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114th Congress   }                                      {       Report
                        HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES
 1st Session     }                                      {      114-358

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



 
     VETERANS EMPLOYMENT, EDUCATION, AND HEALTHCARE IMPROVEMENT ACT

                                _______
                                

December 1, 2015.--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

                             together with

                            DISSENTING VIEWS

                        [To accompany H.R. 3016]

      [Including cost estimate of the Congressional Budget Office]

    The Committee on Veterans' Affairs, to whom was referred 
the bill (H.R. 3016) to amend title 38, United States Code, to 
clarify the role of podiatrists in the Department of Veterans 
Affairs, 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..............................................    24
Background and Need for Legislation..............................    26
Hearings.........................................................    52
Subcommittee Consideration.......................................    54
Committee Consideration..........................................    55
Committee Votes..................................................    56
Committee Oversight Findings.....................................    57
Statement of General Performance Goals and Objectives............    57
New Budget Authority, Entitlement Authority, and Tax Expenditures    57
Earmarks and Tax and Tariff Benefits.............................    57
Committee Cost Estimate..........................................    57
Congressional Budget Office Estimate.............................    57
Federal Mandates Statement.......................................    71
Advisory Committee Statement.....................................    71
Constitutional Authority Statement...............................    71
Applicability to Legislative Branch..............................    71
Statement on Duplication of Federal Programs.....................    71
Disclosure of Directed Rulemaking................................    71
Section-by-Section Analysis of the Legislation...................    71
Changes in Existing Law Made by the Bill as Reported.............    88
Dissenting Views.................................................   224

                               Amendment

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

SECTION 1. SHORT TITLE; TABLE OF CONTENTS.

  (a) Short Title.--This Act may be cited as the ``Veterans Employment, 
Education, and Healthcare Improvement Act''.
  (b) Table of Contents.--The table of contents for this Act is as 
follows:

Sec. 1. Short title; table of contents.

                     TITLE I--VETERANS HEALTH CARE

Sec. 101. Role of podiatrists in Department of Veterans Affairs.
Sec. 102. Priority of medal of honor recipients in health care system 
of Department of Veterans Affairs.
Sec. 103. Improvement of care provided to newborn children.
Sec. 104. Comptroller General audit of budget of Veterans Health 
Administration.
Sec. 105. Outreach to veterans regarding effect of certain delayed 
payments by Department of Veterans Affairs Chief Business Office.
Sec. 106. Department of Veterans Affairs pilot program on dog training 
therapy.

 TITLE II--VETERANS ECONOMIC OPPORTUNITY AND TRANSITION ADMINISTRATION

Sec. 201. Establishment of Veterans Economic Opportunity and Transition 
Administration.
Sec. 202. Under Secretary for Veterans Economic Opportunity and 
Transition.
Sec. 203. Transfer of Department of Labor veterans programs to 
Department of Veterans Affairs.
Sec. 204. Deputy Under Secretary of Veterans Affairs for Veterans' 
Employment, Training, and Transition.
Sec. 205. Additional technical and conforming amendments.
Sec. 206. Use of Federal directory of new hires.

     TITLE III--EDUCATION ASSISTANCE AND VOCATIONAL REHABILITATION

Sec. 301. Modification and improvement of transfer of unused education 
benefits to family members under Department of Veterans Affairs Post-9/
11 Educational Assistance Program.
Sec. 302. Clarification of eligibility for Marine Gunnery Sergeant John 
David Fry Scholarship.
Sec. 303. Approval of courses of education and training for purposes of 
the vocational rehabilitation program of the Department of Veterans 
Affairs.
Sec. 304. Authority to prioritize vocational rehabilitation services 
based on need.
Sec. 305. Recodification and improvement of election process for Post-
9/11 Educational Assistance Program.
Sec. 306. Clarification of assistance provided for certain flight 
training and other programs of education.
Sec. 307. Consideration of certain time spent receiving medical care 
from Secretary of Defense as active duty for purposes of eligibility 
for post-9/11 educational assistance.
Sec. 308. Work-study allowance.
Sec. 309. Vocational rehabilitation and education action plan.
Sec. 310. Reduction in redundancy and inefficiencies in vocational 
rehabilitation claims processing.

           TITLE IV--ADMINISTRATION OF EDUCATIONAL ASSISTANCE

Sec. 401. Centralized reporting of veteran enrollment by certain 
groups, districts, and consortiums of educational institutions.
Sec. 402. Provision of information regarding veteran entitlement to 
educational assistance.
Sec. 403. Role of State approving agencies.
Sec. 404. Criteria used to approve courses.
Sec. 405. Compliance surveys.
Sec. 406. Survey of individuals using their entitlement to educational 
assistance under the educational assistance programs administered by 
the Secretary of Veterans Affairs.
Sec. 407. Improvement of information technology of the Veterans 
Benefits Administration of the Department of Veterans Affairs.
Sec. 408. Technical amendment relating to in-State tuition rate for 
individuals to whom entitlement is transferred under All-Volunteer 
Force Educational Assistance Program and Post-9/11 Educational 
Assistance.

                         TITLE V--OTHER MATTERS

Sec. 501. Amount of loan guaranteed under home loan program of 
Department of Veterans Affairs.
Sec. 502. Longitudinal study of job counseling, training, and placement 
service for veterans.
Sec. 503. Limitations on subcontracts under contracts with small 
business concerns owned and controlled by veterans.
Sec. 504. Procedures for provision of certain information to State 
veterans agencies to facilitate the furnishing of assistance and 
benefits to veterans.

                     TITLE I--VETERANS HEALTH CARE

SEC. 101. ROLE OF PODIATRISTS IN DEPARTMENT OF VETERANS AFFAIRS.

  (a) Inclusion as Physician.--
          (1) In general.--Subchapter I of chapter 74 of title 38, 
        United States Code, is amended by adding at the end the 
        following new section:

``Sec. 7413. Treatment of podiatrists

  ``For purposes of this chapter, the term `physician' includes a 
podiatrist.''.
          (2) Clerical amendment.--The table of sections at the 
        beginning of such chapter is amended by inserting after the 
        item relating to section 7412 the following new item:

``7413. Treatment of podiatrists.''.

          (3) Conforming amendment.--Section 7401(1) of such title is 
        amended by striking ``Physicians, dentists, podiatrists,'' and 
        inserting ``Physicians, dentists,''.
  (b) Qualifications.--Section 7402(b) of such title is amended--
          (1) in paragraph (1)--
                  (A) in subparagraph (A), by striking ``or of doctor 
                of osteopathy'' and inserting ``, doctor of osteopathy, 
                or doctor of podiatric medicine''; and
                  (B) in subparagraph (C), by inserting ``podiatry,'' 
                after ``surgery,'';
          (2) by striking paragraph (5); and
          (3) by redesignating paragraphs (6) through (14) as 
        paragraphs (5) through (13), respectively.
  (c) Period of Appointment.--Section 7403(a)(2) of such title is 
amended--
          (1) by striking subparagraph (C); and
          (2) by redesignating subparagraphs (D) through (H) as 
        subparagraphs (C) through (G), respectively.
  (d) Modification of Pay Grade.--
          (1) Grade.--The list in section 7404(b) of such title is 
        amended by striking ``CLINICAL PODIATRIST, CHIROPRACTOR, AND 
        OPTOMETRIST SCHEDULE'' and inserting ``CLINICAL CHIROPRACTOR 
        AND OPTOMETRIST SCHEDULE''.
          (2) Application.--The amendment made by paragraph (1) shall 
        apply with respect to a pay period of the Department of 
        Veterans Affairs beginning on or after the date that is 30 days 
        after the date of the enactment of this Act.
  (e) Contracts for Scarce Services.--Section 7409(a) of such title is 
amended by striking ``podiatrists,''.
  (f) Personnel Administration.--Section 7421(b) of such title is 
amended--
          (1) by striking paragraph (3); and
          (2) by redesignating paragraphs (4) through (8) as paragraphs 
        (3) through (7), respectively.
  (g) Medical Directors.--Section 7306(a)(4) of such title is amended 
by inserting ``, doctor of podiatric medicine,'' after ``doctor of 
medicine''.
  (h) Application.--The amendments made by this section shall apply 
with respect to podiatrists employed by the Department of Veterans 
Affairs as of the date of the enactment of this Act or who are 
appointed on or after such date.

SEC. 102. PRIORITY OF MEDAL OF HONOR RECIPIENTS IN HEALTH CARE SYSTEM 
                    OF DEPARTMENT OF VETERANS AFFAIRS.

  (a) Enrollment Priority.--Section 1705(a) of title 38, United States 
Code, is amended--
          (1) in paragraph (1), by striking the period at the end and 
        inserting the following: ``and veterans who were awarded the 
        medal of honor under section 3741, 6241, or 8741 of title 10 or 
        section 491 of title 14.''; and
          (2) in paragraph (3), by striking ``veterans who were awarded 
        the medal of honor under section 3741, 6241, or 8741 of title 
        10 or section 491 of title 14,''.
  (b) Eligibility.--Section 1710(a)(2)(D) of such title is amended by 
inserting after ``war'' the following: ``, who was awarded the medal of 
honor under section 3741, 6241, or 8741 of title 10 or section 491 of 
title 14,''.
  (c) Extended Care Services.--Section 1710B(c)(2) of such title is 
amended--
          (1) in subparagraph (B), by striking ``or'';
          (2) in subparagraph (C), by striking the period at the end 
        and inserting ``; or''; and
          (3) by adding at the end the following new subparagraph:
          ``(D) to a veteran who was awarded the medal of honor under 
        section 3741, 6241, or 8741 of title 10 or section 491 of title 
        14.''.
  (d) Copayment for Medications.--Section 1722A(a)(3) of such title is 
amended--
          (1) in subparagraph (B), by striking ``or'';
          (2) in subparagraph (C), by striking the period at the end 
        and inserting ``; or''; and
          (3) by adding at the end the following new subparagraph:
          ``(D) to a veteran who was awarded the medal of honor under 
        section 3741, 6241, or 8741 of title 10 or section 491 of title 
        14.''.
  (e) Application.--The priority of enrollment of medal of honor 
recipients pursuant to chapter 17 of title 38, United States Code, as 
amended by this section, shall apply to each such recipient, regardless 
of the date on which the medal is awarded.

SEC. 103. IMPROVEMENT OF CARE PROVIDED TO NEWBORN CHILDREN.

  Section 1786 of title 38, United States Code, is amended--
          (1) in subsection (a), by striking ``seven days'' and 
        inserting ``42 days''; and
          (2) by adding at the end the following new subsection:
  ``(c) Annual Report.--Not later than October 31, 2016, and each year 
thereafter through 2020, the Secretary shall submit to the Committees 
on Veterans' Affairs of the House of Representatives and the Senate a 
report on the health care services provided under subsection (a) during 
the fiscal year preceding the date of the report, including the number 
of newborn children who received such services during such fiscal 
year.''.

SEC. 104. COMPTROLLER GENERAL AUDIT OF BUDGET OF VETERANS HEALTH 
                    ADMINISTRATION.

  (a) In General.--Subchapter II of chapter 73 of title 38, United 
States Code, is amended by adding at the end the following new section:

``Sec. 7330B. Comptroller General audit of VHA budget

  ``(a) In General.--The Comptroller General of the United States shall 
periodically conduct an audit of elements of the budget of the Veterans 
Health Administration, including the budget formulation, execution, 
allocation, and use of funds.
  ``(b) Selection of Elements.--(1) In selecting elements of the budget 
of the Veterans Health Administration for purposes of an audit under 
subsection (a), the Comptroller General shall take into consideration--
          ``(A) knowledge of the programs of the Veterans Health 
        Administration;
          ``(B) current issues;
          ``(C) national priorities; and
          ``(D) priorities expressed by the appropriate congressional 
        committees.
  ``(2) Not later than 30 days before conducting an audit under 
subsection (a), the Comptroller General shall submit to the appropriate 
congressional committees notice of the elements selected by the 
Comptroller General for purposes of the audit.
  ``(c) Appropriate Congressional Committees.--In this section, the 
term `appropriate congressional committees' means--
          ``(1) the Committee on Veterans' Affairs, the Committee on 
        Appropriations, and the Committee on the Budget of the Senate; 
        and
          ``(2) the Committee on Veterans' Affairs, the Committee on 
        Appropriations, and the Committee on the Budget of the House of 
        Representatives.''.
  (b) Clerical Amendment.--The table of sections at the beginning of 
such chapter is amended by inserting after the item relating to section 
7330A the following new item:

``7330B. Comptroller General audit of VHA budget.''.

SEC. 105. OUTREACH TO VETERANS REGARDING EFFECT OF CERTAIN DELAYED 
                    PAYMENTS BY DEPARTMENT OF VETERANS AFFAIRS CHIEF 
                    BUSINESS OFFICE.

  (a) Outreach.--The Secretary of Veterans Affairs shall conduct 
outreach, including through national and local veterans service 
organizations, to inform veterans of how to resolve credit issues 
caused by delayed payment of a claim for emergency hospital care, 
medical services, or other emergency health care furnished through a 
non-Department of Veterans Affairs provider. The Secretary shall 
establish a toll-free telephone number for veterans to report such 
credit issues to the Chief Business Office of the Department of 
Veterans Affairs.
  (b) Annual Report.--
          (1) In general.--During the five-year period beginning on the 
        date of the enactment of this Act, the Secretary of Veterans 
        Affairs shall annually submit to Congress a report on the 
        effectiveness of the Chief Business Office in providing timely 
        payment of proper invoices for emergency hospital care, medical 
        services, or other emergency health care furnished through non-
        Department of Veterans Affairs providers by the required 
        payment date during both the five-year period preceding the 
        date of the report and the one-year period preceding such date. 
        For any part of the period covered by a report under this 
        subsection that occurred before October 1, 2014, the report 
        shall evaluate the provision of such payments by the Veterans 
        Integrated Service Networks.
          (2) Matters included.--The reports under paragraph (1) shall 
        include, for each period covered by the report, the following:
                  (A) The number of veterans who contacted the 
                Secretary regarding a delayed payment that negatively 
                affected, or will potentially negatively affect, the 
                credit of the veteran.
                  (B) The total amount of interest penalties paid by 
                the Secretary of Veterans Affairs under section 3902 of 
                title 31, United States Code, by reason of a delayed 
                payment.
                  (C) The number of proper invoices submitted, listed 
                in a table for each quarter and fiscal year of each 
                such period that includes--
                          (i) the total amount owed by the Secretary 
                        under the proper invoices;
                          (ii) the payment status of each proper 
                        invoice, as of the date of the report; and
                          (iii) the period that elapsed until each 
                        proper invoice was paid, including an 
                        explanation of any delayed payment.
                  (D) Any comments regarding delayed payments made by 
                medical providers.
                  (E) A description of the best practices that the 
                Chief Business Office can carry out to provide timely 
                payment of a proper invoice, including a plan to 
                improve such timely payments.
  (c) Quarterly Reports on Pending Claims.--During the five-year period 
beginning on the date of the enactment of this Act, the Chief Business 
Office of the Department of Veterans Affairs shall submit to Congress 
quarterly reports on the number of pending claims for reimbursement for 
emergency hospital care, medical services, and other emergency health 
care furnished through non-Department of Veterans Affairs providers. 
Each such report shall include each of the following:
          (1) The total number of such pending claims for each hospital 
        system of the Department, as of the last day of the quarter 
        covered by the report.
          (2) The total number of veterans who submitted such a pending 
        claim in each State, as of such day.
          (3) The aggregate amount of all such pending claims in each 
        State, as of such day.
          (4) As of such day--
                  (A) the number of such pending claims that have been 
                pending for 30 days or longer;
                  (B) the number of such pending claims that have been 
                pending for 90 days or longer; and
                  (C) the number of such pending claims that have been 
                pending for 365 days or longer.
          (5) For each hospital system, for the quarter covered by the 
        report--
                  (A) the number of claims for reimbursement for 
                emergency hospital care, medical services, and other 
                emergency health care furnished through non-Department 
                of Veterans Affairs providers approved during such 
                quarter;
                  (B) the number of such claims denied during such 
                quarter; and
                  (C) the number of such claims denied listed by each 
                denial reason group.
  (d) Comptroller General Study.--
          (1) In general.--The Comptroller General of the United States 
        shall conduct a study that evaluates the effectiveness of the 
        Chief Business Office in providing timely payment of a proper 
        invoice for emergency hospital care, medical services, or other 
        emergency health care furnished through non-Department of 
        Veterans Affairs providers by the required payment date.
          (2) Submittal.--The Comptroller General shall submit to 
        Congress a report on the study conducted under paragraph (1), 
        including the total amount of interest penalties paid by the 
        Secretary of Veterans Affairs under section 3902 of title 31, 
        United States Code, by reason of a delayed payment.
  (e) Definitions.--In this section:
          (1) The term ``delayed payment'' means a proper invoice that 
        is not paid by the Secretary of Veterans Affairs until after 
        the required payment date.
          (2) The term ``proper invoice'' has the meaning given that 
        term in section 3901(a) of title 31, United States Code.
          (3) The term ``required payment date'' means the date that 
        payment is due for a contract pursuant to section 3903(a) of 
        title 31, United States Code.

SEC. 106. DEPARTMENT OF VETERANS AFFAIRS PILOT PROGRAM ON DOG TRAINING 
                    THERAPY.

  (a) In General.--Commencing not later than 120 days after the date of 
the enactment of the Act, the Secretary of Veterans Affairs shall carry 
out a pilot program under which the Secretary shall enter into a 
contract with one or more appropriate non-government entities for the 
purpose of assessing the effectiveness of addressing post-deployment 
mental health and post-traumatic stress disorder symptoms through a 
therapeutic medium of training service dogs for veterans with 
disabilities.
  (b) Duration of Pilot Program.--The pilot program required by 
subsection (a) shall be carried out during the five-year period 
beginning on the date of the commencement of the pilot program.
  (c) Locations of Pilot Program.--In entering into contracts for 
purposes of the pilot program, the Secretary shall seek to enter into 
contracts with appropriate non-government entities located in close 
proximity to at least three but not more than five medical centers of 
the Department.
  (d) Appropriate Non-Government Entities.--For purposes of the pilot 
program, an appropriate non-government entity is an entity that is 
certified in the training and handling of service dogs and that has a 
training area that would be appropriate for use in educating veterans 
with mental health conditions in the art and science of service dog 
training and handling. Such training area shall--
          (1) include a dedicated space that is suitable for grooming 
        and training dogs indoors;
          (2) be wheelchair accessible;
          (3) include classroom or lecture space;
          (4) include office space for staff;
          (5) include a suitable space for storing training equipment;
          (6) provide for periodic use of other training areas for 
        training the dogs with wheelchairs and conducting other 
        exercises;
          (7) include outdoor exercise and toileting space for dogs; 
        and
          (8) provide transportation for weekly field trips to train 
        dogs in other environments.
  (e) Design of Pilot Program.--Each contract entered into under 
subsection (a) shall provide that the non-government entity shall--
          (1) ensure that veterans participating in the program receive 
        training from certified service dog training instructors;
          (2) ensure that in selecting assistance dogs for use in the 
        program, dogs residing in animal shelters or foster homes are 
        looked at as an option, if appropriate, and ensure that all 
        dogs used in the program have adequate temperament and health 
        clearances;
          (3) ensure that each service dog in training participating in 
        the pilot program is taught all essential commands pertaining 
        to service dog skills;
          (4) ensure that each service dog in training lives at the 
        pilot program site or a volunteer foster home in the vicinity 
        of such site while receiving training;
          (5) ensure that the pilot program involves both lecture of 
        service dog training methodologies and practical hands-on 
        training and grooming of service dogs; and
          (6) ensure that the pilot program is designed to--
                  (A) maximize the therapeutic benefits to veterans 
                participating in the program; and
                  (B) provide well-trained service dogs to veterans 
                with disabilities; and
          (7) in hiring service dog training instructors to carry out 
        training under the pilot program, give a preference to veterans 
        who have successfully graduated from post-traumatic stress 
        disorder or other residential treatment programs and who have 
        received adequate certification in service dog training.
  (f) Administration.--In order to carry out the pilot program under 
section (a), the Secretary of Veterans Affairs shall--
          (1) administer the program through the Recreation Therapy 
        Service of the Department of Veterans Affairs under the 
        direction of a certified recreational therapist with sufficient 
        administrative experience to oversee the pilot program; and
          (2) establish a director of service dog training with a 
        background working in social services, experience in teaching 
        others to train service dogs in a vocational setting, and at 
        least one year of experience working with veterans or active 
        duty service members with post-traumatic stress disorder in a 
        clinical setting.
  (g) Veteran Eligibility.--The Secretary shall select veterans for 
participation in the pilot program. A veteran with post-traumatic 
stress disorder or other post-deployment mental health condition may 
volunteer to participate in the pilot program, if the Secretary 
determines that there are adequate program resources available for such 
veteran at the pilot program site. Veterans may participate in the 
pilot program in conjunction with the compensated work therapy program 
of the Department of Veterans Affairs.
  (h) Collection of Data.--The Secretary shall collect data on the 
pilot program required under subsection (a) to determine how effective 
the program is for the veterans participating in the program. Such data 
shall include data to determine how effectively the program assists 
veterans in--
          (1) reducing stigma associated with post-traumatic stress 
        disorder or other post-deployment mental health condition;
          (2) improving emotional regulation;
          (3) improving patience;
          (4) instilling or re-establishing a sense of purpose;
          (5) providing an opportunity to help fellow veterans;
          (6) reintegrating into the community;
          (7) exposing the dog to new environments and in doing so, 
        helping the veteran reduce social isolation and withdrawal;
          (8) building relationship skills, including parenting skills;
          (9) relaxing the hyper-vigilant survival state;
          (10) improving sleep patterns; and
          (11) enabling veterans to decrease the use of pain 
        medication.
  (i) Reports to Congress.--Not later than one year after the date of 
the commencement of the pilot program under subsection (a), and each 
year thereafter for the duration of the pilot program, the Secretary 
shall submit to Congress a report on the pilot program. Each such 
report shall include--
          (1) the number of veterans participating in the pilot 
        program;
          (2) a description of the services carried out under the pilot 
        program;
          (3) the effects that participating in the pilot program has 
        on the following--
                  (A) symptoms of post-traumatic stress disorder and 
                post-deployment adjustment difficulties, including 
                depression, maintenance of sobriety, suicidal 
                ideations, and homelessness;
                  (B) potentially relevant physiological markers that 
                possibly relate to the interactions with the service 
                dogs;
                  (C) family dynamics;
                  (D) insomnia and pain management; and
                  (E) overall well-being; and
          (4) the recommendations of the Secretary with respect to the 
        extension or expansion of the pilot program.
  (j) Definition.--For the purposes of this section, the term ``service 
dog training instructor'' means an instructor who provides the direct 
training of veterans with post-traumatic stress disorder and other 
post-deployment issues in the art and science of service dog training 
and handling.

 TITLE II--VETERANS ECONOMIC OPPORTUNITY AND TRANSITION ADMINISTRATION

SEC. 201. ESTABLISHMENT OF VETERANS ECONOMIC OPPORTUNITY AND TRANSITION 
                    ADMINISTRATION.

  (a) Veterans Economic Opportunity and Transition Administration.--
          (1) In general.--Part V of title 38, United States Code, is 
        amended by adding at the end the following new chapter:

      ``CHAPTER 80--VETERANS ECONOMIC OPPORTUNITY AND TRANSITION 
                             ADMINISTRATION

``Sec.
``8001. Organization of Administration.
``8002. Functions of Administration.

``Sec. 8001. Organization of Administration

  ``(a) Veterans Economic Opportunity and Transition Administration.--
There is in the Department of Veterans Affairs a Veterans Economic 
Opportunity and Transition Administration. The primary function of the 
Veterans Economic Opportunity and Transition Administration is the 
administration of the programs of the Department that provide 
assistance related to economic opportunity to veterans and their 
dependents and survivors.
  ``(b) Under Secretary for Economic Opportunity and Transition.--The 
Veterans Economic Opportunity and Transition Administration is under 
the Under Secretary for Veterans Economic Opportunity and Transition, 
who is directly responsible to the Secretary for the operations of the 
Administration.
  ``(c) Deputy Under Secretaries.--The Veterans Economic Opportunity 
and Transition Administration shall have two Deputy Under Secretaries 
as follows:
          ``(1) The Deputy Under Secretary for Readjustment, who shall 
        be the principal assistant of the Under Secretary for Veterans 
        Economic Opportunity and Transition with respect to the 
        programs specified in paragraphs (1) through (4) of section 
        8002 of this title.
          ``(2) The Deputy Under Secretary for Employment, Training, 
        and Transition, who shall be the principal assistant of the 
        Under Secretary for Veterans Economic Opportunity and 
        Transition with respect to the programs specified in paragraphs 
        (5) through (9) of section 8002 of this title.

``Sec. 8002. Functions of Administration

  ``The Veterans Economic Opportunity and Transition Administration is 
responsible for the administration of the following programs of the 
Department:
          ``(1) Vocational rehabilitation and employment programs.
          ``(2) Educational assistance programs.
          ``(3) Veterans' housing loan and related programs.
          ``(4) The verification of small businesses owned and 
        controlled by veterans pursuant to subsection (f) of section 
        8127 of this title, including the administration of the 
        database of veteran-owned businesses described in such 
        subsection.
          ``(5) Job counseling, training, and placement services for 
        veterans under chapter 41 of this title.
          ``(6) Employment and training of veterans under chapter 42 of 
        this title.
          ``(7) Administration of employment and employment rights of 
        members of the uniformed services under chapter 43 of this 
        title.
          ``(8) Homeless veterans reintegration programs under chapter 
        20 of this title.
          ``(9) The Transition Assistance Program under section 1144 of 
        title 10.
          ``(10) Any other program of the Department that the Secretary 
        determines appropriate.''.
          (2) Clerical amendments.--The tables of chapters at the 
        beginning of title 38, United States Code, and of part V of 
        title 38, United States Code, are each amended by inserting 
        after the item relating to chapter 79 the following new item:

``80.  Veterans Economic Opportunity and Transition             8001''.
                            Administration.

  (b) Effective Date.--Chapter 80 of title 38, United States Code, as 
added by subsection (a) shall take effect on October 1, 2016.
  (c) Full-Time Employees.--For fiscal years 2017 and 2018, the total 
number of full-time equivalent employees authorized for the Veterans 
Benefits Administration and the Veterans Economic Opportunity and 
Transition Administration, as established under chapter 80 of title 38, 
United States Code, as added by subsection (a), may not exceed 22,118.
  (d) Homeless Veterans Reintegration Programs.--Nothing in section 
8002 of title 38, United States Code, as added by subsection (a), or in 
any other amendment made by this title, shall affect the provision of 
funds to grant recipients under section 2021 or 2021A of title 38, 
United States Code.

SEC. 202. UNDER SECRETARY FOR VETERANS ECONOMIC OPPORTUNITY AND 
                    TRANSITION.

  (a) Under Secretary.--
          (1) In general.--Chapter 3 of title 38, United States Code, 
        is amended by inserting after section 306 the following new 
        section:

``Sec. 306A. Under Secretary for Veterans Economic Opportunity and 
                    Transition

  ``(a) Under Secretary.--There is in the Department an Under Secretary 
for Veterans Economic Opportunity and Transition, who is appointed by 
the President, by and with the advice and consent of the Senate. The 
Under Secretary for Veterans Economic Opportunity and Transition shall 
be appointed without regard to political affiliation or activity and 
solely on the basis of demonstrated ability in--
          ``(1) information technology; and
          ``(2) the administration of programs within the Veterans 
        Economic Opportunity and Transition Administration or programs 
        of similar content and scope.
  ``(b) Responsibilities.--The Under Secretary for Veterans Economic 
Opportunity and Transition is the head of, and is directly responsible 
to the Secretary for the operations of, the Veterans Economic 
Opportunity and Transition Administration.
  ``(c) Vacancies.--(1) Whenever a vacancy in the position of Under 
Secretary for Veterans Economic Opportunity and Transition occurs or is 
anticipated, the Secretary shall establish a commission to recommend 
individuals to the President for appointment to the position.
  ``(2) A commission established under this subsection shall be 
composed of the following members appointed by the Secretary:
          ``(A) Three persons representing education and training, 
        vocational rehabilitation, employment, real estate, mortgage 
        finance and related industries, and survivor benefits 
        activities affected by the Veterans Economic Opportunity and 
        Transition Administration.
          ``(B) Two persons representing veterans served by the 
        Veterans Economic Opportunity and Transition Administration.
          ``(C) Two persons who have experience in the management of 
        private sector benefits programs of similar content and scope 
        to the economic opportunity and transition programs of the 
        Department.
          ``(D) The Deputy Secretary of Veterans Affairs.
          ``(E) The chairman of the Veterans' Advisory Committee on 
        Education formed under section 3692 of this title.
          ``(F) One person who has held the position of Under Secretary 
        for Veterans Economic Opportunity and Transition, if the 
        Secretary determines that it is desirable for such person to be 
        a member of the commission.
  ``(3) A commission established under this subsection shall recommend 
at least three individuals for appointment to the position of Under 
Secretary for Veterans Economic Opportunity and Transition. The 
commission shall submit all recommendations to the Secretary. The 
Secretary shall forward the recommendations to the President and the 
Committees on Veterans' Affairs of the Senate and House of 
Representatives with any comments the Secretary considers appropriate. 
Thereafter, the President may request the commission to recommend 
additional individuals for appointment.
  ``(4) The Assistant Secretary or Deputy Assistant Secretary of 
Veterans Affairs who performs personnel management and labor relations 
functions shall serve as the executive secretary of a commission 
established under this subsection.
  ``(d) Qualifications of Recommended Individuals.--Each individual 
recommended to the President by the commission for appointment to the 
position of Under Secretary for Veterans Economic Opportunity and 
Transition shall be an individual who has held a senior level position 
in the private sector with responsibilities relating to at least one of 
the following:
          ``(1) Education policy.
          ``(2) Vocational rehabilitation.
          ``(3) Employment.
          ``(4) Job placement.
          ``(5) Home loan finance.
          ``(6) Small business development.''.
          (2) Clerical amendment.--The table of sections at the 
        beginning of such chapter is amended by inserting after the 
        item relating to section 306 the following new item:

``306A. Under Secretary for Veterans Economic Opportunity and 
Transition.''.

  (b) Conforming Amendments.--Title 38, United States Code, is further 
amended--
          (1) in section 306(c)(2), by striking subparagraphs (A) and 
        (E) and redesignating subparagraphs (B), (C), (D), and (F), as 
        subparagraphs (A) through (D), respectively;
          (2) in section 317(d)(2), by inserting after ``Under 
        Secretary for Benefits,'' the following: ``the Under Secretary 
        for Veterans Economic Opportunity and Transition,'';
          (3) in section 318(d)(2), by inserting after ``Under 
        Secretary for Benefits,'' the following: ``the Under Secretary 
        for Veterans Economic Opportunity and Transition,'';
          (4) in section 516(e)(2)(C), by striking ``Health and the 
        Under Secretary for Benefits'' and inserting ``Health, the 
        Under Secretary for Benefits, and the Under Secretary for 
        Veterans Economic Opportunity and Transition'';
          (5) in section 541(a)(2)(B), by striking ``Health and the 
        Under Secretary for Benefits'' and inserting ``Health, the 
        Under Secretary for Benefits, and the Under Secretary for 
        Veterans Economic Opportunity and Transition'';
          (6) in section 542(a)(2)(B)(iii), by striking ``Health and 
        the Under Secretary for Benefits'' and inserting ``Health, the 
        Under Secretary for Benefits, and the Under Secretary for 
        Veterans Economic Opportunity and Transition'';
          (7) in section 544(a)(2)(B)(vi), by striking ``Health and the 
        Under Secretary for Benefits'' and inserting ``Health, the 
        Under Secretary for Benefits, and the Under Secretary for 
        Veterans Economic Opportunity and Transition'';
          (8) in section 709(c)(2)(A), by inserting after ``Under 
        Secretary for Benefits,'' the following: ``the Under Secretary 
        for Veterans Economic Opportunity and Transition,'';
          (9) in section 7701(a), by inserting after ``assistance'' the 
        following: ``, other than assistance related to Economic 
        Opportunity and Transition,''; and
          (10) in section 7703, by striking paragraphs (2) and (3) and 
        redesignating paragraphs (4) and (5) as paragraphs (2) and (3), 
        respectively.
  (c) Effective Date.--Section 306A of title 38, United States Code, as 
added by subsection (a), and the amendments made by this section, shall 
take effect on October 1, 2016.

SEC. 203. TRANSFER OF DEPARTMENT OF LABOR VETERANS PROGRAMS TO 
                    DEPARTMENT OF VETERANS AFFAIRS.

  (a) Transfer of Functions.--
          (1) In general.--Effective October 1, 2016, there shall be 
        transferred to the Secretary of Veterans Affairs all functions 
        performed under the following programs of the Department of 
        Labor, and all personnel, assets, and liabilities pertaining to 
        such programs, immediately before such transfer occurs:
                  (A) Job counseling, training, and placement services 
                for veterans under chapter 41 of title 38, United 
                States Code.
                  (B) Employment and training of veterans under chapter 
                42 of such title.
                  (C) Administration of employment and employment 
                rights of members of the uniformed services under 
                chapter 43 of such title.
                  (D) Homeless veterans reintegration programs under 
                chapter 20 of such title.
          (2) Organization.--The programs, and the personnel, assets, 
        and liabilities pertaining to such programs, transferred to the 
        Secretary under paragraph (1) shall be administered as part of 
        the Veterans Economic Opportunity and Transition Administration 
        established by section 8001 of title 38, United States Code, as 
        added by section 201.
  (b) Budget Request.--Under section 1105 of title 31, United States 
Code, the President shall include in the President's budget request for 
the Department of Veterans Affairs for fiscal year 2017, and for each 
subsequent fiscal year, funding requested for the functions referred to 
in subsection (a)(1).
  (c) References.--Any reference in any other Federal law, Executive 
order, rule, regulation, or delegation of authority, or any document of 
or pertaining to a department or office from which a function is 
transferred by this section--
          (1) to the head of such department or office is deemed to 
        refer to the head of the department or office to which such 
        function is transferred; or
          (2) to such department or office is deemed to refer to the 
        department or office to which such function is transferred.
  (d) Exercise of Authorities.--Except as otherwise provided by law, a 
Federal official to whom a function is transferred by this section may, 
for purposes of performing the function, exercise all authorities under 
any other provision of law that were available with respect to the 
performance of that function to the official responsible for the 
performance of the function immediately before the effective date of 
the transfer of the function under this section.
  (e) Savings Provisions.--
          (1) Legal documents.--All orders, determinations, rules, 
        regulations, permits, grants, loans, contracts, agreements, 
        certificates, licenses, and privileges--
                  (A) that have been issued, made, granted, or allowed 
                to become effective by the President, the Secretary of 
                Labor, the Secretary of Veterans Affairs, any officer 
                or employee of any office transferred by this section, 
                or any other Government official, or by a court of 
                competent jurisdiction, in the performance of any 
                function that is transferred by this section, and
                  (B) that are in effect on the effective date of such 
                transfer (or become effective after such date pursuant 
                to their terms as in effect on such effective date),
        shall continue in effect according to their terms until 
        modified, terminated, superseded, set aside, or revoked in 
        accordance with law by the President, any other authorized 
        official, a court of competent jurisdiction, or operation of 
        law.
          (2) Proceedings.--This section shall not affect any 
        proceedings or any application for any benefits, service, 
        license, permit, certificate, or financial assistance pending 
        on the date of the enactment of this section before an office 
        transferred by this section, but such proceedings and 
        applications shall be continued. Orders shall be issued in such 
        proceedings, appeals shall be taken therefrom, and payments 
        shall be made pursuant to such orders, as if this section had 
        not been enacted, and orders issued in any such proceeding 
        shall continue in effect until modified, terminated, 
        superseded, or revoked by a duly authorized official, by a 
        court of competent jurisdiction, or by operation of law. 
        Nothing in this subsection shall be considered to prohibit the 
        discontinuance or modification of any such proceeding under the 
        same terms and conditions and to the same extent that such 
        proceeding could have been discontinued or modified if this 
        section had not been enacted.
          (3) Suits.--This section shall not affect suits commenced 
        before the date of the enactment of this section, and in all 
        such suits, proceeding shall be had, appeals taken, and 
        judgments rendered in the same manner and with the same effect 
        as if this section had not been enacted.
          (4) Nonabatement of actions.--No suit, action, or other 
        proceeding commenced by or against the Department of Labor or 
        the Secretary of Labor, or by or against any individual in the 
        official capacity of such individual as an officer or employee 
        of an office transferred by this section, shall abate by reason 
        of the enactment of this section.
          (5) Continuance of suits.--If any Government officer in the 
        official capacity of such officer is party to a suit with 
        respect to a function of the officer, and under this section 
        such function is transferred to any other officer or office, 
        then such suit shall be continued with the other officer or the 
        head of such other office, as applicable, substituted or added 
        as a party.
          (6) Administrative procedure and judicial review.--Except as 
        otherwise provided by this section, any statutory requirements 
        relating to notice, hearings, action upon the record, or 
        administrative or judicial review that apply to any function 
        transferred by this section shall apply to the exercise of such 
        function by the head of the Federal agency, and other officers 
        of the agency, to which such function is transferred by this 
        section.
  (f) Transfer of Assets.--Except as otherwise provided in this 
section, so much of the personnel, property, records, and unexpended 
balances of appropriations, allocations, and other funds employed, 
used, held, available, or to be made available in connection with a 
function transferred to an official or agency by this section shall be 
available to the official or the head of that agency, respectively, at 
such time or times as the Director of the Office of Management and 
Budget directs for use in connection with the functions transferred.
  (g) Delegation and Assignment.--Except as otherwise expressly 
prohibited by law or otherwise provided in this section, an official to 
whom functions are transferred under this section (including the head 
of any office to which functions are transferred under this section) 
may delegate any of the functions so transferred to such officers and 
employees of the office of the official as the official may designate, 
and may authorize successive redelegations of such functions as may be 
necessary or appropriate. No delegation of functions under this section 
or under any other provision of this section shall relieve the official 
to whom a function is transferred under this section of responsibility 
for the administration of the function.
  (h) Authority of Director of the Office of Management and Budget With 
Respect to Functions Transferred.--
          (1) Determinations.--If necessary, the Director of Management 
        and Budget shall make any determination of the functions that 
        are transferred under this section.
          (2) Incidental transfers.--The Director, at such time or 
        times as the Director shall provide, may make such 
        determinations as may be necessary with regard to the functions 
        transferred by this section, and to make such additional 
        incidental dispositions of personnel, assets, liabilities, 
        grants, contracts, property, records, and unexpended balances 
        of appropriations, authorizations, allocations, and other funds 
        held, used, arising from, available to, or to be made available 
        in connection with such functions, as may be necessary to carry 
        out the provisions of this section. The Director shall provide 
        for the termination of the affairs of all entities terminated 
        by this section and for such further measures and dispositions 
        as may be necessary to effectuate the purposes of this section.
  (i) Certain Vesting of Functions Considered Transfers.--For purposes 
of this section, the vesting of a function in a department or office 
pursuant to reestablishment of an office shall be considered to be the 
transfer of the function.
  (j) Availability of Existing Funds.--Existing appropriations and 
funds available for the performance of functions, programs, and 
activities terminated pursuant to this section shall remain available, 
for the duration of their period of availability, for necessary 
expenses in connection with the termination and resolution of such 
functions, programs, and activities.
  (k) Memorandum of Understanding.--Not later than 180 days after the 
date of the enactment of this Act, the Secretary of Veterans Affairs 
and the Secretary of Labor shall--
          (1) enter into a memorandum of understanding to carry out 
        this section, which shall include--
                  (A) a description of how the Department of Veterans 
                Affairs will coordinate with the Employment and 
                Training Agency at the Department of Labor to ensure 
                coordination and avoid duplication among activities 
                authorized the Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act 
                (Public Law 113-128) and the activities referred to in 
                subsection (a)(1)(A) through (D); and
                  (B) a description of how the Department of Veterans 
                Affairs will share the performance accountability 
                measures required under subsection (l)(1) with the 
                Employment and Training Agency of the Department of 
                Labor; and
          (2) jointly submit to the Committee on Veterans' Affairs and 
        the Committee on Education and the Workforce of the House of 
        Representatives and the Committee on Veterans' Affairs and the 
        Committee on Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions of the 
        Senate a copy of such memorandum.
  (l) Coordination With Requirements Under WIOA.--
          (1) Performance accountability.--The Secretary of Veterans 
        Affairs shall establish performance accountability measures for 
        the activities carried out pursuant to the programs referred to 
        in subsection(a)(1)(A) through (D), which shall meet or exceed 
        the requirements of section 116(b) of the Workforce Innovation 
        and Opportunity Act (Public Law 113-128; 29 U.S.C. 3141).
          (2) State plans.--The Secretary shall ensure that each State 
        develops and submits to the Secretary a combined State plan 
        that meets or exceeds the requirements under section 103 of the 
        Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act (Public Law 113-128; 
        29 U.S.C. 3113) for activities authorized under chapter 41 of 
        title 38, United States Code.
  (m) Definitions.--For purposes of this section--
          (1) the term ``function'' includes any duty, obligation, 
        power, authority, responsibility, right, privilege, activity, 
        or program; and
          (2) the term ``office'' includes any office, administration, 
        agency, bureau, institute, council, unit, organizational 
        entity, or component thereof.

