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[From the U.S. Government Publishing Office]


113th Congress                                                 Report
                    }   HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES   { 
 1st Session        }                              {            113-63
======================================================================
 
                         RUTH MOORE ACT OF 2013

                                _______
                                

  May 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. 671]

      [Including cost estimate of the Congressional Budget Office]

    The Committee on Veterans' Affairs, to whom was referred 
the bill (H.R. 671) to amend title 38, United States Code, to 
improve the disability compensation evaluation procedure of the 
Secretary of Veterans Affairs for veterans with mental health 
conditions related to military sexual trauma, and for other 
purposes, having considered the same, report favorably thereon 
with amendments and recommend that the bill as amended do pass.

                                CONTENTS

                                                                   Page
Amendment........................................................     2
Purpose and Summary..............................................     4
Background and Need for Legislation..............................     4
Hearings.........................................................     5
Subcommittee Consideration.......................................     6
Committee Consideration..........................................     6
Committee Votes..................................................     6
Committee Oversight Findings.....................................     7
Statement of General Performance Goals and Objectives............     7
New Budget Authority, Entitlement Authority, and Tax Expenditures     7
Earmarks and Tax and Tariff Benefits.............................     7
Committee Cost Estimate..........................................     7
Congressional Budget Office Estimate.............................     7
Federal Mandates Statement.......................................    11
Advisory Committee Statement.....................................    11
Constitutional Authority Statement...............................    11
Applicability to Legislative Branch..............................    11
Statement on Duplication of Federal Programs.....................    11
Disclosure of Directed Rulemaking................................    11
Section-by-Section Analysis of the Legislation...................    12
Changes in Existing Law Made by the Bill as Reported.............    13

                               Amendment

    The amendments are as follows:
  Strike all after the enacting clause and insert the 
following:

SECTION 1. SHORT TITLE.

  This Act may be cited as the ``Ruth Moore Act of 2013''.

SEC. 2. REPORTS ON CLAIMS FOR DISABILITIES INCURRED OR AGGRAVATED BY 
                    MILITARY SEXUAL TRAUMA.

  (a) Annual Reports.--
          (1) In general.--Subchapter VI of chapter 11 of title 38, 
        United States Code, is amended by adding at the end the 
        following new section:

``Sec. 1164. Reports on claims for disabilities incurred or aggravated 
                    by military sexual trauma

  ``(a) Reports.--Not later than December 1, 2014, and each year 
thereafter through 2018, the Secretary shall submit to Congress a 
report on covered claims submitted during the previous fiscal year.
  ``(b) Elements.--Each report under subsection (a) shall include the 
following:
          ``(1) The number of covered claims submitted to or considered 
        by the Secretary during the fiscal year covered by the report.
          ``(2) Of the covered claims listed under paragraph (1), the 
        number and percentage of such claims--
                  ``(A) submitted by each sex;
                  ``(B) that were approved, including the number and 
                percentage of such approved claims submitted by each 
                sex; and
                  ``(C) that were denied, including the number and 
                percentage of such denied claims submitted by each sex.
          ``(3) Of the covered claims listed under paragraph (1) that 
        were approved, the number and percentage, listed by each sex, 
        of claims assigned to each rating percentage.
          ``(4) Of the covered claims listed under paragraph (1) that 
        were denied--
                  ``(A) the three most common reasons given by the 
                Secretary under section 5104(b)(1) of this title for 
                such denials; and
                  ``(B) the number of denials that were based on the 
                failure of a veteran to report for a medical 
                examination.
          ``(5) The number of covered claims that, as of the end of the 
        fiscal year covered by the report, are pending and, separately, 
        the number of such claims on appeal.
          ``(6) For the fiscal year covered by the report, the average 
        number of days that covered claims take to complete beginning 
        on the date on which the claim is submitted.
          ``(7) A description of the training that the Secretary 
        provides to employees of the Veterans Benefits Administration 
        specifically with respect to covered claims, including the 
        frequency, length, and content of such training.
  ``(c) Definitions.--In this section:
          ``(1) The term `covered claims' means claims for disability 
        compensation submitted to the Secretary based on a covered 
        mental health condition alleged to have been incurred or 
        aggravated by military sexual trauma.
          ``(2) The term `covered mental health condition' means post-
        traumatic stress disorder, anxiety, depression, or other mental 
        health diagnosis described in the current version of the 
        Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders published 
        by the American Psychiatric Association that the Secretary 
        determines to be related to military sexual trauma.
          ``(3) The term `military sexual trauma' means, with respect 
        to a veteran, psychological trauma, which in the judgment of a 
        mental health professional, resulted from a physical assault of 
        a sexual nature, battery of a sexual nature, or sexual 
        harassment which occurred during active military, naval, or air 
        service.''.
          (2) Clerical amendment.--The table of sections at the 
        beginning of such chapter is amended by adding at the end the 
        following new item:

