due to 
his extraordinary public service accomplishments and 
demonstrated record of supporting this nation's highest 
traditions of freedom and democracy, there was overwhelming 
national support for his interment in Arlington. Under the 
proposed legislation, Justice Marshall and other extraordinary 
public servants could not be buried in Arlington National 
Cemetery.
    In addition, this bill would exclude from burial in 
Arlington individuals who, while performing a mission on behalf 
of the United States, make the ultimate sacrifice by giving 
their lives for their country. For example, Mr. Robert Frasure 
died in a tragic accident in an armored vehicle in Bosnia. Mr. 
Frasure was a Deputy Assistant Secretary of State and a special 
envoy of the President. He had no military service and was, 
therefore, not eligible for burial in Arlington, 
notwithstanding the fact that he died in an area of hostilities 
while on an official mission in service of his country. We 
believe that individuals like Mr. Frasure, who are dispatched 
to strife-ridden areas and make the ultimate sacrifice in 
service to their country, should not be excluded from burial in 
ANC.
    Arlington should be preserved as a national shrine honoring 
the men and women who have served in the Armed Forces and those 
Americans who have made extraordinary public contributions, the 
vast majority of which are veterans of our Armed Forces. If 
there is one thing we know, it is that life is uncertain. We 
believe that there must be a mechanism under the legislation to 
deal with facts and events that are impossible to predict with 
certainty today.
    We recommend that language be included in the bill that 
would provide the President, through his designee, the 
Secretary of the Army the discretion to grant exceptions for 
burial in ANC to individuals whose acts, services, or 
contributions on behalf of the Armed Forces or the nation are 
extraordinary and substantially similar to the acts, services, 
or contributions made by the individuals who would be entitled 
to burial under the legislation that you enact. We note that 
Congress has conferred similar discretion upon the Secretary of 
Veterans' Affairs in connection with the administration of 
cemeteries within the National Cemetery System. The authority 
granted could include a proviso that the appropriate oversight 
committees be notified of each exception. We note that 
decisions concerning burials are time-sensitive and extremely 
emotional, requiring prompt action.
    The draft legislation also includes a provision that 
addresses the placement of memorials and monuments, other than 
private markers at individual gravesites. We support your 
legislative efforts to limit these memorials and monuments to 
those that commemorate service in the Armed Forces by an 
individual or group, and those that commemorate particular 
military events. We also approve of the legislative language 
that restricts the placement of memorials or monuments 
commemorating military events until twenty-five years after the 
event. This time period will ensure that the event being 
commemorated is of fitting historical significance.
    In closing, I would like to emphasize that the Army takes 
very seriously its responsibility to administer and to uphold 
the sanctity of Arlington National Cemetery as we pay final 
tribute to men and women who have served our country with 
distinction. In this regard, the Army has recently completed a 
strategic plan, which is designed to ensure that Arlington will 
remain active as the nation's foremost military cemetery. This 
plan identifies fourteen parcels of land that are located in 
close proximity to the cemetery and that could be used for 
future burials. We intend to examine those parcels that are 
readily available so that the future needs of the cemetery are 
met. These parcels include contiguous land sites that will be 
vacated by the Army, Navy, and Marine Corps, including a 
portion of Ft. Myer and the Navy annex. We solicit your support 
for this initiative. Funds are included in the President's 
budget for fiscal years 1999-2003 to prepare concept plans to 
develop those parcels of land owned by the federal government 
when they become excess to government needs in the near future. 
Acquisition of this property will allow for continued operation 
of the cemetery through the twenty-first century.
    I appreciate very much the opportunity to be here, Mr. 
Chairman. Mr. Metzler and I would be pleased to answer any 
questions you may have.

               Congressional Budget Office Cost Estimate

    The following letter was received from the Congressional 
Budget Office concerning the cost of the reported bill:

                                     U.S. Congress,
                               Congressional Budget Office,
                                    Washington, DC, March 12, 1998.
Hon. Bob Stump,
Chairman, Committee on Veterans' Affairs,
House of Representatives, Washington, DC.