SEC. 204. DEPUTY UNDER SECRETARY OF VETERANS AFFAIRS FOR VETERANS' 
                    EMPLOYMENT, TRAINING, AND TRANSITION.

  (a) In General.--Subsection (a) of section 4102A of title 38, United 
States Code, is amended to read as follows:
  ``(a) Deputy Under Secretary for Veterans' Employment, Training, and 
Transition.--(1) The Deputy Under Secretary for Employment, Training, 
and Transition established by subsection (c)(2) of section 8001 of this 
title shall formulate and implement all departmental policies and 
procedures to carry out this chapter and the other programs described 
in such subsection.
  ``(2) The employees of the Department administering chapter 43 of 
this title shall be administratively and functionally responsible to 
the Deputy Under Secretary for Employment, Training, and Transition.''.
  (b) Clerical Amendments.--Chapter 41 of title 38, United States Code, 
is amended as follows:
          (1) The section heading of section 4102A of such title is 
        amended to read as follows:

``Sec. 4102A. Deputy Under Secretary for Veterans' Employment, 
                    Training, and Transition; program functions; 
                    Regional Administrators''.

          (2) The item relating to such section in the table of 
        sections at the beginning of such chapter is amended to read as 
        follows:

``4102A. Deputy Under Secretary for Veterans' Employment, Training, and 
Transition; program functions; Regional Administrators.''.

  (c) Effective Date.--The amendments made by this section shall take 
effect on October 1, 2016.

SEC. 205. ADDITIONAL TECHNICAL AND CONFORMING AMENDMENTS.

  (a) Chapter 41.--Chapter 41 of title 38, United States Code, as 
amended by this title, is further amended as follows:
          (1) By striking ``Assistant Secretary of Labor for Veterans' 
        Employment and Training'' each place it appears and inserting 
        ``Deputy Under Secretary for Employment, Training, and 
        Transition''.
          (2) By striking ``Department of Labor'' each place it appears 
        and inserting ``Department''.
          (3) By striking ``Secretary of Labor'' each place it appears 
        and inserting ``Secretary''.
          (4) In section 4101, by striking paragraph (8).
          (5) In section 4102A(b)--
                  (A) in paragraph (1), by striking ``such Assistant 
                Secretary'' and inserting ``such Deputy Under 
                Secretary''; and
                  (B) in paragraph (3), by striking ``and consulting 
                with the Secretary of Veterans Affairs''.
          (6) In section 4105(b), by striking ``and the Secretary of 
        Veterans Affairs'' both places it appears.
          (7) By striking section 4108.
          (8) In the table of sections at the beginning of such 
        chapter, by striking the item relating to section 4108.
          (9) In section 4110(d), by striking paragraph (1) and 
        redesignating paragraphs (2) through (6) as paragraphs (1) 
        through (5), respectively.
          (10) In section 4110A(b), by striking ``Congress'' and 
        inserting ``the Committees on Veterans' Affairs of the Senate 
        and House of Representatives''.
          (11) In section 4114--
                  (A) by striking ``Assistant Secretary for Veterans' 
                Employment and Training'' each place it appears and 
                inserting ``Deputy Under Secretary for Employment, 
                Training, and Transition''; and
                  (B) in paragraphs (2) and (3) of subsection (b) and 
                in subsections (c) and (d), by striking ``Assistant 
                Secretary'' each place it appears and inserting 
                ``Deputy Under Secretary''.
  (b) Chapter 42.--Chapter 42 of title 38, United States Code, is 
amended as follows:
          (1) By striking ``Secretary of Labor'' each place it appears 
        and inserting ``Secretary''.
          (2) By striking ``Department of Labor'' each place it appears 
        and inserting ``Department''.
  (c) Chapter 43.--Chapter 43 of title 38, United States Code, is 
amended as follows:
          (1) In section 4303, by striking paragraph (11).
          (2) In section 4317(b)(2), by striking ``Secretary of 
        Veterans Affairs'' and inserting ``Secretary''.
          (3) In section 4321, by striking ``(through the Veterans' 
        Employment and Training Service)''.
          (4) In section 4332(a)(1), by striking ``of Labor''.
          (5) In section 4333, by striking ``, the Secretary of 
        Defense, and the Secretary of Veterans Affairs'' and inserting 
        ``and the Secretary of Defense''.
  (d) Chapter 20.--Chapter 20 of title 38, United States Code, is 
amended as follows:
          (1) In section 2003(a)(4), by striking ``of the Department of 
        Labor''.
          (2) In section 2011(g)(2), by striking ``the Department of 
        Labor,''.
          (3) In section 2021--
                  (A) in subsection (b), by striking ``that Secretary'' 
                and inserting ``the Secretary'';
                  (B) in subsection (c)--
                          (i) by striking the subsection heading and 
                        inserting the following:
  ``(c) Administration Through Deputy Under Secretary for Veterans' 
Employment, Training, and Transition.--''; and
                          (ii) by striking ``Assistant Secretary of 
                        Labor for Veterans' Employment and Training'' 
                        and inserting ``Deputy Under Secretary for 
                        Employment, Training, and Transition''; and
                  (C) by striking ``Secretary of Labor'' each place it 
                appears and inserting ``Secretary''.
          (4) In section 2021A--
                  (A) in subsection (c), by striking ``that Secretary'' 
                and inserting ``the Secretary'';
                  (B) in subsection (d)--
                          (i) by striking the subsection heading and 
                        inserting the following:
  ``(d) Administration Through Deputy Under Secretary for Veterans' 
Employment, Training, and Transition.--''; and
                          (ii) by striking ``Assistant Secretary of 
                        Labor for Veterans' Employment and Training'' 
                        and inserting ``Deputy Under Secretary for 
                        Employment, Training, and Transition''; and
                  (C) by striking ``Secretary of Labor'' each place it 
                appears and inserting ``Secretary''.
          (5) In section 2023--
                  (A) in subsection (a), by striking ``and the 
                Secretary of Labor (hereinafter in this section 
                referred to as the `Secretaries')'';
                  (B) by striking ``Secretaries'' each place it appears 
                and inserting ``Secretary''; and
                  (C) in subsection (c)(4), by striking ``determine'' 
                and inserting ``determines''.
          (6) In section 2065(b)(5), by striking subparagraph (E) and 
        redesignating subparagraphs (F) through (H) as subparagraphs 
        (E) through (G), respectively.
          (7) In section 2066(a)(3), by striking subparagraph (A) and 
        redesignating subparagraphs (B) through (G) as subparagraphs 
        (A) through (F), respectively.
  (e) Other Provisions of Title 38.--Title 38, United States Code, is 
further amended as follows:
          (1) In section 542(a)(2)(B), by striking clause (i) and 
        redesignating clauses (ii) and (iii) as clauses (i) and (ii), 
        respectively.
          (2) In section 544(a)(2)(B), by striking clause (i) and 
        redesignating clauses (ii) through (vi) as clauses (i) through 
        (v), respectively.
          (3) In section 3118(b), by striking ``and the Assistant 
        Secretary for Veterans' Employment in the Department of 
        Labor''.
          (4) In section 3119(c), by striking ``the Assistant Secretary 
        for Veterans' Employment in the Department of Labor,''.
          (5) In section 3121(a)(3), by striking ``the Assistant 
        Secretary of Labor for Veterans' Employment and Training of the 
        Department of Labor'' and inserting ``the Under Secretary for 
        Veterans Economic Opportunity and Transition''.
          (6) In section 3692(a), by striking ``and the Assistant 
        Secretary of Labor for Veterans' Employment and Training shall 
        be ex officio members'' and inserting ``an ex officio member''.
          (7) In section 6306--
                  (A) in subsection (a), by striking ``shall arrange 
                with the Secretary of Labor for the State employment 
                service to match'' and inserting ``shall ensure that 
                the State employment service matches''; and
                  (B) in subsection (b), by striking ``, in 
                consultation with the Secretary of Labor,''.
  (f) Effective Date.--The amendments made by this section shall take 
effect on October 1, 2016.

SEC. 206. USE OF FEDERAL DIRECTORY OF NEW HIRES.

  Section 453A(h) of the Social Security Act (42 U.S.C. 653a(h)) is 
amended by adding at the end the following new paragraph:
          ``(4) Secretary of veterans affairs.--The Secretary of 
        Veterans Affairs shall have access to information reported by 
        employers pursuant to subsection (b) of this section.''.

     TITLE III--EDUCATION ASSISTANCE AND VOCATIONAL REHABILITATION

SEC. 301. MODIFICATION AND IMPROVEMENT OF TRANSFER OF UNUSED EDUCATION 
                    BENEFITS TO FAMILY MEMBERS UNDER DEPARTMENT OF 
                    VETERANS AFFAIRS POST-9/11 EDUCATIONAL ASSISTANCE 
                    PROGRAM.

  (a) Eligibility Requirements.--Subsection (b)(1) of section 3319 of 
title 38, United States Code, is amended--
          (1) by striking ``six years'' and inserting ``ten years''; 
        and
          (2) by striking ``four more years'' and inserting ``two more 
        years''.
  (b) Commencement of Use.--Subsection (g)(1)(A) of such section is 
amended by striking ``six years'' and inserting ``ten years''.
  (c) Rate of Payment.--Subsection (h)(3)(B) of such section is amended 
by inserting before the period at the end the following: ``, except 
that the amount of the monthly stipend described in subsection 
(c)(1)(B) or (g)(3)(A)(ii) of section 3313, as the case may be, shall 
be payable in an amount equal to 50 percent of the amount of such 
stipend that would otherwise be payable under this chapter to the 
individual making the transfer''.
  (d) Clerical Amendment.--Such section is further amended by striking 
``armed forces'' each place it appears and inserting ``Armed Forces''.
  (e) Applicability.--The amendments made by this section shall apply 
with respect to an election to transfer entitlement under section 3319 
of title 38, United States Code, that is made on or after the date that 
is 180 days after the date of the enactment of this Act.

SEC. 302. CLARIFICATION OF ELIGIBILITY FOR MARINE GUNNERY SERGEANT JOHN 
                    DAVID FRY SCHOLARSHIP.

  (a) In General.--Section 701(d) of the Veterans Access, Choice, and 
Accountability Act of 2014 (Public Law 113-146; 128 Stat. 1796; 38 
U.S.C. 3311 note) is amended to read as follows:
  ``(d) Applicability.--
          ``(1) In general.--The amendments made by this section shall 
        apply with respect to a quarter, semester, or term, as 
        applicable, commencing on or after January 1, 2015.
          ``(2) Deaths that occurred between september 11, 2001, and 
        december 31, 2005.--For purposes of section 3311(f)(2) of title 
        38, United States Code, any member of the Armed Forces who died 
        during the period beginning on September 11, 2001, and ending 
        on December 31, 2005, is deemed to have died on January 1, 
        2006.''.
  (b) Election on Receipt of Certain Benefits.--Section 3311(f) of 
title 38, United States Code, is amended--
          (1) in paragraph (3), by striking ``A surviving spouse'' and 
        inserting ``Except as provided in paragraph (4), a surviving 
        spouse'';
          (2) by redesignating paragraph (4) as paragraph (5); and
          (3) by inserting after paragraph (3) the following new 
        paragraph (4):
          ``(4) Exception for certain elections.--
                  ``(A) In general.--An election made under paragraph 
                (3) by a spouse described in subparagraph (B) may not 
                be treated as irrevocable if such election occurred 
                before the date of the enactment of this paragraph.
                  ``(B) Eligible surviving spouse.--A spouse described 
                in this subparagraph is an individual--
                          ``(i) who is entitled to assistance under 
                        subsection (a) pursuant to paragraph (9) of 
                        subsection (b); and
                          ``(ii) who was the spouse of a member of the 
                        Armed Forces who died during the period 
                        beginning on September 11, 2001, and ending on 
                        December 31, 2005.''.
  (c) Technical Amendment.--Paragraph (5) of subsection (f) of section 
3311 of title 38, United States Code, as redesignated by subsection 
(b)(2), is amended by striking ``that paragraph'' and inserting 
``paragraph (9) of subsection (b)''.
  (d) Yellow Ribbon G.I. Education Enhancement Program.--Section 
3317(a) of such title is amended by striking ``paragraphs (1) and (2) 
of section 3311(b)'' and inserting ``paragraphs (1), (2), and (9) of 
section 3311(b) of this title''.

SEC. 303. APPROVAL OF COURSES OF EDUCATION AND TRAINING FOR PURPOSES OF 
                    THE VOCATIONAL REHABILITATION PROGRAM OF THE 
                    DEPARTMENT OF VETERANS AFFAIRS.

  (a) In General.--Section 3104(b) of title 38, United States Code, is 
amended by adding at the end the following new sentence: ``To the 
maximum extent practicable, a course of education or training may be 
pursued by a veteran as part of a rehabilitation program under this 
chapter only if the course is approved for purposes of chapter 30 or 33 
of this title. The Secretary may waive the requirement under the 
preceding sentence to the extent the Secretary determines 
appropriate.''.
  (b) Effective Date.--The amendment made by subsection (a) shall apply 
with respect to a course of education or training pursued by a veteran 
who first begins a program of rehabilitation under chapter 31 of title 
38, United States Code, on or after the date that is one year after the 
date of the enactment of this Act.

SEC. 304. AUTHORITY TO PRIORITIZE VOCATIONAL REHABILITATION SERVICES 
                    BASED ON NEED.

  Section 3104 of title 38, United States Code, as amended by section 
303, is further amended by adding at the end the following new 
subsection:
  ``(c)(1) The Secretary shall have the authority to administer this 
chapter by prioritizing the provision of services under this chapter 
based on need, as determined by the Secretary. In evaluating need for 
purposes of this subsection, the Secretary shall consider disability 
ratings, the severity of employment handicaps, qualification for a 
program of independent living, income, and any other factor the 
Secretary determines appropriate.
  ``(2) Not later than 90 days before making any changes to the 
prioritization of the provision of services under this chapter as 
authorized under paragraph (1), the Secretary shall submit to Congress 
a plan describing such changes.''.

SEC. 305. RECODIFICATION AND IMPROVEMENT OF ELECTION PROCESS FOR POST-
                    9/11 EDUCATIONAL ASSISTANCE PROGRAM.

  (a) In General.--Subchapter III of chapter 33 of title 38, United 
States Code, is amended by adding at the end the following new section:

``Sec. 3326. Election to receive educational assistance

  ``(a) Individuals Eligible to Elect Participation in Post-9/11 
Educational Assistance.--An individual may elect to receive educational 
assistance under this chapter if such individual--
          ``(1) as of August 1, 2009--
                  ``(A) is entitled to basic educational assistance 
                under chapter 30 of the title and has used, but retains 
                unused, entitlement under that chapter;
                  ``(B) is entitled to educational assistance under 
                chapter 107, 1606, or 1607 of title 10 and has used, 
                but retains unused, entitlement under the applicable 
                chapter;
                  ``(C) is entitled to basic educational assistance 
                under chapter 30 of this title but has not used any 
                entitlement under that chapter;
                  ``(D) is entitled to educational assistance under 
                chapter 107, 1606, or 1607 of title 10 but has not used 
                any entitlement under such chapter;
                  ``(E) is a member of the Armed Forces who is eligible 
                for receipt of basic educational assistance under 
                chapter 30 this title and is making contributions 
                toward such assistance under section 3011(b) or 3012(c) 
                of this title; or
                  ``(F) is a member of the Armed Forces who is not 
                entitled to basic educational assistance under chapter 
                30 of this title by reason of an election under section 
                3011(c)(1) or 3012(d)(1) of this title; and
          ``(2) as of the date of the individual's election under this 
        paragraph, meets the requirements for entitlement to 
        educational assistance under this chapter.
  ``(b) Cessation of Contributions Toward GI Bill.--Effective as of the 
first month beginning on or after the date of an election under 
subsection (a) of an individual described by paragraph (1)(E) of that 
subsection, the obligation of the individual to make contributions 
under section 3011(b) or 3012(c) of this title, as applicable, shall 
cease, and the requirements of such section shall be deemed to be no 
longer applicable to the individual.
  ``(c) Revocation of Remaining Transferred Entitlement.--
          ``(1) Election to revoke.--If, on the date an individual 
        described in paragraph (1)(A) or (1)(C) of subsection (a) makes 
        an election under that subsection, a transfer of the 
        entitlement of the individual to basic educational assistance 
        under section 3020 of this title is in effect and a number of 
        months of the entitlement so transferred remain unutilized, the 
        individual may elect to revoke all or a portion of the 
        entitlement so transferred that remains unutilized.
          ``(2) Availability of revoked entitlement.--Any entitlement 
        revoked by an individual under this paragraph shall no longer 
        be available to the dependent to whom transferred, but shall be 
        available to the individual instead for educational assistance 
        under chapter 33 of this title in accordance with the 
        provisions of this section.
          ``(3) Availability of unrevoked entitlement.--Any entitlement 
        described in paragraph (1) that is not revoked by an individual 
        in accordance with that paragraph shall remain available to the 
        dependent or dependents concerned in accordance with the 
        current transfer of such entitlement under section 3020 of this 
        title.
  ``(d) Post-9/11 Educational Assistance.--
          ``(1) In general.--Subject to paragraph (2) and except as 
        provided in subsection (e), an individual making an election 
        under subsection (a) shall be entitled to educational 
        assistance under this chapter in accordance with the provisions 
        of this chapter, instead of basic educational assistance under 
        chapter 30 this title, or educational assistance under chapter 
        107, 1606, or 1607 of title 10, as applicable.
          ``(2) Limitation on entitlement for certain individuals.--In 
        the case of an individual making an election under subsection 
        (a) who is described by paragraph (1)(A) of that subsection, 
        the number of months of entitlement of the individual to 
        educational assistance under this chapter 33 shall be the 
        number of months equal to--
                  ``(A) the number of months of unused entitlement of 
                the individual under chapter 30 of this title, as of 
                the date of the election, plus
                  ``(B) the number of months, if any, of entitlement 
                revoked by the individual under subsection (c)(1).
  ``(e) Continuing Entitlement to Educational Assistance Not Available 
Under 9/11 Assistance Program.--
          ``(1) In general.--In the event educational assistance to 
        which an individual making an election under subsection (a) 
        would be entitled under chapter 30 of this title, or chapter 
        107, 1606, or 1607 of title 10, as applicable, is not 
        authorized to be available to the individual under the 
        provisions of this chapter the individual shall remain entitled 
        to such educational assistance in accordance with the 
        provisions of the applicable chapter.
          ``(2) Charge for use of entitlement.--The utilization by an 
        individual of entitlement under paragraph (1) shall be 
        chargeable against the entitlement of the individual to 
        educational assistance under this chapter at the rate of one 
        month of entitlement under this chapter for each month of 
        entitlement utilized by the individual under paragraph (1) (as 
        determined as if such entitlement were utilized under the 
        provisions of chapter 30 of this title, or chapter 107, 1606, 
        or 1607 of title 10, as applicable).
  ``(f) Additional Post-9/11 Assistance for Members Having Made 
Contributions Toward GI Bill.--
          ``(1) Additional assistance.--In the case of an individual 
        making an election under subsection (a) who is described by 
        subparagraph (A), (C), or (E) of paragraph (1) of that 
        subsection, the amount of educational assistance payable to the 
        individual under this chapter 33 as a monthly stipend payable 
        under paragraph (1)(B) of section 3313(c) of this title, or 
        under paragraphs (2) through (7) of that section (as 
        applicable), shall be the amount otherwise payable as a monthly 
        stipend under the applicable paragraph increased by the amount 
        equal to--
                  ``(A) the total amount of contributions toward basic 
                educational assistance made by the individual under 
                section 3011(b) or 3012(c) of this title, as of the 
                date of the election, multiplied by
                  ``(B) the fraction--
                          ``(i) the numerator of which is--
                                  ``(I) the number of months of 
                                entitlement to basic educational 
                                assistance under chapter 30 of this 
                                title remaining to the individual at 
                                the time of the election; plus
                                  ``(II) the number of months, if any, 
                                of entitlement under such chapter 30 
                                revoked by the individual under 
                                subsection (c)(1); and
                          ``(ii) the denominator of which is 36 months.
          ``(2) Months of remaining entitlement for certain 
        individuals.--In the case of an individual covered by paragraph 
        (1) who is described by subsection (a)(1)(E), the number of 
        months of entitlement to basic educational assistance remaining 
        to the individual for purposes of paragraph (1)(B)(i)(II) shall 
        be 36 months.
          ``(3) Timing of payment.--The amount payable with respect to 
        an individual under paragraph (1) shall be paid to the 
        individual together with the last payment of the monthly 
        stipend payable to the individual under paragraph (1)(B) of 
        section 3313(c) of this title, or under subsections (b) through 
        (g) of that section (as applicable), before the exhaustion of 
        the individual's entitlement to educational assistance under 
        this chapter.
  ``(g) Continuing Entitlement to Additional Assistance for Critical 
Skills or Speciality and Additional Service.--An individual making an 
election under subsection (a)(1) who, at the time of the election, is 
entitled to increased educational assistance under section 3015(d) of 
this title, or section 16131(i) of title 10, or supplemental 
educational assistance under subchapter III of chapter 30 of this 
title, shall remain entitled to such increased educational assistance 
or supplemental educational assistance in the utilization of 
entitlement to educational assistance under this chapter, in an amount 
equal to the quarter, semester, or term, as applicable, equivalent of 
the monthly amount of such increased educational assistance or 
supplemental educational assistance payable with respect to the 
individual at the time of the election.
  ``(h) Alternative Election by Secretary.--
          ``(1) In general.--In the case of an individual who, on or 
        after January 1, 2016, submits to the Secretary an election 
        under this section that the Secretary determines is clearly 
        against the interests of the individual, or who fails to make 
        an election under this section, the Secretary may make an 
        alternative election on behalf of the individual that the 
        Secretary determines is in the best interests of the 
        individual.
          ``(2) Notice.--If the Secretary makes an election on behalf 
        of an individual under this subsection, the Secretary shall 
        notify the individual by not later than seven days after making 
        such election and shall provide the individual with a 30-day 
        period, beginning on the date of the individual's receipt of 
        such notice, during which the individual may modify or revoke 
        the election made by the Secretary on the individual's behalf. 
        The Secretary shall include, as part of such notice, a clear 
        statement of why the alternative election made by the Secretary 
        is in the best interests of the individual as compared to the 
        election submitted by the individual. The Secretary shall 
        provide the notice required under this paragraph by electronic 
        means whenever possible.
  ``(i) Irrevocability of Elections.--An election under subsection (a) 
or (c)(1) is irrevocable.''.
  (b) Clerical Amendment.--The table of sections at the beginning of 
such chapter is amended by adding at the end the following new item:

``3326. Election to receive educational assistance.''.

  (c) Conforming Repeal.--Subsection (c) of section 5003 of the Post-9/
11 Veterans Educational Assistance Act of 2008 (Public Law 110-252; 38 
U.S.C. 3301 note) is hereby repealed.

SEC. 306. CLARIFICATION OF ASSISTANCE PROVIDED FOR CERTAIN FLIGHT 
                    TRAINING AND OTHER PROGRAMS OF EDUCATION.

  (a) Flight Training.--Subsection (c)(1)(A) of section 3313 of title 
38, United States Code, is amended--
          (1) in clause (i)--
                  (A) by redesignating subclauses (I) and (II) as items 
                (aa) and (bb), respectively;
                  (B) by striking ``In the case of a program of 
                education pursued at a public institution of higher 
                learning'' and inserting ``(I) Subject to subclause 
                (II), in the case of a program of education pursued at 
                a public institution of higher learning not described 
                in clause (ii)(II)(bb)''; and
                  (C) by adding at the end the following new subclause:
                          ``(II) In determining the actual net cost for 
                        in-State tuition and fees pursuant to subclause 
                        (I), the Secretary may not pay for tuition and 
                        fees relating to flight training.''; and
          (2) in clause (ii)--
                  (A) in subclause (I), by redesignating items (aa) and 
                (bb) as subitems (AA) and (BB), respectively;
                  (B) in subclause (II), by redesignating items (aa) 
                and (bb) as subitems (AA) and (BB), respectively;
                  (C) by redesignating subclauses (I) and (II) as items 
                (aa) and (bb), respectively;
                  (D) by striking ``In the case of a program of 
                education pursued at a non-public or foreign 
                institution of higher learning'' and inserting ``(I) In 
                the case of a program of education described in 
                subclause (II)''; and
                  (E) by adding at the end the following new subclause:
                          ``(II) A program of education described in 
                        this subclause is any of the following:
                                  ``(aa) A program of education pursued 
                                at a non-public or foreign institution 
                                of higher learning.
                                  ``(bb) A program of education pursued 
                                at a public institution of higher 
                                learning in which flight training is 
                                required to earn the degree being 
                                pursued (including with respect to a 
                                dual major, concentration, or other 
                                element of such a degree).''.
  (b) Certain Programs of Education Carried Out Under Contract.--
Section 3313(c)(1)(A)(ii)(II) of title 38, United States Code, as added 
by subsection (a)(2)(E), is amended by adding at the end the following 
new item:
                                  ``(cc) A program of education pursued 
                                at a public institution of higher 
                                learning in which the public 
                                institution of higher learning enters 
                                into a contract or agreement with an 
                                entity (other than another public 
                                institution of higher learning) to 
                                provide such program of education or a 
                                portion of such program of 
                                education.''.
  (c) Application.--
          (1) In general.--Except as provided by paragraph (2), the 
        amendments made by subsection (a) and (b) shall apply with 
        respect to a quarter, semester, or term, as applicable, 
        commencing on or after the date of the enactment of this Act.
          (2) Special rule for current students.--In the case of an 
        individual who, as of the date of the enactment of this Act, is 
        using educational assistance under chapter 33 of title 38, 
        United States Code, to pursue a course of education that 
        includes a program of education described in item (bb) or (cc) 
        of section 3313(c)(1)(A)(ii)(II) of title 38, United States 
        Code, as added by subsections (a) and (b), respectively, the 
        amendment made by such subsection shall apply with respect to a 
        quarter, semester, or term, as applicable, commencing on or 
        after the date that is two years after the date of the 
        enactment of this Act.

SEC. 307. CONSIDERATION OF CERTAIN TIME SPENT RECEIVING MEDICAL CARE 
                    FROM SECRETARY OF DEFENSE AS ACTIVE DUTY FOR 
                    PURPOSES OF ELIGIBILITY FOR POST-9/11 EDUCATIONAL 
                    ASSISTANCE.

  (a) In General.--Section 3301(1)(B) of title 38, United States Code, 
is amended by inserting ``12301(h),'' after ``12301(g),''.
  (b) Application.--The amendment made by subsection (a) shall apply 
with respect to active duty service by a member of a reserve component 
covered by section 12301(h) of title 10, United States, beginning on or 
after the date that is 180 days after the date of the enactment of this 
Act.

SEC. 308. WORK-STUDY ALLOWANCE.

  Section 3485(a)(4) of title 38, United States Code, is amended by 
striking ``June 30, 2013'' each place it appears and inserting ``June 
30, 2013, or the period beginning on June 30, 2016, and ending on June 
30, 2021''.

SEC. 309. VOCATIONAL REHABILITATION AND EDUCATION ACTION PLAN.

   Not later than 270 days after the date of the enactment of this Act, 
the Secretary of Veterans Affairs shall develop and publish an action 
plan for improving the services and assistance provided under chapter 
31 of title 38, United States Code. Such plan shall include each of the 
following:
          (1) A comprehensive analysis of, and recommendations and a 
        proposed implementation plan for remedying workload management 
        challenges at regional offices of the Department of Veterans 
        Affairs, including steps to reduce counselor caseloads of 
        veterans participating in a rehabilitation program under such 
        chapter, particularly for counselors who are assisting veterans 
        with traumatic brain injury and post-traumatic stress disorder 
        and counselors with educational and vocational counseling 
        workloads.
          (2) A comprehensive analysis of the reasons for the 
        disproportionately low percentage of veterans with service-
        connected disabilities who served in the Armed Forces after 
        September 11, 2001, who opt to participate in a rehabilitation 
        program under such chapter relative to the percentage of such 
        veterans who use their entitlement to educational assistance 
        under chapter 33 of title 38, United States Code, including an 
        analysis of barriers to timely enrollment in rehabilitation 
        programs under chapter 31 of such title and of any barriers to 
        a veteran enrolling in the program of that veteran's choice.
          (3) Recommendations and a proposed implementation plan for 
        encouraging more veterans with service-connected disabilities 
        who served in the Armed Forces after September 11, 2001, to 
        participate in rehabilitation programs under chapter 31 of such 
        title.
          (4) A national staff training program for vocational 
        rehabilitation counselors of the Department that includes the 
        provision of--
                  (A) training to assist counselors in understanding 
                the very profound disorientation experienced by 
                warriors whose lives and life-plans have been upended 
                and out of their control because of their injury;
                  (B) training to assist counselors in working in 
                partnership with veterans on individual rehabilitation 
                plans; and
                  (C) training on post-traumatic stress disorder and 
                other mental health conditions and on moderate to 
                severe traumatic brain injury that is designed to 
                improve the ability of such counselors to assist 
                veterans with these conditions, including by providing 
                information on the broad spectrum of such conditions 
                and the effect of such conditions on an individual's 
                abilities and functional limitations.

SEC. 310. REDUCTION IN REDUNDANCY AND INEFFICIENCIES IN VOCATIONAL 
                    REHABILITATION CLAIMS PROCESSING.

  (a) Vocational Rehabilitation Claims.--The Secretary of Veterans 
Affairs shall reduce redundancy and inefficiencies in the use of 
information technology to process claims for rehabilitation programs 
under chapter 31 of title 38, United States Code, by--
          (1) ensuring that all payments for and on behalf of veterans 
        participating in a rehabilitation program under such chapter 
        are only processed and paid out of one corporate information 
        technology system, in order to eliminate the redundancy of 
        multiple information technology payment systems; and
          (2) enhancing the information technology system supporting 
        veterans participating in such a program to support more 
        accurate accounting of services and outcomes for such veterans.
  (b) Authorization of Appropriations.--There is authorized to be 
appropriated to the Secretary of Veterans Affairs for fiscal year 2016 
$10,000,000 to carry out this section.
  (c) Report.--Not later than 180 days after the date of the enactment 
of this Act, the Secretary of Veterans Affairs shall submit to Congress 
a report on the changes made pursuant to subsection (a).

           TITLE IV--ADMINISTRATION OF EDUCATIONAL ASSISTANCE

SEC. 401. CENTRALIZED REPORTING OF VETERAN ENROLLMENT BY CERTAIN 
                    GROUPS, DISTRICTS, AND CONSORTIUMS OF EDUCATIONAL 
                    INSTITUTIONS.

  (a) In General.--Section 3684(a) of title 38, United States Code, is 
amended--
          (1) in paragraph (1), by inserting ``32, 33,'' after ``31,''; 
        and
          (2) by adding at the end the following new paragraph:
  ``(4) For purposes of this subsection, the term `educational 
institution' may include a group, district, or consortium of separately 
accredited educational institutions located in the same State that are 
organized in a manner that facilitates the centralized reporting of the 
enrollments in such group, district, or consortium of institutions.''.
  (b) Effective Date.--The amendments made by subsection (a) shall 
apply with respect to reports submitted on or after the date of the 
enactment of this Act.

SEC. 402. PROVISION OF INFORMATION REGARDING VETERAN ENTITLEMENT TO 
                    EDUCATIONAL ASSISTANCE.

  (a) In General.--Subchapter II of chapter 36 of title 38, United 
States Code, is amended by adding at the end the following new section:

``Sec. 3699. Provision of certain information to educational 
                    institutions

  ``For each veteran or other individual pursuing a course of education 
that has been approved under this chapter using educational assistance 
to which the veteran or other individual is entitled under chapter 30, 
32, 33, or 35 of this title, the Secretary shall make available to the 
educational institution offering the course information about the 
amount of such educational assistance to which the veteran or other 
individual is entitled. Such information shall be provided to such 
educational institution through a secure information technology system 
accessible by the educational institution and shall be regularly 
updated to reflect any amounts used by the veteran or other 
individual.''.
  (b) Clerical Amendment.--The table of sections at the beginning of 
such chapter is amended by inserting after the item relating to section 
3698 the following new item:

``3699. Provision of certain information to educational 
institutions.''.

SEC. 403. ROLE OF STATE APPROVING AGENCIES.

  (a) Approval of Certain Courses.--Section 3672(b)(2)(A) of title 38, 
United States Code, is amended by striking ``the following'' and all 
that follows through the colon and inserting the following: ``a program 
of education is deemed to be approved for purposes of this chapter if a 
State approving agency determines that the program is one of the 
following programs:''.
  (b) Approval of Other Courses.--Section 3675 of such title is 
amended--
          (1) in subsection (a)(1)--
                  (A) by striking ``The Secretary or a State approving 
                agency'' and inserting ``A State approving agency, or 
                the Secretary when acting in the role of a State 
                approving agency,''; and
                  (B) by striking ``offered by proprietary for-profit 
                educational institutions'' and inserting ``not covered 
                by section 3672 of this title''; and
          (2) in subsection (b), by striking ``the Secretary or the 
        State approving agency'' each place it appears and inserting 
        ``the State approving agency, or the Secretary when acting in 
        the role of a State approving agency,''.

SEC. 404. CRITERIA USED TO APPROVE COURSES.

  (a) Nonaccredited Courses.--Section 3676(c)(14) of title 38, United 
States Code, is amended by inserting before the period the following: 
``if the Secretary, in consultation with the State approving agency and 
pursuant to regulations prescribed to carry out this paragraph, 
determines such criteria are necessary and treat public, private, and 
proprietary for-profit educational institutions equitably''.
  (b) Accredited Courses.--Section 3675(b)(3) of such title is amended 
by striking ``and (3)'' and inserting ``(3), and (14)''.
  (c) Application.--The amendment made by subsection (a) shall apply 
with respect to--
          (1) criteria developed pursuant to paragraph (14) of 
        subsection (c) of section 3676 of title 38, United States Code, 
        on or after January 1, 2013; and
          (2) an investigation conducted under such subsection that is 
        covered by a reimbursement of expenses paid by the Secretary of 
        Veterans Affairs to a State pursuant to section 3674 of such 
        title on or after October 1, 2015.

SEC. 405. COMPLIANCE SURVEYS.

  (a) In General.--Section 3693 of such title is amended--
          (1) by striking subsection (a) and inserting the following 
        new subsection (a):
  ``(a)(1) Except as provided in subsection (b), the Secretary shall 
conduct an annual compliance survey of educational institutions and 
training establishments offering one or more courses approved for the 
enrollment of eligible veterans or persons if at least 20 such veterans 
or persons are enrolled in any such course. The Secretary shall--
          ``(A) design the compliance surveys to ensure that such 
        institutions or establishments, as the case may be, and 
        approved courses are in compliance with all applicable 
        provisions of chapters 30 through 36 of this title;
          ``(B) survey each such educational institution and training 
        establishment not less than once during every two-year period; 
        and
          ``(C) assign not fewer than one education compliance 
        specialist to work on compliance surveys in any year for each 
        40 compliance surveys required to be made under this section 
        for such year.
  ``(2) The Secretary, in consultation with the State approving 
agencies, shall--
          ``(A) annually determine the parameters of the surveys 
        required under paragraph (1); and
          ``(B) not later than September 1 of each year, make available 
        to the State approving agencies a list of the educational 
        institutions and training establishments that will be surveyed 
        during the fiscal year following the date of making such list 
        available.''; and
          (2) by adding at the end the following new subsection:
  ``(c) In this section, the terms `educational institution' and 
`training establishment' have the meaning given such terms in section 
3452 of this title.''.
  (b) Conforming Amendments.--Subsection (b) of such section is 
amended--
          (1) by striking ``subsection (a) of this section for an 
        annual compliance survey'' and inserting ``subsection (a)(1) 
        for a compliance survey'';
          (2) by striking ``institution'' and inserting ``educational 
        institution or training establishment''; and
          (3) by striking ``institution's demonstrated record of 
        compliance'' and inserting ``record of compliance of such 
        institution or establishment''.

SEC. 406. SURVEY OF INDIVIDUALS USING THEIR ENTITLEMENT TO EDUCATIONAL 
                    ASSISTANCE UNDER THE EDUCATIONAL ASSISTANCE 
                    PROGRAMS ADMINISTERED BY THE SECRETARY OF VETERANS 
                    AFFAIRS.

  (a) Survey Required.--By not later than 270 days after the date of 
the enactment of this Act, the Secretary of Veterans Affairs shall 
enter into a contract with a non-government entity for the conduct of a 
survey of a statistically valid sample of individuals who have used or 
are using their entitlement to educational assistance under chapters 
30, 32, 33, and 35 of title 38, United States Code, to pursue a program 
of education or training. The contract shall provide that--
          (1) not later than one month before the collection of data 
        under the survey begins, the survey shall be submitted to the 
        Committees on Veterans' Affairs of the Senate and House of 
        Representatives;
          (2) the non-government entity shall complete the survey and 
        submit to the Secretary the results of the survey by not later 
        than 180 days after entering into the contract; and
          (3) the survey shall be conducted by electronic means and by 
        any other means the non-government entity determines 
        appropriate.
  (b) Information To Be Collected.--The contract under subsection (a) 
shall provide that the survey shall be designed to collect the 
following types of information about each individual surveyed, where 
applicable:
          (1) Demographic information, including the highest level of 
        education completed by the individual, the military 
        occupational specialty or specialties of the individual while 
        serving on active duty as a member of the Armed Forces or as a 
        member of the National Guard or of a Reserve Component of the 
        Armed Forces, and whether the individual has a service-
        connected disability.
          (2) The opinion of the individual regarding participation in 
        the transition assistance program under section 1144 of title 
        10, United States Code, and the effectiveness of the program, 
        including instruction on the use of the benefits under laws 
        administered by the Secretary of Veterans Affairs.
          (3) The resources the individual used to help the 
        individual--
                  (A) decide to use the individual's entitlement to 
                educational assistance to enroll in a program of 
                education or training; and
                  (B) choose the program of education or training the 
                individual pursued.
          (4) The individual's goal when the individual enrolled in the 
        program of education or training.
          (5) The nature of the individual's experience with the 
        education benefits processing system of the Department of 
        Veterans Affairs.
          (6) The nature of the individual's experience with the school 
        certifying official of the educational institution where the 
        individual pursued the program of education or training who 
        processed the individual's claim.
          (7) Any services or benefits the educational institution or 
        program of education or training provided to veterans while the 
        individual pursued the program of education or training.
          (8) The type of educational institution at which the 
        individual pursued the program of education or training.
          (9) Whether the individual completed the program of education 
        or training or the number of credit hours completed by the 
        individual as of the time of the survey, and, if applicable, 
        any degree or certificate obtained by the individual for 
        completing the program.
          (10) The employment status of the individual and whether such 
        employment status differs from the employment status of the 
        individual prior to enrolling in the program of education or 
        training.
          (11) Whether the individual is or was enrolled in a program 
        of education on a full-time or part-time basis.
          (12) The opinion of the individual on the effectiveness of 
        the educational assistance program of the Department of 
        Veterans Affairs under which the individual was entitled to 
        educational assistance.
          (13) Whether the individual was ever entitled to a 
        rehabilitation under chapter 31 of title 38, United States 
        Code, and whether the individual participated in such a 
        program.
          (14) A description of any circumstances that prevented the 
        individual from using the individual's entitlement to 
        educational assistance to pursue a desired career path or 
        degree.
          (15) Whether the individual is using the individual's 
        entitlement to educational assistance to pursue a program of 
        education or training or has transferred such an entitlement to 
        a dependent.
          (16) Such other matters as the Secretary determines 
        appropriate.
  (c) Report.--Not later than 90 days after receiving the results of 
the survey required under this section, the Secretary shall submit to 
the Committees on Veterans' Affairs of the Senate and House of 
Representatives a report on the results of the survey and any 
recommendations of the Secretary relating to such results. Such report 
shall also include an unedited version of the results of the survey 
submitted by the non-government entity that conducted the study.