``1164. Reports on claims for disabilities incurred or aggravated by 
military sexual trauma.''.

          (3) Initial report.--The Secretary of Veterans Affairs shall 
        submit to Congress an initial report described in section 1164 
        of title 38, United States Code, as added by paragraph (1), by 
        not later than 90 days after the date of the enactment of this 
        Act. Such initial report shall be in addition to the annual 
        reports required under such section beginning in December 2014.
  (b) Sense of Congress.--It is the sense of Congress that the 
Secretary of Veterans Affairs should update and improve the regulations 
of the Department of Veterans Affairs with respect to military sexual 
trauma by--
          (1) ensuring that military sexual trauma is specified as an 
        in-service stressor in determining the service-connection of 
        post-traumatic stress disorder by including military sexual 
        trauma as a stressor described in section 3.304(f)(3) of title 
        38, Code of Federal Regulations; and
          (2) recognizing the full range of physical and mental 
        disabilities (including depression, anxiety, and other 
        disabilities as indicated in the Diagnostic and Statistical 
        Manual of Mental Disorders published by the American 
        Psychiatric Association) that can result from military sexual 
        trauma.
  (c) Provision of Information.--During the period beginning on the 
date that is 15 months after the date of the enactment of this Act and 
ending on the date on which the Secretary updates and improves 
regulations as described in subsection (b), the Secretary shall--
          (1) provide to each veteran who has submitted a covered claim 
        or been treated for military sexual trauma at a medical 
        facility of the Department with a copy of the report under 
        subsection (a)(3) or section 1164 of title 38, United States 
        Code, as added by subsection (a)(1), that has most recently 
        been submitted to Congress;
          (2) provide on a monthly basis to each veteran who has 
        submitted any claim for disability compensation or been treated 
        at a medical facility of the Department information that 
        includes--
                  (A) the date that the Secretary plans to complete 
                such updates and improvements to such regulations;
                  (B) the number of covered claims that have been 
                granted or denied during the month covered by such 
                information;
                  (C) a comparison to such rate of grants and denials 
                with the rate for other claims regarding post-traumatic 
                stress disorder;
                  (D) the three most common reasons for such denials;
                  (E) the average time for completion of covered 
                claims;
                  (F) the average time for processing covered claims at 
                each regional office; and
                  (G) any information the Secretary determines relevant 
                with respect to submitting a covered claim;
          (3) in addition to providing to veterans the information 
        described in paragraph (2), the Secretary shall make available 
        on a monthly basis such information on a conspicuous location 
        of the Internet website of the Department; and
          (4) submit to Congress on a monthly basis a report that 
        includes--
                  (A) a list of all adjudicated covered claims, 
                including ancillary claims, during the month covered by 
                the report;
                  (B) the outcome with respect to each medical 
                condition included in the claim; and
                  (C) the reason given for any denial of such a claim.
  (d) Military Sexual Trauma Defined.--In this section:
          (1) The term ``covered claim'' has the meaning given that 
        term in section 1164(c)(1) of title 38, United States Code, as 
        added by subsection (a)(1).
          (2) The term ``military sexual trauma'' has the meaning given 
        that term in section 1164(c)(3) of title 38, United States 
        Code, as added by subsection (a)(1).

SEC. 3. EXTENSION OF ROUNDING DOWN OF PERCENTAGE INCREASES OF RATES OF 
                    CERTAIN EDUCATIONAL ASSISTANCE.

