H. Rept. 113-211 - 113th Congress (2013-2014)

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House Report 113-211 - VETERANS' ADVISORY COMMITTEE ON EDUCATION IMPROVEMENT ACT OF 2013

[House Report 113-211]
[From the U.S. Government Publishing Office]


113th Congress                                                   Report
                        HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES
 1st Session                                                    113-211

======================================================================



 
   VETERANS' ADVISORY COMMITTEE ON EDUCATION IMPROVEMENT ACT OF 2013

                                _______
                                

 September 17, 2013.--Committed to the Committee of the Whole House on 
            the State of the Union and ordered to be printed

                                _______
                                

    Mr. Miller of Florida, from the Committee on Veterans' Affairs, 
                        submitted the following

                              R E P O R T

                        [To accompany H.R. 2011]

      [Including cost estimate of the Congressional Budget Office]

    The Committee on Veterans' Affairs, to whom was referred 
the bill (H.R. 2011) to amend title 38, United States Code, to 
provide for a two-year extension of the Veterans' Advisory 
Committee on Education, having considered the same, report 
favorably thereon without amendment and recommend that the bill 
do pass.

                                CONTENTS

                                                                   Page
Purpose and Summary..............................................     2
Background and Need for Legislation..............................     2
Hearings.........................................................     3
Subcommittee Consideration.......................................     3
Committee Consideration..........................................     3
Committee Votes..................................................     3
Committee Oversight Findings.....................................     3
Statement of General Performance Goals and Objectives............     4
New Budget Authority, Entitlement Authority, and Tax Expenditures     4
Earmarks and Tax and Tariff Benefits.............................     4
Committee Cost Estimate..........................................     4
Congressional Budget Office Estimate.............................     4
Federal Mandates Statement.......................................     5
Advisory Committee Statement.....................................     5
Constitutional Authority Statement...............................     5
Applicability to Legislative Branch..............................     5
Duplication of Federal Programs..................................     5
Disclosure of Directed Rule Making...............................     5
Section-by-Section Analysis of the Legislation...................     6
Changes in Existing Law Made by the Bill as Reported.............     6

                                Purpose

    H.R. 2011, the Veterans' Advisory Committee on Education 
Improvement Act of 2013, was introduced on May 16, 2013 by 
Representative John K. Delaney of Maryland. The bill would 
reauthorize the Veterans' Advisory Committee on Education at 
the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs' (VA) for two years.

                  Background and Need for Legislation


Section 1--Short title

    Veterans' Advisory Committee on Education Improvement Act 
of 2013.

Section 2--Two-year extension of Veterans' Advisory Committee on 
        Education

    Public Law 89-358 (80 Stat. 12) established an advisory 
committee on education, currently codified in section 3692 of 
title 38, United States Code (U.S.C.). The Advisory Committee 
provides advice to the Secretary of Veterans Affairs on the 
administration of education and training programs for veterans 
and servicemembers, reservists and guard personnel, and for 
dependents of veterans under Chapters 30, 32, 33, 35 and 36 of 
title 38, U.S.C. and Chapter 1606 of title 10, U.S.C.
    The Advisory Committee advises the Secretary of Veterans 
Affairs regarding existing VA education benefit programs and 
services; recommends needed new education benefit programs and 
services; and assists in long-range planning and development. 
Its recommendations may involve proposed regulatory and 
administrative changes, as well as legislative proposals. The 
Advisory Committee may consider matters dealing with the 
education programs administered by VA either at the request of 
the Secretary, a properly designated official, or may act on 
its own initiative. The Advisory Committee submits its 
recommendations and reports to the Secretary and may also 
submit its reports to the Congress.
    The Advisory Committee is composed of persons who are 
``eminent in their respective fields of education, labor, 
management,'' and persons at institutions who provide education 
under title 37 and title 10, U.S.C. The Advisory Committee 
membership is also, to the maximum extent practical, to be 
comprised of veteran representatives of the past major 
conflicts of the United States, beginning with World War II. 
The U.S. Department of Education's Assistant Secretary of 
Education for Postsecondary Education and the U.S. Department 
of Labor's Assistant Secretary of Veterans' Employment and 
Training are ex-officio members.
    The Veterans Advisory Committee on Education authority 
expires on December 31, 2013. This Committee believes the 
Advisory Committee provides worthwhile advice to the Secretary 
of Veterans Affairs on veterans' education issues; thus the 
Committee believes the Advisory Committee should continue to 
assist the Secretary to better manage the educational 
assistance programs and stay abreast of new and on-going 
problems. As veterans' education continues to evolve, the 
Secretary should have experts that can be relied upon to 
provide timely advice on issues ranging from technology, 
quality of education, and the regulation of schools 
participating in veterans' education programs. This view was 
also held by all witnesses at the Committees' June 26, 2013 
legislative hearing on H.R. 2011. Therefore section 2 of H.R. 
2011 would re-authorize the Advisory Committee through December 
31, 2015.