SEC. 407. IMPROVEMENT OF INFORMATION TECHNOLOGY OF THE VETERANS 
                    BENEFITS ADMINISTRATION OF THE DEPARTMENT OF 
                    VETERANS AFFAIRS.

  (a) Processing of Certain Educational Assistance Claims.--The 
Secretary of Veterans Affairs shall, to the maximum extent possible, 
make such changes and improvements to the information technology system 
of the Veterans Benefits Administration of the Department of Veterans 
Affairs to ensure that--
          (1) to the maximum extent possible, all original and 
        supplemental claims for educational assistance under chapter 33 
        of title 38, United States Code, are adjudicated 
        electronically; and
          (2) rules-based processing is used to make decisions with 
        respect to such claims with little human intervention.
  (b) Implementation Plan.--Not later than 180 days after the date of 
the enactment of this Act, the Secretary of Veterans Affairs shall 
submit to Congress a plan to implement the changes and improvements 
described in subsection (a).
  (c) Report.--Not later than one year after the date of the enactment 
of this Act, the Secretary of Veterans Affairs shall submit to Congress 
a report on the implementation of the changes and improvements 
described in subsection (a).
  (d) Authorization of Appropriations.--There is authorized to be 
appropriated to the Secretary of Veterans Affairs $30,000,000 to carry 
out this section during fiscal years 2016 and 2017.

SEC. 408. TECHNICAL AMENDMENT RELATING TO IN-STATE TUITION RATE FOR 
                    INDIVIDUALS TO WHOM ENTITLEMENT IS TRANSFERRED 
                    UNDER ALL-VOLUNTEER FORCE EDUCATIONAL ASSISTANCE 
                    PROGRAM AND POST-9/11 EDUCATIONAL ASSISTANCE.

  (a) Technical Amendment.--Section 3679(c)(2)(B) of title 38, United 
States Code, is amended by striking ``or 3319 of this title'' and all 
that follows and inserting ``of this title or to whom educational 
assistance is transferred under section 3319 of this title.''.
  (b) Applicability.--The amendment made by subsection (a) shall apply 
with respect to a course, semester, or term that begins after July 1, 
2016.

                         TITLE V--OTHER MATTERS

SEC. 501. AMOUNT OF LOAN GUARANTEED UNDER HOME LOAN PROGRAM OF 
                    DEPARTMENT OF VETERANS AFFAIRS.

  (a) Adjustment of Loan Limit.--Section 3703(a)(1) of title 38, United 
States Code, is amended--
          (1) in subparagraph (A)(i)(IV)--
                  (A) by striking ``the lesser of''; and
                  (B) by striking ``or 25 percent of the loan''; and
          (2) in subparagraph (C), by striking ``Freddie Mac'' and all 
        that follows through the period at the end and inserting 
        ``amount of the loan.''.
  (b) Effective Date.--The amendments made by this section shall apply 
with respect to a loan guaranteed under section 3710 of title 38, 
United States Code, on or after the date that is 30 days after the date 
of the enactment of this Act.

SEC. 502. LONGITUDINAL STUDY OF JOB COUNSELING, TRAINING, AND PLACEMENT 
                    SERVICE FOR VETERANS.

  (a) In General.--Chapter 41 of title 38, United States Code, is 
amended by adding at the end the following new section:

``Sec. 4115. Longitudinal study of job counseling, training, and 
                    placement service for veterans

  ``(a) Study Required.--(1) The Secretary shall enter into a contract 
with a non-government entity to conduct a longitudinal study of a 
statistically valid sample of each of the groups of individuals 
described in paragraph (2). The contract shall provide for the study of 
each such group over a period of at least five years.
  ``(2) The groups of individuals described in this paragraph are the 
following:
          ``(A) Veterans who have received intensive services.
          ``(B) Veterans who did not receive intensive services but who 
        otherwise received services under this chapter.
          ``(C) Veterans who did not seek or receive services under 
        this chapter.
  ``(3) The study required by this subsection shall include the 
collection of the following information for each individual who 
participates in the study:
          ``(A) The average number of months such individual served on 
        active duty.
          ``(B) The distribution of disability ratings of such 
        individual.
          ``(C) Any unemployment benefits received by such individual.
          ``(D) The average number of months such individual was 
        employed during the year covered by the report.
          ``(E) The average annual starting and ending salaries of any 
        such individual who was employed during the year covered by the 
        report.
          ``(F) The average annual income of such individual.
          ``(G) The average total household income of such individual 
        for the year covered by the report.
          ``(H) The percentage of such individuals who own their 
        principal residences.
          ``(I) The employment status of such individual.
          ``(J) In the case of such an individual who received services 
        under this chapter, whether the individual believes that any 
        service provided by a disabled veterans' outreach specialist or 
        local veterans' employment representative helped the individual 
        to become employed.
          ``(K) In the case of such an individual who believes such a 
        service helped the individual to become employed, whether--
                  ``(i) the individual retained the position of 
                employment for a period of one year or longer; and
                  ``(ii) the individual believes such a service helped 
                the individual to secure a higher wage or salary.
          ``(L) The conditions under which such individual was 
        discharged or released from the Armed Forces.
          ``(M) Whether such individual has used any educational 
        assistance to which the individual is entitled under this 
        title.
          ``(N) Whether such individual has participated in a 
        rehabilitation program under chapter 31 of this title.
          ``(O) Demographic information about such individual.
          ``(P) Such other information as the Secretary determines 
        appropriate.
  ``(b) Annual Reports.--(1) By not later than July 1 of each year 
covered by the study required under subsection (a), the Secretary shall 
submit to the Committees on Veterans' Affairs of the Senate and House 
of Representatives a report on the outcomes of the study during the 
preceding year.
  ``(2) The Secretary shall include in each annual report submitted 
under paragraph (1) any information the Secretary determines is 
necessary to determine the long-term outcomes of the individuals in the 
groups described in subsection (a)(2).''.
  (b) Clerical Amendment.--The table of sections at the beginning of 
such chapter is amended by adding at the end the following new item:

``4115. Longitudinal study of job counseling, training, and placement 
service for veterans.''.

SEC. 503. LIMITATIONS ON SUBCONTRACTS UNDER CONTRACTS WITH SMALL 
                    BUSINESS CONCERNS OWNED AND CONTROLLED BY VETERANS.

  (a) In General.--Section 8127 of title 38, United States Code, is 
amended--
          (1) by redesignating subsection (l) as subsection (m); and
          (2) by inserting after subsection (k) the following new 
        subsection (l):
  ``(l) Limitations on Subcontracting.--(1)(A) The requirements 
applicable to a covered small business concern under section 46 of the 
Small Business Act (15 U.S.C. 657s) shall apply with respect to a small 
business concern owned and controlled by a veteran with a service-
connected disability or a small business concern owned and controlled 
by a veteran that is awarded a contract that is counted for purposes of 
meeting the goals under subsection (a).
  ``(B) For purposes of applying the requirements of section 46 of the 
Small Business Act (15 U.S.C. 657s) pursuant to subparagraph (A), the 
term `similarly situated entity' used in such section 46 includes a 
subcontractor for a small business concern owned and controlled by a 
veteran with a service-connected disability or a small business concern 
owned and controlled by a veteran described in such subparagraph (A).
  ``(2) Before awarding a contract that is counted for purposes of 
meeting the goals under subsection (a), the Secretary shall obtain from 
an offeror a certification that the offeror will comply with the 
requirements described in paragraph (1)(A) if awarded the contract. 
Such certification shall--
          ``(A) specify the exact performance requirements applicable 
        under such paragraph; and
          ``(B) explicitly acknowledge that the certification is 
        subject to section 1001 of title 18.
  ``(3) If the Secretary determines that a small business concern that 
is awarded a contract that is counted for purposes of meeting the goals 
under subsection (a) did not act in good faith with respect to the 
requirements described in paragraph (1)(A), the small business concern 
shall be subject to the penalties specified in--
          ``(A) section 16(g)(1) of the Small Business Act (15 U.S.C. 
        645(g)(1)); and
          ``(B) section 1001 of title 18.
  ``(4)(A) The Director of Small and Disadvantaged Business Utilization 
for the Department, established pursuant to section 15(k) of the Small 
Business Act (15 U.S.C. 644(k)), and the Chief Acquisition Officer of 
the Department, established pursuant to section 1702 of title 41, shall 
jointly implement a process using the systems described in section 
16(g)(2) of the Small Business Act (15 U.S.C. 645(g)(2)), or any other 
systems available, to monitor compliance with this subsection. The 
Chief Acquisition Officer shall refer any violations of this subsection 
to the Inspector General of the Department.
  ``(B) Not later than November 30 of each year, the Inspector General 
shall submit to the Committees on Veterans' Affairs of the Senate and 
House of Representatives a report for the fiscal year preceding the 
fiscal year during which the report is submitted that includes, for the 
fiscal year covered by the report--
          ``(i) the number of referred violations received under 
        subparagraph (A); and
          ``(ii) the disposition of such referred violations, including 
        the number of small business concerns suspended or debarred 
        from Federal contracting or referred to the Attorney General 
        for prosecution.''.
  (b) Effective Date.--Subsection (l) of section 8127 of title 38, 
United States Code, as added by subsection (a) shall apply with respect 
to a contract entered into after the date of the enactment of this Act.

SEC. 504. PROCEDURES FOR PROVISION OF CERTAIN INFORMATION TO STATE 
                    VETERANS AGENCIES TO FACILITATE THE FURNISHING OF 
                    ASSISTANCE AND BENEFITS TO VETERANS.

  (a) Procedures Required.--The Secretary of Veterans Affairs shall 
develop procedures to share the information described in subsection (b) 
regarding veterans with State veterans agencies in electronic data 
format as a means of facilitating the furnishing of assistance and 
benefits to veterans.
  (b) Covered Information.--The information shared with State veterans 
agencies under subsection (a) regarding a veteran shall include the 
following:
          (1) Military service and separation data.
          (2) A personal email address.
          (3) A personal telephone number.
          (4) A mailing address.
  (c) Opt-Out Election.--A veteran may elect to prevent their 
information from being shared with State veterans agencies under 
subsection (a) pursuant to a process that the Secretary shall establish 
for purposes of this subsection.
  (d) Use of Information.--The Secretary shall ensure that the 
information shared with State veterans agencies in accordance with the 
procedures developed under subsection (a) is only shared by such 
agencies with county government veterans service offices for such 
purposes as the Secretary shall specify for the administration and 
delivery of assistance and benefits.

    Amend the title so as to read:
    A bill to amend title 38, United States Code, to make 
certain improvements in the laws administered by the Secretary 
of Veterans Affairs relating to health care, educational 
assistance, and vocational rehabilitation, to establish the 
Veterans Economic Opportunity and Transition Administration, 
and for other purposes.

                          Purpose and Summary

    H.R. 3016, the VA Provider Equity Act, was introduced by 
Representative Wenstrup of Ohio on July 9, 2015. H.R. 3016, as 
amended, the Veterans Employment, Education, and Healthcare 
Improvement Act incorporates the text of H.R. 3016 as well as 
provisions from the following bills: H.R. 272, introduced by 
Representative Tim Walberg of Michigan on January 12, 2015; 
H.R. 356, introduced by Representative Sean Patrick Maloney of 
New York on January 14, 2015; H.R. 359, introduced by 
Representative Steve Stivers of Ohio on January 14, 2015; H.R. 
423, introduced by Representative Doug Collins of Georgia on 
January 21, 2015; H.R. 475, introduced by Representative Brad 
Wenstrup of Ohio on January 22, 2015; H.R. 476, introduced by 
Representative Brad Wenstrup of Ohio on January 22, 2015; H.R. 
643, introduced by Representative Gus Bilirakis of Florida on 
February 2, 2015; H.R. 832, introduced by Representative Paul 
Cook of California on February 10, 2015; H.R. 1015, introduced 
by Representative Tim Huelskamp of Kansas on February 20, 2015; 
H.R. 1141, introduced by Representative Mark Takano of 
California on February 26, 2015; H.R. 1187, introduced by 
Representative Lee Zeldin of New York on February 27, 2015; 
H.R. 1862, introduced Representative Charles Boustany of 
Louisiana on April 16, 2015; H.R. 2275, introduced by 
Representative Jeff Miller of Florida on May 12, 2015; H.R. 
2344 introduced by Representative Brad Wenstrup of Ohio on May 
14, 2015; H.R. 2531, and introduced by Representative Tammy 
Duckworth of Illinois on May 21, 2015.
    H.R. 3016, as amended, would: (1) make Doctors of Podiatric 
Medicine (podiatrists) equal to Doctors of Osteopathy (DOs) and 
Medical Doctors (MDs) within VA in terms of pay, promotion, and 
leadership potential within the U.S. Department of Veterans 
Affairs (VA) health care system and amend VA's definition of 
``physician'' to include podiatrists; (2) increase, from third 
to first, the priority for enrollment in the VA health care 
system given to Medal of Honor (MOH) recipients and exempt MOH 
recipients from having to pay co-payments for inpatient care, 
outpatient care, long-term care, and prescription medications; 
(3) allow VA to provide the newborn child of a female veteran 
who is receiving VA provided maternity care with post-delivery 
care services for 42 days after the child's birth if the 
veteran delivered the child in a VA facility or another 
facility with which VA has a contract for such services; (4) 
require the Government Accountability Office (GAO) to conduct 
periodic audits of the VA health care budget; (5) require VA to 
conduct outreach to and establish a toll-free number for 
veterans with credit issues caused by a delayed payment of a 
claim for emergency hospital care, medical services, or other 
emergency health care furnished through a non-VA provider, 
report on the number of pending claims and VA's effectiveness 
in providing timely payment of proper invoices for emergency 
hospital care, medical services, or other emergency health care 
furnished through non-VA providers, and require GAO to conduct 
a study that evaluates the effectiveness of the Chief Business 
Office (CBO) in providing timely payment of a proper invoice 
for such care by the required payment date; (6) direct VA to 
carry out a 5-year pilot program to assess the effectiveness of 
addressing veterans' post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) and 
post-deployment mental health issues through the therapeutic 
medium of service dog training and handling; (7) authorize the 
creation of the new Veterans Economic Opportunity and 
Transition Administration (VEOTA) at VA; (8) transfer all 
programs and functions of the U.S. Department of Labor's (DoL) 
Veterans Employment and Training Service (VETS) to VA under the 
new VEOTA; (9) make various improvements to the G.I. Bill 
program; (10) provide eligibility for the Post-9/11 GI Bill for 
servicemembers on certain military orders; (11) improve the 
processing of vocational rehabilitation and education (VR&E;) 
benefits; (12) eliminate the current monetary cap for a VA-
backed home loan; (14) make changes to protect small businesses 
that are owned and controlled by veterans; and (15) authorize a 
new longitudinal study on outcomes of job training and 
placement programs for veterans.

                  Background and Need for Legislation


                     TITLE I--VETERANS HEALTH CARE

Section 101--Role of podiatrists in the Department of Veterans Affairs

    According to VA data regarding health care utilization 
among veterans of Operation Enduring Freedom, Operation Iraqi 
Freedom, and Operation New Dawn, of the approximately 61 
percent of veterans newly separated from service in the Armed 
Forces who have used VA health care since October 1, 2001, the 
most common diagnosis was for a musculoskeletal ailment. Some 
of these musculoskeletal ailments are the result of lower 
extremity injuries inflicted by improvised explosive devices on 
the battlefield. Musculoskeletal ailments are also an 
increasingly prevalent concern among veterans of previous 
generations who may be struggling with lower extremity issues 
exacerbated by aging, chronic conditions like diabetes, and 
complications resulting from military service. The recruitment 
and retention of podiatrists at VA medical facilities is 
critical to ensuring that these veterans are provided with 
high-quality care. However, VA's qualifications for podiatrists 
were developed in 1976 and have not been updated in the 39 
years since. In that time, the practice of podiatry has evolved 
significantly. Because VA's podiatric service has not kept pace 
with these changes, VA podiatrists experience disparities in 
recognition and pay when compared to their non-VA peers. During 
a May 15, 2015, Subcommittee on Health hearing on VA staffing, 
a representative from the American Podiatric Medical 
Association testified that there was a, ``. . . marked 
disparity in recognition and pay of podiatrists as physicians 
in the VA [healthcare system]. These discrepancies have 
directly resulted in a severe recruitment issue of experienced 
podiatrists into the VA, and unfortunately have also been the 
direct cause of retention issues.''
    To address this, Section 101 of the bill would make 
podiatrists equal to DOs and MDs within VA in terms of pay, 
make podiatrists eligible for the same promotions and 
leadership positions within VA as DOs and MDs, and amend VA's 
definition of ``physician'' to include podiatrists. The 
Committee believes that this will correct long-standing 
inequities between the treatment of podiatrists in VA medical 
facilities and podiatrists' practices in the private sector and 
significantly improve VA's ability to recruit and retain high-
quality podiatrists within the VA health care system.

Section 102--Priority of Medal of Honor recipients in health care 
        system of Department of Veterans Affairs

    Eligibility for the VA health care system is governed by a 
system of eight enrollment priority groups. Medal of Honor 
(MOH) recipients--who have been granted the highest award for 
valor that can be bestowed upon an individual for service in 
the United States Armed Forces--are eligible to be enrolled in 
the VA healthcare system under priority group 3. Other veterans 
eligible for enrollment under priority group 3 include former 
Prisoners of War, Purple Heart recipients, veterans whose 
discharge was for a disability that was incurred or aggravated 
in the line of duty, veterans with a VA-rated service-connected 
disability of 10 percent or 20 percent, and veterans awarded 
special eligibility for purposes of receiving vocational 
rehabilitation benefits. Veterans in priority group 3 are 
required to pay applicable VA copayments for certain care.
    Given the extraordinary service that MOH recipients have 
provided our nation, the Committee believes that these veterans 
should be granted the highest priority for care and should not 
be required to pay copayments for the care that they receive 
through VA. As such, Section 102 of the bill would increase, 
from third to first, the priority for enrollment in the VA 
health care system given to MOH recipients and would also 
exempt MOH recipients from having to pay co-payments for 
inpatient care, outpatient care, long-term care, and 
prescription medications.

Section 103--Improvement of care provided to newborn children

    During the 111th Congress, the Caregivers and Veterans 
Omnibus Health Services Act of 2010 (P.L. 111-163, 124 Stat. 
1130) authorized VA to furnish care to a newborn child of a 
female veteran receiving VA-provided maternity care for up to 
seven days following the birth of the child, if the female 
veteran delivered the newborn child in a VA facility or in 
another facility pursuant to a VA contract. Prior to this Act, 
VA had been authorized to provide maternity care to female 
veterans but had not been authorized to provide care to the 
newborn child of a female veteran. VA-provided newborn care, 
like VA-provided maternity care, is typically provided by non-
VA providers in non-VA facilities at VA's expense. VA defines 
newborn care as any care provided to an infant once the 
umbilical cord connecting it to its mother has been severed.
    The number of female veterans requiring VA-provided 
maternity and newborn care is rising. VA expects female 
veterans to deliver 2,157 newborns in Fiscal Year (FY) 2016, 
with 11 percent of those births expected to require inpatient 
hospitalization beyond the seven days that VA can currently 
cover. Further, VA expects the number of female veteran births 
to rise by approximately ten percent from FY 2017 to FY 2025, 
with the number of newborns delivered preterm or with low birth 
weight projected to increase 11 percent per year over that same 
time frame. What's more, there is evidence to suggest that 
female veterans, particularly those with PTSD are at an 
increased risk for birth complications. According to a 2014 
study conducted by VA and the Stanford University School of 
Medicine, a woman's risk of spontaneous premature delivery 
increases by 35 percent if the woman has PTSD in the year 
before delivery. The study team analyzed the 16,344 births that 
VA covered from 2000 to 2012 and found that 3,049 infants were 
born to female veterans with a PTSD diagnosis. Of those, there 
were 1,921 births to female veterans with a PTSD diagnosis in 
the year prior to giving birth.
    Section 103 of the bill would authorize VA to provide the 
newborn child of a woman veteran who is receiving VA maternity 
care with post-delivery care services for 42 days (six weeks) 
after the child's birth if the veteran delivered the child in a 
VA facility or another facility with which VA has a contract 
for such services. This would make VA-provided newborn care 
more equivalent to VA-provided maternity care in length, which 
generally begins with the confirmation of pregnancy and 
continues through the postpartum visit 6 to 8 weeks after 
delivery.

Section 104--Comptroller general audit of budget of Veterans Health 
        Administration

    The Veterans Health Care Budget Reform and Transparency Act 
of 2009 (P.L. 111-81, 123 Stat. 2137) required GAO to report on 
the President's annual budget request to Congress for VA health 
care services. In response to this mandate, GAO studied the 
consistency, transparency, and reliability of the information 
in VA's congressional budget justifications and VA's Enrollee 
Health Care Projection Model (EHCPM). GAO's last report 
conducted in accordance with this budget mandate was released 
in 2013. In June 2015, the Committee uncovered a multi-billion 
dollar shortfall in VA's Medical Services account which 
threatened VA's ability to continue treating veteran patients 
through the remainder of FY 2015. According to VA, this 
shortfall was driven by increased demand for non-VA care and 
rising costs of Hepatitis C treatments. To prevent a nationwide 
VA health care system shutdown, Congress passed the Surface 
Transportation and Veterans Health Care Choice Improvement Act 
of 2015 (P.L. 114-41, 129 Stat. 443), which included a section 
authorizing VA to access $3.348 billion from the Veterans 
Choice Fund to cover the costs of non-VA care and Hepatitis C 
treatments through the end of the FY 2015. However, while that 
action addressed VA's short-term VA health care budget 
concerns, it also highlighted the need for continuing audits of 
VA's health care budget.
    To add context to the requirement set forth in this 
section, VA's FY15 financial report was released on November 
16, 2015. While the auditor gave VA's financial statements an 
unmodified, i.e. ``clean'' opinion, internal controls have 
deteriorated. VA now has material weaknesses in its IT security 
controls, procurement, purchased care processing and 
reconciliation, and financial reporting. VA has significant 
deficiencies in operating expense accrual and the organization 
of its office of the Chief Financial Officer. In addition, 
Anti-deficiency Act violations and noncompliance with section 
5315 of title 38, U.S.C. (dealing with interest on and recovery 
of delinquent benefits payments) continue, and there are new 
non-compliances with the Federal Managers' Financial Integrity 
Act and the Improper Payments Elimination and Recovery Act. The 
overall picture of financial operations in VA has worsened from 
FY14.
    As such, Section 104 of the bill would require GAO to 
conduct periodic audits of the Veterans Health Administration 
(VHA) budget. In determining which aspect of VHA's budget to 
audit, GAO would be required to take into account current 
issues, national priorities, and priorities expressed by the 
House and Senate Committees on Veterans' Affairs, 
Appropriations, and Budget and to submit notice to those same 
committees 30 days before conducting the audit. This would 
ensure that GAO's work is in line with the specific aspects of 
VA's health care budget that are of the highest interest and 
value to Congress.

Section 105--Outreach to Veterans regarding effect of certain delayed 
        payments by Department of Veterans Affairs chief business 
        office

    Regulations issued in response to the Prompt Payment Act 
(chapter 39 of title 31, U.S.C.),\1\ stipulates that valid and 
proper invoices submitted by vendors must be paid on time by 
federal agencies. VA's ability to timely and accurately process 
payments to non-VA providers, in compliance with the prompt 
payment rule, is increasingly important as the number of 
veterans receiving care from non-VA providers continues to rise 
significantly. The Veterans Access, Choice, and Accountability 
Act of 2014 (P.L. 113-146, 128 Stat. 1754) (Choice Act) 
included two provisions aimed at improving the timeliness of 
VA's payments to non-VA providers. However, since the passage 
of the law, anecdotal reports continue to indicate that VA is 
not meeting this target or otherwise complying with the prompt 
payment rule. In the last year, the Committee has heard from 
health care entities ranging from large-scale hospital 
corporations to individual providers who report either 
nonpayment or extremely delayed and/or inaccurate payments on 
the part of VA. This has resulted in millions of dollars of 
unpaid debt, which, in some cases, has been transferred to the 
veteran patient.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------
    \1\5 C.F.R. Part 1315.
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    To assist veterans who have been penalized due to VA's 
inability or unwillingness to pay non-VA providers in a timely 
manner, Section 105 of the bill would require VA to conduct 
outreach to inform veterans of how to resolve credit issues 
caused by a delayed payment of a claim for emergency hospital 
care, medical services, or other emergency health care 
furnished through a non-VA provider. VA would also be required 
to establish a toll-free telephone number for veterans to 
report credit issues resulting from VA delayed or inaccurate 
payment to the VA CBO. This Section would also require VA to 
report to Congress annually on the Department's effectiveness 
in providing timely payment for care furnished through non-VA 
providers and quarterly reports on the number of pending claims 
for reimbursement by non-VA providers. This would ensure that 
the Committee is continually kept informed of VA's progress 
complying with the prompt payment rule while also ensuring that 
veterans are provided resources to assist them in resolving 
credit issues that may result from delayed or inaccurate 
payments on the part of VA.

Section 106--Department of Veterans Affairs pilot program on dog 
        training therapy

    Given the prevalence of PTSD and other post-deployment 
mental health issues among the veteran population, Congress has 
recognized the need to provide veterans seeking treatment for 
mental health issues with newer and more innovative therapies. 
One of these therapies is service dog training therapy, which 
is believed to help address symptoms associated with PTSD and 
post-deployment mental health issues without the use of 
pharmaceuticals. Currently, therapeutic service dog training 
programs for servicemembers and veterans are ongoing at the 
Walter Reed National Military Medical Center, the National 
Intrepid Center of Excellence, the Palo Alto VA Medical Center, 
the Fort Belvoir Warrior Transition Brigade, the 
NeuroRestorative Residential Treatment Center, and the Warrior 
Canine Connection Healing Quarters. Anecdotal reports from 
servicemembers and veterans who have sought care through these 
programs have been positive, including improved emotional 
regulation, sleep patterns, and sense of personal safety as 
well as reduced levels of anxiety and social isolation. 
According to a statement for the record provided to the 
Subcommittee on Health by Warrior Canine Connection for a 
Subcommittee legislative hearing on July 14, 2015, service dog 
training programs for veterans with mental health issues 
benefits veterans in the following ways:

        In teaching the dogs that the world is a safe place, 
        the Warrior Trainers challenge their symptoms of combat 
        stress. By focusing on preparing the dogs for service 
        as the partners of disabled veterans, they are 
        motivated and able to visit places they usually avoid, 
        like stores, restaurants, and crowded public 
        transportation stations. The program also emphasizes 
        positive reinforcement, emotional affect, consistency, 
        and patience--tools that make Warrior Trainers better 
        parents and improve their family relationships.

    Section 106 of the bill would require VA to carry out a 
five-year pilot program to assess the effectiveness of 
addressing veterans' post-deployment mental health and PTSD 
symptoms through the therapeutic medium of service dog training 
and handling. This would provide needed data regarding the 
effectiveness of service dog training for reducing symptoms of 
mental illness among the veteran population. In carrying out 
the pilot, VA would be required to contract with appropriate 
nongovernmental entities certified in the training and handling 
of service dogs located in close proximity to at least three 
but no more than five VA medical centers with a training area 
that would be appropriate for use in educating veterans with 
mental health conditions in the art and science of service dog 
training and handling. This would enable more veterans with 
mental health concerns to participate in service dog training 
programs, which the Committee hopes will assist them in 
reintegrating healthfully back into the community. Upon 
completion of the pilot, the trained service dogs would be 
provided to veterans with disabilities, thereby providing the 
veterans participating in the pilot with an opportunity to help 
their fellow veterans. The pilot program would have the added 
benefit of providing a possible career path to veterans who 
successfully graduate from the program and are interested in 
becoming certified dog trainers.

TITLE II--VETERANS ECONOMIC OPPORTUNTIY AND TRANSITITION ADMINISTRATION

Section 201--Establishment of Veteran Economic Opportunity and 
        Transition Administration of Department of Veterans Affairs

    Currently, title 38, U.S.C. establishes three separate 
Administrations within VA. Chapter 73 of title 38, U.S.C. 
establishes the VHA, which manages all VA health care related 
facilities and programs. Chapter 77 of title 38, U.S.C., 
establishes the Veterans Benefits Administration (VBA), which 
is responsible for the administration of all benefit programs, 
including compensation, pension, insurance, educational 
assistance and training programs, and loan guaranty programs. 
Chapter 24 of title 38, U.S.C. establishes the National 
Cemetery Administration (NCA), which manages over 131 National 
Cemeteries and other burial-related facilities and programs.
    VA's disability compensation program is a highly complex 
program, designed to provide monthly payments for disabilities 
incurred or aggravated in military service. With the wars in 
the Middle East and the aging of the veterans population in 
general, the number of compensation claims that have been 
received by VA has continued to increase. As of August 29, 
2015, there are still 356,765 disability claims backlogged at 
VA, and over 25 percent of these claims have been pending for 
more than 125 days. These backlogged claims continue to draw 
considerable criticism from the veterans' community, as well as 
Congress, and the media.
    In the 109th Congress, the Committee recognized the 
importance of focusing on programs that increase economic 
opportunities for veterans and lessen reliance on long-term 
government assistance by creating the Subcommittee on Economic 
Opportunity. This Subcommittee has jurisdiction over education 
and training, employment, home loan, and other programs that 
focus on a veteran's ability to obtain and retain meaningful 
employment. The Committee believes that this increased focus 
and specialization has brought greater attention and needed 
oversight to these programs that seek to enable veterans to 
live economically-productive lives.
    Understandably, senior VBA leaders spend considerable time 
and resources focusing on decreasing the inventory of 
disability compensation claims at the expense of time and focus 
needed for other benefit programs. Over time, this has led to 
less leadership attention to the non-compensation programs. As 
an example, the Administration's FY 2016 budget request 
includes funds to support 21,101 full time equivalent employees 
(FTEE) for VBA. Of this number, 17,119 FTEE were requested to 
administer disability compensation, pension, burial, dependency 
indemnity compensation, and fiduciary programs while only 4,752 
FTEE were requested for other programs.
    The number of FTEE for disability compensation and pension 
has ballooned by 8,160, or 91 percent, since FY 2005, while 
over this same time period, the FTEE for other programs at VBA 
has not grown at the same rate. While it is important to 
increase staffing to attack the current backlog, the Committee 
believes that the focus on disability compensation and pension 
results in a lack of attention being given to the lengthy waits 
for benefits from the education, vocational rehabilitation, and 
loan guaranty programs and only undermines the potential for 
veterans to improve their lives through programs that increase 
economic opportunities.
    Therefore, to ensure more effective oversight of those 
programs, the Committee believes that separating the 
compensation and pension programs from programs which lead to 
increased employability and economic success would be 
appropriate. Section 201 would, therefore, create chapter 80 in 
title 38, U.S.C., to establish the Veterans Economic 
Opportunity and Transition Administration, which would manage 
the G.I. Bill, Home Loan Guaranty, and Vocational 
Rehabilitation and Employment (VR&E;) programs, as well as all 
employment programs currently administered by DoL's VETS.
    Additionally, section 8127 of title 38, U.S.C., established 
a program to assist VA in meeting the statutory goals for 
procurement of goods and services from service disabled 
veteran-owned small businesses. Because small business 
ownership can be a significant contributor to economic success 
and due to VA's continued difficulty in administering the 
service-disabled veteran-owned small business program, Section 
201 would place the program authorized by section 8127 of title 
38, U.S.C., under the supervision of VEOTA.
    The Committee also believes that with the significant 
growth in VA employees, it would be appropriate to staff the 
new VEOTA using existing personnel resources, so this Section 
would also cap the amount of combined FTEE at both VBA and 
VEOTA to no more than 22,118 FTEE for FY 2017 and FY 2018. 
Finally, in order for the organization of the VEOTA to take 
place in an orderly and efficient manner, the amendments made 
by this Section and title would not go into effect until 
October 1, 2016. The Committee believes this gives VA and DoL 
enough time to allow for a smooth transition in the re-
alignment these programs within VEOTA.

Section 202--Under Secretary for Veterans Economic Opportunity and 
        Transition

    Section 202 of the bill would amend title 38, U.S.C., by 
creating the position of Under Secretary for Veterans Economic 
Opportunity and Transition to oversee all VEOTA programs and 
operations. This Section would complement Section 201 of this 
bill by creating this Under Secretary position to put the new 
VEOTA on par with other administrations within VA.
    Under this Section, the new Under Secretary would be 
appointed by the President with the advice and consent of the 
Senate. The Section would also require that the Under Secretary 
have a demonstrated ability in the use of information 
technology (IT) and administration of programs similar to those 
in the new VEOTA. The Section would also require that when 
there is a vacancy for this position, the Secretary would be 
required to convene a commission to recommend individuals to 
the President for appointment, and that the commission consist 
of individuals who represent a cross section of the programs 
administered by the VEOTA. While the President is not bound to 
appoint any individuals recommended by the commission, the 
Committee would expect that the commission's recommendations be 
seriously considered during the appointment process. Finally, 
the Committee would also expect the commission to recommend 
individuals who have private sector experience in running 
programs similar to those under VEOTA.

Section 203--Transfer of Department of Labor Veterans programs to 
        Department of Veterans Affairs

    The Committee believes that one of the most important 
missions of the federal government is to help returning 
servicemembers and veterans find and maintain meaningful and 
gainful employment. Many problems and negative life experiences 
that veterans may experience can be mitigated, or avoided all 
together, by having well-paying jobs that adequately provide 
for them and their families. The Committee believes that is why 
the programs administered by VETS are so critically important 
to veterans' success. The Department of Labor (DoL) should be 
ensuring that the employment programs it administers for 
veterans under chapters 21, 41, 42, and 43 of title 38, U.S.C., 
are the crown jewels of their employment programs. The most 
important of these programs is the Jobs for Veterans State 
Grant (JVSG) program, which provides grants to states to fund 
job placement and employment counselors called Disabled Veteran 
Outreach Program Specialists (DVOPS) and Local Veteran 
Employment Representatives (LVERs). These counselors are the 
front line state government employees tasked with employment 
training and job placement for disabled and non-disabled 
veterans. Unfortunately, it has become clear to the Committee, 
and many others, that programs administered by VETS are lost in 
myriad of other programs and priorities at DoL and that senior 
DoL leaders, regardless of party, have consistently failed to 
advocate for, and exercise effective oversight of VETS' 
programs.
    While the Committee will admit that services have minimally 
improved over the years, since 1997, there have been more than 
16 reports conducted by the GAO or other entities that have 
consistently shown that VETS has been unable to provide 
adequate oversight over the JVSG program and failed to 
implement adequate performance metrics to determine the quality 
of services provided to veterans seeking employment. 
Additionally, despite legislative attempts to improve 
cooperation and coordination with VA employment and training 
programs, there is still little evidence of the desired synergy 
between VA and VETS. The Committee believes this is largely due 
to the normal bureaucratic inertia inherent in getting multiple 
executive branch departments to coordinate programs. 
Transferring VETS to VA would eliminate that obstacle to 
improving performance of the Jobs for Veterans State Grant 
Program.
    The Committee's negative view of VETS' programs is shared 
by numerous veteran service organizations. At a February 12, 
2015, Subcommittee on Economic Opportunity oversight hearing on 
VETS' FY 2016 budget and overall performance, several veteran 
service organizations expressed displeasure with the current 
performance of VETS and low priority that DoL places on 
veterans' programs. The following quotes are from testimony by 
veterans organizations provided to the Subcommittee at this 
hearing:

        ``Each Secretary of Labor for the last thirty years, 
        including the current Secretary, could have used part 
        of the Secretary's contingency fund from what is now 
        known as the Workforce Investment Act (WIA) to drive 
        behavior in states and local areas that help veterans 
        by according incentive grants to those who do the best 
        job of actually placing veterans in real jobs. None 
        have done so, which renders their rhetoric even more 
        empty and hollow when they hold their by invitation 
        only ``Salute to All America Veterans'' in the Great 
        Hall or another venue in the Francis Perkins Building 
        (USDOL Headquarters) just before Veterans Day each 
        year. Security is always tight, lest any rank and file 
        veterans get in, and unemployed veterans need not 
        apply.''--Vietnam Veterans of America

        ``The American Legion has long supported DOL-VETS, 
        because we believe that when it comes to employment no 
        one has more expertise and experience. For our efforts, 
        we have been rewarded with ongoing program management 
        problems, a lack of accountability and oversight, an 
        agency too truculent to make sensible policy changes, 
        and a veterans' office within the agency that fails to 
        view Veteran Service Organizations as partners in the 
        work of improving federal employment services for 
        veterans. It has become painfully clear to us that the 
        agency with the monumental task of keeping America 
        gainfully employed is unable or unwilling to give the 
        requisite attention to veterans' employment issues that 
        we know our constituents deserve.''--The American 
        Legion

    To finally address these concerns, Section 203 would 
transfer all of the programs administered by VETS to the new 
VEOTA. The Section would require that all unused appropriated 
funds, proceedings, suits, administrative procedures, rules, 
and regulations that are currently in place for VETS would not 
change, but be transferred to VA. This Section would also 
require that all of VETS' employees transfer to this new 
administration at VA, and it would be the Committee's 
expectation that this change would not be the cause of any 
current career federal staff members losing their jobs. The 
transfer would be effective on October 1, 2016. The Section 
would also require that within 180 days of the transfer, VA and 
DoL enter into a memorandum of understanding to include a 
description of how VA would coordinate with DoL's Employment 
and Training Agency (ETA) to ensure coordination of services 
and performance metrics required by the Workforce Innovation 
and Opportunity Act (P.L. 113-128, 128 Stat. 1425) once the 
transfer of VETS is complete. The Committee believes that this 
coordination with ETA is needed to ensure that the employment 
programs that would become a part of VA do not duplicate 
efforts and that they meet performance metrics of employment 
programs overseen by ETA.
    In addition to their criticism of VETS performance, the 
move to VA has also been supported by a large number of veteran 
service organizations including: The American Legion, Iraq and 
Afghanistan Veterans of America (IAVA), The Veterans of Foreign 
Wars of the United States, Paralyzed Veterans of America, 
Vietnam Veterans of America, and Disabled American Veterans 
(DAV). The following is a selection of quotes from testimony 
provided by veteran service organizations at the Subcommittee 
legislative hearing on this Section on June 2, 2015:

        ``The creation of a new VA administration that would 
        manage all these programs is a logical, responsible 
        step for Congress to take through this legislative 
        mandate. Plus, important to DAV, we believe 
        consolidation offers the potential to streamline and 
        enhance the prospects and training possibilities for 
        wounded, injured and ill wartime veterans, for them to 
        overcome employment obstacles, and open up opportunity 
        for them in their post-service lives. . . . Veterans 
        who truly sacrifice themselves in war need a hand up, 
        not a handout. Reforming this important function of 
        government that leads them to rewarding private 
        employment would provide them that hand.''--Disabled 
        American Veterans

        ``We believe that placing all veterans' employment 
        programs under a single authority will improve 
        congressional oversight and government efficiency. . . 
        . By aligning VETS programs with the veteran-centric 
        mission of VA, veterans will have easier access to 
        employment services.''--Veterans of Foreign Wars of the 
        United States

        ``Veterans we speak to have long reported overlapping 
        services have clouded options rather than clarified 
        them. GAO reports and feedback from our annual member 
        survey have indicated the performance of LVERs and 
        DVOPS under DoL VETS has been stagnant at best and not 
        shown the improvement needed to help veterans begin 
        careers. Ineffective oversight and the incongruent 
        placement of this service within a myriad of other 
        programs over at DoL has not proven to be a positive 
        fit.''--Iraq and Afghanistan Veterans of America

    The Committee believes that this transfer would not only 
provide a new level of oversight of employment programs that 
are currently overseen by VETS, but it would also place these 
programs under the new VEOTA with other veteran education and 
training programs, which would result in increased 
collaboration, reduced duplication, and improved opportunities 
for veterans. The Committee understands that this transfer is a 
major re-alignment of current services, so it does not propose 
moving VETS to VA lightly. However, the Committee believes that 
this re-alignment will result in fewer veterans using expensive 
government assistance services which will ultimately lead to 
better outcomes for veterans and in turn will help our economy 
grow.