  (a) Montgomery GI Bill.--Section 3015(h)(2) of title 38, United 
States Code, is amended--
          (1) by striking ``fiscal year 2014'' and inserting ``fiscal 
        year 2019''; and
          (2) by striking ``fiscal year 2013'' and inserting ``fiscal 
        year 2018''.
  (b) Survivors' and Dependents' Educational Assistance.--Section 
3564(b) of such title is amended--
          (1) by striking ``fiscal year 2014'' and inserting ``fiscal 
        year 2019''; and
          (2) by striking ``fiscal year 2013'' and inserting ``fiscal 
        year 2018''.

    Amend the title to read:
    A bill to amend title 38, United States Code, to direct the 
Secretary of Veterans Affairs to submit to Congress an annual 
report on claims for disabilities incurred or aggravated by 
military sexual trauma, and for other purposes.

                          Purpose and Summary

    H.R. 671 was introduced on February 13, 2013, by 
Representative Chellie Pingree of Maine. H.R. 671, as amended, 
would require the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) to 
annually report to Congress on disability benefits claims 
submitted for covered mental health conditions alleged to have 
been incurred or aggravated by military sexual trauma, for the 
period 2014 through 2018. H.R. 671, as amended, expresses the 
sense of Congress as to VA's need to update and improve its 
regulations with regard to military sexual trauma, and would 
require certain reporting to Congress and to veteran claimants 
on a monthly basis starting fifteen months after the enactment 
of H.R. 671, as amended. Such reporting requirements would last 
until the Secretary updates and improves VA's regulations as to 
military sexual trauma. H.R. 671, as amended, would also extend 
the current authority to round down to the nearest whole dollar 
percentage increases of rates of certain educational assistance 
benefits following annual cost-of-living adjustments.

                  Background and Need for Legislation


Section 1. Short Title

    The Ruth Moore Act of 2013

Section 2. Reports on Claims for Disabilities Incurred or Aggravated by 
        Military Sexual Trauma

    VA's current regulation on post-traumatic stress disorder 
(PTSD), as it pertains to in-service military sexual trauma 
(MST) cases, is not effective. The regulation, found at 38 
C.F.R. 3.303(f)(5), purports to reduce the burden for veterans 
to prove these claims. However, in practice, this has not 
happened. Furthermore, to date, VA has not taken adequate 
action to ensure that the full range of physical and mental 
disabilities that result from MST are properly addressed in the 
disability benefits claims process, including depression, 
anxiety, and other conditions as indicated in the Diagnostic 
and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders published by the 
American Psychiatric Association.
    From 2008 to 2010, VA approved over 50 percent of PTSD 
claims related to combat, but approved barely 35 percent of 
PTSD claims related to in-service personal assault. Several 
factors have complicated the process for MST survivors as they 
seek disability compensation. First, the vast majority of 
sexual assaults in the military are not reported, and even 
those that are reported are often not prosecuted. As a result, 
many survivors of MST have found it hard to prove that an 
assault, the stressor, occurred. The precipitating events of 
MST are often unrecorded in a servicemember's medical records 
or in-service department records, which is particularly the 
case for incidents of sexual assault while on active duty. In 
2011, the Pentagon estimated that about 19,000 male and female 
servicemembers were sexually assaulted, yet less than 14 
percent of these crimes were reported. Additionally, PTSD cases 
have posed significant problems for VA because this disability, 
by its nature, often has a delayed onset.
    In addition to the complicated nature specific to MST 
reporting and onset of resultant medical conditions, current VA 
policy allows so-called ``secondary markers'' to be considered 
as evidence of an assault; however, VA has been inconsistent in 
applying this policy.
    While victims of in-service personal assaults are often 
fearful to report the crime, this fear is especially likely 
when the assailant is a superior within the military chain of 
command. Additionally, even when the assailant is not the 
victim's superior, active duty reporting of assault remains 
problematic. The nature of military service has discouraged 
reporting both implicitly as well as explicitly. Even when the 
servicemember does make a report of the assault, these reports 
are rarely documented or associated with the veteran's service 
records.
    Ruth Moore's case, the individual of whom this Act's title 
is derived, is the epitome of how these specialized claims drag 
on and slow down the system. Ms. Moore had to continually fight 
VA for twenty-three years in order to obtain her rightful 
benefits. Throughout her struggles, she was suffering from 
depression and a sexually transmitted disease that she 
contracted from her attacker. Ms. Moore had the benefit of 
purportedly relaxed requirements of 38 C.F.R. 3.304(f)(5), yet 
it was not until 2009 that VA finally awarded her claim.
    It is of the utmost importance that VA expediently act to 
update and improve its regulations, including recognition of 
the full range of disorders implicated within MST claims. Study 
of the armed services emphasizes that MST is a growing problem 
in the military; VA must take proactive steps to ensure fair 
and thorough review of claims submitted under MST. Furthermore, 
VA must ensure that it succeeds in consistent and integrated 
application of its regulations to the disability benefits 
claims of survivors of MST. While this measure cannot put an 
end to MST, as it is the responsibility of the Department of 
Defense to aggressively combat this heinous and disgraceful 
crime in military service, H.R. 671 will serve to provide 
relief to those veterans who are suffering from a disability as 
a result of MST.