    Dear Mr. Chairman: The Congressional Budget Office has 
prepared the enclosed cost estimate for H.R. 3211, the 
Arlington National Cemetery Burial Eligibility Act.
    If you wish further details on this estimate, we will be 
pleased to provide them. The CBO staff contact is Charles 
Riemann, who can be reached at 226-2840.
            Sincerely,
                                           June E. O'Neill,
                                                           Director

    Enclosure

               CONGRESSIONAL BUDGET OFFICE COST ESTIMATE

     H.R. 3211--Arlington National Cemetery Burial Eligibility Act

    As ordered reported by the House Committee on Veterans' 
Affairs on March 11, 1998

    H.R. 3211 would codify many current regulations governing 
eligibility for burial in Arlington National Cemetery and 
interment in its columbarium. The bill would allow certain 
close family members of eligible veterans to be buried in the 
same grave without the need for a waiver, and it would prohibit 
burial in other special cases. Under the bill, future memorials 
or markers must commemorate service in the Armed Forces. H.R. 
3211 would require the Secretary of the Army to maintain a 
public register that would describe the eligibility of each 
individual buried in Arlington National Cemetery after January 
1, 1998. The Secretary would also be required to publish a 
pamphlet describing eligibility requirements for burial.
    CBO estimates that the costs of implementing H.R. 3211 
would not be significant. Most categories of veterans and 
family members covered under the bill's eligibility criteria 
are already eligible under current regulations. The bill would 
grant eligibility to family members who are presently 
ineligible for burial at Arlington National Cemetery, but 
because these individuals are small in number and have tended 
to receive waivers, the bill would not lead to a significant 
increase in the number of burials at the cemetery. CBO 
estimates that the costs of producing the register and pamphlet 
would be negligible. Because the legislation would not affect 
direct spending or receipts, pay-as-you-go procedures would not 
apply.
    The bill contains no intergovernmental or private-sector 
mandates as defined in the Unfunded Mandates Reform Act of 
1995, and would not affect the budgets of state, local, or 
tribal governments.
    The estimate was prepared by Charles Riemann, who can be 
reached at 226-2840. This estimate was approved by Robert A. 
Sunshine, Deputy Assistant Director for Budget Analysis.

                     Inflationary Impact Statement

    The enactment of the reported bill would have no 
inflationary impact.

                  Applicability to Legislative Branch

    The reported bill would not be applicable to the 
legislative branch under the Congressional Accountability Act, 
Public Law 104-1, because the bill would only affect certain 
Department of Veterans Affairs and Department of Defense 
programs and benefits recipients.

                     Statement of Federal Mandates

    The reported bill would not establish a federal mandate 
under the Unfunded Mandates Reform Act, Public Law 104-4.

                 Statement of Constitutional Authority

    Pursuant to Article I, section 8 of the United States 
Constitution, the reported bill is authorized by Congress' 
power to ``provide for the common Defence and general Welfare 
of the United States.''

         Changes in Existing Law Made by the Bill, as Reported

  In compliance with clause 3 of rule XIII of the Rules of the 
House of Representatives, changes in existing law made by the 
bill, as reported, are shown as follows (existing law proposed 
to be omitted is enclosed in black brackets, new matter is 
printed in italics, existing law in which no change is proposed 
is shown in roman):

               CHAPTER 24 OF TITLE 38, UNITED STATES CODE

             CHAPTER 24--NATIONAL CEMETERIES AND MEMORIALS

Sec.
2400.    Establishment of National Cemetery System; composition of such 
          system; appointment of director.
     * * * * * * *
2412.    Arlington National Cemetery: persons eligible for burial.
2413.    Arlington National Cemetery: persons eligible for placement in 
          columbarium.
2414.    Arlington National Cemetery: authorized headstones, markers, 
          and monuments.
          * * * * * * *

Sec. 2402. Persons eligible for interment in national cemeteries

  Under such regulations as the Secretary may prescribe and 
subject to the provisions of section 6105 of this title, the 
remains of the following persons may be buried in any open 
national cemetery in the National Cemetery System:
          (1) * * *
          * * * * * * *
          (7) Any person who at the time of death was entitled 
        (or but for age would have been entitled) to retired 
        pay under [chapter 67] chapter 1223 of title 10 [or 
        would have been entitled to retired pay under that 
        chapter but for the fact that the person was under 60 
        years of age].
          * * * * * * *