Section 204--Deputy Under Secretary for Veterans Affairs for Veterans 
        Employment, Training, and Transition

    Section 204 would clarify that the new Deputy Under 
Secretary for Veterans Employment, Training, and Transition 
would be responsible for the programs that were previously 
under the jurisdiction of the Assistant Secretary for Veterans 
Employment and Training at DoL.

Section 205--Additional technical and conforming amendments

    Section 205 would provide various technical and conforming 
amendments to chapters 20, 41, 42, and 43 of title 38, U.S.C., 
to complete the transfer of VETS to VA and the creation of the 
VEOTA.

Section 206--Use of Federal Directory of New Hires

    Section 206 would authorize the new Under Secretary for 
Veterans Economic Opportunity and Transition access to the 
National Directory of New Hires. The Personal Responsibility 
and Work Opportunity Reconciliation Act of 1996 (P.L. 104-193, 
110 Stat. 2105) created the National Directory of New Hires 
that was designed to use state employment and unemployment data 
and Federal agencies' data to help state agencies track down 
non-custodial parents who owe child support. Employers across 
the country are required to notify the new hires directory when 
they hire a new employee. This requirement makes this directory 
the most up to date system for tracking employment in the 
country. The Committee believes that allowing the Under 
Secretary for the VEOTA to have access to this database would 
greatly assist in tracking employment outcomes of veterans.

     TITLE III--EDUCATION ASSISTANCE AND VOCATIONAL REHABILITATION

Section 301--Modification and improvement of transfer of unused 
        education benefits to family members under Department of 
        Veterans Affairs Post-9/11 Educational Assistance Program

    Title V of the Supplemental Appropriations Act of 2008 
(P.L. 110-252, 122 Stat. 2323, 2358 et seq.) created chapter 33 
of title 38, U.S.C., which authorized the Post-9/11 G.I. Bill. 
Section 3319 of title 38, U.S.C., authorized eligible 
servicemembers to transfer unused education benefits under the 
Post-99/11 G.I. Bill to family members. Section 3319 requires 
that the servicemember must make an election to transfer unused 
benefits to a dependent only while they are still on active 
duty. In order to be eligible to transfer this benefit, the 
servicemember must have already served six years on active duty 
and agreed to serve an additional four years of active duty. 
This provision was added to the Post-9/11 G.I. Bill as a 
retention incentive.\2\
---------------------------------------------------------------------------
    \2\See ``Welcome to the Air Force's Post-9/11 GI Bill webpage'' 
accessed at http://www.afpc.af.mil/library/gibill/. 
---------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Subtitle H of the National Defense Authorization Act for 
Fiscal Year 2013\3\ established the Military Compensation and 
Retirement Modernization Commission (MCRMC). The commissioners 
were appointed by both Congress and the President on a 
bipartisan basis and represent years of experience in military 
and veterans policy. The primary mission of the MCRMC was to 
realign the pay and benefits for servicemembers and veterans to 
maintain a professional all-volunteer force, during war time 
and peacetime.\4\
---------------------------------------------------------------------------
    \3\P.L. 112-239, 126 Stat. 1632.
    \4\http://mldc.whs.mil/faq. 
---------------------------------------------------------------------------
    The final report with the MCRMC's recommendations was 
submitted to Congress in January 2015 and was the culmination 
of the MCRMC's work, which included numerous studies and 
surveys of servicemembers regarding pay and benefits. The MCRMC 
recommended that the eligibility for transferability of Post-9/
11 G.I. Bill benefits should be adjusted to require 
servicemembers to serve ten years and sign up for an additional 
two years. The MCRMC recommended this to improve retention and 
the use of the education benefits by servicemembers. The MCRMC 
found:

        The average DoD continuation rate from 1980 to 2010 for 
        a servicemember at 6 years of service [YOS] is 35.3 
        percent while the average continuation rate for a 
        servicemember at 10 YOS in 19.3 percent. Offering 
        transferability at 10 YOS instead of 6 would enable the 
        services to increase retention at this critical point 
        in a military career.\5\
---------------------------------------------------------------------------
    \5\Final Report of the Military Compensation and Retirement 
Modernization Commission. Page 169. http://mldc.whs.mil/public/docs/
report/MCRMC-FinalReport-29JAN15-HI.pdf. 

    The MCRMC also recommended that the housing and living 
stipend provided to spouses and children who were using 
transferred Post-9/11 G.I. Bill benefits be eliminated. This 
recommendation was based on that the fact that in many cases, 
the living stipend was significantly higher than the cost of 
room and board at most schools. The MCRMC's final report 
---------------------------------------------------------------------------
stated:

        The Post-9/11 G.I. Bill housing stipend often exceeds 
        the actual housing costs of dependent beneficiaries. 
        For example, in academic year 2013-2014, New School 
        University in New York reportedly had the highest 
        estimated room and board cost in the country at 
        $18,490. The BAH [Basic Allowance for Housing] per 
        month for an E5 with dependents in New York City in 
        2013 was $3,258, and for 2014 it was $3,744. Assuming a 
        9-month academic year, a student using Post-9/11 G.I. 
        Bill benefits at New School for 2013-2014 would receive 
        $31,752, which is $13,262 more than the estimated cost 
        of room and board. Northwestern Oklahoma State 
        University in Alva, OK reportedly had the lowest 
        estimated room and board cost in the United States in 
        academic year 2013-2014, at $3,900. Using the same 
        assumptions, a student using Post-9/11 G.I. Bill 
        benefits would receive $8,658 in BAH, $4,758 more than 
        the estimated cost of room and board.\6\
---------------------------------------------------------------------------
    \6\Final Report of the Military Compensation and Retirement 
Modernization Commission. Page 167 and 168. http://mldc.whs.mil/public/
docs/report/MCRMC-FinalReport-29JAN15-HI.pdf. 

    Section 301, would implement the MCRMC's recommendations on 
transferability with minor modifications. The Committee agrees 
that the change in eligibility requirements for transferability 
benefits is necessary to improve retention, and Section 301 
would amend section 3319 of title 38, U.S.C., to implement the 
MCRMC's recommendations. While the MCRMC recommended that the 
Committee eliminate all living stipend benefits for transferees 
of Post-
9/11 G.I. Bill benefits, the Committee believes this would be a 
step too far for spouses who have also made sacrifices for the 
nation in their support of their spouse's service. While the 
Committee agrees that a full elimination in the living stipend 
for servicemember's children is justifiable, Section 301 would 
only reduce the living stipend benefits for children by half. 
These amendments would take effect for elections to transfer 
benefits made 180 days following enactment of this bill.

Section 302--Clarification of eligibility for the Marine Gunnery 
        Sergeant John David Fry Scholarship

    Section 3311 of title 38, U.S.C., establishes the Marine 
Gunnery Sergeant John David Fry Scholarship, (Fry Scholarship), 
which provides Post-9/11 G.I. Bill benefits to the children and 
surviving spouses of servicemembers who die in the line of duty 
while on active duty after September 10, 2001. The original Fry 
Scholarship authorized by chapter 33 of title 38, U.S.C., only 
provided Post-
9/11 G.I. Bill benefits to eligible children. Prior to the 
Choice Act, surviving spouses were only eligible to receive 
education assistance under chapter 35 of title 38, U.S.C. 
Section 701 of the Choice Act extended these same benefits to 
spouses of servicemembers who die in the line of duty. Eligible 
beneficiaries may receive up to 36 months of Post-9/11 G.I. 
Bill benefits at the 100 percent level. Under current law, 
eligible surviving spouses may use such assistance until they 
remarry or until 15 years after their military spouse's death, 
whichever occurs sooner.
    After the Choice Act was signed into law, the Committee 
heard concerns from many veterans' organizations, most notably 
from the Gold Star Wives of America and the Tragedy Assistance 
Program for Survivors, regarding the amount of time, or lack 
thereof, which many surviving spouses had left to use this 
benefit. Due to the 15 year delimitating date, surviving 
spouses whose military spouse died in the line of duty between 
September 11, 2001 and January 1, 2006, would not have enough 
time to use 100 percent of the benefit. It was the Committee's 
intention when expanding this benefit to surviving spouses in 
the Choice Act to allow all eligible surviving spouses to 
receive 100 percent of the benefit.
    Section 302(a), therefore, would amend the Choice Act and 
deem that, for purposes of this benefit, any member of the 
Armed Forces who died between September 11, 2001 and December 
31, 2005, effectively died on January 1, 2006. This would 
ensure that all eligible surviving spouses are able to receive 
100 percent of the Fry Scholarship.
    Due to the delimitating date included in the Choice Act, 
many surviving spouses whose spouses died between September 11, 
2001 and December 31, 2005, may have made an irrevocable 
decision to receive education benefits through chapter 35 of 
title 38, U.S.C., so that they could have more time to use 
their benefits. Currently, if they have chosen to use chapter 
35 education benefits in lieu of the Fry Scholarship, that 
decision is irrevocable. Due to the expansion of eligible time 
to use the Fry Scholarship in this Act, the Committee believes 
it is important to allow these surviving spouses to revoke 
their prior election to use chapter 35 education benefits 
instead of the Fry Scholarship. Section 302(b), therefore, 
would allow a surviving spouse of a servicemember who died 
between September 11, 2001 and December 31, 2005, to revoke 
their election to receive educational benefits under chapter 35 
instead of the Fry Scholarship.
    The Post-9/11 G.I. Bill will cover a large amount of school 
costs, but many private schools cost an additional amount than 
what is provided in statute, and in cases where a veteran is 
not eligible for the in-state tuition rate, the cost to attend 
public school can exceed what is allowable by law. Section 3317 
of title 38, U.S.C., authorizes the Yellow Ribbon program, 
which assists with these additional costs and authorizes VA to 
enter into agreements with private and public schools to pay a 
dollar-for-dollar matching grant to cover the additional 
tuition costs beyond what is provided in the tuition and fee 
cap for the Post-9/11 G.I. Bill in section 3313(c) of title 38, 
U.S.C. Under current law, individuals using the Fry Scholarship 
are not also eligible to use the Yellow Ribbon program to pay 
for the rest of their tuition amount beyond what is provided in 
the
    Post-9/11 G.I. Bill. The Committee believes that it was not 
the intention of Congress to limit the Fry Scholarship to 
exclude children and spouses of servicemembers who have died in 
the line of duty from being able to utilize the Yellow Ribbon 
program. Section 302(d), therefore, would amend section 3317(a) 
of title 38, U.S.C., to allow individuals eligible for the Fry 
Scholarship to also be eligible to use the Yellow Ribbon 
Program while they attend school.

Section 303--Approval of courses of education and training for purposes 
        of the Vocational Rehabilitation Program of the Department of 
        Veterans Affairs

    Chapter 31 of title 38, U.S.C., sets up the parameters for 
disabled veterans to receive services through VA's VR&E; 
service. Through this program, eligible veterans and 
servicemembers receive personalized rehabilitation plans that 
help prepare them for employment or, in the case of severely 
disabled veterans, maximum daily independent living. Through 
this program, veterans and servicemembers are eligible for 
educational, vocational, psychological, employment and personal 
readjustment counseling. According to VA's Annual Benefits 
Report for FY 2013, over 90 percent of VR&E; participants choose 
a formal post-secondary education or training program option 
including non-accredited and G.I. Bill approved training 
programs.\7\
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    \7\VBA Annual Benefits Report for FY2013. Page 7. http://
www.benefits.va.gov/REPORTS/abr/ABR-VocRehab-FY13-09262014.pdf 
---------------------------------------------------------------------------
    While the Committee understands the need for flexibility 
when creating rehabilitation plans that best fit the needs of 
an individual veteran, it would be appropriate for VR&E; 
counselors to ensure, wherever possible, that the program of 
education is approved for G.I. Bill benefits. These programs 
undergo a thorough review by VA or State Approving Agencies 
(SAAs) and are required to meet a selection of rigorous 
criteria for approval. This process protects veterans and 
taxpayers alike from unscrupulous actors. Therefore, Section 
303 would amend section 3105(b) of title 38, U.S.C., to require 
that, to the maximum extent possible, a course of education or 
training pursued through the VR&E; program must be approved for 
benefits under chapters 30 or 33 of title 38, U.S.C. Under this 
Section, the Secretary would have waiver authority for this 
provision and current classes that are approved for VR&E; 
benefits, but G.I. Bill benefits would not be impacted until 
one year following enactment.

Section 304--Authority to prioritize Vocational Rehabilitation Services 
        based on need

    As more and more veterans become eligible for VR&E; 
services, based on the increased number of pending claims for 
disability compensation, the Committee remains concerned about 
the growing VR&E; counselor-to-participant ratio. In FY 2013, VA 
provided VR&E; services to 123,383 veterans, and they have 
estimated this number will increase by over 14,000 in FY 2016. 
As the number of veterans receiving services has increased, the 
number of VR&E; counselors has remained relatively flat. This 
means the caseload for each counselor has increased 
significantly, which translates into reduced services for 
veterans. As the Secretary has not made the investment in 
providing more counselors to reduce the counselor ratio, the 
Committee is concerned the severely disabled or high risk 
veterans are not being provided VR&E; services in a timely 
fashion. Therefore, Section 304 would authorize the Secretary 
to prioritize VR&E; services based on need. Under this Section, 
the Secretary would be required to consider the following 
factors when prioritizing VR&E; services: disability rating, 
severity of the employment handicap, qualification for a 
program of independent living, income, and other factors as the 
Secretary deems appropriate.
    The Committee recognizes that the Secretary already has the 
authority to prioritize the adjudication of certain 
compensation and pension claims and believes that claims for 
VR&E; services should be treated no differently. The Committee 
would expect that if this authority were utilized, the 
Secretary would exercise caution to provide VR&E; services to 
all eligible veterans in a timely fashion regardless of the 
prioritization.

Section 305--Re-codification and improvement of election process for 
        Post-9/11 Educational Assistance Program

    Section 5003(c) of the Post-9/11 G.I. Bill delineates the 
circumstances under which veterans and servicemembers with 
remaining eligibility for other education programs administered 
by VA can be converted to the Post-9/11 G.I. Bill. Section 
5003(c) also mandates that any such conversion is irrevocable.
    During a January 2013 site visit to the Atlanta VA Regional 
Processing Office, Committee staff asked VA staff what steps or 
processes could be changed to reduce processing times for Post-
9/11 G.I. Bill claims. VA staff informed Committee staff that 
one step in the adjudication of G.I. Bill claims concerns 
veterans' irrevocable decision to convert their remaining 
months of eligibility for other G.I. Bill programs to the Post-
9/11 G.I. Bill. They stated that many veterans make obvious 
errors in choosing a program to which they are not entitled or 
other errors which require manual processing of the claim. When 
this happens, VA then notifies the veteran, normally in 
writing, of the discrepancy and must wait for the veteran to 
contact VA and make the appropriate switch to their irrevocable 
election in order for their Post-9/11 G.I. Bill claim to be 
processed. VA staff believes these steps add unnecessary time 
and result in processing delays. This process was later 
confirmed again to Committee staff at a site visit to the St. 
Louis VA Regional Processing Office in April 2014.
    Therefore, Section 305 would authorize VA to make an 
alternative election for the beneficiary for a different 
education benefit. VA would only be authorized to make such an 
election if it believes it is clearly in the best interest of 
the veteran. VA would be required to notify veterans of this 
alternative election within seven days and allow the veteran to 
change such election within 30 days. The Committee believes 
this is an important step to reduce processing times for this 
benefit while still balancing individual choice. This Section 
would also re-codify section 500(c) of the Post-9/11 G.I. Bill 
into section 3326 of title 38, U.S.C.

Section 306--Clarification of assistance provided for certain flight 
        training and other programs of education

    Section 102 of the Post-9/11 Veterans Educational 
Assistance Improvements Act of 2010\8\ modified the Post-9/11 
G.I. Bill, so that students attending a public institution of 
higher learning under the Post-9/11 G.I. Bill are eligible to 
receive the total net cost of in-state tuition and fees after 
the application of any waiver of tuition and fees and any 
scholarship, or other Federal, State, institutional, or 
employer-based aid or assistance. If a student is attending a 
non-public institution of higher learning, he/she is eligible 
for the lesser of the actual net cost for tuition and fees 
after the application of any waiver or scholarships or $20,235. 
This cap is also subject to an annual Cost-of-Living-Adjustment 
increase. This was a change from the original Post-9/11 G.I. 
Bill that set the cap on tuition and fees at up to the highest 
in-state tuition rate in a state regardless whether the student 
was attending a public or non-public institution of higher 
learning.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------
    \8\P.L. 111-377, 124 Stat. 4106.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------
    At the Subcommittee on Economic Opportunity oversight 
hearing on November 11, 2014, entitled, ``The Role of State 
Approving Agencies in Ensuring Quality Education Programs for 
Veterans,'' the National Association of State Approving 
Agencies (NASAA) testified that they were concerned that 
changes made to the Post 9/11 G.I. Bill were encouraging some 
public institutions to contract with third party flight schools 
for expensive flight or helicopter training. Since these 
private flight schools are now under the umbrella of public 
schools, there was no limit to what they could charge for 
tuition and fees since the statute only requires that schools 
charge the in-state tuition rate.
    As part of its legislative package presented to the 
Subcommittee at this hearing, NASAA recommended that the 
Subcommittee try to rein in this extravagant spending and place 
a cap on flight training at public institutions. This same 
sentiment was echoed at this hearing by VA and witnesses 
representing several leading veteran service organizations. In 
its written statement, VA expressed concern that many of these 
schools were using P.L. 111-377 to get around the current cap 
on vocational flight training, stating:

        There has been a significant increase in flight 
        training centers, specifically those that offer 
        helicopter training, which have contracted with public 
        IHLs to offer flight-related degrees. Sometimes these 
        programs charge higher prices than those that would be 
        charged if the student had chosen to attend the 
        vocational flight school for the same training. This 
        practice allows the flight schools to receive payments 
        above the academic year tuition and fee cap imposed by 
        statute, which is currently $11,562.86. If those same 
        classes are included in a public IHL degree program, VA 
        can pay up to 100 percent of the in-state tuition and 
        fee charges. This does not appear to be consistent with 
        the intent of Congress as it relates to flight 
        programs.

    VA also included a legislative proposal in its FY 2016 
budget submission to place the same cap on flight training as 
is currently in place for private, non-profit, and for-profit 
institutions. As a result of the proposal from VA, as well as 
concerns expressed by NASAA and veterans groups, Section 306 
would place a cap on flight training for tuition and fee 
payments at public schools at $20,235, the same cap that is in 
place for all private for-profit and non-profit institutions; 
this cap would also be subject to the cost of living 
adjustment. This Section would also prohibit students from 
taking flight training at a public institution as an elective 
course and would grandfather students currently in flight 
training programs for two years following enactment. The 
Committee believes this grandfather clause is important to 
cover current students who enrolled in these programs with the 
understanding that their tuition and fees would be completely 
paid for under the Post-9/11 G.I. Bill. The Section also 
subjects all programs that are contracted out by a public 
school to a third party to this same cap.
    The Committee does not propose this cap lightly and 
understands that this would change the way that flight schools 
are paid for through the Post-9/11 G.I. Bill. The Committee, 
however, is concerned that the sharp growth in these programs 
and the uncontrollable increase in the cost of flight training 
following the enactment of P.L. 111-377 shows that there have 
been some unscrupulous actors who have found this loophole in 
the law and exploited it.
    As confirmation of this exploration, data provided by VA to 
the Committee, between FY 2013 and FY 2014, the number of 
students taking flight training increased by only 171 students, 
or 9 percent, yet the total cost to taxpayers for this program 
grew by $37 million, or 87 percent, during this same period. 
This data also showed that in one case in FY 2014, VA paid over 
$534,000 in tuition and flight payments for one student that 
year. In a story in The Los Angeles Times on March 15, 2015 
entitled, ``U.S. Taxpayers Stuck with the Tab as Helicopter 
Flight Schools Exploit GI Bill Loophole,'' the owner of one of 
these schools essentially admitted to exploiting the loophole 
by stating, ``Because there was no cap, we started to one-up 
each other . . . You kind of end up with an arms race.''\9\ The 
Committee believes that paying these unrestrained costs was 
never the intent of the Post-9/11 G.I. Bill; therefore Section 
306 would close this loophole and responsibly end this practice 
to protect both taxpayers and veterans alike, and also to 
protect the G.I. Bill for future generations of veterans.
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Section 307--Consideration of certain time spent receiving medical care 
        from the Secretary of Defense as active duty for purposes of 
        eligibility for Post-9/11 educational assistance

    Guardsmen and Reservists who deploy on active duty are no 
less vulnerable to injury in combat than full time active duty 
servicemembers. Under current law, Guardsmen and Reservists 
wounded in combat receive orders under section 12301(h) of 
title 10, U.S.C., to serve time for medical and recovery 
purposes upon their return from deployment. However, federal 
law does not recognize such orders as creditable for Post-
9/11 G.I. Bill education assistance, meaning that while these 
Guardsmen and Reservists are on orders under section 12301(h) 
of title 10, U.S.C., and receiving medical treatment, they do 
not accrue any time towards their Post-9/11 G.I. Bill 
eligibility. Under this scenario, a Guardsman or Reservist who 
serves on active duty but was never injured could accrue more 
Post-9/11 G.I. Bill benefits than one who is still active duty 
but recovering from injuries sustained in combat.
    Section 307 would end this unequal treatment and ensure 
that Guardsmen and Reservists are able to accrue eligibility 
for Post-
9/11 G.I. Bill benefits while on orders under section 12301(h) 
of title 10, U.S.C. The Committee believes this policy would 
fairly reflect the time that Guardsmen and Reservists spend 
serving our nation for the purposes of their education 
assistance benefits.

Section 308--Work study allowance

    VA's work-study program allows certain veterans and 
dependents enrolled in school through a VA educational program 
to perform a certain number of hours of work in exchange for 
compensation through VA's work study program. Eligible 
individuals are able to work for up to 25 hours times the 
number of weeks contained in an enrollment period. Participants 
receive the greater of the State's minimum wage rate or the 
national minimum wage rate under section 6(a) of the Fair Labor 
Standards Act of 1938 (section 206(a) of title 29, U.S.C.). 
Eligible work-study activities were expanded to the following 
positions: (1) VA outreach services programs or outreach 
services to servicemembers and veterans furnished by employees 
of a SAA; (2) Hospital and domiciliary care and medical 
treatment at VA facilities, and care to veterans in a state 
home; and (3) Activities relating to the administration of a 
national cemetery or a state veterans' cemetery.
    The legal authority for these expanded work study programs 
expired on June 1, 2013, however the Committee and veterans 
service organizations believe that the reauthorization of these 
work study options would be beneficial to veterans or their 
dependents as they pursue a college degree. At a June 2, 2015, 
Subcommittee on Economic Opportunity legislative hearing, Mr. 
Steve Gonzalez with The American Legion testified on this 
language, stating:

        This program provides a valuable benefit to student-
        veterans and that benefit is often multiplied many 
        times over when, for example, veterans are allowed to 
        perform outreach services to service members and 
        veterans furnished under the supervision of a State 
        approving agency employee. This is just one instance of 
        the important work that is accomplished by these 
        student-veterans.

    This program gives veterans and dependents an alternative 
means to supplement their income as they attend an institution 
of higher learning. In recent years, the average student has 
been leaving college with an average debt of $24,000 to cover 
all college expenses, but this program would help veterans 
mitigate this debt while also getting work experience as they 
attend school. Section 308, therefore, would amend section 
3485(a)(4) of title 38, U.S.C., by striking the expiration date 
of June 30, 2013, and inserting the expiration date of June 30, 
2021.

Section 309--Vocational Rehabilitation and Education Action Plan

    The VR&E; program provides job training and related services 
for veterans with service-connected disabilities who experience 
barriers to employment. A 2014 GAO report, entitled ``VA 
Vocational Rehabilitation & Employment: Further Performance and 
Workload Management Improvements are Needed,'' included several 
recommendations to improve the program and assist more veterans 
in a timely manner. The report found that caseloads were too 
high for each VR&E; counselor, something the Committee has been 
concerned about for several years. The President's FY 2016 
budget once again flat lined the amount of funding for VR&E; 
counselors, despite the increasing numbers of veterans entering 
the program. The report also found that approximately only half 
of the almost 17,000 veterans who entered the VR&E; program in 
FY 2003 and received employment-related services were placed in 
suitable jobs and that the current program does not adequately 
address the unique challenges of service-connected disabled 
veterans suffering from Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI) or PTSD.
    The Committee believes that the VR&E; program is important 
in the process of getting disabled veterans into meaningful and 
sustainable jobs following active duty, but VR&E; staff cannot 
meet the growing demand for services in a timely manner. The 
Committee believes that a thorough examination of the program 
and ways to improve the program is important to the success of 
the disabled veterans the program serves. At a June 2, 2015, 
Subcommittee on Economic Opportunity legislative hearing, Mr. 
Christopher Neiweem with the IAVA testified on this language, 
stating:

        Without a fundamental understanding of the conditions a 
        veteran is facing, a counselor will not be positioned 
        to identify how to help the veteran secure a job and 
        begin a rewarding career. This legislation would 
        improve a program that has been too often regarded as 
        mediocre due to organizational factors as it relates to 
        the veteran-counselor relationship.

    The Committee and veteran groups believe that the VR&E; 
program does need to be improved to properly serve disabled 
veterans and rehabilitate them in a more impactful and timely 
manner. Section 309, therefore, would require VA, within 270 
days of enactment, to develop and publish an action plan for 
improving VR&E; services. Such an action plan would include each 
of the following: (1) a comprehensive analysis and 
recommendations to remedy workload management challenges at the 
regional office level, including steps to reduce counselor 
caseloads, particularly for counselors assisting veterans with 
TBI and PTSD, and counselors with educational and vocational 
counseling workloads; (2) an analysis of why veterans with 
service-connected disabilities tend to opt to use Post-9/11 
G.I. Bill benefits rather than enroll in chapter 31 vocational 
rehabilitation programs, including an analysis of barriers to 
timely enrollment in chapter 31 programs and barriers to a 
veteran enrolling in the program of the veteran's choice; (3) 
recommendations and an implementation plan to encourage more 
Post-9/11 veterans with service-connected disabilities to 
participate in chapter 31 vocational rehabilitation programs; 
and (4) a national staff training program for vocational 
rehabilitation counselors.
    The Committee believes that beyond VA creating an action 
plan to improve the program, additional VR&E; counselors do need 
to be hired and that there needs to be a priority of services 
given to the most disabled veterans. A thorough examination of 
the program, however, is also necessary and an action plan 
created by VA to improve the program is also needed.

Section 310--Reduction in redundancy and inefficiencies in vocational 
        rehabilitation claims processing

    As VA continues to reduce its reliance on paper based 
systems, one of the last benefit programs to go paperless has 
been the VR&E; program. VR&E; counselors provide personalized 
vocational rehabilitation plans and most of their notes, 
tracking of payments, and outcome measures remain in the 
veterans paper based file or non-centralized IT systems. While 
some information is provided to VA's Central Office, most of 
the work and information on the veteran stays in the paper file 
and antiquated IT systems.
    The Committee believes that VA must move all of its 
payments to a corporate database to better track success and 
payments to veterans and to impose overall transparency of VA's 
financial status. Section 310, therefore, would state that in 
an effort to reduce redundancies and inefficiencies that all 
payments through VA's VR&E; program use one corporate database 
and ensure that any IT system that helps track such payments 
support a more accurate accounting of outcomes for veterans. 
The Section would authorize $10,000,000 in FY 2016 to 
accomplish this goal, and would require VA to provide a report 
to Congress within 180 days following enactment on VA's efforts 
to better align payments through VR&E.;

           TITLE IV--ADMINISTRATION OF EDUCATIONAL ASSISTANCE

Section 401--Centralized reporting of veteran enrollment by certain 
        groups, districts, and consortiums of educational institutions

    Chapter 36 of title 38, U.S.C., describes the process by 
which VA approves courses of instruction at institutions of 
higher learning (IHLs), and how schools certify the enrollment 
of veterans, which is necessary prior to any use of VA 
educational assistance benefits for veterans, dependents, and 
survivors. Schools are currently required to submit enrollments 
separately, even if an individual school is one of a number of 
schools sharing a common registration system. Requiring each 
school to submit enrollments separately, however, is highly 
inefficient for both the schools and VA, and the Committee 
believes that consolidating such processes among schools with 
common registration systems would lead to a more cost-efficient 
process.
    To streamline the process and reduce those inefficiencies, 
Section 401 would amend section 3684(a) of title 38, U.S.C., to 
authorize IHLs that belong to a consortium of institutions 
governed by a common body with common administrative practices 
to submit enrollments in a consolidated fashion.

Section 402--Provision of information regarding veteran entitlement to 
        educational assistance

    One of the most common concerns that the Committee receives 
from School Certifying Officials (SCOs) at G.I. Bill eligible 
schools, is that VA's current IT system does not allow them to 
view a student veteran's remaining G.I. Bill entitlement. This 
flaw in VA's system makes it difficult for a SCO to quickly and 
properly advise a student veteran on which educational programs 
they are eligible to receive. At a Subcommittee on Economic 
Opportunity legislative hearing on March 24, 2015, the National 
Association of Veteran Program Administrators (NAVPA) expressed 
support for this provision in submitted testimony by stating:

        With today's veterans often changing between schools or 
        needing to enroll in programs close to enrollment 
        deadlines the ability to see what GI Bill entitlements 
        a student had remaining would be beneficial to the 
        student and the College/University that they are 
        wanting to attend.

    Section 402 would address this issue and would require that 
VA provide access to IT systems that would allow SCOs to view a 
student veteran's eligibility for educational assistance under 
title 38, U.S.C.

Section 403--Role of state approving agencies

    The Post-9/11 Veterans Educational Assistance Improvements 
Act of 2010 (P.L. 111-377, 124 Stat. 4106) made several changes 
to what had been the traditional role of the SAAs in approving 
courses and schools for G.I. Bill benefits. Specifically, 
section 203 amended section 3672 of title 38, U.S.C., and made 
several types of educational institutions ``deemed approved'' 
for G.I. Bill benefits. VA currently makes the determination if 
a school meets this standard. This change was meant as a way to 
reduce the number of site visits the SAAs had to conduct at 
IHLs, i.e. most well established public institutions, which 
normally provide quality courses to students. While the 
Committee believes there is merit to limiting unnecessary 
visits, it is important for the SAAs, along with the VA to make 
the determination if a school meets the basic criteria for 
being ``deemed approved'' for G.I. Bill benefits.
    Section 403 would provide SAAs with this approval authority 
and would also amend section 3675 of title 38, U.S.C., to make 
the same approval authority apply to accredited non-degree 
programs at public and private IHLs that are not currently 
covered by section 3672 of title 38, U.S.C., while maintaining 
all previous approval criteria for private, for-profit schools. 
The Committee believes these changes are necessary, because 
both the SAAs and VA expressed concern in testimony at the 
Subcommittee on Economic Opportunity's legislative hearing on 
March 24, 2015, that too many schools were creating 
certifications and transition courses that may not meet quality 
standards but are ``deemed approved'' because they have been 
created by a school that has been ``deemed approved.''

Section 404--Criteria used to approve courses

    Section 3676(c)(14) of title 38, U.S.C., authorizes the 
SAAs to set their own ``reasonable criteria'' for approving 
non-accredited courses. Traditionally, these types of criteria 
have been minimal in nature and have been applied equally to 
all schools. In 2014, one State passed a law that set up new 
standards for schools to be eligible for G.I. Bill benefits 
based on graduation rates and cohort student loan default 
rates. The new law only applied these standards to private, 
for-profit institutions and specifically exempted community 
colleges and public IHLs from these criteria.
    While the Committee supports a State's right to set up its 
own ``reasonable criteria,'' it remains concerned that such 
criteria must remain equitable for all types of schools. 
Therefore, Section 404 would require that any ``reasonable 
criteria'' instituted by the states, apply equitably to all 
schools in the State and give VA the authority to disapprove 
any ``reasonable criteria.'' This standard would apply to any 
new criteria for accredited and non-accredited courses that 
were created by the states after January 1, 2013. The Committee 
included this date, so that VA and the SAAs did not have to 
review all state-instituted ``reasonable criteria'' that has 
been created dating as far back as the origination of section 
3676.

Section 405--Compliance surveys

    Section 3693 of title 38, U.S.C., requires that VA, or the 
SAAs acting on VA's behalf, conduct annual compliance surveys 
at any institution that offers any type of non-degree program 
as well as every facility that has at least 300 G.I. Bill 
recipients. The compliance surveys are meant as an audit of 
these institutions' paperwork, tuition, and fees payments; 
however, while helpful for schools, these audits do not examine 
the quality of education being provided by the school. 
Representatives for VA made the following statement as part of 
their written submission on H.R. 476 at the March 25th, 2015 
legislative hearing before the Subcommittee on Economic 
Opportunity:

        Currently, there are approximately 16,000 approved 
        domestic and international IHLs and non-college degree 
        (NCD) institutions. Of the 16,000 institutions, there 
        were 11,260 active institutions in calendar year 2013. 
        During FY 2013 and FY 2014, VA and SAAs completed well 
        over 10,000 surveys, with just over 5,000 surveys 
        completed in FY 2014. VA anticipates completing a 
        similar number of reviews in 2015.

    Based on these numbers and their own experiences, VA and 
the SAAs have supported making adjustments to the legislative 
requirements for compliance surveys. As such, Section 405 is 
based on the legislative proposal submitted by the SAAs and 
would require that compliance surveys be conducted at least 
once every two years at G.I. Bill eligible facilities with at 
least 20 G.I. Bill recipients. This Section would also require 
VA and the SAAs to work together each year to identify which 
schools will receive a compliance survey and the parameters for 
such a visit. The Committee agrees with VA and the SAAs that 
the compliance surveys are an important tool to ensure that 
G.I. Bill monies have been spent appropriately, but that the 
current process needs to be tweaked to allow VA and the SAAs to 
focus on approvals, training of school certifying officials, 
and providing technical assistance to schools.

Section 406--Survey of individuals using their entitlement to 
        educational assistance under the educational assistance 
        programs administered by the Secretary of Veterans Affairs

    A major issue that continues to impact veterans' education 
policy is the lack of information on outcomes of G.I. Bill 
participants. This goes beyond performance and outcomes 
measures, but includes the need for basic demographic 
information on students, how students choose their school, what 
improvements students believe need to be made to the G.I. Bill 
program, and other information. Section 406 would address this 
problem and would require VA to contract with a third party 
entity to conduct a survey on all G.I. Bill participants. The 
content of the survey would be required to be submitted to 
Congress before the third party entity begins the survey 
process. Students would be asked about basic demographic 
information, their opinion of the Transition Assistance Program 
(TAP), their view of the process for administering their 
educational benefit, their employment status, and other 
information. The Committee believes this survey would allow VA 
and Congress to have a better understanding of a veteran's 
experience and would better inform future oversight and 
legislative proposals.

Section 407--Improvement of information technology of the Veterans 
        Benefit Administration of the Department of Veterans Affairs

    When VA began implementing the Post-9/11 G.I. Bill in 2009, 
there were considerable processing delays due to an outdated IT 
system that required VA to process many claims manually. As VA 
found short-term workarounds, Congress approved funding for VA 
to automate processing through a system called the ``Long Term 
Solution'' (LTS). The goal of LTS was for most, if not all, 
claims to be completed electronically without any human 
intervention.
    VA took years and expended millions of dollars to complete 
six different releases of the LTS. At a March 24, 2015, 
Subcommittee on Economic Opportunity legislative hearing, VA 
stated that LTS activated the capability for end-to-end 
automation of supplemental claims in September 2012. VA also 
stated that currently over 80 percent of supplemental claims 
are now completed without any human intervention; supplemental 
claims are for current students who are simply re-certifying 
that they are going to continue with their training or 
education program. Furthermore, VA stated in their testimony 
the following:

        Currently, LTS is in a sustainment phase with only 
        minimal increases in functionality. Further development 
        would allow LTS to automate certificates of eligibility 
        and provide very fast service (possibly one day) for 
        some Veterans who apply for the Post-9/11 GI Bill, as 
        opposed to the current 16-day average processing time. 
        In addition, further development for supplemental 
        claims would allow LTS to produce increased 
        efficiencies in processing through additional 
        automation, while ensuring consistent and timely 
        service to Veterans.

    Although the Committee concedes that VA has made progress 
processing supplemental claims, LTS is now in sustainment mode, 
and VA has told the Committee that there are no plans to 
automate the processing of original or first time claims. The 
President's budget for FY 2016 did not include any new funding 
for LTS or additional staff to process original claims, and 
predicted that it will take, on average, 28 days to complete 
the processing of an original claim; this is the same amount of 
time it took VA to process original claims in FY 2015. The 
Committee is pleased that supplemental claims are being 
adjudicated quickly, but remains concerned that there is no 
plan to also fully automate original claims. This is a problem, 
as timely housing allowance checks and tuition payments to 
schools are critically important for Post-9/11 G.I. Bill 
participants.
    Section 407, therefore, would require the Secretary, to the 
maximum extent possible, to complete all Post-9/11 G.I. Bill 
benefit claims electronically using rules based processing with 
little, to no, human intervention. Under this Section, VA would 
be required to provide to the Committee a report on its plan to 
implement new IT systems within 180 days of enactment. The 
Section would also authorize $30 million to fund these system 
improvements. At the legislative hearing on this bill, VA 
agreed with the Committee that this Section is necessary to 
improve accuracy and processing times for Post-9/11 G.I. Bill 
claims.

Section 408--Technical amendment relating to in-state tuition rate for 
        individuals to whom entitlement is transferred under All 
        Volunteer Force Educational Assistance Program and Post-9/11 
        Educational Assistance

    Section 702 of the Choice Act\10\ required that, for public 
institutions of higher learning to remain eligible for VA 
education benefits under the Montgomery G.I. Bill and the Post-
9/11 G.I. Bill, public institutions had to provide in-state 
tuition to eligible veterans and dependents of veterans who had 
transferred their benefits to their spouse or child prior to 
leaving active duty. VA's interpretation of section 702, 
however, did not treat dependents of current active duty 
servicemembers as eligible for the in-state tuition rate. The 
Committee believes it was never Congress' intent to exclude 
these dependents, as most are still connected to the 
servicemember and still subject to the transient nature of 
military service, often making it difficult to meet strict in-
state tuition requirements in some states.
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    Section 408 would address this problem by making a 
technical amendment to ensure eligible dependents of active 
duty servicemembers are included in the in-state tuition 
provision of the Choice Act. States and schools would have 
until July 1, 2016, to comply with this change.

                         TITLE V--OTHER MATTERS

Section 501--Amount of loan guaranteed under Home Loan Program of 
        Department of Veterans Affairs

    Under current law, VA's maximum loan guaranty amount is 
calculated as a percentage of the Freddie Mac conforming loan 
limitation determined by the Federal Home Loan Mortgage 
Corporation Act\11\ which varies by location and zip code. 
Since in most cases VA's guaranty must be at least 25 percent 
of the loan, this means that VA's maximum loan guaranty amount 
is effectively capped at the Freddie Mac limit. For many 
veterans who are seeking to purchase a home in high cost areas, 
the Freddie Mac limit is too low for VA's zero-down loan 
program. This either forces the veteran not to use the VA 
program, or pay the loan principal down.
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    \11\\12\U.S.C. 1454(a)(2)
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    Section 501, therefore, would amend section 3703 of title 
38, U.S.C., to eliminate the maximum loan guaranty amount under 
the VA home loan program by eliminating the Freddie Mac cap for 
VA home loans and would make the maximum guaranty amount 25 
percent of the loan amount. The Committee is confident VA's 
current strict underwriting standards and low foreclosure rates 
will ensure that veterans still have the required good credit 
and income to qualify for the loan, and that this change will 
not result in a significant increased amount of foreclosures.