Section 3. Extension of rounding down of percentage increases of rates 
        of certain educational assistance

    Finally, section 3015(h)(2) and 3564(b) of title 38, United 
States Code, requires that any increase in educational 
assistance rates under the Montgomery GI Bill or the Survivors' 
and Dependents' Educational Assistance Program be rounded down 
to the next lower whole dollar amount. This authority expires 
at the end of fiscal year 2013 and H.R. 671, as amended, would 
extend this authority through fiscal year 2018.

                                Hearings

    On April 16, 2013, the Subcommittee on Disability 
Assistance and Memorial Affairs conducted a legislative hearing 
on various bills introduced during the 113th Congress, 
including H.R. 671. The following witnesses testified at the 
hearing:

The Honorable Bill Johnson, U.S. House of Representatives; The 
Honorable Chellie Pingree, U.S. House of Representatives; The 
Honorable Timothy Walz, U.S. House of Representatives; Mr. Jeff 
Hall, Assistant National Legislative Director, Disabled 
American Veterans; Mr. Raymond Kelley, Director of National 
Legislative Service, Veterans of Foreign Wars; Colonel Robert 
F. Norton, USA (Ret.), Deputy Director of Government Relations, 
Military Officers Association of America; Heather Ansley, Esq., 
MSW, Vice President of Veterans Policy, VetsFirst, a program of 
United Spinal Association; Mr. Michael D. Murphy, Executive 
Director, National Association of County Veterans Service 
Officers; Mr. Richard Hipolit, Assistant General Counsel, U.S. 
Department of Veterans Affairs; Mr. David R. McLenachen, 
Director, Pension and Fiduciary Service, U.S. Department of 
Veterans Affairs, accompanied by Ms. Mary Ann Flynn, Deputy 
Director, Policy and Procedures, Compensation Service, U.S. 
Department of Veterans Affairs. The following groups submitted 
statements for the record: The American Legion; Iraq and 
Afghanistan Veterans of America; National Organization of 
Veterans Advocates; and Wounded Warrior Project.

                       Subcommittee Consideration

    On April 25, 2013, the Subcommittee on Disability 
Assistance and Memorial Affairs met in an open markup session, 
a quorum being present, and favorably forwarded to the full 
Committee H.R. 671, as amended, by voice vote.
    During consideration of H.R. 671 the following amendment 
was considered and agreed to by voice vote:

        An amendment in the nature of a substitute offered by 
        Ms. Titus of Nevada that modified the bill to remove 
        provisions setting a legal standard of proof for claims 
        based on military sexual trauma and directed VA to 
        update and improve its regulations on military sexual 
        trauma within 180 days, was agreed to by voice vote.

                        Committee Consideration

    On May 8, 2013, the full Committee met in an open markup 
session, a quorum being present, and ordered H.R. 671, as 
amended, reported favorably to the House of Representatives, by 
voice vote. During consideration of the bill, the following 
amendment was considered:

        An amendment in the nature of a substitute, by Mr. 
        Michaud of Maine, which removed the 180-day deadline 
        for update and improvement of VA's regulations as to 
        MST and required, after the passage of fifteen months 
        from date of enactment, additional VA reporting on a 
        monthly basis to veteran claimants and Congress, until 
        such time as VA's updated regulations are implemented, 
        and added section 3, which extended the current 
        authority to round down of percentage increases of 
        rates of certain educational assistance, was agreed to 
        by voice vote.