Sec. 2412. Arlington National Cemetery: persons eligible for burial

  (a) Primary Eligibility.--The remains of the following 
individuals may be buried in Arlington National Cemetery:
          (1) Any member of the Armed Forces who dies while on 
        active duty.
          (2) Any retired member of the Armed Forces and any 
        person who served on active duty and at the time of 
        death was entitled (or but for age would have been 
        entitled) to retired pay under chapter 1223 of title 
        10.
          (3) Any former member of the Armed Forces separated 
        for physical disability before October 1, 1949, who--
                  (A) served on active duty; and
                  (B) would have been eligible for retirement 
                under the provisions of section 1201 of title 
                10 (relating to retirement for disability) had 
                that section been in effect on the date of 
                separation of the member.
          (4) Any former member of the Armed Forces whose last 
        active duty military service terminated honorably and 
        who has been awarded one of the following decorations:
                  (A) Medal of Honor.
                  (B) Distinguished Service Cross, Air Force 
                Cross, or Navy Cross.
                  (C) Distinguished Service Medal.
                  (D) Silver Star.
                  (E) Purple Heart.
          (5) Any former prisoner of war who dies on or after 
        November 30, 1993.
          (6) The President or any former President.
  (b) Eligibility of Family Members.--The remains of the 
following individuals may be buried in Arlington National 
Cemetery:
          (1) The spouse, surviving spouse, minor child, and, 
        at the discretion of the Superintendent, unmarried 
        adult child of a person listed in subsection (a), but 
        only if buried in the same gravesite as that person.
          (2)(A) The spouse, minor child, and, at the 
        discretion of the Superintendent, unmarried adult child 
        of a member of the Armed Forces on active duty if such 
        spouse, minor child, or unmarried adult child dies 
        while such member is on active duty.
          (B) The individual whose spouse, minor child, and 
        unmarried adult child is eligible under subparagraph 
        (A), but only if buried in the same gravesite as the 
        spouse, minor child, or unmarried adult child.
          (3) The parents of a minor child or unmarried adult 
        child whose remains, based on the eligibility of a 
        parent, are already buried in Arlington National 
        Cemetery, but only if buried in the same gravesite as 
        that minor child or unmarried adult child.
          (4)(A) Subject to subparagraph (B), the surviving 
        spouse, minor child, and, at the discretion of the 
        Superintendent, unmarried adult child of a member of 
        the Armed Forces who was lost, buried at sea, or 
        officially determined to be permanently absent in a 
        status of missing or missing in action.
          (B) A person is not eligible under subparagraph (A) 
        if a memorial to honor the memory of the member is 
        placed in a cemetery in the national cemetery system, 
        unless the memorial is removed. A memorial removed 
        under this subparagraph may be placed, at the 
        discretion of the Superintendent, in Arlington National 
        Cemetery.
          (5) The surviving spouse, minor child, and, at the 
        discretion of the Superintendent, unmarried adult child 
        of a member of the Armed Forces buried in a cemetery 
        under the jurisdiction of the American Battle Monuments 
        Commission.
  (c) Spouses.--For purposes of subsection (b)(1), a surviving 
spouse of a person whose remains are buried in Arlington 
National Cemetery by reason of eligibility under subsection 
(a), who has remarried is eligible for burial in the same 
gravesite of that person. The spouse of the surviving spouse is 
not eligible for burial in such gravesite.
  (d) Disabled Adult Unmarried Children.--In the case of an 
unmarried adult child who is incapable of self-support up to 
the time of death because of a physical or mental condition, 
the child may be buried under subsection (b) without 
requirement for approval by the Superintendent under that 
subsection if the burial is in the same gravesite as the 
gravesite in which the parent, who is eligible for burial under 
subsection (a), has been or will be buried.
  (e) Family Members of Persons Buried in a Group Gravesite.--
In the case of a person eligible for burial under subsection 
(a) who is buried in Arlington National Cemetery as part of a 
group burial, the surviving spouse, minor child, or unmarried 
adult child of the member may not be buried in the group 
gravesite.
  (f) Exclusive Authority for Burial in Arlington National 
Cemetery.--Eligibility for burial of remains in Arlington 
National Cemetery prescribed under this section is the 
exclusive eligibility for such burial.
  (g) Application for Burial.--A request for burial of remains 
of an individual in Arlington National Cemetery made before the 
death of the individual may not be considered by the Secretary 
of the Army or any other responsible official.
  (h) Register of Buried Individuals.--(1) The Secretary of the 
Army shall maintain a register of each individual buried in 
Arlington National Cemetery and shall make such register 
available to the public.
  (2) With respect to each such individual buried on or after 
January 1, 1998, the register shall include a brief description 
of the basis of eligibility of the individual for burial in 
Arlington National Cemetery.
  (i) Definitions.--For purposes of this section:
          (1) The term ``retired member of the Armed Forces'' 
        means--
                  (A) any member of the Armed Forces on a 
                retired list who served on active duty and who 
                is entitled to retired pay;
                  (B) any member of the Fleet Reserve or Fleet 
                Marine Corps Reserve who served on active duty 
                and who is entitled to retainer pay; and
                  (C) any member of a reserve component of the 
                Armed Forces who has served on active duty and 
                who has received notice from the Secretary 
                concerned under section 12731(d) of title 10, 
                of eligibility for retired pay under chapter 
                1223 of title 10.
          (2) The term ``former member of the Armed Forces'' 
        includes a person whose service is considered active 
        duty service pursuant to a determination of the 
        Secretary of Defense under section 401 of Public Law 
        95-202 (38 U.S.C. 106 note).
          (3) The term ``Superintendent'' means the 
        Superintendent of Arlington National Cemetery.