Section 502--Longitudinal study of job counseling, training, and 
        placement services for veterans

    Outcomes of services provided by VETS are some of the most 
difficult sets of data the Committee tracks. Despite the common 
measures used to track all employment services provided to all 
Americans by the DoL, there is little to no tracking relating 
the job training and employment placement services provided by 
DVOPS and LVERs and the veteran receiving these services 
becoming employed. Since VETS has no plans to change outcome 
measures to better identify the services they provide, Section 
502 would authorize the new Under Secretary for VEOTA to enter 
into a contract with a non-governmental entity to conduct a 
five-year longitudinal study of veteran employment programs 
under chapter 41 of title 38, U.S.C. The study would compare 
the employment outcomes of veterans who have received 
``intensive services'' under chapter 41, veterans who have not 
received ``intensive services'' but did receive other services 
authorized by chapter 41, and veterans who did not seek or 
receive services under this chapter.
    The study would be required to include the following 
information on participants: (1) the average number of months 
the participant spent on active duty; (2) disability ratings of 
participants; (3) unemployment benefits received by 
participants; (4) number of months the participants were 
employed in the year covered by the report; (5) the average 
annual starting and ending salary of participants who were 
employed during the year covered by the report; (6) the average 
income of participants; (7) the total household income of 
participants; (8) the percentage of participants that own their 
own residences; (9) in the case of participants who received 
services under chapter 41, if the participant believes the 
services helped them become employed; (10) in the case of 
participants that believe the services did help them become 
employed, if they retained their position of employment for one 
year or longer and if they believe the services helped them 
secure a higher wage; (11) the conditions under which the 
participants were discharged or released from active duty; (12) 
whether the participants have used any veteran educational 
assistance provided by VA; (13) if the participants 
participated in a rehabilitation program under chapter 31 of 
title 38, U.S.C.; (14) demographic information on the 
participants; and (15) any other information the Secretary 
deems appropriate.
    The Committee believes this study will be an invaluable 
depiction of the benefits provided by DVOPS and LVERs and will 
provide a roadmap of ways to improve training and job placement 
services to veterans.

Section 503--Limitations on subcontracts under contracts with small 
        business concerns owned and controlled by veterans

    Committee staff discussed with VA Office of Inspector 
General (OIG) representatives what is needed to better 
prosecute businesses that attempt to fraudulently pass 
themselves off as veteran-owned small businesses in order to 
take advantage of preferential set-asides as authorized by 
section 8127 of title 38, U.S.C. Whereas the OIG has had 
success in prosecuting these bad actors, it has noted to the 
Committee that it is often hard to make a case for knowing and 
willful falsification or concealment of material facts, which 
is necessary to prove certain title 18, U.S.C., crimes. As 
such, Section 503 would ensure that VA contractors would be 
required to complete a certification that would notify the 
business that they are subject to prosecution for violations of 
section 8127 of title 38, U.S.C.
    Another serious problem that interferes with veteran-owned 
small businesses appropriately taking advantage of set-asides 
is when businesses that are not veteran-owned, or that are not 
small businesses, attempt to use a veteran-owned small business 
as a pass-through to fraudulently receive those set asides. 
Section 503 would also require relevant provisions of the Small 
Business Act to apply, particularly those that prohibit pass-
throughs and to save set-asides for those businesses that are 
actually qualified.
    These provisions are intended to improve the availability 
of set-asides for veteran-owned small businesses by holding 
accountable those who attempt to defraud those businesses. 
Further, to improve oversight, VA's Chief Acquisition Officer 
would be required by Section 503 to report violations to the 
OIG. Subsequently, the OIG would be required to provide related 
information the House and Senate Committees on Veterans' 
Affairs in annual reports.

Section 504--Procedures for provision of certain information to state 
        veterans agencies to facilitate the furnishing of assistance 
        and benefits to veterans

    In the 113th Congress the Committee held a hearing 
entitled, ``Honoring the Commitment: Overcoming the Barriers to 
Quality Mental Health Care for Veterans.'' One of the goals of 
that hearing was to address VA's progress in effectively 
partnering with non-VA providers to address service gaps and 
create a more patient-centric network of care focused on 
wellness-based outcomes. During that hearing, Linda Spoonster 
Schwartz, the then-Commissioner of Veterans' Affairs for the 
State of Connecticut, testified that:

        The task of serving veterans is a shared responsibility 
        with States and the Federal Government. . . . Too often 
        VA on the National and State level does not coordinate 
        or even communicate with the State Departments and 
        agencies tasked with caring and providing services for 
        our veterans. State-based programs are augmented by 
        thousands of private-sector, community volunteers and 
        faith based initiatives that attempt to help disabled 
        and injured service members and their families meet 
        housing, transportation, childcare, employment, mental 
        health and short-term financial aid. We are not lacking 
        in people wanting to help, we are lacing [sic] in a 
        coordinated effort, accountability and creative 
        approaches to solving problems in the local 
        communities. Just as all politics are local, the care 
        and welfare of each military member, veterans and their 
        families is not only a priority for State Governments, 
        there are local programs, services and resources that 
        have been developed to meet the needs of veterans where 
        they live and work. State Legislators are as vitally 
        engaged in the needs of veterans and also creating new 
        programs and services as are Members of Congress. A 
        true partnership of Federal and State resources can 
        only improve the opportunities for our veterans, 
        especially the troops returning today, and their 
        families.

    The Committee concurs with Ms. Spoonster Schwartz's 
sentiments and believes that VA must take steps to partner with 
state veteran agencies to improve the provision of care and 
support to veterans and their families.
    Section 504 would direct VA to develop procedures to share 
information that includes military service and separation data, 
personal email addresses and telephone numbers, and mailing 
addresses of veterans with state veterans agencies in 
electronic format as a means of facilitating the furnishing of 
assistance and benefits to such veterans, while allowing 
veterans to elect to prevent their information from being 
shared.

                                Hearings

    On March 19, 2015, the Subcommittee on Oversight and 
Investigations conducted a legislative hearing on various bills 
introduced during the 114th Congress, including H.R. 1015, 
which is included in H.R. 3016, as amended. The following 
witnesses testified:
          The Honorable Jeff Miller, U.S. House of 
        Representatives, 1st District, Florida; Ms. Meghan 
        Flanz, Director, Office of Accountability Review, 
        Department of Veterans Affairs; Dr. Michael Icardi, 
        National Director, Pathology and Laboratory Medicine 
        Services, Veterans Health Administration; Mr. Stanley 
        Lowe, Deputy Assistant Secretary for Information 
        Security and Chief Information Security Officer, 
        Department of Veteran Affairs; Mr. Dennis Milsten, CCM, 
        Associate Executive Director, Office of Operations, 
        Office of Construction and Facilities Management, 
        Department of Veterans Affairs; Ms. Diane Zumatto, 
        National Legislative Director, AMVETS; Mr. Frank 
        Wilton, Chief Executive Officer, American Association 
        of Tissue Banks; and Mr. Daimon Geopfert, National 
        Leader, Security and Privacy Consulting, McGladrey, 
        LLP.
          A statement for the record was submitted by the 
        following: The American Legion.
    On March 24, 2015, the Subcommittee on Economic Opportunity 
conducted a legislative hearing on various bills introduced 
during the 114th Congress, including H.R. 475; H.R. 476; H.R. 
643; H.R. 1141; and H.R. 1187, all of which are included in 
H.R. 3016, as amended. The following witnesses testified:
          The Honorable Jeff Miller, U.S. House of 
        Representatives, 1st District, Florida; The Honorable 
        Patrick Murphy, U.S. House of Representatives, 18th 
        District, Florida; Mr. Aleks Morosky, Deputy Director, 
        National Legislative Service, Veterans of Foreign Wars 
        of the United States; Mr. Christopher Neiweem, 
        Legislative Associate, Iraq and Afghanistan Veterans of 
        America; Mr. Steve Gonzalez, Assistant Director, 
        National Veteran Employment & Education Division, The 
        American Legion; Dr. Joseph W. Wescott, President, 
        National Association of State Approving Agencies; Ms. 
        Teresa W. Gerton, Deputy Assistant Secretary, Veterans' 
        Employment and Training Service, U.S. Department of 
        Labor; and MG Robert M. Worley II USAF (Ret.), 
        Director, Education Service, Veterans Benefit 
        Administration, U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs who 
        was accompanied by Mr. Tom Leney, Executive Director, 
        Small and Veteran Business Programs, Ms. Kimberly 
        McLeod, Deputy Assistant General Counsel, and Mr. John 
        Brizzi, Deputy Assistant General Counsel; and
          Statements for the Record were submitted by the 
        following: U.S. Department of Defense; School Advocates 
        for Veterans' Education and Success; Paralyzed Veterans 
        of America; Easter Seals, Inc.; and National 
        Association of Veterans' Program Administrators.
    On June 2, 2015, the Subcommittee on Economic Opportunity 
conducted a legislative hearing on various bills introduced 
during the 114th Congress, including H.R. 356; H.R. 832; H.R. 
2275; H.R. 2344; H.R. 2361; and a draft bill entitled ``To 
amend title 38, United States Code, to make certain 
modifications and improvements in the transfer of unused 
educational assistance benefits under the Post-9/11 Educational 
Assistance Program of the Department of Veterans Affairs, and 
for other purposes,'' all of which are included in H.R. 3016, 
as amended. The following witnesses testified:
          The Honorable Jeff Miller, U.S. House of 
        Representatives, 1st District of Florida; The Honorable 
        Bill Flores, U.S. House of Representatives, 17th 
        District of Texas; The Honorable Paul Cook, U.S. House 
        of Representatives, 8th District of California; The 
        Honorable Sean Patrick Maloney, U.S. House of 
        Representatives, 18th District of New York; Mr. Paul R. 
        Varela, Assistant National Legislative Director, 
        Disabled American Veterans; Mr. Brendon Gehrke, Senior 
        Legislative Associate of the National Legislative 
        Service, Veterans of Foreign Wars of the United States; 
        Mr. Steve Gonzalez, Assistant Director of the Veterans 
        Employment and Education Division, The American Legion; 
        Mr. David Borer, General Counsel, American Federation 
        of Government Employees, AFL-CIO; Mr. Christopher 
        Neiweem, Legislative Associate, Iraq and Afghanistan 
        Veterans of America; Mr. Rick Weidman, Executive 
        Director of Government Affairs, Vietnam Veterans of 
        America; Mr. Curtis L. Coy, Deputy Under Secretary for 
        Economic Opportunity of the Veterans Benefits 
        Administration, U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs who 
        was accompanied by Ms. Cathy Mitrano, Deputy Assistant 
        Secretary for the Office of Resource Management of the 
        Human Resources and Administration, U.S. Department of 
        Veterans Affairs; Ms. Teresa W. Gerton, Acting 
        Assistant Secretary of the Veterans' Employment and 
        Training Service, U.S. Department of Labor; and Dr. 
        Susan S. Kelly, Director of the Transition to Veterans 
        Program Office at the Office of the Under Secretary of 
        Defense for Personnel and Readiness, U.S. Department of 
        Defense.
          A statement for the record was submitted by the 
        following: Paralyzed Veterans of America.
    On July 14, 2015, the Subcommittee on Health conducted a 
legislative hearing on various bills introduced in the 114th 
Congress, including H.R. 272; H.R. 359; H.R. 423; H.R. 1862; 
and H.R. 3016, all of which are included in H.R. 3016, as 
amended. The following witnesses testified:
          Honorable Tim Walberg, U.S. House of Representatives, 
        7th Congressional District; Michigan; Honorable Sean 
        Duffy, U.S. House of Representatives, 7th Congressional 
        District, Wisconsin; Honorable Steve Stivers, U.S. 
        House of Representatives, 15th Congressional District, 
        Ohio; Honorable Kyrsten Sinema, U.S. House of 
        Representatives, 9th Congressional District, Arizona; 
        Honorable Doug Collins, U.S. House of Representatives, 
        9th Congressional District, Georgia; Honorable Mike 
        Coffman, U.S. House of Representatives, 6th 
        Congressional District , Colorado; Honorable Jeff 
        Denham, U.S. House of Representatives, 10th 
        Congressional District, California; Honorable Charles 
        Boustany, U.S. House of Representatives, 3rd 
        Congressional District, Louisiana; Honorable Brad 
        Wenstrup, U.S. House of Representatives, 2nd 
        Congressional District, Ohio; Ian de Planque, 
        Legislative Director American Legion; Adrian Atizado, 
        Assistant National Legislative Director, Disabled 
        American Veterans; Carlos Fuentes, Senior Legislative 
        Associate, National Legislative Service Veterans of 
        Foreign Wars of the United States; and, Madhulika 
        Agarwal MD, MPH, Deputy Under Secretary for Health for 
        Policy and Services, Veterans Health Administration 
        U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs, who was 
        accompanied by Janet P. Murphy MBA, Acting Deputy Under 
        Secretary for Health for Operations and Management, 
        Veterans Health Administration U.S. Department of 
        Veterans Affairs and Jessica Tanner, General Attorney 
        Office of General Counsel, U.S. Department of Veterans 
        Affairs.
          Statements for the Record were submitted by: The 
        American Academy of Audiology and the American Speech-
        Language Association; the Children of Vietnam Veterans 
        Health Alliance, the International Hearing Society; 
        Iraq and Afghanistan Veterans of America; the National 
        Medical Association; Paralyzed Veterans of America; 
        VetsFirst, a program of the United Spinal Association: 
        Vietnam Veterans of America; Warrior Canine Connection; 
        the American Academy of Ophthalmology; and, the 
        American Medical Association.

                       Subcommittee Consideration

    On April 16, 2015, the Subcommittee on Economic Opportunity 
met in open markup session, a quorum being present, and 
favorably forwarded H.R. 475, as amended, and H.R. 476, as 
amended, H.R. 643, H.R. 1141, and H.R. 1187 to the full 
Committee. During consideration of the bills, the following 
amendments were considered and agreed to by voice vote:
          An amendment in the nature of a substitute offered by 
        Mr. Wenstrup of Ohio, to remove a provision to extend 
        the deadline for the in-state tuition of the Choice 
        Act, and make technical and conforming changes that 
        were suggested by VA during the March 24, 2015, 
        Subcommittee on Economic Opportunity legislative 
        hearing; and
          An amendment in the nature of a substitute offered by 
        Mr. Wenstrup of Ohio, which included a one-year 
        grandfather clause for the provision that places a 
        monetary cap on flight training through the Post-9/11 
        G.I. Bill, and minor changes that were suggested by VA 
        during the March 24, 2015 Subcommittee on Economic 
        Opportunity legislative hearing.
    On June 25, 2015, the Subcommittee on Economic Opportunity 
met in open markup session, a quorum being present, and a 
motion to favorably forward H.R. 356, H.R. 832, H.R. 2275, H.R. 
2344, and H.R. 2361 to the full Committee was adopted by voice 
vote.
    On July 22, 2015, the Subcommittee on Health met in open 
markup session, a quorum being present, and a motion to 
favorably forwarded H.R. 272, H.R. 359, H.R. 423, H.R. 1862, 
and H.R. 3016 to the full Committee was adopted by voice vote.

                        Committee Consideration

    On September 17, 2015, the full Committee met in open 
markup session, a quorum being present, and ordered H.R. 3016, 
as amended, reported favorably to the House of Representatives, 
by voice vote. During consideration of the bill, the following 
amendments were considered:
          An amendment in the nature of a substitute offered by 
        Rep. Brad Wenstrup of Ohio, which combined the text of 
        H.R. 272; H.R. 356;, H.R. 423; H.R. 456; H.R. 475, as 
        amended; H.R. 476, as amended; H.R. 643; H.R. 832; H.R. 
        1015, as amended; H.R. 1141, as amended; and H.R. 1187, 
        H.R. 1862, H.R. 2275, H.R. 2344, as amended, H.R. 2531, 
        H.R. 3016, and changes to the Post-9/11 G.I. Bill was 
        agreed to by voice vote.
          An amendment to the amendment in the nature of 
        substitute offered by Rep. Phil Roe of Tennessee, which 
        expanded the amount of time VA would treat or pay for 
        newborn care from two weeks to six weeks was agreed to 
        by voice vote.
          An amendment to the amendment in the nature of 
        substitute offered by Mr. Takano of California, which 
        would have eliminated section 301 of the amendment in 
        the nature of substitute on eligibility to transfer 
        benefits to dependents under the Post-9/11 G.I. Bill 
        was not agreed to and failed by voice vote.
          An amendment to the amendment in the nature of a 
        substitute offered by Ms. Titus of Nevada, which would 
        have eliminated section 203 of the amendment in the 
        nature of a substitute which transfers functions and 
        programs of VETS to VA and would require a series of 
        studies on the effectiveness of VETS' programs was not 
        agreed to and failed by voice vote.
          An amendment to the amendment in the nature of 
        substitute by Mr. Takano of California would expand the 
        membership of VA's advisory committee on minority 
        veterans to include veterans who are lesbian, gay or 
        bisexual and veterans who are transgender was not 
        agreed to. The amendment failed by a recorded vote of 
        12 nays and 9 yeas, 1 present, with 2 absent.
    A motion by Ranking Member Corrine Brown of Florida to 
report H.R. 3016, as amended, favorably to the House of 
Representatives was adopted by voice vote.

                            Committee Votes

    In compliance with clause 3(b) of rule XIII of the Rules of 
the House of Representatives, the results of the record vote 
that occurred during the Committee consideration of H.R. 3016 
is as follows:
    An amendment to the amendment in the nature of substitute 
by Mr. Takano of California would expand the membership of VA's 
advisory committee on minority veterans to include veterans who 
are lesbian, gay or bisexual and veterans who are transgender 
was not agreed to. The amendment failed by a recorded vote of 
12 nays and 9 yeas, 1 present, with 2 absent. 


                      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 that the Secretary will use these 
provisions to improve education and employment programs as well 
as the health care services provided to veterans and 
dependents.

   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. 3016, 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. 
3016, 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. 3016, 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, November 19, 2015.
Hon. Jeff Miller,
Chairman, Committee on Veterans' Affairs,
House of Representatives, Washington, DC.
    Dear Mr. Chairman: The Congressional Budget Office has 
prepared the enclosed estimate for H.R. 3016, the Veterans 
Employment, Education, and Healthcare Improvement Act.
    If you wish further details on this estimate, we will be 
pleased to provide them. The CBO staff contact is David Newman.
            Sincerely,
                                                        Keith Hall.
    Enclosure.

H.R. 3016--Veterans Employment, Education, and Healthcare Improvement 
        Act

    Summary: H.R. 3016 would modify certain mandatory veterans' 
programs, including those that provide educational benefits and 
mortgage loan guarantees. On net, CBO estimates that enacting 
H.R. 3016 would decrease direct spending by $815 million over 
the 2016-2025 period.
    In addition, H.R. 3016 would expand the types of medical 
care provided by the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA); 
reorganize the administration of several job training, 
readjustment benefits, and other benefit programs; transfer 
certain employment training and placement programs from the 
Department of Labor (DOL) to VA; and modify the processing of 
benefit claims. In total, CBO estimates that implementing the 
bill would cost $234 million over the 2016-2020 period, 
assuming appropriation of the necessary amounts.
    Pay-as-you-go procedures apply because enacting the 
legislation would affect direct spending. Enacting the bill 
would not affect revenues.
    CBO estimates that enacting H.R. 3016 would not increase 
net direct spending or on-budget deficits in any of the four 
consecutive 10-year periods beginning in 2026.
    H.R. 3016 contains no intergovernmental or private-sector 
mandates as defined in the Unfunded Mandates Reform Act (UMRA) 
and would impose no costs on state, local, or tribal 
governments. State agencies that serve veterans would benefit 
from contact and service information about veterans provided 
electronically by VA.
    Estimated cost to the Federal Government: The estimated 
budgetary effects of H.R. 3016 are shown in Table 1. The costs 
of this legislation fall within budget function 700 (veterans 
benefits and services).

  TABLE 1.--BUDGETARY EFFECTS OF H.R. 3016, THE VETERANS EMPLOYMENT, EDUCATION, AND HEALTH CARE IMPROVEMENT ACT
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                                               By fiscal year, in millions of dollars--
                                                    ------------------------------------------------------------
                                                       2016      2017      2018      2019      2020    2016-2020
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                           CHANGES IN DIRECT SPENDINGa
 
Estimated Budget Authority.........................        -7       -20       -44       -63       -80       -214
Estimated Outlays..................................        -7       -20       -44       -63       -80       -214
                                        SPENDING SUBJECT TO APPROPRIATION
 
Estimated Authorization Level......................        76        54        33        36        38        237
Estimated Outlays..................................        56        64        38        37        39       234
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
aEnacting H.R. 3016 would have effects beyond 2020. CBO estimates that under H.R. 3016 direct spending would
  decrease by $815 million over the 2016-2025 period.

    Basis of estimate: For this estimate, CBO assumes that H.R. 
3016 will be enacted early in fiscal year 2016, the estimated 
amounts will be appropriated each year, and outlays will follow 
historical spending patterns for affected programs.

Direct spending

    CBO estimates that enacting H.R. 3016 would decrease net 
direct spending by $7 million in 2016 and $815 million over the 
2016-2025 period (see Table 2). Most of that change arises from 
provisions that would modify the education benefits provided by 
VA. Changes to VA's authority to guarantee mortgages would 
increase direct spending by a smaller amount.
    Changes to Education Benefits. H.R. 3016 would make several 
changes to education benefits provided under the Post-9/11 GI 
Bill. On net, those changes would decrease direct spending by 
$882 million over the 2016-2025 period.
    Under the Post-9/11 GI Bill, VA pays for tuition and fees 
at institutions of higher learning and, with certain 
exceptions, provides monthly housing allowances to 
beneficiaries while they are in school. Payments for attending 
public schools cover the full cost of tuition and fees at rates 
charged to in-state students. Annual payments for education 
programs at private institutions are capped at about $21,000 
for 2016. (That limit is adjusted annually for inflation.)

                                                                   TABLE 2.--ESTIMATED EFFECTS OF H.R. 3016 ON DIRECT SPENDING
------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                                                                                           By fiscal year, in millions of dollars--
                                                             -----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                                                2016     2017     2018     2019     2020     2021       2022         2023         2024         2025      2016-2020    2016-2025
------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                                                                   CHANGES IN DIRECT SPENDING
 
Transferred Education Benefits
    Estimated Budget Authority..............................      -10      -24      -41      -64      -79      -87          -98         -110         -123         -137         -218         -773
    Estimated Outlays.......................................      -10      -24      -41      -64      -79      -87          -98         -110         -123         -137         -218         -773
Payments for Flight Training
    Estimated Budget Authority..............................       -4       -8      -19      -20      -22      -23          -25          -26          -27          -29          -73         -203
    Estimated Outlays.......................................       -4       -8      -19      -20      -22      -23          -25          -26          -27          -29          -73         -203
Fry Scholarships
    Estimated Budget Authority..............................        2        4        7       11       11        3            3            3            3            3           35           50
    Estimated Outlays.......................................        2        4        7       11       11        3            3            3            3            3           35           50
Credit for Time in Medical Care
    Estimated Budget Authority..............................        1        2        3        4        4        5            5            5            5            6           14           40
    Estimated Outlays.......................................        1        2        3        4        4        5            5            5            5            6           14           40
Work-Study Program
    Estimated Budget Authority..............................        *        1        1        1        1        *            0            0            0            0            4            4
    Estimated Outlays.......................................        *        1        1        1        1        *            0            0            0            0            4            4
Loan Guarantee Limit
    Estimated Budget Authority..............................        4        5        5        5        5        6            7            7            8           15           24           67
    Estimated Outlays.......................................        4        5        5        5        5        6            7            7            8           15           24           67
    Total Changes in Direct Spending
        Estimated Budget Authority..........................       -7      -20      -44      -63      -80      -96         -108         -121         -134         -142         -214         -815
        Estimated Outlays...................................       -7      -20      -44      -63      -80      -96         -108         -121         -134         -142         -214        -815
------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Note: * = between $0 and $500,000.

    In addition, students who face tuition and fees above what 
VA will cover--students at certain private schools and out-of-
state students attending public schools--may be eligible to 
have part or all of their remaining expenses covered under the 
Yellow Ribbon GI Education Enhancement Program (YRP). 
Institutions participating in the YRP agree to cover a portion 
of the difference between the tuition charged and the amount 
that VA would otherwise pay. VA then matches that financial 
assistance, thereby reducing or eliminating students' out-of-
pocket expenses.
    Service members and veterans can use those benefits 
themselves or transfer up to a total of 36 months of benefits 
to their spouses and children after serving at least six years 
in the military. Spouses can use the benefits as soon as they 
are transferred, but children must wait until the member has 
completed 10 years of service.
    Transferred Education Benefits. Section 301 would modify 
the authorities under which service members may transfer 
education benefits to their dependents. On net, those changes 
would reduce direct spending by $773 million over the 2016-2025 
period, CBO estimates.
    Section 301 would reduce by half the monthly housing 
allowance paid to children who use transferred benefits. That 
reduction would apply to benefits that are transferred to 
children 180 days or more after the bill is enacted. Based on 
current payment levels and adjusting for expected inflation, 
CBO estimates that the annual payment for the housing allowance 
under the Post-9/11 GI Bill will average about $7,000 in 2016 
and $7,900 over the 2016-2025 period. (That annual payment may 
represent an academic years' worth of benefits for one student 
or portions of an academic year for two or more students.)
    Based on data from the Department of Defense (DoD), CBO 
estimates that about 28,000 service members will transfer their 
education benefits to their children each year. Less than 10 
percent of children who receive transferred benefits will be 
college-aged at the time of the transfer and only half will 
reach college age during the subsequent 10-year period. Most 
service members will have completed at least 10 years of 
service by the time their children are old enough to attend 
college. Thus, the reduction in the housing allowance would 
affect a small number of annual payments initially--about 2,000 
in 2016. The number of reduced payments would increase over 
time to nearly 40,000 annual payments in 2025. CBO estimates 
that the number of annual payments that would be cut in half 
under section 301 would total roughly 220,000 over the 2016-
2025 period, reducing direct spending by $900 million.
    Section 301 also would change the terms under which service 
members may transfer Post-9/11 GI Bill benefits to their 
spouses and children. Under current law, members must serve at 
least six years and agree to serve another four years to 
transfer their benefits. Under section 301, members would have 
to serve at least 10 years, and agree to serve an additional 
two years in order to transfer benefits. Spouses and children 
would be allowed to begin using benefits as soon as they are 
transferred by the member.
    CBO expects that those changes would cause some service 
members to leave the military and use their benefits 
themselves, rather than transfer them to their dependents. 
Because service members would have to wait four more years 
before committing to additional military service, they would 
have more opportunities to leave the armed forces. Also, 
spouses would have to wait an additional four years to use 
transferred benefits, somewhat reducing their value to the 
spouse. Finally, the length of service required from the member 
would increase from 10 years to 12 years.
    Based on the rate at which personnel leave the military 
between their 6th and 10th years of service, CBO estimates that 
each year about 2,000 members who would have committed to 
additional service in order to transfer benefits under current 
law would, under this provision, leave the military and retain 
those benefits for their own use. That change would have 
several offsetting effects that would increase net direct 
spending by about $130 million over the 2016-2025 period, CBO 
estimates. Those effects include:
           Increased costs of $560 million for an 
        additional 20,000 service members who would separate 
        and use additional benefits;
           Increased costs of $40 million for the 
        roughly 2,000 additional recruits who would replace 
        those separating service members, some of whom would 
        later separate and use education benefits near the end 
        of the budget window;
           Decreased costs of $270 million because 
        spouses who do receive transferred benefits would have 
        to wait an additional four years to receive them, 
        reducing the total number of spouses who attend school 
        over the next 10 years by about 6,500;
           Decreased costs of $100 million because 
        about 4,700 fewer spouses would receive transferred 
        benefits; and
           Decreased costs of $100 million because 
        about 14,000 fewer children would receive transferred 
        benefits, about 2,000 of whom would have reached 
        college age during the next 10 years.
    Payments for Flight Training. Section 306 would cap 
payments for tuition and fees for educational programs that 
involve flight training. Flight-training programs require 
significant expenditures for aircraft purchases, equipment 
maintenance, aviation fuel, and insurance. In 2014, VA paid an 
average of $42,000 in tuition and fees for all beneficiaries 
enrolled in flight-training programs at public institutions. 
The maximum benefit for tuition and fees for flight trainees at 
private institutions was $19,400 that year.
    Section 306 would apply the limit for private institutions 
to all flight-training programs. (Students who are enrolled in 
flight-training programs before enactment of H.R. 3016 would 
not see their education benefits reduced for two years.) 
Payments for students whose tuition is below the new cap would 
not be affected. In 2014, the average cost for the 544 students 
whose tuition and fees exceeded the $19,400 limit applicable to 
private institutions for that year was about $62,000, a 
difference of $42,600. (That number excludes students at 
programs currently precluded from enrolling new students 
receiving VA education benefits.) In total, payments to schools 
would decline by $342 million over the 2016-2025 period as a 
result of the cap, CBO estimates.
    Under the bill, the savings realized by capping tuition 
payments would be partially offset because some students may be 
eligible for additional assistance under the Yellow Ribbon 
Program.
    Based on data from VA that reflects payments under the YRP, 
CBO expects that about 90 percent of the institutions affected 
by the new cap on flight-training costs would make qualifying 
contributions under the YRP, and those contributions would 
cover about 45 percent of the difference between the listed 
amount for tuition and fees and the limit on VA payments for 
those costs. Thus, reductions in benefit payments for flight 
training would be about 40 percent less than what they would be 
in the absence of the Yellow Ribbon Program. VA's matching 
payments under the YRP would total $139 million over the 2016-
2025 period.
    On that basis, CBO estimates that in most years about 600 
individuals would be affected by the new limit on tuition and 
fees. The number of students affected would be smaller in 2016 
and 2017 because payments for students who enrolled before H.R. 
3016 was enacted would not be reduced in those years. In 2018, 
the first year that the cap would apply to payments for all 
students in flight training, payments for affected students 
would decline by about $30,000. That amount would increase 
annually because the gap between flight-training costs and the 
new cap would increase with inflation. CBO estimates that, in 
total, enacting section 306 would decrease direct spending by 
$203 million over the 2016-2025 period.
    Fry Scholarships. The Marine Gunnery Sergeant John David 
Fry Scholarship provides 36 months of education benefits under 
the Post-9/11 GI Bill to spouses and children of service 
members who died on active duty at any time after September 11, 
2001. Section 302 would enhance that benefit by allowing those 
individuals to receive payments under the Yellow Ribbon Program 
and by giving certain spouses more time to use the benefit. In 
total, section 302 would increase direct spending by $50 
million over the 2016-2025 period, CBO estimates.
    Under current law, service members must complete at least 
36 months of active duty or be discharged from the military for 
a service-connected disability to earn YRP benefits. (Spouses 
and children who receive transferred benefits from members who 
were eligible for the YRP program can also receive that 
additional assistance.) Under the bill, recipients of the Fry 
Scholarship could receive additional education assistance 
through the Yellow Ribbon Program; thus, the roughly 6,000 
dependents who use Fry Scholarship benefits each year also 
would become eligible for YRP assistance.
    In 2014, VA made payments averaging $5,700 for 6 percent of 
the students who were eligible for the Yellow Ribbon Program. 
About 6,000 people with Fry Scholarships will attend school 
each year, CBO estimates. Assuming the same percentage of 
students with Fry Scholarships get similar YRP benefits 
(adjusted for inflation), those additional payments would 
increase direct spending by $25 million over the 2016-2025 
period, CBO estimates.
    Section 302 also would extend the time that certain spouses 
have to use Fry Scholarship benefits before they expire. On 
January 1, 2015, the Fry Scholarship was expanded to include 
spouses. Under current law, those spouses have 15 years after 
the service member's death to use their benefits; thus, some 
spouses have fewer than four years before their benefits will 
expire. Section 302 would allow spouses of service members who 
died between September 11, 2001, and December 31, 2005, up to 
51 additional months to use their benefits. Approximately 2,000 
service members with spouses died during that period, and their 
spouses would not have time to use any or all of their Fry 
Scholarship under current law. CBO estimates that direct 
spending on education benefits would increase by $25 million 
over the 2016-2025 period, because of the additional time for 
spouses to use their benefits.
    Credit for Time in Medical Care. Section 307 would allow 
the time a reservist serves on active duty while receiving 
medical care or undergoing a medical evaluation, to count as 
qualifying active service for accruing education benefits under 
chapter 33. Based on historical data from the Department of 
Defense regarding such activations, CBO estimates that about 
1,000 reservists will be called to active duty for those 
reasons annually, and spend an average of seven months in that 
status. For those individuals, that additional qualifying 
service could result in a roughly 15 percent increase in annual 
benefits under chapter 33--about $2,500 per person in 2016.
    However, some activated reservists will already qualify for 
the maximum benefit as a result of other time on active duty; 
others would not use their benefits at all, even if the amount 
of the benefit were increased. Based on personnel data from 
DoD, CBO estimates that under section 307, about half of the 
reservists who are activated for medical care would receive and 
use additional benefits as a result of that service. Section 
307 would apply to active-duty service after the date of 
enactment of the bill; thus, the initial budgetary effect would 
be small--about $1 million in 2016. As the population of 
veterans who would benefit from the provision grew over time, 
annual costs would increase to about $5 million. In total, the 
additional payments from VA for those benefits would increase 
direct spending by $40 million over the 2016-2025 period, CBO 
estimates.
    Work-Study Program. Section 308 would renew for five years 
an expired authority to pay veterans to work in certain 
positions at VA while they are using educational assistance. 
Under the program, veterans could be paid the minimum wage for 
up to 25 hours per week for working in VA hospitals, nursing 
homes, retirement homes, and veterans' cemeteries, or for 
performing outreach services to other veterans. The authority 
to hire veterans in those positions expired on June 30, 2013. 
Section 308 would restart the program on June 30, 2016.
    In 2012, the last full year before the authority expired, 
VA paid an average of $2,750 to about 400 veterans who 
performed such work. CBO expects that participation would be 
similar under the renewed program; therefore, we estimate that 
enacting section 308 would increase direct spending by $4 
million over the 2016-2021 period.
    In-State Tuition for Dependents. For dependents who receive 
transferred benefits under chapter 33, section 408 would 
require public institutions of higher learning to set tuition 
and fees at rates that are no higher than those charged to 
state residents. Institutions that declined to do so would be 
disapproved for attendance by students using VA education 
benefits. To the extent that public institutions complied and 
lowered prices for such beneficiaries, the difference between 
the rate charged by the institution and the amount paid by VA 
would decline or disappear. Thus VA would not have to provide 
matching payments under the Yellow Ribbon Program for 
institutions that would have covered part of that difference, 
and spending for that program would decline.
    Section 408 is similar to a requirement in current law that 
public institutions must offer in-state tuition rates to 
veterans who were discharged within the three-year period 
preceding their enrollment in the institution. That requirement 
should similarly reduce mandatory spending under the YRP. 
However, the Secretary of Veterans Affairs has waived the 
disapproval of institutions that do not offer in-state tuition 
to veterans, reducing the incentive for public institutions to 
offer that lower rate. The Secretary's waiver would similarly 
apply to dependents who would otherwise be affected by the 
enactment of section 408. CBO expects that VA will continue to 
waive the requirement in current law; therefore, enacting 
section 408 would not affect direct spending.
    Loan Guarantee Limit. VA provides partial loan guarantees 
to lenders that make home loans to veterans. The guarantee 
payment from VA is capped at 25 percent of the initial loan 
balance, up to the maximum loan amount established by the 
Federal Home Loan Mortgage Corporation Act, currently $417,000. 
(Loans at or below that level are known as conforming loans; 
loans in excess are called jumbo loans. Exceptions are made to 
the conforming limit for certain high-cost areas like Hawaii 
and Alaska.)
    Section 501 would eliminate the cap on the loan amount for 
which VA can provide a guarantee of 25 percent. As a result, VA 
would provide a larger guarantee amount for some jumbo loans 
that it will already cover under current law. Additionally, 
some veterans who would not have used the benefit because of 
the guarantee limit would do so if section 501 were enacted. 
From October 2008, to December 2014, the maximum loan amount 
for which VA could provide a full guarantee was temporarily 
increased to $729,750. Based on information about the jumbo 
loans VA guaranteed during that period, CBO estimates that if 
the loan limit were removed, VA would increase the guaranteed 
amount by about $100,000 on average for about 5,000 loans a 
year that it will otherwise guarantee for a lesser amount under 
current law. Also, VA would guarantee an additional 1,000 loans 
annually with an average loan amount of about $700,000. As a 
result, the annual loan volume that VA would guarantee would 
grow by an average of $1.2 billion. Because the subsidy costs 
of VA's loan guarantees are considered direct spending, 
increasing the loan volume would increase direct spending.\1\ 
Based on the experience from VA's loan guarantee program, CBO 
estimates that enacting section 501 would increase direct 
spending by $4 million in 2016 and $67 million over the 2016-
2025 period.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------
    \1\Under the Federal Credit Reform Act of 1990, the subsidy cost of 
a loan guarantee is the net present value of estimated payments by the 
government to cover defaults and delinquencies, interest subsidies, or 
other expenses, offset by an payments to the government, including 
origination fees, other fees, penalties, and recoveries on defaulted 
loans. Such subsidy costs are calculated by discounting those expected 
cash flows using the rate on Treasury securities of comparable 
maturity. The resulting estimated subsidy costs are recorded in the 
budget when the loans are disbursed.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

Spending subject to appropriation

    H.R. 3016 would expand the types of medical care provided 
by VA. It also would establish a new organization in VA to 
administer several job training, readjustment, and benefit 
programs, and would transfer certain job training and placement 
programs from the Department of Labor to VA. Finally, the bill 
would improve the systems and methods for processing benefit 
claims, and require VA to provide certain reports and studies. 
In total, CBO estimates that implementing the bill would cost 
$234 million over the 2016-2020 period, assuming appropriation 
of the necessary amounts (see Table 3).
    Medical Care. The bill would expand neonatal care, increase 
the benefits paid to podiatrists at VA, establish a pilot 
program for certain veterans to train service dogs, and require 
periodic reviews of VA's budget for health care. In total, 
implementing those provisions would increase costs by $100 
million, CBO estimates.
    Care for Newborns. Section 103 would authorize VA to 
provide up to 42 days of health care to newborn children of 
female veterans who receive maternity care through the 
department. Under current law, VA may provide such care for no 
more than seven days after delivery.
    Based on data from VA, CBO estimates that that 11 percent 
(or 240) of the roughly 2,200 eligible births that occur each 
year are complicated births that require neonatal care beyond 
seven days. Based on information from the Agency for Healthcare 
Research and Quality, and excluding the days over 42, the 
average length of stay for neonatal care for complicated births 
(for example, premature delivery, low birth weight, and fetal-
growth retardation) is 15 days. Using information from VA, we 
estimate that the average daily cost for complicated births is 
about $4,000. As a result, and adjusting for anticipated 
inflation, CBO estimates that implementing this proposal would 
cost $50 million over the 2016-2020 period.

  Table 3.--Budgetary Effects of H.R. 3016, The Veterans Employment, Education, and Health Care Improvement Act
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                                            By fiscal year, in millions of dollars--
                                               -----------------------------------------------------------------
                                                   2016       2017       2018       2019       2020    2016-2020
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                        SPENDING SUBJECT TO APPROPRIATION
 
Care for Newborns
    Estimated Authorization Level.............          7          9         10         12         13         51
    Estimated Outlays.........................          6          9         10         12         13         50
Podiatrists
    Estimated Authorization Level.............          5          6          7          8          9         35
    Estimated Outlays.........................          4          6          7          8          9         34
Dog Training Therapy
    Estimated Authorization Level.............          2          2          2          2          2         10
    Estimated Outlays.........................          2          2          2          2          2         10
Outreach on Credit Protection
    Estimated Authorization Level.............          1          2          1          1          1          6
    Estimated Outlays.........................          1          2          1          1          1          6
Veterans Economic Opportunity and Transition
 Administration
    Estimated Authorization Level.............          *         30         10         10         10         60
    Estimated Outlays.........................          *         27         12         10         10         59
Transfer Labor Programs to VA
    Estimated Authorization Level.............         14          4          2          2          2         24
    Estimated Outlays.........................         10          7          3          2          2         24
Claims Processing
    Authorization Level.......................         40          0          0          0          0         40
    Estimated Outlays.........................         27          9          2          1          1         40
Information on Benefit Entitlement
    Estimated Authorization Level.............          5          0          0          0          0          5
    Estimated Outlays.........................          4          1          0          0          0          5
Reports, Surveys, and Studies
    Estimated Authorization Level.............          2          1          1          1          1          6
    Estimated Outlays.........................          2          1          1          1          1          6
    Total Spending Subject to Appropriation
        Estimated Authorization Level.........         76         54         33         36         38        237
        Estimated Outlays.....................         56         64         38         37         39       234
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Note: VA = Department of Veterans Affairs; * = between $0 and $500,000.