                            Committee Votes

    Clause 3(b) of rule XIII of the Rules of the House of 
Representatives requires the Committee to list the recorded 
votes on the motion to report the legislation and amendments 
thereto. There were no recorded votes taken on amendments or in 
connection with ordering H.R. 671, as amended, reported to the 
full House. A motion by Ranking Member Michael H. Michaud of 
Maine to order H.R. 671, as amended, reported favorably to the 
full House 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. 671, as amended, 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. 
671, as amended, 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. 671, as amended, provided by the Congressional Budget 
Office pursuant to section 402 of the Congressional Budget Act 
of 1974.

                                     U.S. Congress,
                               Congressional Budget Office,
                                       Washington, DC, May 16, 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. 671, the Ruth 
Moore Act of 2013.
    If you wish further details on this estimate, we will be 
pleased to provide them. The CBO staff contact is Dwayne M. 
Wright.
            Sincerely,
                                      Douglas W. Elmendorf,
                                                          Director.
    Enclosure.

H.R. 671--Ruth Moore Act of 2013

    Summary: H.R. 671 would extend provisions of current law 
that require increases in monthly rates of certain education 
assistance be rounded down to the next lower whole dollar. The 
bill would also require the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) 
to submit annual reports about disability claims for military 
sexual trauma (MST) to the Congress and to veterans who file 
MST claims. CBO estimates that enacting H.R. 671 would reduce 
direct spending by $15 million over the 2014-2023 period. Also, 
CBO estimates that implementing H.R. 671 would have a 
discretionary cost of $4 million over the 2014-2018 period, 
subject to the availability of appropriated amounts.
    Pay-as-you-go procedures apply because enacting the 
legislation would affect direct spending. Enacting the bill 
would have no effect on revenues.
    H.R. 671 contains no intergovernmental or private-sector 
mandates as defined in the Unfunded Mandates Reform Act (UMRA).
    Estimated cost to the Federal Government: The estimated 
budgetary impact of H.R. 671 is shown in the following table. 
The costs of this legislation fall within budget function 700 
(veterans benefits and services).

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                                                                       By fiscal year, in millions of dollars--
                                                             -------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                                               2014   2015   2016   2017   2018   2019   2020   2021   2022   2023  2014-2018  2014-2023
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                                               CHANGES IN DIRECT SPENDING

Estimated Budget Authority..................................      *     -1     -1     -1     -2     -2     -2     -2     -2     -2        -5        -15
Estimated Outlays...........................................      *     -1     -1     -1     -2     -2     -2     -2     -2     -2        -5        -15
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
* = less than $500,000.
Notes: In addition to the budgetary effects shown above, H.R. 671 would have a discretionary cost of $4 million over the 2014-2018 period, subject to
  appropriation of the necessary amounts.

    Basis of estimate:
    Direct spending: Under current law, the rates of certain 
monthly benefits paid under the Montgomery G.I. Bill and 
Survivors' and Dependents' Educational Assistance programs are 
increased annually by specified economic indices. Section 3 of 
H.R. 671 would extend for five years two provisions of law that 
require those increases to be rounded down to the next lower 
whole dollar. Those two provisions are both currently due to 
expire at the end of fiscal year 2013. Based on projections of 
the number of beneficiaries and payments made each year, CBO 
estimates that enacting section 3 would reduce direct spending 
by $15 million over the 2014-2023 period.
    Spending subject to appropriation: Section 2 would require 
VA to submit annual reports through 2018 to the Congress 
detailing the number of MST claims for disability benefits 
approved and denied, the number of claims pending and on 
appeal, and the average number of days it takes to process such 
claims. The required reports also would include information on 
any training VA provides to its employees for handling MST 
claims. In addition to mandating such reports to the Congress, 
section 2 would require VA to provide the annual reports to 
every veteran who has submitted a claim or been treated at a VA 
medical facility because of MST until such time as VA updates 
its regulations for adjudicating those claims. VA also would be 
required to submit monthly reports to each veteran who has 
submitted a claim or been treated at a VA facility for such 
trauma detailing information on VA's monthly tracking, 
approval, and denial of claims relating to MST. Finally, VA 
would be required to place such information on its website.
    CBO estimates that subject to the availability of 
appropriated funds, implementing section 2 would have an 
insignificant cost in 2014 and would cost $1 million a year 
thereafter, for a total of $4 million over the 2014-2018 
period.
    Pay-as-You-Go considerations: The Statutory Pay-As-You-Go 
Act of 2010 establishes budget-reporting and enforcement 
procedures for legislation affecting direct spending or 
revenues. The net changes in outlays that are subject to those 
pay-as-you-go procedures are shown in the following table.