Sec. 2413. Arlington National Cemetery: persons eligible for placement 
                    in columbarium

  (a) Eligibility.--The cremated remains of the following 
individuals may be placed in the columbarium in Arlington 
National Cemetery:
          (1) A person eligible for burial in Arlington 
        National Cemetery under section 2412 of this title.
          (2)(A) A veteran whose last period of active duty 
        service (other than active duty for training) ended 
        honorably.
          (B) The spouse, surviving spouse, minor child, and, 
        at the discretion of the Superintendent of Arlington 
        National Cemetery, unmarried adult child of such a 
        veteran.
  (b) Spouse.--Section 2412(c) of this title shall apply to a 
spouse under this section in the same manner as it applies to a 
spouse under section 2412.

Sec. 2414. Arlington National Cemetery: authorized headstones, markers, 
                    and monuments

  (a) Gravesite Markers Provided by the Secretary.--A gravesite 
in Arlington National Cemetery shall be appropriately marked in 
accordance with section 2404 of this title.
  (b) Gravesite Markers Provided at Private Expense.--(1) The 
Secretary of the Army shall prescribe regulations for the 
provision of headstones or markers to mark a gravesite at 
private expense in lieu of headstones and markers provided by 
the Secretary of Veterans Affairs in Arlington National 
Cemetery.
  (2) Such regulations shall ensure that--
          (A) such headstones or markers are of simple design, 
        dignified, and appropriate to a military cemetery;
          (B) the person providing such headstone or marker 
        provides for the future maintenance of the headstone or 
        marker in the event repairs are necessary;
          (C) the Secretary of the Army shall not be liable for 
        maintenance of or damage to the headstone or marker;
          (D) such headstones or markers are aesthetically 
        compatible with Arlington National Cemetery; and
          (E) such headstones or markers are permitted only in 
        sections of Arlington National Cemetery authorized for 
        such headstones or markers as of January 1, 1947.
  (c) Monuments.--(1) No monument (or similar structure as 
determined by the Secretary of the Army in regulations) may be 
placed in Arlington National Cemetery except pursuant to the 
provisions of this subsection.
  (2) A monument may be placed in Arlington National Cemetery 
if the monument commemorates--
          (A) the service in the Armed Forces of the 
        individual, or group of individuals, whose memory is to 
        be honored by the monument; or
          (B) a particular military event.
  (3) No monument may be placed in Arlington National Cemetery 
until the end of the 25-year period beginning--
          (A) in the case of commemoration of service under 
        paragraph (1)(A), on the last day of the period of 
        service so commemorated; and
          (B) in the case of commemoration of a particular 
        military event under paragraph (1)(B), on the last day 
        of the period of the event.
  (4) A monument may be placed only in those sections of 
Arlington National Cemetery designated by the Secretary of the 
Army for such placement.