    Podiatrists. Section 101 would require VA to treat 
podiatrists as physicians for the purposes of pay, recruitment, 
and retention. Over the next five years, CBO expects that VA 
will employ, on average, about 400 podiatrists at an annual 
salary of $195,000. Based on pay data from VA, CBO estimates 
that this proposal would increase that compensation by 6 
percent to an average of $210,000 over that period. In 
addition, CBO expects that the higher level of compensation 
would enable VA to be more successful in recruiting 
podiatrists. Accordingly, we estimate that over the 2016-2020 
period, the number of podiatrists VA employs each year would 
increase to an average of 420. As a result, CBO estimates that 
implementing section 101 would increase personnel costs by $34 
million over the 2016-2020 period.
    Dog Training Therapy. Section 106 would require VA to 
establish a pilot program through which veterans diagnosed with 
post-traumatic stress disorder or other mental health 
conditions would train service dogs for use by other disabled 
veterans. The pilot program would operate in up to five medical 
centers over a five-year period. Based on the cost of a similar 
VA program in Palo Alto, California, CBO expects that each 
facility would train six service dogs every two years using one 
certified dog trainer. CBO estimates that implementing the 
provision would cost $10 million over the 2016-2020 period.
    Outreach on Credit Protection. Section 105 would require VA 
to inform veterans about the negative effects on their credit 
score from overdue copayments to VA for emergency care provided 
at nondepartment facilities. VA also would be required to 
operate a toll-free line for veterans to report such credit 
issues to VA. CBO expects that implementing these requirements 
would require five additional employees at an annual cost of $1 
million.
    Section 105 would also require the Government 
Accountability Office to conduct an analysis on the timeliness 
of VA payments to non-VA providers of health care. Based on the 
resources necessary for previous studies, CBO estimates such a 
study would cost $1 million. In total, implementing section 105 
would cost $6 million over the 2016-2020 period, CBO estimates.
    Economic Opportunity and Transition Administration. Title 
II of the bill would create a new administration at VA to 
manage programs for readjustment benefits, home-loan 
guarantees, and small-business assistance. The title also would 
transfer the responsibilities for the veterans' employment 
programs administered by the Department of Labor to VA. In 
total, CBO estimates that implementing title II would increase 
costs by $83 million.
    Veterans Economic Opportunity and Transition 
Administration. Beginning in fiscal year 2017, sections 201 and 
202 would establish the Veterans Economic Opportunity and 
Transition Administration (VEOTA). The Veterans Benefits 
Administration (VBA) currently manages the following benefit 
programs for veterans and other eligible individuals:
           Disability compensation;
           Pension, dependency and indemnity 
        compensation, burial, and fiduciary programs;
           Readjustment benefits (including education 
        and vocational rehabilitation benefits);
           Home-loan guarantees;
           Small business programs; and
           Insurance.
    This bill would transfer some programs that are currently 
administered by VBA to VEOTA. Under this new organizational 
structure, all readjustment benefit programs (including 
employment programs), the home-loan guarantee program, and 
veterans' small business programs would instead be managed by 
VEOTA. VBA and VEOTA each would be led by an Undersecretary. 
Section 201 would limit the total number of full-time 
equivalent (FTE) positions serving in both administrations to 
22,118 in fiscal years 2017 and 2018.
    Based on information from VA, there are currently about 
4,400 VA employees who oversee and carry out the benefits 
programs that would transfer to VEOTA under this provision. CBO 
estimates that those personnel, and the records, property, and 
budgetary resources currently used by VBA to manage those 
programs also would be transferred. Using the current operating 
costs for VBA of $137 million, we estimate a 10 percent 
increase in 2017 to capture moving expenses, IT costs and other 
reorganization expenses, and about a 3 percent increase 
thereafter for ongoing operating expenses. Those estimated 
additional operating costs would total about $50 million over 
2016-2020 period. In addition, CBO estimates that VEOTA would 
require an additional 20 FTE positions at an average annual 
cost of $180,000 to manage the daily operations of the new 
administration. As a result, CBO estimates costs of $9 million 
for additional staff.
    CBO estimates that establishing VEOTA and transferring the 
programs, personnel, and accompanying assets and hiring the 
additional 20 personnel would cost $59 million over the 2016-
2020 period.
    Veterans Employment and Training Services. In 2014, DOL 
employed about 230 individuals and spent about $230 million to 
provide employment, job training, and reintegration services to 
veterans. Section 203 would transfer those veterans-related 
programs to VA, under VEOTA (as established in section 201). 
CBO estimates that implementing that provision would cost $24 
million over the 2016-2020 period. Those costs primarily 
reflect building the necessary information technology (IT) 
systems for grant management and relocating staff.
    Many of the transferred programs are grant programs that 
require grant management and data collection systems to analyze 
and evaluate the effectiveness of each program. Under current 
law, DOL relies on its customized IT systems to manage those 
programs. Those systems are currently used throughout DOL and 
embedded in the department's greater IT infrastructure. CBO 
expects that VA would need to develop its own grant management 
system to distribute and manage the grants and collect the 
comprehensive data necessary to comply with the statutory 
reporting requirements of the transferred programs. Based on 
information from DOL, CBO estimates that it would cost $18 
million over the 2016-2020 period to develop and maintain the 
IT systems.
    Based on information from DOL, CBO estimates that about 140 
of the 230 transferring employees work outside of the 
Washington, D.C. area. CBO assumes that those personnel would 
remain at their current locations after VA takes responsibility 
for their functions. The remaining individuals would relocate 
from DOL to a VA facility. Based on information from the 
General Services Administration (GSA), CBO estimates that it 
would cost about $20,000 to move each of those employees within 
the District of Columbia.
    Because VA already leases space to accommodate some of 
their current employees, CBO expects that it would need to 
lease additional space to accommodate the 90 relocated 
employees. Based on GSA planning estimates, VA would need to 
lease about 18,000 square feet of office space at a cost of 
about $40 per square foot. Because those employees are 
intermingled with other DOL employees, CBO expects that DOL 
would not be able to consolidate space very quickly. Thus, any 
reduction in costs for DOL from the relocated employees would 
be less than the increase in costs for VA over the first few 
years. On net, CBO estimates that it would cost about $6 
million to move 90 employees and lease office space over the 
2016-2020 period.
    Benefit Processing Improvements. H.R. 3016 would make 
several changes to the systems and methods used to process 
benefit claims. In total, those changes would increase costs by 
$45 million.
    Claims Processing. Section 407 would require VA to maximize 
the use of automation and algorithms in systems used to process 
claims for educational assistance under the Post-9/11 GI Bill 
(Chapter 33) and would authorize the appropriation of $30 
million in 2016 for that purpose.
    Section 310 would require VA to reduce the number of IT 
systems used to process payments for vocational rehabilitation 
benefits and to ensure that such payments on behalf of a 
particular veteran are paid from only one system. It would 
authorize the appropriation of $10 million in 2016 for that 
purpose.
    CBO estimates that implementing those provisions would cost 
$40 million over the 2016-2020 period, assuming appropriation 
of the specified amounts.
    Information on Benefit Entitlement. Section 402 would 
require VA to allow institutions of higher learning to obtain 
information on the educational assistance to which a veteran is 
entitled via a secure IT system. CBO expects that VA could 
accomplish that requirement by modifying systems that are 
currently used to provide other information to such 
institutions. Based on information from VA, CBO estimates that 
modifying those systems would cost $5 million over the 2016-
2020 period, assuming appropriation of the estimated amounts.
    Reports, Surveys, and Studies. The bill would require VA to 
produce a total of nine reports on matters such as medical 
care, benefit processing, and contract set-asides for veteran-
owned business. It also would require a survey of veterans 
using educational benefits, and a multiyear study on job 
counseling and placement programs. Based on the costs of 
similar studies and reports, CBO estimates that meeting those 
requirements would cost a total of $6 million over the 2016-
2020 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. 3016 AS ORDERED REPORTED BY THE HOUSE COMMITTEE ON VETERANS' AFFAIRS ON SEPTEMBER 17, 2015
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                                                               By fiscal year, in millions of dollars--
                                            ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                              2016   2017    2018    2019    2020    2021     2022      2023      2024      2025    2016-2020  2016-2025
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                                          NET INCREASE IN THE ON-BUDGET DEFICIT
 
Statutory Pay-As-You-Go Impact.............     -7     -20     -44     -63     -80     -96      -108      -121      -134      -142       -214       -815
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

    Increase in long term direct spending and deficits: CBO 
estimates that enacting H.R. 3016 would not increase net direct 
spending or on-budget deficits in any of the four consecutive 
10-year periods beginning in 2026.
    Intergovernmental and private-sector impact H.R. 3016 
contains no intergovernmental or private-sector mandates as 
defined in UMRA and would impose no costs on state, local, or 
tribal governments. State agencies that serve veterans would 
benefit from contact and service information about veterans 
provided electronically by VA.
    Previous cost estimates: On August 26, 2015, CBO 
transmitted a cost estimate for H.R. 475, the GI Bill 
Processing Improvement and Quality Enhancement Act of 2015, as 
ordered reported by the House Committee on Veterans' Affairs on 
May 21, 2015. Sections 102 and 103 of that bill are similar to 
sections 306 and 307 of H.R. 3016 and the estimated costs are 
the same. Section 104 of H.R. 475 is similar to section 501 of 
H.R. 3016. CBO estimates a smaller cost in fiscal year 2016 for 
section 501 than we estimated for the earlier provision because 
of the later expected date of enactment.
    Estimate prepared by: Federal Costs: Ann E. Futrell, David 
Newman, and Dwayne M. Wright; Impact on State, Local, and 
Tribal Governments: Jon Sperl; Impact on the Private Sector: 
Paige Piper/Bach.
    Estimate approved by: H. Samuel Papenfuss, Deputy Assistant 
Director for Budget Analysis.

                       Federal Mandates Statement

    The Committee adopts as its own the estimate of Federal 
mandates regarding H.R. 3016, 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. 
3016, 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(g) of H. Res. 5, 114th Cong. (2015), 
the Committee finds that no provision of H.R. 3016, as amended, 
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(i) of H. Res. 5, 114th Cong. (2015), 
the Committee estimates that H.R. 3016, as amended, contains no 
directed rule making that would require the Secretary to 
prescribe regulations.

             Section-by-Section Analysis of the Legislation


                     TITLE I--VETERANS HEALTH CARE

Section 101. Role of podiatrists in Department of Veterans Affairs

    Section 101(a) would amend subchapter I of chapter 74 of 
title 38, U.S.C., to create a new section entitled, ``7413. 
Treatment of podiatrists.'' This new section would specify that 
the term ``physician'' includes a podiatrist for purposes of 
this chapter. It would also amend the table of sections at the 
beginning of chapter 74 of title 38, U.S.C., by inserting after 
the item relating to section 7412 the following new item, 
``7413. Treatment of podiatrists.'' It would further amend 
section 7401(1) of title 38, U.S.C., by striking ``Physicians, 
dentists, podiatrists'' and inserting ``Physicians, dentists.''
    Section 101(b) would amend section 7402(b) of title 38 
U.S.C., in paragraph (1), subparagraph (A) by striking ``or of 
doctor of osteopathy'' and inserting ``doctor of osteopathy, or 
doctor of podiatric medicine'' and in paragraph (C) by 
inserting ``podiatry'' after ``surgery,'' by striking paragraph 
(5), and by redesignating paragraphs (6) through (14) as 
paragraphs (5) through (13), respectively.
    Section 101(c) would amend section 7403(a)(2) of title 38, 
U.S.C., by striking subparagraph (C) and by redesignating 
subparagraphs (D) through (H) as subparagraphs (C) through (G), 
respectively.
    Section 101(d) would amend the list in section 7404(b) of 
title 38, U.S.C., by striking ``CLINICAL PODIATRIST, 
CHIROPRACTOR, AND OPTOMETRIST SCHEDULE'' and inserting 
``CLINICAL CHIROPRACTOR AND OPTOMETRIST SCHEDULE'' and would 
require this amendment to apply with respect to a VA pay period 
beginning on or after the date that is 30 days after the date 
of the enactment of this Act.
    Section 101(e) would amend section 7409(a) of title 38, 
U.S.C., by striking ``podiatrists''.
    Section 101(f) would amend section 7421(b) of title 38, 
U.S.C., by striking paragraph (3) and by redesignating 
paragraphs (4) through (8) as paragraphs (3) through (7).
    Section 101(g) would amend section 7306(a)(4) of title 38, 
U.S.C., by inserting ``, doctor of podiatric medicine,'' after 
``doctor of medicine.''
    Section 101(h) would require the amendments made by this 
Section to apply with respect to podiatrists employed by VA as 
of the date of the enactment of this Act or who are appointed 
on or after such date.

Section 102. Priority of Medal of Honor recipients in health care 
        system of Department of Veterans Affairs

    Section 102(a) would amend section 1705(a) of title 38, 
U.S.C., in paragraph 1, by striking the period at the end and 
inserting ``and veterans who were awarded the medal of honor 
under section 3741, 6241, or 8741 of title 10 or section 491 of 
title 14'' and, in paragraph 3, by striking ``veterans who were 
awarded the medal of honor under section 3741, 6241, or 8741 or 
title 10 or section 491 of title 14.''
    Section 102(b) would amend section 1710(a)(2)(D) of title 
38, U.S.C., by inserting ``who was awarded the medal of honor 
under section 3741, 6241, or 8741 of title 10 or section 491 of 
title 14'' after ``war.''
    Section 102(c) would amend section 1710B(c)(2) of title 38, 
U.S.C., by striking ``or'' in subparagraph (B), by striking the 
period at the end and inserting ``; or'' in subparagraph (C), 
by adding at the end a new subparagraph (D) to read ``(D) to a 
veteran who was awarded the medal of honor under section 3741, 
6241, or 8741 of title 10 or section 491 of title 14.''
    Section 102(d) would amend 1722(a)(3) of title 38, U.S.C., 
by striking ``or'' in subparagraph (B), by striking the period 
at the end and inserting ``; or'' in subparagraph (C), and by 
adding at the end a new subparagraph (D) to read ``(D) to a 
veteran who was awarded the medal of honor under section 3741, 
6241, or 8741 of title 10 or section 491 of title 14.''
    Section 102(e) would require that the priority of 
enrollment of medal of honor recipients pursuant to chapter 17 
of title 38, U.S.C., shall apply to each medal of honor 
recipient, regardless of the date on which the medal is 
awarded.

Section 103. Improvement of care provided to newborn children

    Section 103 would amend section 1786 of title 38, U.S.C., 
by striking ``seven days'' and inserting ``42 days'' and by 
adding a new subsection to read ``(c) Annual Report--Not later 
than October 31, 2016, and each year thereafter through 2020, 
the Secretary shall submit to the Committees on Veterans' 
Affairs of the House of Representatives and the Senate a report 
on the health care services provided under subsection (a) 
during the fiscal year preceding the date of the report, 
including the number of newborn children who received such 
services during such fiscal year.''

Section 104. Comptroller general audit of budget of Veterans Health 
        Administration

    Section 104(a) would amend subchapter II of chapter 73 of 
title 38, U.S.C., by creating a new section entitled, ``7330B. 
Comptroller General audit of VHA budget.'' The new section 
would require that the Comptroller General of the United States 
conduct periodic audits of the elements of the Veterans Health 
Administration budget including the budget formulation, 
execution, allocation, and use of funds. It would also require 
that, in selecting elements of the Veterans Health 
Administration budget to audit, the Comptroller General is 
required to take knowledge of Veterans Health Administration 
programs, current issues, national priorities, and priorities 
expressed by the appropriate congressional committees into 
consideration. The new section would further require that the 
Comptroller General submit notice to the appropriate 
congressional committees of the elements of the Veterans Health 
Administration budget selected for audit by not later than 30 
days before conducting the audit. The appropriate congressional 
committees are defined as the Committees on Veterans' Affairs, 
the Committees on Appropriations, and the Committees on the 
Budget of the Senate and the U.S. House of Representatives.

Section. 105. Outreach to veterans regarding effect of certain delayed 
        payments by department of veterans affairs chief business 
        office

    Section 105(a) would require that the Secretary of Veterans 
Affairs conduct outreach, including through national and local 
veterans service organizations, to inform veterans of how to 
resolve credit issues caused by delayed payment by VA of a 
claim for emergency hospital care, medical services, or other 
emergency health care furnished through a non-VA provider. It 
would also require the Secretary of Veterans Affairs to 
establish a toll-free number for veterans to report such credit 
issues to the VA Chief Business Office.
    Section 105(b) would require the Secretary of Veterans 
Affairs, during the five-year period beginning on the date of 
enactment of this Act, to submit an annual report on the 
effectiveness of the Chief Business Office in providing timely 
payment of proper invoices for emergency hospital care, medical 
services, or other emergency health care furnished through non-
VA providers during both the five-year period and the one-year 
period preceding the date of the report. For any part of the 
period of the report that occurred before October 1, 2014, the 
report would be required to evaluate such payments by Veterans 
Integrated Service Network. The annual reports would further be 
required, for each period covered by the report, to include: 
the number of veterans who contacted the Secretary regarding a 
delayed payment that negatively affected, or will potentially 
negatively affect, the credit of the veteran; the total amount 
of interest penalties paid by the Secretary of Veterans Affairs 
under section 3902 of title 31 U.S.C., by reason of delayed 
payment; the number of proper invoices submitted, listed in a 
table for each quarter and fiscal year of each such period that 
includes the total amount owed by the Secretary under the 
proper invoices, the payment status of each proper invoice as 
of the date of the report, and the period that elapsed until 
each proper invoice was paid to include an explanation of any 
delayed payment; any comments regarding delayed payments made 
by medical providers; and a description of the best practices 
that the Chief Business Office can carry out to provide timely 
payment of a proper invoice to include a plan to improve such 
timely payments.
    Section 105(c) would require the VA Chief Business Office, 
during the five-year period beginning on the date of the 
enactment of this Act, to submit quarterly reports to Congress 
on the number of pending claims for reimbursement for emergency 
hospital care, medical services, and other emergency health 
care furnished through non-VA providers. Each quarterly report 
would be required to include: the total number of such pending 
claims for each VA hospital system as of the last day of the 
quarter covered by the report; the total number of veterans who 
submitted such a pending claim in each state as of such day; 
the aggregate amount of all such pending claims in each State 
as of such day; the number of such pending claims that have 
been pending for 30, 90, or 365 days or longer as of such day; 
the number of claims for reimbursement for emergency hospital 
care, medical services, and other emergency health care 
furnished through non-VA providers approved and denied during 
such quarter for each hospital system to include, for each 
denied claim, the number of such claims denied listed by each 
denial reason group.
    Section 105(d) would require the Comptroller General to 
conduct a study to evaluate the effectiveness of the VA Chief 
Business Office in providing timely payment of a proper invoice 
for emergency hospital care, medical services, or other 
emergency health care furnished through non-VA providers by the 
required payment date and submit a report on the study to 
Congress, to include the total amount of interest penalties 
paid by the Secretary of Veterans Affairs under section 3902 of 
title 31, U.S.C., by reason of delayed payment.
    Section 105(e) would define the term ``delayed payment'' as 
a proper invoice that is not paid by the Secretary of Veterans 
Affairs until after the required payment date, define the term 
``proper invoice'' as the meaning given that term in section 
3901(a) of title 31, U.S.C., and define the term ``required 
payment date'' as the date that payment is due for a contract 
pursuant to section 3903(a) of title 31, U.S.C.

Section 106. Department of Veterans Affairs pilot program on service 
        dog training therapy

    Section 106(a) would require the Secretary of Veterans 
Affairs, by not later than 120 days after enactment of this 
Act, to carry out a pilot program under which the Secretary 
would enter into a contract with one or more appropriate non-
government entities for the purpose of assessing the 
effectiveness of post-deployment mental health and post-
traumatic stress disorder symptoms through a therapeutic medium 
of training service dogs for veterans with disabilities.
    Section 106(b) would require the pilot program to be 
carried out during the five-year period beginning on the date 
of the commencement of the pilot program.
    Section 106(c) would require the Secretary of Veterans 
Affairs to enter into contracts with appropriate non-
governmental entities located in close proximity to at least 
three but not more than five VA medical centers.
    Section 106(d) would define an appropriate non-government 
entity as an entity that is certified in the training and 
handling of service dogs and that has a training area that 
would be appropriate for use in educating veterans with mental 
health conditions in the art and science of service dog 
training and handling. The training area would be required to 
include a dedicated space that is suitable for grooming and 
training dogs indoors, be wheelchair accessible, include 
classroom or lecture space, include office space for staff, 
include a suitable space for storing training equipment, 
provide for the periodic use of other training areas for 
training the dogs with wheelchairs and conducting other 
exercises, include outdoor exercise and toileting space for the 
dogs, and provide transportation for weekly field trips to 
train the dogs in other environments.
    Section 106(e) would require each contract entered into 
under Section 106(a) of the bill: to ensure that veterans 
participating in the program receive training from certified 
service dog training instructors; to ensure that, in selecting 
assistance dogs for use in the program, dogs residing in animal 
shelters or foster homes are looked at as an option, if 
appropriate, and ensure that all dogs used in the program have 
adequate temperament and health clearances; to ensure that each 
service dog in training participating in the pilot program is 
taught all essential commands pertaining to service dog skills; 
to ensure that each service dog in training lives at the pilot 
program site or a volunteer foster home in the vicinity of such 
site while receiving training; to ensure that the pilot program 
involves both lecture of a service dog training methodologies 
and practical hands-on training and grooming of service dogs; 
to ensure that the pilot program is designed to maximize the 
therapeutic benefits to veterans participating in the program 
and provide well-trained service dogs to veterans with 
disabilities; and to give preference to veterans who have 
successfully graduated from PTSD or other residential treatment 
programs and who have received adequate certification in 
service dog training when hiring service dog training 
instructors.
    Section 106(f) would require that VA administer the pilot 
program through the Recreational Therapy Service under the 
direction of a certified recreational therapist with sufficient 
administrative experience to oversee the pilot program and 
establish a director of service dog training with a background 
in working in social services, experience in teaching others to 
train service dogs in a vocational setting, and at least one 
year of experience working with veterans or active duty 
servicemembers with PTSD in a clinical setting.
    Section 106(g) would require the Secretary of Veterans 
Affairs to select veterans for participation in the pilot 
program. It would also authorize a veteran with PTSD or other 
post-deployment mental health condition to volunteer to 
participate in the pilot program if the Secretary determines 
that there are adequate program resources available for such 
veteran at the pilot program site and to participate in the 
pilot program in conjunction with the VA compensated work 
therapy program.
    Section 106(h) would require the Secretary of Veterans 
Affairs to collect data on the pilot program to determine how 
effective the program is for veterans participating in the 
program and require such data to include how effectively the 
program assists veterans in: reducing stigma associated with 
PTSD or other post-deployment mental health conditions; 
improving emotional regulation; improving patience; instilling 
or re-establishing a sense of purpose; providing an opportunity 
to help fellow veterans; reintegrating into the community; 
exposing the dog to new environments and, in doing so, helping 
the veteran reduce social isolation and withdrawal; building 
relationships skills, including parenting skills; relaxing the 
hyper-vigilant survival state; improving sleep patterns; and 
enabling veterans to decrease the use of pain medication.
    Section 106(i) would require the Secretary of Veterans 
Affairs to submit a report on the pilot program to Congress not 
later than one year after the date of the commencement of the 
pilot program. It would further require that each report 
include: the number of veterans participating in the pilot 
program; a description of the services carried out under the 
pilot program; the effects that participating in the pilot 
program has on symptoms of PTSD and post-deployment adjustment 
difficulties (including depression, maintenance of sobriety, 
suicidal ideations, and homelessness), potentially relevant 
physiological markers that possibly relate to the interactions 
with the service dogs, family dynamics, insomnia and pain 
management, and overall well-being; and the recommendations of 
the Secretary of Veterans Affairs with respect to the extension 
or expansion of the pilot program.
    Section 106(j) of the bill would define the term ``service 
dog instructor'' as an instructor who provides the direct 
training of veterans with PTSD and other post-deployment issues 
in the art and science of service dog training and handling.

  TITLE II--VETERANS ECONOMIC OPPORUNITY AND TRANSITION ADMINISTRATION

Section 201. Establishment of Veterans Economic Opportunity and 
        Transition Administration

    Section 201(a) would amend Part V of title 38, U.S.C., to 
create a new chapter 80 entitled, ``Veterans Economic 
Opportunity and Transition Administration.''
          Sec. 8001(a) would create the new Veterans Economic 
        Opportunity and Transition Administration at VA whose 
        primary function would be to administer programs that 
        provide assistance related to economic opportunity to 
        veterans and their dependents.
          Sec. 8001(b) would authorize the creation of the 
        Under Secretary for Economic Opportunity and Transition 
        who would be directly responsible to the Secretary of 
        Veterans Affairs and would oversee the operation and 
        administration of the Veterans Economic Opportunity and 
        Transition Administration.
          Sec. 8001(c) would authorize the creation of two 
        Deputy Under Secretaries for the new administration. 
        The Deputy Under Secretary for Readjustment created by 
        the Section would be responsible for overseeing 
        programs related to vocational rehabilitation and 
        employment; educational assistance; veterans housing 
        and related programs; and the verification of veteran 
        owned small businesses under section 8127 of title 38, 
        U.S.C. The Deputy Under Secretary for Employment, 
        Training and Transition created by this Section would 
        be responsible for overseeing programs related to job 
        counseling, training, and placement services under 
        chapter 41 of title 38, U.S.C.; employment and training 
        of veterans under chapter 42 of title 38, U.S.C.; 
        administration of employment and employment rights of 
        members of the uniformed services under chapter 43 of 
        title 38, U.S.C.; the Homeless Veterans Reintegration 
        Programs under chapter 20 of title 38, U.S.C.; and the 
        Transition Assistance Program under chapter 1144 of 
        title 10, U.S.C.
          Sec. 8002(a) would require that this new 
        administration be responsible for the administration of 
        programs related to the following: vocational 
        rehabilitation and employment; educational assistance; 
        veterans housing and related programs; the verification 
        of veteran owned small businesses under section 8127 of 
        title 38, U.S.C.; job counseling, training, and 
        placement services under chapter 41 of title 38, 
        U.S.C.; employment and training of veterans under 
        chapter 42 of title 38, U.S.C.; employment and 
        employment rights of members of the uniformed services 
        under chapter 43 of title 38, U.S.C.; the Homeless 
        Veterans Reintegration Programs under chapter 20 of 
        title 38, U.S.C.; the Transition Assistance Program 
        under chapter 1144 of title 10, U.S.C.; and any other 
        VA program that the Secretary deems appropriate.
          Sec. 8002(b) would require that all of the changes 
        made by the new chapter 80 of title 38, U.S.C., take 
        effect no later than October 1, 2016.
          Sec. 8002(c) would require that the total number of 
        full time equivalent employees authorized for the 
        Veterans Benefit Administration and the Veterans 
        Economic Opportunity and Transition Administration for 
        fiscal years 2017 and 2018 may not exceed 22,118.
          Sec. 8002(d) clarifies that the creation of this new 
        administration would not affect grant funds provided to 
        organizations through the Homeless Veterans 
        Reintegration Program under chapters 2021 and 2021A of 
        title 38, U.S.C.

Section 202. Under Secretary for Veterans Economic Opportunity and 
        Transition

    Section 202(a) would amend chapter 3 of title 38, U.S.C., 
by creating a new section 306.
    Sec. 306A(a) would authorize the position of Under 
Secretary for Veterans Economic Opportunity and Transition. The 
Section would require that this position be appointed by the 
President with the advice and consent of the U.S. Senate. The 
new Under Secretary would be appointed without regard for 
political affiliation or activity and would be chosen based 
solely on demonstrated ability in information technology and 
the administration of programs in similar content or scope to 
the programs in the new Veterans Economic Opportunity and 
Transition Administration authorized by Section 201 of this 
bill.
    Sec. 306A(b) would require that the new Under Secretary 
created by Section 306A(a) be directly responsible to the 
Secretary for the operations of the new Veterans Economic 
Opportunity and Transition Administration.
    Sec. 306A(c) would require that when there is a vacancy in 
the position of the new Under Secretary that the Secretary 
establish a commission to recommend individuals for the 
position to the President. The commission would be composed of 
the following members appointed by the Secretary: (1) three 
persons who are affected by the programs of the new Veterans 
Economic Opportunity and Transition Administration; (2) two 
veterans affected by programs of the new Veterans Economic 
Opportunity and Transition Administration; (3) two persons who 
have had experience in the management of private sector 
programs and benefits similar in scope to the programs and 
benefits of the new Veterans Economic Opportunity and 
Transition Administration; (4) the VA Deputy Secretary; (5) the 
chairman of the Veterans Advisory Committee on Education formed 
under section 3692 of title 38, U.S.C.; and (6) one person who 
previously held the position of the Under Secretary for 
Veterans Economic Opportunity and Transition if the Secretary 
determines that it is desirable for this person to serve on the 
commission.
    This section would also require the commission to submit at 
least three individuals for the position to the Secretary of 
Veterans Affairs. The Secretary of Veterans Affairs would be 
required to submit these names to the President and the House 
and Senate Committees on Veterans' Affairs for consideration 
with or without comment. The President may ask the commission 
to recommend additional individuals following its initial 
submission. Finally, this Section would require the VA Deputy 
Assistant Secretary who performs personnel management and labor 
relations functions to serve as the executive secretary of the 
commission.
    Sec. 306A(d) would require that any individual who is 
recommended to the President under this Section shall have held 
a senior level position in the private sector relating to at 
least one of the following: education policy, vocational 
rehabilitation, employment, job placement, home loan finance, 
or small business development.
    Section 202(b) would make various conforming amendments to 
title 38, U.S.C., based on the provisions of the new Sec. 306A.
    Section 202(c) would require that provisions of the new 
Sec. 306A go into effect on October 1, 2016.

Section 203. Transfer of Department of Labor veterans programs to 
        Department of Veterans Affairs

    Section 203(a) would require DoL to transfer all veterans 
employment and training programs under chapters 41, 42, 43, and 
20 of title 38, U.S.C., to VA's Veterans Economic Opportunity 
and Transition Administration created by Section 201 of this 
bill, effective October 1, 2016.
    Section 203(b) would require that pursuant to section 1105 
of title 31, U.S.C., the President shall include in VA's FY 
2017 budget request, and for each subsequent fiscal year, the 
funding requested for the programs transferred under Section 
203(a).
    Section 203(c) would require that any Federal law, 
executive order, rule, regulation, or delegation of authority, 
or any document of or pertaining to a department or office 
relating to programs transferred from DoL to VA under Section 
203(a) now reference VA.
    Section 203(d) would authorize any federal official tasked 
with implementing the programs and functions being transferred 
by Section 203(a) to not lose such authority as part of the 
transfer.
    Section 203(e) would require that any legal documents or 
proceedings that were in effect or under consideration before 
the transfer from DoL to VA shall remain in effect. This would 
apply to all contracts, rules, regulations, loans, grants, and 
suits related to the transfer required by Section 203(a).
    Section 203(f) would give the Office of Management and 
Budget (OMB) the authority to transfer all assets and 
unexpended balances from DoL to VA as part of the transfer 
required by Section 203(a).
    Section 203(g) would authorize the continuation of current 
delegations of authority by the Secretary of Labor to continue 
when the functions are transferred to the VA Secretary under 
Section 203(a).
    Section 203(h) would grant the Director of OMB the 
authority to make determinations of assets and incidental 
transfers as it relates to the transfer under Section 203(a).
    Section 203(i) would authorize that, for the purposes of 
this Section, the vesting of a function in the new office of VA 
shall be considered the transfer of this function.
    Section 203(j) would require that existing appropriations 
made to DoL for the administration of veterans programs would 
remain available for necessary expenses related to the 
termination and resolution of such functions, programs, and 
activities.
    Section 203(k) would require the Secretary of Labor and the 
Secretary of Veterans Affairs to enter into a Memorandum of 
Understanding (MOU) to carry out the transfer, no later than 
180 days following enactment. The MOU would be required to 
contain information on how VA is going to coordinate with DoL's 
Employment and Training Agency to share performance measures 
required by Section 203(l) and ensure coordination and avoid 
duplication of services authorized by the Workforce Innovation 
and Opportunity Act (P.L. 113-128). The Departments would be 
required to submit this MOU to the Committee on Veterans' 
Affairs and the Committee on Education and the Workforce of the 
House of Representatives, and the Committee on Veterans' 
Affairs and the Committee on Health, Education, Labor, and 
Pensions of the Senate.
    Section 203(l) would require VA to create performance and 
accountability standards for the programs that would be 
transferred under Section 203(a), which would meet or exceed 
the standards under section 103 of the Workforce Innovation and 
Opportunity Act (P.L. 113-128). Additionally, the VA Secretary 
would be required to ensure that each State submits a joint 
plan that also meets or exceeds the requirements of section 103 
of the Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act (P.L. 113-128) 
for activities authorized under chapter 41 of title 38, U.S.C.
    Section 203(m) would define several terms used in this 
Section. The term ``function'' would include any duty, 
obligation, power, authority, responsibility, right, privilege, 
activity, or program. The term ``office'' would include any 
office administration agency, bureau, institute, council, unit, 
organizational entity, or component thereof.

Section 204. Deputy Under Secretary of Veterans Affairs for veterans 
        Employment, Training, and Transition

    Section 204 would amend section 4102(A) of title 38, 
U.S.C., to clarify that the Deputy Under Secretary for 
Employment, Training, and Transition established by subsection 
8001(c)(2) of title 38, U.S.C., will oversee all employment and 
training programs under chapters 41 and 43 of title 38, U.S.C.

Section 205. Additional technical and conforming amendments

    Section 205 would make various technical and conforming 
amendments to title 38, U.S.C., related to the transfer of 
veteran employment and training programs from DoL to VA and the 
creation of the new Veterans Economic Opportunity and 
Transition Administration at VA. These amendments would take 
effect on October 1, 2016.

Section 206. Use of Federal Directory of New Hires

    Section 206 would amend section 453A(h) of the Social 
Security Act (42 U.S.C. 653a(h)) by adding a new paragraph (4) 
that would authorize VA to access the information provided by 
the Federal Directory of New Hires for tracking veteran 
employment outcomes.

    TITLE III--EDUCATIONAL ASSISTANCE AND VOCATIONAL REHABILITATION

Section 301. Modification and improvement of transfer of unused 
        education benefits to family members under Department of 
        Veteran Affairs Post-9/11 Educational Assistance Program.

    Section 301(a) would amend section 3319(b)(1) of title 38, 
U.S.C., by changing the service requirements needed for a 
servicemember to transfer unused Post-9/11 G.I. Bill benefits 
to eligible dependents. Current law requires that to be 
eligible for the transfer, the servicemember must have served 
six years on active duty and agree to serve an additional four 
more years. This Section would modify this by requiring that to 
be eligible, a servicemember serve ten years on active duty and 
agree to serve an additional two years in order to transfer 
Post-9/11 G.I. Bill benefits to eligible dependents.
    Section 301(b) would amend section 3319(g)(1)(A) of title 
38, U.S.C., by striking six years and inserting ten years for 
the commencement of use of Post-9/11 G.I. Bill benefits by 
eligible dependents.
    Section 301(c) would amend section 3319(h)(3)(B) of title 
38, U.S.C., by requiring the amount of the monthly stipend 
described in sections 3313(c)(1)(B) and 3313(g)(3)(A)(ii) of 
title 38 of U.S.C., payable to children eligible for Post-9/11 
G.I. Bill benefits, to be equal to one half of what the 
servicemember or veteran would receive.
    Section 301(d) would make a clerical amendment to section 
3319 of title 38, U.S.C., by striking ``armed forces'' each 
place it appears and inserting ``Armed Services.''
    Section 301(e) would make all amendments made by this 
Section applicable to any transfer of entitlement under section 
3319 of title 38, U.S.C., made on or after 180 days following 
enactment of this section.

Section 302. Clarification of eligibility for Marine Gunnery Sergeant 
        John David Fry Scholarship.

    Section 302(a) would amend section 701(d) of the Choice 
Act, to state that for purposes of section 3311(f)(2) of title 
38, U.S.C., and the receipt of Fry Scholarship education 
benefits, any member of the Armed Services who died in the line 
of duty during the period beginning on September 11, 2001 and 
ending on December 31, 2005 is deemed to have died on January 
1, 2006.
    Section 302(b) would amend section 3311(f) of title 38, 
U.S.C., to clarify that a surviving spouse may revoke the 
decision to receive chapter 35 education assistance benefits in 
lieu of the Fry Scholarship benefits made before the date of 
enactment of this Section.
    Section 302(c) would make a technical amendment to 
paragraph 5 of section 3311(f) of title 38, U.S.C.
    Section 302(d) would amend section 3317(a) of title 38, 
U.S.C., to provide Yellow Ribbon Program eligibility for Fry 
Recipients for any eligible education program commencing on or 
after January 1, 2015.

Section 303. Approval of courses of education and training for purposes 
        of the Vocational Rehabilitation Program of the Department of 
        Veterans Affairs.

    Section 303(a) would amend section 3104 of title 38, 
U.S.C., to require that, to the maximum extent possible, 
training courses approved for VR&E; services under chapter 31 of 
title 38, U.S.C., must be approved for education benefits under 
the G.I. Bill through chapters 30 and 33 of title 38, U.S.C.
    Section 303(b) would set the effective date for section 
304(a) for one year after enactment of this Section.

Section 304. Authority to prioritize vocational rehabilitation services 
        based on need

    Section 304 would amend section 3104 of title 38, U.S.C., 
to give the Secretary of Veterans Affairs the authority to 
prioritize VR&E; services provided to veterans based on need. 
Section 304 would also require the Secretary of Veterans 
Affairs to take the following factors into consideration when 
determining need: disability ratings, severity of the 
employment handicap(s), qualification for a program of 
independent living, income, and any other factor the Secretary 
of Veterans Affairs determines to be appropriate. The Section 
would also require the Secretary of Veterans Affairs to submit 
a plan to Congress no later than ninety days prior to making 
any changes to the prioritization of VR&E; services described by 
this section.

Section 305. Recodification and improvement of election process for 
        Post-9/11 Educational Assistance Program

    Section 305(a) would create section 3326 of title 38, 
U.S.C., by re-codifying section 5003(c) of the Post-9/11 
Veterans Educational Assistance Act of 2008 (P.L. 110-252). 
Section 8(h) would be added to this Section and would authorize 
VA, after January 1, 2016, to make an alternative election for 
Post-9/11 G.I. Bill benefits if VA believes the veteran's 
original choice was not in the veteran's best interests. Under 
this Section, if VA makes this election, VA must notify the 
veteran within seven days and the veteran would be given thirty 
days in which he/she could change VA's decision.
    Section 305(b) would make a clerical amendment to the table 
of sections to include this new section 3326.
    Section 305(c) would make a conforming repeal to subsection 
(c) of section 5003 of the Post-9/11 Veterans Educational 
Assistance Act of 2008 (P.L. 110-252).

Section 306. Clarification of assistance provided for certain flight 
        training

    Section 306(a) would amend section 3313(c)(1)(A) of title 
38, U.S.C., to subject flight training at public schools to the 
cap on tuition and fees established by 3313(c)(1)(A)(ii) of 
title 38, U.S.C. For FY 2015, this cap is $20,235. Under this 
provision, students would not be allowed to take flight 
training courses unless the training is specifically required 
to obtain their degree.
    Section 306(b) would amend section 3313(c)(1)(A)(ii)(II) of 
title 38, U.S.C., to subject any program of education pursued 
at a public institution of higher learning in which the school 
enters into a contract or agreement with another entity to 
provide the program of education, or a portion of the program, 
to the cap established by 3313(c)(1)(A)(ii)(II) of title 38, 
U.S.C. For FY 2015, this cap is $20,235.
    Section 306(c) would require that these changes apply to 
any quarter, semester, or term commencing on or after enactment 
of the bill. Finally, the new rules would not go into effect 
for current flight students for two additional years following 
enactment.

Section 307. Consideration of certain time spent receiving medical care 
        from the Secretary of Defense as active duty for purposes of 
        eligibility for post-9/11 educational assistance

    Section 307(a) would amend section 3301(1)(B) of title 38, 
U.S.C., by inserting ``12301(h)'' after ``12301(g).''
    Section 307(b) would apply the amendment made in Section 
307(a) to any active duty service by a member of a reserve 
component covered by section 12301(h) of title 10, U.S.C., 
beginning on or after 180 days following enactment of this Act.

Section 308. Work-study allowance

    Section 308 would amend section 3485(a)(4) of title 38, 
U.S.C., to strike ``June 30, 2013'' and insert ``June 30, 2013, 
or the period beginning on June 30, 2016 and ending on June 30, 
2021''.