            CBO ESTIMATE OF PAY-AS-YOU-GO EFFECTS FOR H.R. 671 AS ORDERED REPORTED BY THE HOUSE COMMITTEE ON VETERANS' AFFAIRS ON MAY 8, 2013
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                                                              By fiscal year, in millions of dollars--
                                           -------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                             2013    2014    2015    2016    2017    2018    2019    2020    2021    2022    2023   2013-2018  2013-2023
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                                             NET DECREASE (-) IN THE DEFICIT

Statutory Pay-As-You-Go Impact............       0       0      -1      -1      -1      -2      -2      -2      -2      -2      -2        -5        -15
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

    Intergovernmental and private-sector impact: H.R. 671 
contains no intergovernmental or private-sector mandates as 
defined in UMRA and would not affect the budgets of state, 
local, or tribal governments.
    Estimate prepared by: Federal Costs: William Ma--Rate 
Adjustment; Dwayne M. Wright--Reports. Impact on State, Local, 
and Tribal Governments: Lisa Ramirez-Branum; Impact on the 
Private Sector: Elizabeth Bass.
    Estimate approved by: Theresa Gullo, Deputy Assistant 
Director for Budget Analysis.

                       Federal Mandates Statement

    The Committee adopts as its own the estimate of Federal 
mandates regarding H.R. 671, as amended, 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. 
671, as amended.

                 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.671, as amended, 
the ``Ruth Moore 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. 671, as amended, 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. 671, as 
amended, as the ``Ruth Moore Act of 2013.''

Section 2. Reports on claims for disabilities incurred or aggravated by 
        military sexual trauma

    Section 2(a) would require the Secretary to annually report 
to Congress each year from 2014 through 2018 on disability 
claims submitted during the previous fiscal year that were 
based on a covered mental health condition alleged to have been 
incurred or aggravated by military sexual trauma. Section 2(a) 
would define ``covered claims,'' ``covered mental health 
condition,'' and ``military sexual trauma'' and would enumerate 
the specific contents required of the report.
    Section 2(b) would express the sense of Congress that the 
Secretary should update and improve VA's regulations with 
respect to military sexual trauma by ensuring that military 
sexual trauma is specified as an in-service stressor, and by 
recognizing the full range of physical and mental disabilities 
resultant per the American Psychiatric Association's 
publications.
    Section 2(c) would provide that, for the period starting 
fifteen months after passage of the Act and lasting until the 
Secretary publishes updated and improved regulations, the 
Secretary must provide the report that is provided to Congress 
to each veteran who has submitted a covered claim or been 
treated for military sexual trauma at a medical facility of the 
Department. Section 2(c) would require the Secretary to provide 
a monthly update on VA's progress on regulation amendment and 
enumerated information on related claims processing to each 
veteran who has submitted any claim for disability compensation 
or been treated at a medical facility of VA. Section 2(c) would 
also provide that for the period starting fifteen months after 
passage of the Act, and lasting until the Secretary publishes 
updated and improved regulations, VA must provide on a monthly 
basis: information to veterans who have submitted claims or 
have been treated in regards to military sexual trauma; provide 
information to all veterans who have utilized the VA for 
benefits or healthcare; provide all of the requested reporting 
requirements on a prominent location, on the home page, of the 
VA's primary website; and provide a report to Congress with 
enumerated information on the disposition of each month's 
covered claims.
    Section 2(d) would define ``covered claim'' and ``military 
sexual trauma,'' as added by Section 2(a).

Section 3. Extension of rounding down of percentage increases of rates 
        of certain educational assistance

    Section 3(a) would extend the rounding down of percentage 
increases of rates of the Montgomery GI Bill by five years, 
from the end of fiscal year 2013 through fiscal year 2018.
    Section 3(b) would extend the rounding down of percentage 
increases of rates of Survivors' and Dependents' Educational 
Assistance by five years, from fiscal year 2014 through fiscal 
year 2018.