                                Hearings

    On June 26, 2013, the Subcommittee on Economic Opportunity 
conducted a legislative hearing on various bills introduced 
during the 113th Congress, including H.R. 2011. The following 
witnesses testified at the hearing:
    The Honorable Ken Calvert; The Honorable Elijah E. 
Cummings; The Honorable John Delaney; The Honorable Alan 
Grayson; The Honorable Bill Johnson; Mr. Curtis Coy, Deputy 
Under Secretary of Economic Opportunity, Veterans Benefits 
Administration, U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs, who was 
accompanied by Mr. John Brizzi, Deputy Assistant General 
Counsel, U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs; Mr. Frank C. 
DiGiovanni, Director, Training Readiness and Strategy, Office 
of the Undersecretary of Defense for Personnel and Readiness, 
U.S. Department of Defense; Mr. Ryan M. Gallucci, Deputy 
Director, National Legislative Service, Veterans of Foreign 
Wars of the United States; Mr. Jeffery Steele, Assistant 
Director, National Legislative Commission, The American Legion; 
and MG Andrew ``Drew'' Davis, USMC (Ret.) Executive Director, 
The Reserve Officers Association. The following submitted 
statements for the record: The Honorable Tammy Duckworth, U.S. 
Department of Labor, and Vietnam Veterans of America.

                       Subcommittee Consideration

    On July 18, 2013, the Subcommittee on Economic Opportunity 
met in an open markup session, a quorum being present, and 
favorably forwarded H.R. 2011 to the Full Committee by voice 
vote.

                        Committee Consideration

    On August 1, 2013, the Full Committee met in an open markup 
session, a quorum being present, and ordered H.R. 2011 reported 
favorably to the House of Representatives, by voice vote.

                            Committee Votes

    Clause 3(b) of rule XIII of the Rules of the House of 
Representatives requires the Committee to list recorded votes 
on motions to report legislation and amendments thereto. There 
were no recorded votes taken on amendments or in connection 
with ordering H.R. 2011 reported to the House. A motion by 
Ranking Member Michael H. Michaud of Maine to report H.R. 2011 
favorably to the House of Representatives was agreed to by 
voice vote.

                      Committee Oversight Findings

    In compliance with clause 3(c)(1) of rule XIII and clause 
(2)(b)(1) of rule X of the Rules of the House of 
Representatives, the Committee's oversight findings and 
recommendations are reflected in the descriptive portions of 
this report.

         Statement of General Performance Goals and Objectives

    In accordance with clause 3(c)(4) of rule XIII of the Rules 
of the House of Representatives, the Committee's performance 
goals and objectives are reflected in the descriptive portions 
of this report.

   New Budget Authority, Entitlement Authority, and Tax Expenditures

    In compliance with clause 3(c)(2) of rule XIII of the Rules 
of the House of Representatives, the Committee adopts as its 
own the estimate of new budget authority, entitlement 
authority, or tax expenditures or revenues contained in the 
cost estimate prepared by the Director of the Congressional 
Budget Office pursuant to section 402 of the Congressional 
Budget Act of 1974.

                  Earmarks and Tax and Tariff Benefits

    H.R. 2011 does not contain any Congressional earmarks, 
limited tax benefits, or limited tariff benefits as defined in 
clause 9 of rule XXI of the Rules of the House of 
Representatives.

                        Committee Cost Estimate

    The Committee adopts as its own the cost estimate on H.R. 
2011 prepared by the Director of the Congressional Budget 
Office pursuant to section 402 of the Congressional Budget Act 
of 1974.

               Congressional Budget Office Cost Estimate

    Pursuant to clause 3(c)(3) of rule XIII of the Rules of the 
House of Representatives, the following is the cost estimate 
for H.R. 2011 provided by the Congressional Budget Office 
pursuant to section 402 of the Congressional Budget Act of 
1974.

                                                    August 8, 2013.
Hon. Jeff Miller,
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. 2011, the 
Veterans' Advisory Committee on Education Improvement Act of 
2013.
    If you wish further details on this estimate, we will be 
pleased to provide them. The CBO staff contact is William Ma.
            Sincerely,
                                              Douglas W. Elmendorf.
    Enclosure.