Section 309. Vocational Rehabilitation and Education Action Plan

    Section 309 would require the Secretary of Veterans 
Affairs, not later than 270 days after enactment, to develop 
and publish an action plan for improving the chapter 31 
vocational rehabilitation services. Such plan shall include 
each of the following:
          (1) Comprehensive analysis and recommendations to 
        remedy workload management challenges at the regional 
        office level, including steps to reduce counselor 
        caseloads, particularly for counselors assisting 
        veterans with TBI and PTSD, and counselors with 
        educational and vocational counseling workloads.
          (2) An analysis of why veterans with service-
        connected disabilities tend to opt to use chapter 33 
        Post-9/11 GI Bill benefits rather than enroll in 
        chapter 31 vocational rehabilitation programs, 
        including an analysis of barriers to timely enrollment 
        in chapter 31 programs and barriers to a veteran 
        enrolling in the program of his or her choice.
          (3) Recommendations and an implementation plan to 
        encourage more Post-9/11 veterans with service-
        connected disabilities to participate in chapter 31 
        vocational rehabilitation programs;
          (4) A national staff training program for vocational 
        rehabilitation counselors that includes:
                  (A) Training to help counselors understand 
                the profound disorientation that many service-
                connected disabled veterans experience due to 
                their injuries;
                  (B) Training to help counselors partner with 
                veterans on individual rehabilitation plans; 
                and (C) Training on PTSD and other mental 
                health conditions and on moderate to severe 
                TBI, to improve the counselors' ability to help 
                affected veterans. This training shall include 
                information on the broad spectrum of such 
                conditions and their effect on an individual's 
                abilities and functional limitations.

Section 310. Reduction in redundancy and inefficiencies in vocational 
        rehabilitation claims processing.

    Section 310(a) would require the Secretary to reduce 
redundancy and inefficiencies in the processing of VR&E; claims, 
and would authorize additional funding for the Secretary to 
improve IT programs that process claims for rehabilitation 
programs under chapter 31 of title 38, U.S.C. The Section would 
require that all payments made on behalf of participants in 
VR&E; be completed in one corporate IT solution. Additionally, 
this Section would require that the IT enhancements support a 
more accurate accounting of services and outcomes for VR&E; 
participants.
    Section 310(b) would authorize $10 million to be 
appropriated in FY 2016 to fund the enhancements that would be 
required by Section 310(a).
    Section 310(c) would require VA to submit a report to 
Congress on the changes made by section 310(a) within 180 days 
of the enactment of this Section.

           TITLE IV-ADMINISTRATION OF EDUCATIONAL ASSISTANCE

Section 401. Centralized reporting of veteran enrollment by certain 
        groups, districts, and consortiums of educational institutions

    Section 401(a) would amend section 3684(a) of title 38, 
U.S.C., by permitting a group, district, or consortium of 
separately accredited educational institutions located in a 
state to centralize the reporting of statutorily required G.I. 
Bill enrollment information.
    Section 401(b) would require that section 401(a) apply to 
reports submitted on or after enactment of this section.

Section 402. Provision of information regarding veteran entitlement to 
        educational assistance

    Section 402(a) would amend subchapter II of chapter 36 of 
title 38, U.S.C., by adding a new section, 3699, which would 
require VA to provide to G.I. Bill eligible schools access a 
secure IT system that would allow the school to view students' 
remaining entitlement for educational assistance.
    Section 402(b) would make a clerical amendment to the table 
of sections to include this new section 3699.

Section 403. Role of State approving agencies

    Section 403(a) would amend 3672(b)(2)(A) of title 38, 
U.S.C., to stipulate that an SAA will make the determination if 
a public school's program of education meets the criteria to be 
``deemed approved'' for educational assistance under section 
3672 of title 38, U.S.C.
    Section 403(b) would amend section 3675 of title 38, 
U.S.C., to allow the SAAs to be jointly responsible with VA 
(when acting as the SAA) for approving courses of education 
that are not already approved by section 3672 of title 38, 
U.S.C.

Section 404. Criteria used to approve courses

    Section 404(a) would amend section 3676(c)(14) of title 38, 
U.S.C., to ensure that any ``reasonable criteria'' used by the 
SAAs to approve or deny approval of non-accredited programs of 
education treat public, private, and proprietary for-profit 
schools equally. This decision would be made by VA, in 
consultation with the SAA, pursuant to regulations.
    Section 404(b) would amend section 3675(b)(3) of title 38, 
U.S.C., to ensure the standard set in section 404(a) applies to 
accredited courses as well.
    Section 404(c) stipulates that the application of this 
section would apply to criteria developed on or after January 
1, 2013, and for any criteria applied by the SAAs going forward 
after October 1, 2015.

Section 405. Compliance surveys

    Section 405(a) would amend section 3693 of title 38, 
U.S.C., to require that educational institutions with at least 
twenty G.I. Bill participants receive a compliance survey no 
less than every two years. Under this Section, this survey 
would ensure that the school is in compliance with all rules 
and regulations related to G.I. Bill benefits. Additionally, VA 
would be required to assign no less than one education 
compliance specialist to work on compliance surveys for every 
forty they intend to complete in one year. VA would be required 
to work with the SAAs to annually set up the parameters of the 
survey and ensure the SAA has a list of which schools they are 
expected to complete compliance surveys at each year.
    Section 405(b) would make various conforming amendments to 
section 3693 of title 38, U.S.C.

Section 406. Survey of individuals using their entitlement to 
        educational assistance under the educational assistance 
        programs administered by the Secretary of Veterans Affairs

    Section 406(a) would require that within 270 days of 
enactment, VA shall enter into an agreement with a non-
government entity to conduct a survey of G.I. Bill 
participants. The contract would require that the third party 
non-government entity provide a copy of the survey to Congress 
30 days before the survey begins, that the survey be completed 
within 180 days after entering the contract, and that the 
survey shall be conducted by electronic means or any other 
means the third party deems appropriate.
    Section 406(b) would require that the following topics be 
included in the survey required by section 406(a): basic 
demographic information of the participants, including military 
specialty and level of education; the opinion of the 
participants on TAP; the resources the participants used to 
choose a school; the participants' educational goals when they 
enrolled in their education or training program; the 
participants' experience with processing their claims at VA; 
the participants' experience with the school certifying 
officials at their schools; any extra service or benefit 
provided by the school to the participants; if the participants 
had completed their program at the time of survey; if the 
participants participated in the program on a full or part-time 
basis; if the program led to employment for the participants; 
if the participants were eligible for Vocational Rehabilitation 
and Employment benefits under chapter 31 of title 38, U.S.C.; 
any issues that prevented the participants from completing 
their programs of education; if the participants were using 
their own benefits for the program of education or if these 
benefits were transferred to them; and any other matters the 
Secretary determines appropriate.
    Section 406(c) would require that no later than ninety days 
following the completion of the survey, VA submit to the House 
and Senate Committees on Veterans' Affairs an unedited version 
of the results of the survey and a report that identifies any 
recommendations of the Secretary related to the results of the 
survey.

Section 407. Improvement of information technology of the Veterans 
        Benefit Administration of the Department of Veterans Affairs

    Section 407(a) would require the Secretary of Veterans 
Affairs, to the maximum extent possible, to make changes to IT 
systems at VA to ensure that all original and supplemental 
claims for Post-9/11 G.I. Bill benefits are processed 
electronically using rules based processing and require little 
to no human intervention.
    Section 407(b) would require VA to submit a plan to 
Congress within 180 days of enactment on the changes made 
pursuant to section 407(a).
    Section 407(c) would require that, no later than one year 
after the date of enactment, VA submit a report to Congress on 
the implementation of the changes and improvements made under 
section 407(a) and 407(b).
    Section 407(d) would authorize appropriations in the amount 
of $30,000,000 to carry out this section during FY 2016 and FY 
2017.

Section 408. Technical Amendment relating to In-State tuition rate for 
        individuals to whom entitlement is transferred under All 
        Volunteer Force Educational Assistance Program and Post-9/11 
        Educational Assistance

    Section 408(a) would provide a technical amendment for 
section 3679(c)(2)(B) of title 38, U.S.C., to clarify that 
covered individuals include dependents of active duty 
servicemembers.
    Section 408(b) would stipulate that section 408(a) apply to 
a course, semester, or term that begins on or after July 1, 
2016.

                         TITLE V--OTHER MATTERS

Section 501. Amount of loan guaranteed Under Home Loan Program of 
        Department of Veterans Affairs

    Section 501(a) would amend section 3703(a)(1) of title 38, 
U.S.C., to eliminate a requirement that ties the current loan 
limit for VA backed home loans to the Freddie Mac conforming 
loan limit.
    Section 501(b) would require that the changes that would be 
made in section 501(a) apply to loans made on or after a date 
that is 30 days after enactment of this section.

Section 502. Longitudinal study on job counseling, training, and 
        placement service for veterans

    Section 502(a) would amend chapter 41 of title 38, U.S.C., 
by adding a new section 4415:
    Sec. 4415(a) would require VA to enter into a contract with 
a non-governmental entity to conduct a five year longitudinal 
study of veteran employment programs under chapter 41 of title 
38, U.S.C. The study would include veterans who have received 
``intensive services'' under chapter 41, of title 38. U.S.C.; 
veterans who have not received ``intensive services'' but did 
receive other services authorized by chapter 41 of title 38, 
U.S.C.; and veterans who did not seek or receive any services 
under this chapter.
    The study would be required to include the following 
information on participants: (1) the average number of months 
the participant spent on active duty; (2) the disability 
ratings of participants; (3) any unemployment benefits received 
by participants; (4) the average number of months the 
participants were employed during the year covered by the 
report; (5) the average annual starting and ending salary of 
participants who were employed during the year covered by the 
report; (6) the average annual income of participants; (7) the 
average total household income of participants for the year 
covered by the report; (8) the percentage of participants that 
own their principle residences; (9) the employment status of 
the participant; (10) in the case of participants who received 
services under chapter 41 of title 38, U.S.C., whether the 
participant believes the services helped them become employed; 
(10) in the case of participants who believe the services 
provided to them under chapter 41 of title 38, U.S.C., did help 
them become employed, whether they retained their position of 
employment for one year or longer, and whether they believe the 
services helped them secure a higher wage; (11) the conditions 
under which the participants were discharged or released from 
the Armed Services; (12) whether the participants have used any 
educational assistance under title 38, U.S.C., to which they 
are entitled; (13) if the participants participated in a 
rehabilitation program under chapter 31 of title 38, U.S.C.; 
(14) demographic information on the participants; and (15) any 
other information the Secretary deems appropriate.
    Sec. 4415(b) would require that, no later than July 1 of 
each year covered by the study, the Secretary shall submit a 
report to the House and Senate Committees on Veterans' Affairs 
on the outcomes of the longitudinal study required by section 
502(a).
    Section 502(b) would make a clerical amendment to the table 
of sections to include this new section 4115.

Section 503. Limitations on subcontracts under contracts with small 
        business concerns owned and controlled by veterans

    Section 503(a) would amend section 8127 of title 38, 
U.S.C., by applying requirements under section 46 of the Small 
Business Act to veteran-owned small businesses, including 
reference to the term ``similarly situated entity'' to include 
a subcontractor to veteran-owned small business. Before 
awarding a contract that is counted for meeting relevant 
veteran-owned small business goals, the Secretary of Veterans 
Affairs would be required to obtain from the offeror a 
certification that the offeror will comply with this Section, 
specifying the exact performance requirements and acknowledging 
that the certification is subject to section 1001 of title, 18, 
U.S.C. Further, if the Secretary of Veterans Affairs determines 
that a small business did not operate in good faith with 
respect to these requirements that small business will be 
subject to applicable penalties. This Section would also 
require the VA Director of Small and Disadvantaged Business 
Utilization and Chief Acquisition Officer to implement a 
process to monitor compliance with these provisions and would 
require the Chief Acquisition Officer to refer any violations 
to the VA OIG. Finally, on November 30 of each year, the 
Inspector General would submit to the House and Senate 
Committees on Veterans' Affairs a report for the previous 
fiscal year regarding the number of referred violations and the 
disposition of each.
    Section 503(b) would make this Section applicable to 
contracts entered into after the date of enactment.

Section 504. Procedures for provision of certain information to state 
        veterans agencies to facilitate the furnishing of assistance 
        and benefits to veterans

    Section 504(a) would require the Secretary to develop 
procedures to share with State veterans' agencies, in an 
electronic data format, certain information to facilitate the 
furnishing of assistance and benefits to veterans.
    Section 504(b) would require the Secretary to provide to 
State veterans agencies, the following information as would be 
required by section 504(a): (1) military service and separation 
data; (2) a personal email address; (3) a personal telephone 
number; and (4) a mailing address.
    Section 504(c) would allow a veteran to elect not to have 
their information shared with State veterans agencies under 
section 504(a).
    Section 504(d) would require the Secretary to ensure that 
any information shared under section 504(a) is only shared with 
State veterans agencies with government veterans service 
officers for the administration and delivery of assistance and 
benefits as specified by the Secretary.

         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 italics, existing law in which no change 
is proposed is shown in roman):

         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 italics, and existing law in which no 
change is proposed is shown in roman):

                      TITLE 38, UNITED STATES CODE


                       PART I. GENERAL PROVISIONS

Chapter                                                             Sec.
      General........................................................101
     * * * * * * *

              PART V. BOARDS, ADMINISTRATIONS, AND SERVICES

     * * * * * * *
8001Veterans Economic Opportunity and Transition Administration.......

           *       *       *       *       *       *       *


PART I--GENERAL PROVISIONS

           *       *       *       *       *       *       *


               CHAPTER 3--DEPARTMENT OF VETE RANS AFFAIRS


Sec.
301. Department.
     * * * * * * *
306A. Under Secretary for Veterans Economic Opportunity and Transition.

           *       *       *       *       *       *       *


Sec. 306. Under Secretary for Benefits

  (a) There is in the Department an Under Secretary for 
Benefits, who is appointed by the President, by and with the 
advice and consent of the Senate. The Under Secretary for 
Benefits shall be appointed without regard to political 
affiliation or activity and solely on the basis of demonstrated 
ability in--
          (1) fiscal management; and
          (2) the administration of programs within the 
        Veterans Benefits Administration or programs of similar 
        content and scope.
  (b) The Under Secretary for Benefits is the head of, and is 
directly responsible to the Secretary for the operations of, 
the Veterans Benefits Administration.
  (c)(1) Whenever a vacancy in the position of Under Secretary 
for Benefits occurs or is anticipated, the Secretary shall 
establish a commission to recommend individuals to the 
President for appointment to the position.
  (2) A commission established under this subsection shall be 
composed of the following members appointed by the Secretary:
          [(A) Three persons representing education and 
        training, real estate, mortgage finance, and related 
        industries, and survivor benefits activities affected 
        by the Veterans Benefits Administration.]
          [(B)] (A) Two persons representing veterans served by 
        the Veterans Benefits Administration.
          [(C)] (B) Two persons who have experience in the 
        management of veterans benefits programs or programs of 
        similar content and scope.
          [(D)] (C) The Deputy Secretary of Veterans Affairs.
          [(E) The chairman of the Veterans' Advisory Committee 
        on Education formed under section 3692 of this title.]
          [(F)] (D) One person who has held the position of 
        Under Secretary for Benefits (including service as 
        Chief Benefits Director of the Veterans' 
        Administration), if the Secretary determines that it is 
        desirable for such person to be a member of the 
        commission.
  (3) A commission established under this subsection shall 
recommend at least three individuals for appointment to the 
position of Under Secretary for Benefits. The commission shall 
submit all recommendations to the Secretary. The Secretary 
shall forward the recommendations to the President with any 
comments the Secretary considers appropriate. Thereafter, the 
President may request the commission to recommend additional 
individuals for appointment.
  (4) The Assistant Secretary or Deputy Assistant Secretary of 
Veterans Affairs who performs personnel management and labor 
relations functions shall serve as the executive secretary of a 
commission established under this subsection.

Sec. 306A. Under Secretary for Veterans Economic Opportunity and 
                    Transition

  (a) Under Secretary.--There is in the Department an Under 
Secretary for Veterans Economic Opportunity and Transition, who 
is appointed by the President, by and with the advice and 
consent of the Senate. The Under Secretary for Veterans 
Economic Opportunity and Transition shall be appointed without 
regard to political affiliation or activity and solely on the 
basis of demonstrated ability in--
          (1) information technology; and
          (2) the administration of programs within the 
        Veterans Economic Opportunity and Transition 
        Administration or programs of similar content and 
        scope.
  (b) Responsibilities.--The Under Secretary for Veterans 
Economic Opportunity and Transition is the head of, and is 
directly responsible to the Secretary for the operations of, 
the Veterans Economic Opportunity and Transition 
Administration.
  (c) Vacancies.--(1) Whenever a vacancy in the position of 
Under Secretary for Veterans Economic Opportunity and 
Transition occurs or is anticipated, the Secretary shall 
establish a commission to recommend individuals to the 
President for appointment to the position.
  (2) A commission established under this subsection shall be 
composed of the following members appointed by the Secretary:
          (A) Three persons representing education and 
        training, vocational rehabilitation, employment, real 
        estate, mortgage finance and related industries, and 
        survivor benefits activities affected by the Veterans 
        Economic Opportunity and Transition Administration.
          (B) Two persons representing veterans served by the 
        Veterans Economic Opportunity and Transition 
        Administration.
          (C) Two persons who have experience in the management 
        of private sector benefits programs of similar content 
        and scope to the economic opportunity and transition 
        programs of the Department.
          (D) The Deputy Secretary of Veterans Affairs.
          (E) The chairman of the Veterans' Advisory Committee 
        on Education formed under section 3692 of this title.
          (F) One person who has held the position of Under 
        Secretary for Veterans Economic Opportunity and 
        Transition, if the Secretary determines that it is 
        desirable for such person to be a member of the 
        commission.
  (3) A commission established under this subsection shall 
recommend at least three individuals for appointment to the 
position of Under Secretary for Veterans Economic Opportunity 
and Transition. The commission shall submit all recommendations 
to the Secretary. The Secretary shall forward the 
recommendations to the President and the Committees on 
Veterans' Affairs of the Senate and House of Representatives 
with any comments the Secretary considers appropriate. 
Thereafter, the President may request the commission to 
recommend additional individuals for appointment.
  (4) The Assistant Secretary or Deputy Assistant Secretary of 
Veterans Affairs who performs personnel management and labor 
relations functions shall serve as the executive secretary of a 
commission established under this subsection.
  (d) Qualifications of Recommended Individuals.--Each 
individual recommended to the President by the commission for 
appointment to the position of Under Secretary for Veterans 
Economic Opportunity and Transition shall be an individual who 
has held a senior level position in the private sector with 
responsibilities relating to at least one of the following:
          (1) Education policy.
          (2) Vocational rehabilitation.
          (3) Employment.
          (4) Job placement.
          (5) Home loan finance.
          (6) Small business development.

           *       *       *       *       *       *       *


Sec. 317. Center for Minority Veterans

  (a) There is in the Department a Center for Minority 
Veterans. There is at the head of the Center a Director.
  (b) The Director shall be a career or noncareer appointee in 
the Senior Executive Service. The Director shall be appointed 
for a term of six years.
  (c) The Director reports directly to the Secretary or the 
Deputy Secretary concerning the activities of the Center.
  (d) The Director shall perform the following functions with 
respect to veterans who are minorities:
          (1) Serve as principal adviser to the Secretary on 
        the adoption and implementation of policies and 
        programs affecting veterans who are minorities.
          (2) Make recommendations to the Secretary, the Under 
        Secretary for Health, the Under Secretary for Benefits, 
        the Under Secretary for Veterans Economic Opportunity 
        and Transition, and other Department officials for the 
        establishment or improvement of programs in the 
        Department for which veterans who are minorities are 
        eligible.
          (3) Promote the use of benefits authorized by this 
        title by veterans who are minorities and the conduct of 
        outreach activities to veterans who are minorities, in 
        conjunction with outreach activities carried out under 
        chapter 77 of this title.
          (4) Disseminate information and serve as a resource 
        center for the exchange of information regarding 
        innovative and successful programs which improve the 
        services available to veterans who are minorities.
          (5) Conduct and sponsor appropriate social and 
        demographic research on the needs of veterans who are 
        minorities and the extent to which programs authorized 
        under this title meet the needs of those veterans, 
        without regard to any law concerning the collection of 
        information from the public.
          (6) Analyze and evaluate complaints made by or on 
        behalf of veterans who are minorities about the 
        adequacy and timeliness of services provided by the 
        Department and advise the appropriate official of the 
        Department of the results of such analysis or 
        evaluation.
          (7) Consult with, and provide assistance and 
        information to, officials responsible for administering 
        Federal, State, local, and private programs that assist 
        veterans, to encourage those officials to adopt 
        policies which promote the use of those programs by 
        veterans who are minorities.
          (8) Advise the Secretary when laws or policies have 
        the effect of discouraging the use of benefits by 
        veterans who are minorities.
          (9) Publicize the results of medical research which 
        are of particular significance to veterans who are 
        minorities.
          (10) Advise the Secretary and other appropriate 
        officials on the effectiveness of the Department's 
        efforts to accomplish the goals of section 492B of the 
        Public Health Service Act (42 U.S.C. 289a-2) with 
        respect to the inclusion of minorities in clinical 
        research and on particular health conditions affecting 
        the health of members of minority groups which should 
        be studied as part of the Department's medical research 
        program and promote cooperation between the Department 
        and other sponsors of medical research of potential 
        benefit to veterans who are minorities.
          (11) Provide support and administrative services to 
        the Advisory Committee on Minority Veterans provided 
        for under section 544 of this title.
          (12) Perform such other duties consistent with this 
        section as the Secretary shall prescribe.
  (e) The Secretary shall ensure that the Director is furnished 
sufficient resources to enable the Director to carry out the 
functions of the Center in a timely manner.
  (f) The Secretary shall include in documents submitted to 
Congress by the Secretary in support of the President's budget 
for each fiscal year--
          (1) detailed information on the budget for the 
        Center;
          (2) the Secretary's opinion as to whether the 
        resources (including the number of employees) proposed 
        in the budget for that fiscal year are adequate to 
        enable the Center to comply with its statutory and 
        regulatory duties; and
          (3) a report on the activities and significant 
        accomplishments of the Center during the preceding 
        fiscal year.
  (g) In this section--
          (1) The term ``veterans who are minorities'' means 
        veterans who are minority group members.
          (2) The term ``minority group member'' has the 
        meaning given such term in section 544(d) of this 
        title.

Sec. 318. Center for Women Veterans

  (a) There is in the Department a Center for Women Veterans. 
There is at the head of the Center a Director.
  (b) The Director shall be a career or noncareer appointee in 
the Senior Executive Service. The Director shall be appointed 
for a term of six years.
  (c) The Director reports directly to the Secretary or the 
Deputy Secretary concerning the activities of the Center.
  (d) The Director shall perform the following functions with 
respect to veterans who are women:
          (1) Serve as principal adviser to the Secretary on 
        the adoption and implementation of policies and 
        programs affecting veterans who are women.
          (2) Make recommendations to the Secretary, the Under 
        Secretary for Health, the Under Secretary for Benefits, 
        the Under Secretary for Veterans Economic Opportunity 
        and Transition, and other Department officials for the 
        establishment or improvement of programs in the 
        Department for which veterans who are women are 
        eligible.
          (3) Promote the use of benefits authorized by this 
        title by veterans who are women and the conduct of 
        outreach activities to veterans who are women, in 
        conjunction with outreach activities carried out under 
        chapter 77 of this title.
          (4) Disseminate information and serve as a resource 
        center for the exchange of information regarding 
        innovative and successful programs which improve the 
        services available to veterans who are women.
          (5) Conduct and sponsor appropriate social and 
        demographic research on the needs of veterans who are 
        women and the extent to which programs authorized under 
        this title meet the needs of those veterans, without 
        regard to any law concerning the collection of 
        information from the public.
          (6) Analyze and evaluate complaints made by or on 
        behalf of veterans who are women about the adequacy and 
        timeliness of services provided by the Department and 
        advise the appropriate official of the Department of 
        the results of such analysis or evaluation.
          (7) Consult with, and provide assistance and 
        information to, officials responsible for administering 
        Federal, State, local, and private programs that assist 
        veterans, to encourage those officials to adopt 
        policies which promote the use of those programs by 
        veterans who are women.
          (8) Advise the Secretary when laws or policies have 
        the effect of discouraging the use of benefits by 
        veterans who are women.
          (9) Publicize the results of medical research which 
        are of particular significance to veterans who are 
        women.
          (10) Advise the Secretary and other appropriate 
        officials on the effectiveness of the Department's 
        efforts to accomplish the goals of section 492B of the 
        Public Health Service Act (42 U.S.C. 289a-2) with 
        respect to the inclusion of women in clinical research 
        and on particular health conditions affecting women's 
        health which should be studied as part of the 
        Department's medical research program and promote 
        cooperation between the Department and other sponsors 
        of medical research of potential benefit to veterans 
        who are women.
          (11) Provide support and administrative services to 
        the Advisory Committee on Women Veterans established 
        under section 542 of this title.
          (12) Perform such other duties consistent with this 
        section as the Secretary shall prescribe.
  (e) The Secretary shall ensure that the Director is furnished 
sufficient resources to enable the Director to carry out the 
functions of the Center in a timely manner.
  (f) The Secretary shall include in documents submitted to 
Congress by the Secretary in support of the President's budget 
for each fiscal year--
          (1) detailed information on the budget for the 
        Center;
          (2) the Secretary's opinion as to whether the 
        resources (including the number of employees) proposed 
        in the budget for that fiscal year are adequate to 
        enable the Center to comply with its statutory and 
        regulatory duties; and
          (3) a report on the activities and significant 
        accomplishments of the Center during the preceding 
        fiscal year.

           *       *       *       *       *       *       *


            CHAPTER 5--AUTHORITY AND DUTIES OF THE SECRETARY


SUBCHAPTER I--GENERAL AUTHORITIES

           *       *       *       *       *       *       *



Sec. 516. Equal employment responsibilities

  (a) The Secretary shall provide that the employment 
discrimination complaint resolution system within the 
Department be established and administered so as to encourage 
timely and fair resolution of concerns and complaints. The 
Secretary shall take steps to ensure that the system is 
administered in an objective, fair, and effective manner and in 
a manner that is perceived by employees and other interested 
parties as being objective, fair, and effective.
  (b) The Secretary shall provide--
          (1) that employees responsible for counseling 
        functions associated with employment discrimination and 
        for receiving, investigating, and processing complaints 
        of employment discrimination shall be supervised in 
        those functions by, and report to, an Assistant 
        Secretary or a Deputy Assistant Secretary for complaint 
        resolution management; and
          (2) that employees performing employment 
        discrimination complaint resolution functions at a 
        facility of the Department shall not be subject to the 
        authority, direction, and control of the Director of 
        the facility with respect to those functions.
  (c) The Secretary shall ensure that all employees of the 
Department receive adequate education and training for the 
purposes of this section and section 319 of this title.
  (d) The Secretary shall, when appropriate, impose 
disciplinary measures, as authorized by law, in the case of 
employees of the Department who engage in unlawful employment 
discrimination, including retaliation against an employee 
asserting rights under an equal employment opportunity law.
  (e)(1)(A) Not later than 45 days after the end of each 
calendar quarter, the Assistant Secretary for Human Resources 
and Administration shall submit to the Committees on Veterans' 
Affairs of the Senate and House of Representatives a report 
summarizing the employment discrimination complaints filed 
against the individuals referred to in paragraph (2) during 
such quarter.
  (B) Subparagraph (A) shall apply in the case of complaints 
filed against individuals on the basis of such individuals' 
personal conduct and shall not apply in the case of complaints 
filed solely on the basis of such individuals' positions as 
officials of the Department.
  (2) Paragraph (1) applies to the following officers and 
employees of the Department:
          (A) The Secretary.
          (B) The Deputy Secretary of Veterans Affairs.
          (C) The Under Secretary for [Health and the Under 
        Secretary for Benefits] Health, the Under Secretary for 
        Benefits, and the Under Secretary for Veterans Economic 
        Opportunity and Transition.
          (D) Each Assistant Secretary of Veterans Affairs and 
        each Deputy Assistant Secretary of Veterans Affairs.
          (E) The Under Secretary of Veterans Affairs for 
        Memorial Affairs.
          (F) The General Counsel of the Department.
          (G) The Chairman of the Board of Veterans' Appeals.
          (H) The Chairman of the Board of Contract Appeals of 
        the Department.
          (I) The director and the chief of staff of each 
        medical center of the Department.
          (J) The director of each Veterans Integrated Services 
        Network.
          (K) The director of each regional office of the 
        Department.
          (L) Each program director of the Central Office of 
        the Department.
  (3) Each report under this subsection--
          (A) may not disclose information which identifies the 
        individuals filing, or the individuals who are the 
        subject of, the complaints concerned or the facilities 
        at which the discrimination identified in such 
        complaints is alleged to have occurred;
          (B) shall summarize such complaints by type and by 
        equal employment opportunity field office area in which 
        filed; and
          (C) shall include copies of such complaints, with the 
        information described in subparagraph (A) redacted.
  (4) Not later than April 1 each year, the Assistant Secretary 
shall submit to the committees referred to in paragraph (1)(A) 
a report on the complaints covered by paragraph (1) during the 
preceding year, including the number of such complaints filed 
during that year and the status and resolution of the 
investigation of such complaints.
  (f) The Secretary shall ensure that an employee of the 
Department who seeks counseling relating to employment 
discrimination may elect to receive such counseling from an 
employee of the Department who carries out equal employment 
opportunity counseling functions on a full-time basis rather 
than from an employee of the Department who carries out such 
functions on a part-time basis.
  (g) The number of employees of the Department whose duties 
include equal employment opportunity counseling functions as 
well as other, unrelated functions may not exceed 40 full-time 
equivalent employees. Any such employee may be assigned equal 
employment opportunity counseling functions only at Department 
facilities in remote geographic locations (as determined by the 
Secretary). The Secretary may waive the limitation in the 
preceding sentence in specific cases.
  (h) The provisions of this section shall be implemented in a 
manner consistent with procedures applicable under regulations 
prescribed by the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission.

           *       *       *       *       *       *       *


                  SUBCHAPTER III--ADVISORY COMMITTEES


Sec. 541. Advisory Committee on Former Prisoners of War

  (a)(1) The Secretary shall establish an advisory committee to 
be known as the Advisory Committee on Former Prisoners of War 
(hereinafter in this section referred to as the ``Committee'').
  (2)(A) The members of the Committee shall be appointed by the 
Secretary from the general public and shall include--
          (i) appropriate representatives of veterans who are 
        former prisoners of war;
          (ii) individuals who are recognized authorities in 
        fields pertinent to disabilities prevalent among former 
        prisoners of war, including authorities in 
        epidemiology, mental health, nutrition, geriatrics, and 
        internal medicine; and
          (iii) appropriate representatives of disabled 
        veterans.
  (B) The Committee shall also include, as ex officio members, 
the Under Secretary for [Health and the Under Secretary for 
Benefits] Health, the Under Secretary for Benefits, and the 
Under Secretary for Veterans Economic Opportunity and 
Transition, or their designees.
  (3) The Secretary shall determine the number, terms of 
service, and pay and allowances of members of the Committee 
appointed by the Secretary, except that the term of service of 
any such member may not exceed three years.
  (b) The Secretary shall, on a regular basis, consult with and 
seek the advice of the Committee with respect to the 
administration of benefits under this title for veterans who 
are former prisoners of war and the needs of such veterans with 
respect to compensation, health care, and rehabilitation.
  (c)(1) Not later than July 1 of each odd-numbered year 
through 2009, the Committee shall submit to the Secretary a 
report on the programs and activities of the Department that 
pertain to veterans who are former prisoners of war. Each such 
report shall include--
          (A) an assessment of the needs of such veterans with 
        respect to compensation, health care, and 
        rehabilitation;
          (B) a review of the programs and activities of the 
        Department designed to meet such needs; and
          (C) such recommendations (including recommendations 
        for administrative and legislative action) as the 
        Committee considers to be appropriate.
  (2) The Secretary shall, within 60 days after receiving each 
report under paragraph (1), submit to the Congress a copy of 
the report, together with any comments concerning the report 
that the Secretary considers appropriate.
  (3) The Committee may also submit to the Secretary such other 
reports and recommendations as the Committee considers 
appropriate.
  (4) The Secretary shall submit with each annual report 
submitted to the Congress pursuant to section 529 of this title 
a summary of all reports and recommendations of the Committee 
submitted to the Secretary since the previous annual report of 
the Secretary submitted to the Congress pursuant to that 
section.

Sec. 542. Advisory Committee on Women Veterans

  (a)(1) The Secretary shall establish an advisory committee to 
be known as the Advisory Committee on Women Veterans 
(hereinafter in this section referred to as ``the Committee'').
  (2)(A) The Committee shall consist of members appointed by 
the Secretary from the general public, including--
          (i) representatives of women veterans;
          (ii) individuals who are recognized authorities in 
        fields pertinent to the needs of women veterans, 
        including the gender-specific health-care needs of 
        women;
          (iii) representatives of both female and male 
        veterans with service-connected disabilities, including 
        at least one female veteran with a service-connected 
        disability and at least one male veteran with a 
        service-connected disability; and
          (iv) women veterans who are recently separated from 
        service in the Armed Forces.
  (B) The Committee shall include, as ex officio members--
          [(i) the Secretary of Labor (or a representative of 
        the Secretary of Labor designated by the Secretary 
        after consultation with the Assistant Secretary of 
        Labor for Veterans' Employment);]
          [(ii)] (i) the Secretary of Defense (or a 
        representative of the Secretary of Defense designated 
        by the Secretary of Defense after consultation with the 
        Defense Advisory Committee on Women in the Services); 
        and
          [(iii)] (ii) the Under Secretary for [Health and the 
        Under Secretary for Benefits] Health, the Under 
        Secretary for Benefits, and the Under Secretary for 
        Veterans Economic Opportunity and Transition, or their 
        designees.
  (C) The Secretary may invite representatives of other 
departments and agencies of the United States to participate in 
the meetings and other activities of the Committee.
  (3) The Secretary shall determine the number, terms of 
service, and pay and allowances of members of the Committee 
appointed by the Secretary, except that a term of service of 
any such member may not exceed three years. The Secretary may 
reappoint any such member for additional terms of service.
  (b) The Secretary shall, on a regular basis, consult with and 
seek the advice of the Committee with respect to the 
administration of benefits by the Department for women 
veterans, reports and studies pertaining to women veterans and 
the needs of women veterans with respect to compensation, 
health care, rehabilitation, outreach, and other benefits and 
programs administered by the Department, including the Center 
for Women Veterans.
  (c)(1) Not later than July 1 of each even-numbered year, the 
Committee shall submit to the Secretary a report on the 
programs and activities of the Department that pertain to women 
veterans. Each such report shall include--
          (A) an assessment of the needs of women veterans with 
        respect to compensation, health care, rehabilitation, 
        outreach, and other benefits and programs administered 
        by the Department;
          (B) a review of the programs and activities of the 
        Department designed to meet such needs; and
          (C) such recommendations (including recommendations 
        for administrative and legislative action) as the 
        Committee considers appropriate.
  (2) The Secretary shall, within 60 days after receiving each 
report under paragraph (1), submit to the Congress a copy of 
the report, together with any comments concerning the report 
that the Secretary considers appropriate.
  (3) The Committee may also submit to the Secretary such other 
reports and recommendations as the Committee considers 
appropriate.
  (4) The Secretary shall submit with each annual report 
submitted to the Congress pursuant to section 529 of this title 
a summary of all reports and recommendations of the Committee 
submitted to the Secretary since the previous annual report of 
the Secretary submitted pursuant to such section.

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Sec. 544. Advisory Committee on Minority Veterans

  (a)(1) The Secretary shall establish an advisory committee to 
be known as the Advisory Committee on Minority Veterans 
(hereinafter in this section referred to as ``the Committee'').
  (2)(A) The Committee shall consist of members appointed by 
the Secretary from the general public, including--
          (i) representatives of veterans who are minority 
        group members;
          (ii) individuals who are recognized authorities in 
        fields pertinent to the needs of veterans who are 
        minority group members;
          (iii) veterans who are minority group members and who 
        have experience in a military theater of operations;
          (iv) veterans who are minority group members and who 
        do not have such experience; and
          (v) women veterans who are minority group members and 
        are recently separated from service in the Armed 
        Forces.
  (B) The Committee shall include, as ex officio members, the 
following:
          [(i) The Secretary of Labor (or a representative of 
        the Secretary of Labor designated by the Secretary 
        after consultation with the Assistant Secretary of 
        Labor for Veterans' Employment).]
          [(ii)] (i) The Secretary of Defense (or a 
        representative of the Secretary of Defense designated 
        by the Secretary of Defense).
          [(iii)] (ii) The Secretary of the Interior (or a 
        representative of the Secretary of the Interior 
        designated by the Secretary of the Interior).
          [(iv)] (iii) The Secretary of Commerce (or a 
        representative of the Secretary of Commerce designated 
        by the Secretary of Commerce).
          [(v)] (iv) The Secretary of Health and Human Services 
        (or a representative of the Secretary of Health and 
        Human Services designated by the Secretary of Health 
        and Human Services).
          [(vi)] (v) The Under Secretary for [Health and the 
        Under Secretary for Benefits] Health, the Under 
        Secretary for Benefits, and the Under Secretary for 
        Veterans Economic Opportunity and Transition, or their 
        designees.
  (C) The Secretary may invite representatives of other 
departments and agencies of the United States to participate in 
the meetings and other activities of the Committee.
  (3) The Secretary shall determine the number, terms of 
service, and pay and allowances of members of the Committee 
appointed by the Secretary, except that a term of service of 
any such member may not exceed three years. The Secretary may 
reappoint any such member for additional terms of service.
  (4) The Committee shall meet as often as the Secretary 
considers necessary or appropriate, but not less often than 
twice each fiscal year.
  (b) The Secretary shall, on a regular basis, consult with and 
seek the advice of the Committee with respect to the 
administration of benefits by the Department for veterans who 
are minority group members, reports and studies pertaining to 
such veterans and the needs of such veterans with respect to 
compensation, health care, rehabilitation, outreach, and other 
benefits and programs administered by the Department, including 
the Center for Minority Veterans.
  (c)(1) Not later than July 1 of each year, the Committee 
shall submit to the Secretary a report on the programs and 
activities of the Department that pertain to veterans who are 
minority group members. Each such report shall include--
          (A) an assessment of the needs of veterans who are 
        minority group members with respect to compensation, 
        health care, rehabilitation, outreach, and other 
        benefits and programs administered by the Department;
          (B) a review of the programs and activities of the 
        Department designed to meet such needs; and
          (C) such recommendations (including recommendations 
        for administrative and legislative action) as the 
        Committee considers appropriate.
  (2) The Secretary shall, within 60 days after receiving each 
report under paragraph (1), submit to Congress a copy of the 
report, together with any comments concerning the report that 
the Secretary considers appropriate.
  (3) The Committee may also submit to the Secretary such other 
reports and recommendations as the Committee considers 
appropriate.
  (4) The Secretary shall submit with each annual report 
submitted to the Congress pursuant to section 529 of this title 
a summary of all reports and recommendations of the Committee 
submitted to the Secretary since the previous annual report of 
the Secretary submitted pursuant to such section.
  (d) In this section, the term ``minority group member'' means 
an individual who is--
          (1) Asian American;
          (2) Black;
          (3) Hispanic;
          (4) Native American (including American Indian, 
        Alaskan Native, and Native Hawaiian); or
          (5) Pacific-Islander American.
  (e) The Committee shall cease to exist December 31, 2015.

           *       *       *       *       *       *       *


CHAPTER 7--EMPLOYEES

           *       *       *       *       *       *       *



Sec. 709. Employment restrictions

  (a)(1) Notwithstanding section 3134(d) of title 5, the number 
of Senior Executive Service positions in the Department which 
are filled by noncareer appointees in any fiscal year may not 
at any time exceed 5 percent of the average number of senior 
executives employed in Senior Executive Service positions in 
the Department during the preceding fiscal year.
  (2) For purposes of this subsection, the average number of 
senior executives employed in Senior Executive Service 
positions in the Department during a fiscal year shall be equal 
to 25 percent of the sum of the total number of senior 
executives employed in Senior Executive Service positions in 
the Department on the last day of each quarter of such fiscal 
year.
  (b) The number of positions in the Department which may be 
excepted from the competitive service, on a temporary or 
permanent basis, because of their confidential or policy-
determining character may not at any time exceed the equivalent 
of 15 positions.
  (c)(1) Political affiliation or activity may not be taken 
into account in connection with the appointment of any person 
to any position in or to perform any service for the Department 
or in the assignment or advancement of any employee in the 
Department.
  (2) Paragraph (1) shall not apply--
          (A) to the appointment of any person by the President 
        under this title, other than the appointment of the 
        Under Secretary for Health, the Under Secretary for 
        Benefits, the Under Secretary for Veterans Economic 
        Opportunity and Transition, and the Inspector General; 
        or
          (B) to the appointment of any person to (i) a Senior 
        Executive Service position as a noncareer appointee, or 
        (ii) a position that is excepted from the competitive 
        service, on a temporary or permanent basis, because of 
        the confidential or policy-determining character of the 
        position.