         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 II--GENERAL BENEFITS

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   CHAPTER 11--COMPENSATION FOR SERVICE-CONNECTED DISABILITY OR DEATH


                          SUBCHAPTER I--GENERAL

Sec.
1101. Definitions.
     * * * * * * *

             SUBCHAPTER VI--GENERAL COMPENSATION PROVISIONS

     * * * * * * *
1164. Reports on claims for disabilities incurred or aggravated by 
          military sexual trauma.

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SUBCHAPTER VI--GENERAL COMPENSATION PROVISIONS

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Sec. 1164. Reports on claims for disabilities incurred or aggravated by 
                    military sexual trauma

  (a) Reports.--Not later than December 1, 2014, and each year 
thereafter through 2018, the Secretary shall submit to Congress 
a report on covered claims submitted during the previous fiscal 
year.
  (b) Elements.--Each report under subsection (a) shall include 
the following:
          (1) The number of covered claims submitted to or 
        considered by the Secretary during the fiscal year 
        covered by the report.
          (2) Of the covered claims listed under paragraph (1), 
        the number and percentage of such claims--
                  (A) submitted by each sex;
                  (B) that were approved, including the number 
                and percentage of such approved claims 
                submitted by each sex; and
                  (C) that were denied, including the number 
                and percentage of such denied claims submitted 
                by each sex.
          (3) Of the covered claims listed under paragraph (1) 
        that were approved, the number and percentage, listed 
        by each sex, of claims assigned to each rating 
        percentage.
          (4) Of the covered claims listed under paragraph (1) 
        that were denied--
                  (A) the three most common reasons given by 
                the Secretary under section 5104(b)(1) of this 
                title for such denials; and
                  (B) the number of denials that were based on 
                the failure of a veteran to report for a 
                medical examination.
          (5) The number of covered claims that, as of the end 
        of the fiscal year covered by the report, are pending 
        and, separately, the number of such claims on appeal.
          (6) For the fiscal year covered by the report, the 
        average number of days that covered claims take to 
        complete beginning on the date on which the claim is 
        submitted.
          (7) A description of the training that the Secretary 
        provides to employees of the Veterans Benefits 
        Administration specifically with respect to covered 
        claims, including the frequency, length, and content of 
        such training.
  (c) Definitions.--In this section:
          (1) The term ``covered claims'' means claims for 
        disability compensation submitted to the Secretary 
        based on a covered mental health condition alleged to 
        have been incurred or aggravated by military sexual 
        trauma.
          (2) The term ``covered mental health condition'' 
        means post-traumatic stress disorder, anxiety, 
        depression, or other mental health diagnosis described 
        in the current version of the Diagnostic and 
        Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders published by the 
        American Psychiatric Association that the Secretary 
        determines to be related to military sexual trauma.
          (3) The term ``military sexual trauma'' means, with 
        respect to a veteran, psychological trauma, which in 
        the judgment of a mental health professional, resulted 
        from a physical assault of a sexual nature, battery of 
        a sexual nature, or sexual harassment which occurred 
        during active military, naval, or air service.

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PART III--READJUSTMENT AND RELATED BENEFITS

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CHAPTER 30--ALL-VOLUNTEER FORCE EDUCATIONAL ASSISTANCE PROGRAM

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SUBCHAPTER II--BASIC EDUCATIONAL ASSISTANCE

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Sec. 3015. Amount of basic educational assistance

  (a) * * *

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  (h)(1) * * *
  (2) Any increase under paragraph (1) in a rate with respect 
to a fiscal year after fiscal year 2004 and before [fiscal year 
2014] fiscal year 2019 shall be rounded down to the next lower 
whole dollar amount. Any such increase with respect to a fiscal 
year after [fiscal year 2013] fiscal year 2018 shall be rounded 
to the nearest whole dollar amount.

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CHAPTER 35--SURVIVORS' AND DEPENDENTS' EDUCATIONAL ASSISTANCE

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SUBCHAPTER VI--MISCELLANEOUS PROVISIONS

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Sec. 3564. Annual adjustment of amounts of educational assistance

  (a) * * *
  (b) Any increase under subsection (a) in a rate with respect 
to a fiscal year after fiscal year 2004 and before [fiscal year 
2014] fiscal year 2019 shall be rounded down to the next lower 
whole dollar amount. Any such increase with respect to a fiscal 
year after [fiscal year 2013] fiscal year 2018 shall be rounded 
to the nearest whole dollar amount.

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