H.R. 2011--Veterans' Advisory Committee on Education Improvement Act of 
        2013

    H.R. 2011 would extend the Secretary of Veterans Affairs' 
authority to operate the Veterans' Advisory Committee on 
Education through December 31, 2015. Under current law, that 
authority expires December 31, 2013. The Committee meets 
annually to provide advice and recommendations to the Secretary 
on the administration of education and training programs for 
veterans and other eligible individuals. The bill also would 
modify the composition of the Committee to include veterans of 
recent operations in Iraq and Afghanistan and representatives 
of institutions that furnish vocational rehabilitation services 
to veterans.
    Based on information from the Department of Veterans 
Affairs, CBO estimates that implementing H.R. 2011 would cost 
less than $500,000 over the 2014-2018 period, assuming the 
availability of appropriated funds. Enacting the bill would not 
affect direct spending or revenues; therefore, pay-as-you-go 
procedures do not apply.
    The bill contains no intergovernmental or private-sector 
mandates as defined in the Unfunded Mandates Reform Act and 
would impose no costs on state, local, or tribal governments.
    The CBO staff contact for this estimate is William Ma. The 
estimate was approved by Peter H. Fontaine, Assistant Director 
for Budget Analysis.

                       Federal Mandates Statement

    The Committee adopts as its own the estimate of Federal 
mandates regarding H.R. 2011 prepared by the Director of the 
Congressional Budget Office pursuant to section 423 of the 
Unfunded Mandates Reform Act.

                      Advisory Committee Statement

    No advisory committees within the meaning of section 5(b) 
of the Federal Advisory Committee Act would be created by H.R. 
2011.

                 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 Defense and general Welfare 
of the United States.''

                  Applicability to Legislative Branch

    The Committee finds that the legislation does not relate to 
the terms and conditions of employment or access to public 
services or accommodations within the meaning of section 
102(b)(3) of the Congressional Accountability Act.

              Statement on Duplication of Federal Programs

    Pursuant to section 3(j) of H. Res. 5, 113th Cong. (2013), 
the Committee finds that no provision of H.R. 2011, ``Veterans 
Advisory Committee on Education Improvement Act of 2013'' 
establishes or reauthorizes a program of the Federal Government 
known to be duplicative of another Federal program, a program 
that was included in any report from the Government 
Accountability Office to Congress pursuant to section 21 of 
Public Law 111-139, or a program related to a program 
identified in the most recent Catalog of Federal Domestic 
Assistance.

                   Disclosure of Directed Rulemaking

    Pursuant to section 3(k) of H. Res. 5, 113th Cong. (2013), 
the Committee estimates that H.R. 2011 does not require any 
directed rule makings.

             Section-by-Section Analysis of the Legislation


Section 1--Short title

    This section provides the short title of H.R. 2011 as the 
``Veterans Advisory Committee on Education Improvement Act of 
2013.''

Section 2--Two year extension of Veterans' Advisory Committee on 
        Education

    This section would amend section 3692 of title 38, U.S.C., 
to require VA, to the maximum extent possible, to include 
veterans of the Post-9/11 operations in Iraq and Afghanistan as 
members of the Advisory Committee. The section would also re-
authorize the advisory committee until December 31, 2015.

         Changes in Existing Law Made by the Bill, as Reported

  In compliance with clause 3(e) 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 italic, existing law in which no change is 
proposed is shown in roman):

TITLE 38, UNITED STATES CODE

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PART III--READJUSTMENT AND RELATED BENEFITS

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CHAPTER 36--ADMINISTRATION OF EDUCATIONAL BENEFITS

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SUBCHAPTER II--MISCELLANEOUS PROVISIONS

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Sec. 3692. Advisory committee

  (a) There shall be a Veterans' Advisory Committee on 
Education formed by the Secretary which shall be composed of 
persons who are eminent in their respective fields of 
education, labor, and management and of representatives of 
institutions and establishments furnishing education to 
eligible veterans or persons enrolled under chapter 30, 31, 32, 
33, or 35 of this title and chapter 1606 of title 10. The 
committee shall also, to the maximum extent practicable, 
include veterans representative of World War II, the Korean 
conflict era, the post-Korean conflict era, the Vietnam era, 
the post-Vietnam era, [and the Persian Gulf War] the Persian 
Gulf War, and the post-9/11 operations in Iraq and Afghanistan. 
The Assistant Secretary of Education for Postsecondary 
Education (or such other comparable official of the Department 
of Education as the Secretary of Education may designate) and 
the Assistant Secretary of Labor for Veterans' Employment and 
Training shall be ex officio members of the advisory committee.

           *       *       *       *       *       *       *

  (c) The committee shall remain in existence until [December 
31, 2013] December 31, 2015.

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