           *       *       *       *       *       *       *


PART II--GENERAL BENEFITS

           *       *       *       *       *       *       *


   CHAPTER 17--HOSPITAL, NURSING HOME, DOMICILIARY, AND MEDICAL CARE


SUBCHAPTER I--GENERAL

           *       *       *       *       *       *       *



Sec. 1705. Management of health care: patient enrollment system

  (a) In managing the provision of hospital care and medical 
services under section 1710(a) of this title, the Secretary, in 
accordance with regulations the Secretary shall prescribe, 
shall establish and operate a system of annual patient 
enrollment. The Secretary shall manage the enrollment of 
veterans in accordance with the following priorities, in the 
order listed:
          (1) Veterans with service-connected disabilities 
        rated 50 percent or greater[.] and veterans who were 
        awarded the medal of honor under section 3741, 6241, or 
        8741 of title 10 or section 491 of title 14.
          (2) Veterans with service-connected disabilities 
        rated 30 percent or 40 percent.
          (3) Veterans who are former prisoners of war or who 
        were awarded the Purple Heart, [veterans who were 
        awarded the medal of honor under section 3741, 6241, or 
        8741 of title 10 or section 491 of title 14,] veterans 
        with service-connected disabilities rated 10 percent or 
        20 percent, and veterans described in subparagraphs (B) 
        and (C) of section 1710(a)(2) of this title.
          (4) Veterans who are in receipt of increased pension 
        based on a need of regular aid and attendance or by 
        reason of being permanently housebound and other 
        veterans who are catastrophically disabled.
          (5) Veterans not covered by paragraphs (1) through 
        (4) who are unable to defray the expenses of necessary 
        care as determined under section 1722(a) of this title.
          (6) All other veterans eligible for hospital care, 
        medical services, and nursing home care under section 
        1710(a)(2) of this title.
          (7) Veterans described in section 1710(a)(3) of this 
        title who are eligible for treatment as a low-income 
        family under section 3(b) of the United States Housing 
        Act of 1937 (42 U.S.C. 1437a(b)) for the area in which 
        such veterans reside, regardless of whether such 
        veterans are treated as single person families under 
        paragraph (3)(A) of such section 3(b) or as families 
        under paragraph (3)(B) of such section 3(b).
          (8) Veterans described in section 1710(a)(3) of this 
        title who are not covered by paragraph (7).
  (b) In the design of an enrollment system under subsection 
(a), the Secretary--
          (1) shall ensure that the system will be managed in a 
        manner to ensure that the provision of care to 
        enrollees is timely and acceptable in quality;
          (2) may establish additional priorities within each 
        priority group specified in subsection (a), as the 
        Secretary determines necessary; and
          (3) may provide for exceptions to the specified 
        priorities where dictated by compelling medical 
        reasons.
  (c)(1) The Secretary may not provide hospital care or medical 
services to a veteran under paragraph (2) or (3) of section 
1710(a) of this title unless the veteran enrolls in the system 
of patient enrollment established by the Secretary under 
subsection (a).
  (2) The Secretary shall provide hospital care and medical 
services under section 1710(a)(1) of this title, and under 
subparagraph (B) of section 1710(a)(2) of this title, for the 
12-month period following such veteran's discharge or release 
from service, to any veteran referred to in such sections for a 
disability specified in the applicable subparagraph of such 
section, notwithstanding the failure of the veteran to enroll 
in the system of patient enrollment referred to in subsection 
(a) of this section.

           *       *       *       *       *       *       *


SUBCHAPTER II--HOSPITAL, NURSING HOME, OR DOMICILIARY CARE AND MEDICAL 
                               TREATMENT


Sec. 1710. Eligibility for hospital, nursing home, and domiciliary care

  (a)(1) The Secretary (subject to paragraph (4)) shall furnish 
hospital care and medical services which the Secretary 
determines to be needed--
          (A) to any veteran for a service-connected 
        disability; and
          (B) to any veteran who has a service-connected 
        disability rated at 50 percent or more.
  (2) The Secretary (subject to paragraph (4)) shall furnish 
hospital care and medical services, and may furnish nursing 
home care, which the Secretary determines to be needed to any 
veteran--
          (A) who has a compensable service-connected 
        disability rated less than 50 percent or, with respect 
        to nursing home care during any period during which the 
        provisions of section 1710A(a) of this title are in 
        effect, a compensable service-connected disability 
        rated less than 70 percent;
          (B) whose discharge or release from active military, 
        naval, or air service was for a disability that was 
        incurred or aggravated in the line of duty;
          (C) who is in receipt of, or who, but for a 
        suspension pursuant to section 1151 of this title (or 
        both a suspension and the receipt of retired pay), 
        would be entitled to disability compensation, but only 
        to the extent that such veteran's continuing 
        eligibility for such care is provided for in the 
        judgment or settlement provided for in such section;
          (D) who is a former prisoner of war, who was awarded 
        the medal of honor under section 3741, 6241, or 8741 of 
        title 10 or section 491 of title 14, or who was awarded 
        the Purple Heart;
          (E) who is a veteran of the Mexican border period or 
        of World War I;
          (F) who was exposed to a toxic substance, radiation, 
        or other conditions, as provided in subsection (e); or
          (G) who is unable to defray the expenses of necessary 
        care as determined under section 1722(a) of this title.
  (3) In the case of a veteran who is not described in 
paragraphs (1) and (2), the Secretary may, to the extent 
resources and facilities are available and subject to the 
provisions of subsections (f) and (g), furnish hospital care, 
medical services, and nursing home care which the Secretary 
determines to be needed.
  (4) The requirement in paragraphs (1) and (2) that the 
Secretary furnish hospital care and medical services, the 
requirement in section 1710A(a) of this title that the 
Secretary provide nursing home care, the requirement in section 
1710B of this title that the Secretary provide a program of 
extended care services, and the requirement in section 1745 of 
this title to provide nursing home care and prescription 
medicines to veterans with service-connected disabilities in 
State homes shall be effective in any fiscal year only to the 
extent and in the amount provided in advance in appropriations 
Acts for such purposes.
  (5) During any period during which the provisions of section 
1710A(a) of this title are not in effect, the Secretary may 
furnish nursing home care which the Secretary determines is 
needed to any veteran described in paragraph (1), with the 
priority for such care on the same basis as if provided under 
that paragraph.
  (b)(1) The Secretary may furnish to a veteran described in 
paragraph (2) of this subsection such domiciliary care as the 
Secretary determines is needed for the purpose of the 
furnishing of medical services to the veteran.
  (2) This subsection applies in the case of the following 
veterans:
          (A) Any veteran whose annual income (as determined 
        under section 1503 of this title) does not exceed the 
        maximum annual rate of pension that would be applicable 
        to the veteran if the veteran were eligible for pension 
        under section 1521(d) of this title.
          (B) Any veteran who the Secretary determines has no 
        adequate means of support.
  (c) While any veteran is receiving hospital care or nursing 
home care in any Department facility, the Secretary may, within 
the limits of Department facilities, furnish medical services 
to correct or treat any non-service-connected disability of 
such veteran, in addition to treatment incident to the 
disability for which such veteran is hospitalized, if the 
veteran is willing, and the Secretary finds such services to be 
reasonably necessary to protect the health of such veteran. The 
Secretary may furnish dental services and treatment, and 
related dental appliances, under this subsection for a non-
service-connected dental condition or disability of a veteran 
only (1) to the extent that the Secretary determines that the 
dental facilities of the Department to be used to furnish such 
services, treatment, or appliances are not needed to furnish 
services, treatment, or appliances for dental conditions or 
disabilities described in section 1712(a) of this title, or (2) 
if (A) such non-service-connected dental condition or 
disability is associated with or aggravating a disability for 
which such veteran is receiving hospital care, or (B) a 
compelling medical reason or a dental emergency requires 
furnishing dental services, treatment, or appliances (excluding 
the furnishing of such services, treatment, or appliances of a 
routine nature) to such veteran during the period of 
hospitalization under this section.
  (d) In no case may nursing home care be furnished in a 
hospital not under the direct jurisdiction of the Secretary 
except as provided in section 1720 of this title.
  (e)(1)(A) A Vietnam-era herbicide-exposed veteran is eligible 
(subject to paragraph (2)) for hospital care, medical services, 
and nursing home care under subsection (a)(2)(F) for any 
disability, notwithstanding that there is insufficient medical 
evidence to conclude that such disability may be associated 
with such exposure.
  (B) A radiation-exposed veteran is eligible for hospital 
care, medical services, and nursing home care under subsection 
(a)(2)(F) for any disease suffered by the veteran that is--
          (i) a disease listed in section 1112(c)(2) of this 
        title; or
          (ii) any other disease for which the Secretary, based 
        on the advice of the Advisory Committee on 
        Environmental Hazards, determines that there is 
        credible evidence of a positive association between 
        occurrence of the disease in humans and exposure to 
        ionizing radiation.
  (C) Subject to paragraph (2) of this subsection, a veteran 
who served on active duty between August 2, 1990, and November 
11, 1998, in the Southwest Asia theater of operations during 
the Persian Gulf War is eligible for hospital care, medical 
services, and nursing home care under subsection (a)(2)(F) for 
any disability, notwithstanding that there is insufficient 
medical evidence to conclude that such disability may be 
associated with such service.
  (D) Subject to paragraphs (2) and (3), a veteran who served 
on active duty in a theater of combat operations (as determined 
by the Secretary in consultation with the Secretary of Defense) 
during a period of war after the Persian Gulf War, or in combat 
against a hostile force during a period of hostilities (as 
defined in section 1712A(a)(2)(B) of this title) after November 
11, 1998, is eligible for hospital care, medical services, and 
nursing home care under subsection (a)(2)(F) for any illness, 
notwithstanding that there is insufficient medical evidence to 
conclude that such condition is attributable to such service.
  (E) Subject to paragraph (2), a veteran who participated in a 
test conducted by the Department of Defense Deseret Test Center 
as part of a program for chemical and biological warfare 
testing from 1962 through 1973 (including the program 
designated as ``Project Shipboard Hazard and Defense (SHAD)'' 
and related land-based tests) is eligible for hospital care, 
medical services, and nursing home care under subsection 
(a)(2)(F) for any illness, notwithstanding that there is 
insufficient medical evidence to conclude that such illness is 
attributable to such testing.
  (F) Subject to paragraph (2), a veteran who served on active 
duty in the Armed Forces at Camp Lejeune, North Carolina, for 
not fewer than 30 days during the period beginning on August 1, 
1953 and ending on December 31, 1987, is eligible for hospital 
care and medical services under subsection (a)(2)(F) for any of 
the following illnesses or conditions, notwithstanding that 
there is insufficient medical evidence to conclude that such 
illnesses or conditions are attributable to such service:
          (i) Esophageal cancer.
          (ii) Lung cancer.
          (iii) Breast cancer.
          (iv) Bladder cancer.
          (v) Kidney cancer.
          (vi) Leukemia.
          (vii) Multiple myeloma.
          (viii) Myleodysplasic syndromes.
          (ix) Renal toxicity.
          (x) Hepatic steatosis.
          (xi) Female infertility.
          (xii) Miscarriage.
          (xiii) Scleroderma.
          (xiv) Neurobehavioral effects.
          (xv) Non-Hodgkin's lymphoma.
  (2)(A) In the case of a veteran described in paragraph 
(1)(A), hospital care, medical services, and nursing home care 
may not be provided under subsection (a)(2)(F) with respect 
to--
          (i) a disability that is found, in accordance with 
        guidelines issued by the Under Secretary for Health, to 
        have resulted from a cause other than an exposure 
        described in paragraph (4)(A)(ii); or
          (ii) a disease for which the National Academy of 
        Sciences, in a report issued in accordance with section 
        3 of the Agent Orange Act of 1991, has determined that 
        there is limited or suggestive evidence of the lack of 
        a positive association between occurrence of the 
        disease in humans and exposure to a herbicide agent.
  (B) In the case of a veteran described in subparagraph (C), 
(D), (E), or (F) of paragraph (1), hospital care, medical 
services, and nursing home care may not be provided under 
subsection (a)(2)(F) with respect to a disability that is 
found, in accordance with guidelines issued by the Under 
Secretary for Health, to have resulted from a cause other than 
the service or testing described in such subparagraph.
  (3) In the case of care for a veteran described in paragraph 
(1)(D), hospital care, medical services, and nursing home care 
may be provided under or by virtue of subsection (a)(2)(F) only 
during the following periods:
          (A) Except as provided by subparagraph (B), with 
        respect to a veteran described in paragraph (1)(D) who 
        is discharged or released from the active military, 
        naval, or air service after January 27, 2003, the five-
        year period beginning on the date of such discharge or 
        release.
          (B) With respect to a veteran described in paragraph 
        (1)(D) who is discharged or released from the active 
        military, naval, or air service after January 1, 2009, 
        and before January 1, 2011, but did not enroll to 
        receive such hospital care, medical services, or 
        nursing home care pursuant to such paragraph during the 
        five-year period described in subparagraph (A), the 
        one-year period beginning on the date of the enactment 
        of the Clay Hunt Suicide Prevention for American 
        Veterans Act.
          (C) With respect to a veteran described in paragraph 
        (1)(D) who is discharged or released from the active 
        military, naval, or air service on or before January 
        27, 2003, and did not enroll in the patient enrollment 
        system under section 1705 of this title on or before 
        such date, the three-year period beginning on January 
        27, 2008.
  (4) For purposes of this subsection--
          (A) The term ``Vietnam-era herbicide-exposed 
        veteran'' means a veteran (i) who served on active duty 
        in the Republic of Vietnam during the during the period 
        beginning on January 9, 1962, and ending on May 7, 
        1975, and (ii) who the Secretary finds may have been 
        exposed during such service to dioxin or was exposed 
        during such service to a toxic substance found in a 
        herbicide or defoliant used for military purposes 
        during such period.
          (B) The term ``radiation-exposed veteran'' has the 
        meaning given that term in section 1112(c)(3) of this 
        title.
  (5) When the Secretary first provides care for veterans using 
the authority provided in paragraph (1)(D), the Secretary shall 
establish a system for collection and analysis of information 
on the general health status and health care utilization 
patterns of veterans receiving care under that paragraph. Not 
later than 18 months after first providing care under such 
authority, the Secretary shall submit to Congress a report on 
the experience under that authority. The Secretary shall 
include in the report any recommendations of the Secretary for 
extension of that authority.
  (f)(1) The Secretary may not furnish hospital care or nursing 
home care (except if such care constitutes hospice care) under 
this section to a veteran who is eligible for such care under 
subsection (a)(3) of this section unless the veteran agrees to 
pay to the United States the applicable amount determined under 
paragraph (2) or (4) of this subsection.
  (2) A veteran who is furnished hospital care or nursing home 
care under this section and who is required under paragraph (1) 
of this subsection to agree to pay an amount to the United 
States in order to be furnished such care shall be liable to 
the United States for an amount equal to--
          (A) the lesser of--
                  (i) the cost of furnishing such care, as 
                determined by the Secretary; or
                  (ii) the amount determined under paragraph 
                (3) of this subsection; and
          (B) before September 30, 2015, an amount equal to $10 
        for every day the veteran receives hospital care and $5 
        for every day the veteran receives nursing home care.
  (3)(A) In the case of hospital care furnished during any 365-
day period, the amount referred to in paragraph (2)(A)(ii) of 
this subsection is--
          (i) the amount of the inpatient Medicare deductible, 
        plus (ii) one-half of such amount for each 90 days of 
        care (or fraction thereof) after the first 90 days of 
        such care during such 365-day period.
  (B) In the case of nursing home care furnished during any 
365-day period, the amount referred to in paragraph (2)(A)(ii) 
of this subsection is the amount of the inpatient Medicare 
deductible for each 90 days of such care (or fraction thereof) 
during such 365-day period.
  (C)(i) Except as provided in clause (ii) of this 
subparagraph, in the case of a veteran who is admitted for 
nursing home care under this section after being furnished, 
during the preceding 365-day period, hospital care for which 
the veteran has paid the amount of the inpatient Medicare 
deductible under this subsection and who has not been furnished 
90 days of hospital care in connection with such payment, the 
veteran shall not incur any liability under paragraph (2) of 
this subsection with respect to such nursing home care until--
          (I) the veteran has been furnished, beginning with 
        the first day of such hospital care furnished in 
        connection with such payment, a total of 90 days of 
        hospital care and nursing home care; or
          (II) the end of the 365-day period applicable to the 
        hospital care for which payment was made,
        whichever occurs first.
  (ii) In the case of a veteran who is admitted for nursing 
home care under this section after being furnished, during any 
365-day period, hospital care for which the veteran has paid an 
amount under subparagraph (A)(ii) of this paragraph and who has 
not been furnished 90 days of hospital care in connection with 
such payment, the amount of the liability of the veteran under 
paragraph (2) of this subsection with respect to the number of 
days of such nursing home care which, when added to the number 
of days of such hospital care, is 90 or less, is the difference 
between the inpatient Medicare deductible and the amount paid 
under such subparagraph until--
          (I) the veteran has been furnished, beginning with 
        the first day of such hospital care furnished in 
        connection with such payment, a total of 90 days of 
        hospital care and nursing home care; or
          (II) the end of the 365-day period applicable to the 
        hospital care for which payment was made,
whichever occurs first.
  (D) In the case of a veteran who is admitted for hospital 
care under this section after having been furnished, during the 
preceding 365-day period, nursing home care for which the 
veteran has paid the amount of the inpatient Medicare 
deductible under this subsection and who has not been furnished 
90 days of nursing home care in connection with such payment, 
the veteran shall not incur any liability under paragraph (2) 
of this subsection with respect to such hospital care until--
          (i) the veteran has been furnished, beginning with 
        the first day of such nursing home care furnished in 
        connection with such payment, a total of 90 days of 
        nursing home care and hospital care; or
          (ii) the end of the 365-day period applicable to the 
        nursing home care for which payment was made,
whichever occurs first.
  (E) A veteran may not be required to make a payment under 
this subsection for hospital care or nursing home care 
furnished under this section during any 90-day period in which 
the veteran is furnished medical services under paragraph (3) 
of subsection (a) to the extent that such payment would cause 
the total amount paid by the veteran under this subsection for 
hospital care and nursing home care furnished during that 
period and under subsection (g) for medical services furnished 
during that period to exceed the amount of the inpatient 
Medicare deductible in effect on the first day of such period.
  (F) A veteran may not be required to make a payment under 
this subsection or subsection (g) for any days of care in 
excess of 360 days of care during any 365-calendar-day period.
  (4) In the case of a veteran covered by this subsection who 
is also described by section 1705(a)(7) of this title, the 
amount for which the veteran shall be liable to the United 
States for hospital care under this subsection shall be an 
amount equal to 20 percent of the total amount for which the 
veteran would otherwise be liable for such care under 
subparagraphs (2)(B) and (3)(A) but for this paragraph.
  (5) For the purposes of this subsection, the term ``inpatient 
Medicare deductible'' means the amount of the inpatient 
hospital deductible in effect under section 1813(b) of the 
Social Security Act (42 U.S.C. 1395e(b)) on the first day of 
the 365-day period applicable under paragraph (3) of this 
subsection.
  (g)(1) The Secretary may not furnish medical services (except 
if such care constitutes hospice care) under subsection (a) of 
this section (including home health services under section 1717 
of this title) to a veteran who is eligible for hospital care 
under this chapter by reason of subsection (a)(3) of this 
section unless the veteran agrees to pay to the United States 
in the case of each outpatient visit the applicable amount or 
amounts established by the Secretary by regulation.
  (2) A veteran who is furnished medical services under 
subsection (a) of this section and who is required under 
paragraph (1) of this subsection to agree to pay an amount to 
the United States in order to be furnished such services shall 
be liable to the United States, in the case of each visit in 
which such services are furnished to the veteran, for an amount 
which the Secretary shall establish by regulation.
  (3) This subsection does not apply with respect to home 
health services under section 1717 of this title to the extent 
that such services are for improvements and structural 
alterations.
  (h) Nothing in this section requires the Secretary to furnish 
care to a veteran to whom another agency of Federal, State, or 
local government has a duty under law to provide care in an 
institution of such government.

           *       *       *       *       *       *       *


Sec. 1710B. Extended care services

  (a) The Secretary (subject to section 1710(a)(4) of this 
title and subsection (c) of this section) shall operate and 
maintain a program to provide extended care services to 
eligible veterans in accordance with this section. Such 
services shall include the following:
          (1) Geriatric evaluation.
          (2) Nursing home care (A) in facilities operated by 
        the Secretary, and (B) in community-based facilities 
        through contracts under section 1720 of this title.
          (3) Domiciliary services under section 1710(b) of 
        this title.
          (4) Adult day health care under section 1720(f) of 
        this title.
          (5) Such other noninstitutional alternatives to 
        nursing home care as the Secretary may furnish as 
        medical services under section 1701(10) of this title.
          (6) Respite care under section 1720B of this title.
  (b) The Secretary shall ensure that the staffing and level of 
extended care services provided by the Secretary nationally in 
facilities of the Department during any fiscal year is not less 
than the staffing and level of such services provided 
nationally in facilities of the Department during fiscal year 
1998.
  (c)(1) Except as provided in paragraph (2), the Secretary may 
not furnish extended care services for a non-service-connected 
disability other than in the case of a veteran who has a 
compensable service-connected disability unless the veteran 
agrees to pay to the United States a copayment (determined in 
accordance with subsection (d)) for any period of such services 
in a year after the first 21 days of such services provided 
that veteran in that year.
  (2) Paragraph (1) shall not apply--
          (A) to a veteran whose annual income (determined 
        under section 1503 of this title) is less than the 
        amount in effect under section 1521(b) of this title;
          (B) to a veteran being furnished hospice care under 
        this section; [or]
          (C) with respect to an episode of extended care 
        services that a veteran is being furnished by the 
        Department on November 30, 1999[.]; or
          (D) to a veteran who was awarded the medal of honor 
        under section 3741, 6241, or 8741 of title 10 or 
        section 491 of title 14.
  (d)(1) A veteran who is furnished extended care services 
under this chapter and who is required under subsection (c) to 
pay an amount to the United States in order to be furnished 
such services shall be liable to the United States for that 
amount.
  (2) In implementing subsection (c), the Secretary shall 
develop a methodology for establishing the amount of the 
copayment for which a veteran described in subsection (c) is 
liable. That methodology shall provide for--
          (A) establishing a maximum monthly copayment (based 
        on all income and assets of the veteran and the spouse 
        of such veteran);
          (B) protecting the spouse of a veteran from financial 
        hardship by not counting all of the income and assets 
        of the veteran and spouse (in the case of a spouse who 
        resides in the community) as available for determining 
        the copayment obligation; and
          (C) allowing the veteran to retain a monthly personal 
        allowance.
  (e)(1) There is established in the Treasury of the United 
States a revolving fund known as the Department of Veterans 
Affairs Extended Care Fund (hereinafter in this section 
referred to as the ``fund''). Amounts in the fund shall be 
available, without fiscal year limitation and without further 
appropriation, exclusively for the purpose of providing 
extended care services under subsection (a).
  (2) All amounts received by the Department under this section 
shall be deposited in or credited to the fund.

           *       *       *       *       *       *       *


   SUBCHAPTER III--MISCELLANEOUS PROVISIONS RELATING TO HOSPITAL AND 
NURSING HOME CARE AND MEDICAL TREATMENT OF VETERANS

           *       *       *       *       *       *       *



Sec. 1722A. Copayment for medications

  (a)(1) Subject to paragraph (2), the Secretary shall require 
a veteran to pay the United States $2 for each 30-day supply of 
medication furnished such veteran under this chapter on an 
outpatient basis for the treatment of a non-service-connected 
disability or condition. If the amount supplied is less than a 
30-day supply, the amount of the charge may not be reduced.
  (2) The Secretary may not require a veteran to pay an amount 
in excess of the cost to the Secretary for medication described 
in paragraph (1).
  (3) Paragraph (1) does not apply--
          (A) to a veteran with a service-connected disability 
        rated 50 percent or more;
          (B) to a veteran who is a former prisoner of war; 
        [or]
          (C) to a veteran whose annual income (as determined 
        under section 1503 of this title) does not exceed the 
        maximum annual rate of pension which would be payable 
        to such veteran if such veteran were eligible for 
        pension under section 1521 of this title[.]; or
          (D) to a veteran who was awarded the medal of honor 
        under section 3741, 6241, or 8741 of title 10 or 
        section 491 of title 14.
  (b) The Secretary, pursuant to regulations which the 
Secretary shall prescribe, may--
          (1) increase the copayment amount in effect under 
        subsection (a); and
          (2) establish a maximum monthly and a maximum annual 
        pharmaceutical copayment amount under subsection (a) 
        for veterans who have multiple outpatient 
        prescriptions.
  (c) Amounts collected under this section shall be deposited 
in the Department of Veterans Affairs Medical Care Collections 
Fund.

           *       *       *       *       *       *       *


SUBCHAPTER VIII--HEALTH CARE OF PERSONS OTHER THAN VETERANS

           *       *       *       *       *       *       *



Sec. 1786. Care for newborn children of women veterans receiving 
                    maternity care

  (a) In General.--The Secretary may furnish health care 
services described in subsection (b) to a newborn child of a 
woman veteran who is receiving maternity care furnished by the 
Department for not more than [seven days] 42 days after the 
birth of the child if the veteran delivered the child in--
          (1) a facility of the Department; or
          (2) another facility pursuant to a Department 
        contract for services relating to such delivery.
  (b) Covered Health Care Services.--Health care services 
described in this subsection are all post-delivery care 
services, including routine care services, that a newborn child 
requires.
  (c) Annual Report.--Not later than October 31, 2016, and each 
year thereafter through 2020, the Secretary shall submit to the 
Committees on Veterans' Affairs of the House of Representatives 
and the Senate a report on the health care services provided 
under subsection (a) during the fiscal year preceding the date 
of the report, including the number of newborn children who 
received such services during such fiscal year.

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               CHAPTER 20--BENEFITS FOR HOMELESS VETERANS


SUBCHAPTER I--PURPOSE; DEFINITIONS; ADMINISTRATIVE MATTERS

           *       *       *       *       *       *       *



Sec. 2003. Staffing requirements

  (a) VBA Staffing at Regional Offices.--The Secretary shall 
ensure that there is at least one full-time employee assigned 
to oversee and coordinate homeless veterans programs at each of 
the 20 Veterans Benefits Administration regional offices that 
the Secretary determines have the largest homeless veteran 
populations within the regions of the Administration. The 
programs covered by such oversight and coordination include the 
following:
          (1) Housing programs administered by the Secretary 
        under this title or any other provision of law.
          (2) Compensation, pension, vocational rehabilitation, 
        and education benefits programs administered by the 
        Secretary under this title or any other provision of 
        law.
          (3) The housing program for veterans supported by the 
        Department of Housing and Urban Development.
          (4) The homeless veterans reintegration program [of 
        the Department of Labor] under section 2021 of this 
        title.
          (5) The programs under section 2033 of this title.
          (6) The assessments required by section 2034 of this 
        title.
          (7) Such other programs relating to homeless veterans 
        as may be specified by the Secretary.
  (b) VHA Case Managers.--The Secretary shall ensure that the 
number of case managers in the Veterans Health Administration 
is sufficient to assure that every veteran who is provided a 
housing voucher through section 8(o) of the United States 
Housing Act of 1937 (42 U.S.C. 1437f(o)) is assigned to, and is 
seen as needed by, a case manager.

             SUBCHAPTER II--COMPREHENSIVE SERVICE PROGRAMS


Sec. 2011. Grants

  (a) Authority To Make Grants.--Subject to the availability of 
appropriations provided for such purpose, the Secretary shall 
make grants to assist eligible entities in establishing 
programs to furnish, and expanding or modifying existing 
programs for furnishing, the following to homeless veterans:
          (1) Outreach.
          (2) Rehabilitative services.
          (3) Vocational counseling and training.
          (4) Transitional housing assistance.
  (b) Criteria for Grants.--The Secretary shall establish 
criteria and requirements for grants under this section, 
including criteria for entities eligible to receive grants, and 
shall publish such criteria and requirements in the Federal 
Register. The criteria established under this subsection shall 
include the following:
          (1) Specification as to the kinds of projects for 
        which grants are available, which shall include--
                  (A) new construction of facilities, 
                expansion, remodeling, or alteration of 
                existing facilities, or acquisition of 
                facilities, for use as service centers, 
                transitional housing, or other facilities to 
                serve homeless veterans; and
                  (B) procurement of vans for use in outreach 
                to and transportation for homeless veterans for 
                purposes of a program referred to in subsection 
                (a).
          (2) Specification as to the number of projects for 
        which grants are available.
          (3) Criteria for staffing for the provision of 
        services under a project for which grants are made.
          (4) Provisions to ensure that grants under this 
        section--
                  (A) shall not result in duplication of 
                ongoing services; and
                  (B) to the maximum extent practicable, shall 
                reflect appropriate geographic dispersion and 
                an appropriate balance between urban and other 
                locations.
          (5) Provisions to ensure that an entity receiving a 
        grant shall meet fire and safety requirements 
        established by the Secretary, which shall include--
                  (A) such State and local requirements that 
                may apply; and
                  (B) fire and safety requirements applicable 
                under the Life Safety Code of the National Fire 
                Protection Association or such other comparable 
                fire and safety requirements as the Secretary 
                may specify.
          (6) Specification as to the means by which an entity 
        receiving a grant may contribute in-kind services to 
        the start-up costs of a project for which a grant is 
        sought and the methodology for assigning a cost to that 
        contribution for purposes of subsection (c).
  (c) Funding Limitations.--(1) A grant under this section may 
not be used to support operational costs.
  (2) The amount of a grant under this section may not exceed 
65 percent of the estimated cost of the project concerned.
  (3)(A) The Secretary may not deny an application from an 
entity that seeks a grant under this section to carry out a 
project described in subsection (b)(1)(A) solely on the basis 
that the entity proposes to use funding from other private or 
public sources, if the entity demonstrates that a private 
nonprofit organization will provide oversight and site control 
for the project.
  (B) In this paragraph, the term ``private nonprofit 
organization'' means the following:
          (i) An incorporated private institution, 
        organization, or foundation--
                  (I) that has received, or has temporary 
                clearance to receive, tax-exempt status under 
                paragraph (2), (3), or (19) of section 501(c) 
                of the Internal Revenue Code of 1986;
                  (II) for which no part of the net earnings of 
                the institution, organization, or foundation 
                inures to the benefit of any member, founder, 
                or contributor of the institution, 
                organization, or foundation; and
                  (III) that the Secretary determines is 
                financially responsible.
          (ii) A for-profit limited partnership or limited 
        liability company, the sole general partner or manager 
        of which is an organization that is described by 
        subclauses (I) through (III) of clause (i).
          (iii) A corporation wholly owned and controlled by an 
        organization that is described by subclauses (I) 
        through (III) of clause (i).
  (d) Eligible Entities.--The Secretary may make a grant under 
this section to an entity applying for such a grant only if the 
applicant for the grant--
          (1) is a public or nonprofit private entity with the 
        capacity (as determined by the Secretary) to 
        effectively administer a grant under this section;
          (2) demonstrates that adequate financial support will 
        be available to carry out the project for which the 
        grant is sought consistent with the plans, 
        specifications, and schedule submitted by the 
        applicant; and
          (3) agrees to meet the applicable criteria and 
        requirements established under subsections (b) and (g) 
        and has, as determined by the Secretary, the capacity 
        to meet such criteria and requirements.
  (e) Application Requirement.--An entity seeking a grant for a 
project under this section shall submit to the Secretary an 
application for the grant. The application shall set forth the 
following:
          (1) The amount of the grant sought for the project.
          (2) A description of the site for the project.
          (3) Plans, specifications, and the schedule for 
        implementation of the project in accordance with 
        criteria and requirements prescribed by the Secretary 
        under subsection (b).
          (4) Reasonable assurance that upon completion of the 
        work for which the grant is sought, the project will 
        become operational and the facilities will be used 
        principally to provide to veterans the services for 
        which the project was designed, and that not more than 
        25 percent of the services provided under the project 
        will be provided to individuals who are not veterans.
  (f) Program Requirements.--The Secretary may not make a grant 
for a project to an applicant under this section unless the 
applicant in the application for the grant agrees to each of 
the following requirements:
          (1) To provide the services for which the grant is 
        made at locations accessible to homeless veterans.
          (2) To maintain referral networks for homeless 
        veterans for establishing eligibility for assistance 
        and obtaining services, under available entitlement and 
        assistance programs, and to aid such veterans in 
        establishing eligibility for and obtaining such 
        services.
          (3) To ensure the confidentiality of records 
        maintained on homeless veterans receiving services 
        through the project.
          (4) To establish such procedures for fiscal control 
        and fund accounting as may be necessary to ensure 
        proper disbursement and accounting with respect to the 
        grant and to such payments as may be made under section 
        2012 of this title.
          (5) To seek to employ homeless veterans and formerly 
        homeless veterans in positions created for purposes of 
        the grant for which those veterans are qualified.
  (g) Service Center Requirements.--In addition to criteria and 
requirements established under subsection (b), in the case of 
an application for a grant under this section for a service 
center for homeless veterans, the Secretary shall require each 
of the following:
          (1) That such center provide services to homeless 
        veterans during such hours as the Secretary may specify 
        and be open to such veterans on an as-needed, 
        unscheduled basis.
          (2) That space at such center be made available, as 
        mutually agreeable, for use by staff of the Department 
        of Veterans Affairs, [the Department of Labor,] and 
        other appropriate agencies and organizations in 
        assisting homeless veterans served by such center.
          (3) That such center be equipped and staffed to 
        provide or to assist in providing health care, mental 
        health services, hygiene facilities, benefits and 
        employment counseling, meals, transportation 
        assistance, and such other services as the Secretary 
        determines necessary.
          (4) That such center be equipped and staffed to 
        provide, or to assist in providing, job training, 
        counseling, and placement services (including job 
        readiness and literacy and skills training), as well as 
        any outreach and case management services that may be 
        necessary to carry out this paragraph.
  (h) Recovery of Unused Grant Funds.--(1) If a grant recipient 
under this section does not establish a program in accordance 
with this section or ceases to furnish services under such a 
program for which the grant was made, the United States shall 
be entitled to recover from such recipient the total of all 
unused grant amounts made under this section to such recipient 
in connection with such program.
  (2) Any amount recovered by the United States under paragraph 
(1) may be obligated by the Secretary without fiscal year 
limitation to carry out provisions of this subchapter.
  (3) An amount may not be recovered under paragraph (1) as an 
unused grant amount before the end of the three-year period 
beginning on the date on which the grant is made.

           *       *       *       *       *       *       *


                 SUBCHAPTER III--TRAINING AND OUTREACH


Sec. 2021. Homeless veterans reintegration programs

  (a) In General.--Subject to the availability of 
appropriations provided for such purpose, the [Secretary of 
Labor] Secretary shall conduct, directly or through grant or 
contract, such programs as the Secretary determines appropriate 
to provide job training, counseling, and placement services 
(including job readiness and literacy and skills training) to 
expedite the reintegration of homeless veterans into the labor 
force.
  (b) Requirement To Monitor Expenditures of Funds.--(1) The 
[Secretary of Labor] Secretary shall collect such information 
as [that Secretary] the Secretary considers appropriate to 
monitor and evaluate the distribution and expenditure of funds 
appropriated to carry out this section. The information shall 
include data with respect to the results or outcomes of the 
services provided to each homeless veteran under this section.
  (2) Information under paragraph (1) shall be furnished in 
such form and manner as the [Secretary of Labor] Secretary may 
specify.
  (c)  [Administration Through the Assistant Secretary of Labor 
for Veterans' Employment and Training] Administration Through 
Deputy Under Secretary for Veterans' Employment, Training, and 
Transition.--The [Secretary of Labor] Secretary shall carry out 
this section through the [Assistant Secretary of Labor for 
Veterans' Employment and Training] Deputy Under Secretary for 
Employment, Training, and Transition.
  (d) Biennial Report to Congress.--Not less than every two 
years, the [Secretary of Labor] Secretary shall submit to 
Congress a report on the programs conducted under this section. 
The [Secretary of Labor] Secretary shall include in the report 
an evaluation of services furnished to veterans under this 
section and an analysis of the information collected under 
subsection (b).
  (e) Authorization of Appropriations.--(1) There are 
authorized to be appropriated to carry out this section amounts 
as follows:
          (A) $50,000,000 for fiscal year 2002.
          (B) $50,000,000 for fiscal year 2003.
          (C) $50,000,000 for fiscal year 2004.
          (D) $50,000,000 for fiscal year 2005.
          (E) $50,000,000 for fiscal year 2006.
          (F) $50,000,000 for each of fiscal years 2007 through 
        2015.
  (2) Funds appropriated to carry out this section shall remain 
available until expended. Funds obligated in any fiscal year to 
carry out this section may be expended in that fiscal year and 
the succeeding fiscal year.

Sec. 2021A. Homeless women veterans and homeless veterans with children 
                    reintegration grant program

  (a) Grants.--Subject to the availability of appropriations 
provided for such purpose, the [Secretary of Labor] Secretary 
shall make grants to programs and facilities that the Secretary 
determines provide dedicated services for homeless women 
veterans and homeless veterans with children.
  (b) Use of Funds.--Grants under this section shall be used to 
provide job training, counseling, placement services (including 
job readiness and literacy and skills training) and child care 
services to expedite the reintegration of homeless women 
veterans and homeless veterans with children into the labor 
force.
  (c) Requirement To Monitor Expenditures of Funds.--(1) The 
[Secretary of Labor] Secretary shall collect such information 
as [that Secretary] the Secretary considers appropriate to 
monitor and evaluate the distribution and expenditure of funds 
appropriated to carry out this section. The information shall 
include data with respect to the results or outcomes of the 
services provided to each homeless veteran under this section.
  (2) Information under paragraph (1) shall be furnished in 
such form and manner as the [Secretary of Labor] Secretary may 
specify.
  (d)  [Administration Through the Assistant Secretary of Labor 
for Veterans' Employment and Training] Administration Through 
Deputy Under Secretary for Veterans' Employment, Training, and 
Transition.--The [Secretary of Labor] Secretary shall carry out 
this section through the [Assistant Secretary of Labor for 
Veterans' Employment and Training] Deputy Under Secretary for 
Employment, Training, and Transition.
  (e) Biennial Report to Congress.--The [Secretary of Labor] 
Secretary shall include as part of the report required under 
section 2021(d) of this title an evaluation of the grant 
program under this section, which shall include an evaluation 
of services furnished to veterans under this section and an 
analysis of the information collected under subsection (c).
  (f) Authorization of Appropriations.--(1) In addition to any 
amount authorized to be appropriated to carry out section 2021 
of this title, there is authorized to be appropriated to carry 
out this section $1,000,000 for each of fiscal years 2011 
through 2015.
  (2) Funds appropriated to carry out this section shall remain 
available until expended. Funds obligated in any fiscal year to 
carry out this section may be expended in that fiscal year and 
the succeeding fiscal year.

           *       *       *       *       *       *       *


Sec. 2023. Referral and counseling services: veterans at risk of 
                    homelessness who are transitioning from certain 
                    institutions

  (a) Program Authority.--The Secretary [and the Secretary of 
Labor (hereinafter in this section referred to as the 
``Secretaries'')] shall carry out a program of referral and 
counseling services to eligible veterans with respect to 
benefits and services available to such veterans under this 
title and under State law.
  (b) Location of Program.--The program shall be carried out in 
at least 12 locations. One location shall be a penal 
institution under the jurisdiction of the Bureau of Prisons.
  (c) Scope of Program.--(1) To the extent practicable, the 
program shall provide both referral and counseling services, 
and in the case of counseling services, shall include 
counseling with respect to job training and placement 
(including job readiness), housing, health care, and other 
benefits to assist the eligible veteran in the transition from 
institutional living.
  (2)(A) To the extent that referral or counseling services are 
provided at a location under the program, referral services 
shall be provided in person during such period of time that the 
[Secretaries] Secretary may specify that precedes the date of 
release or discharge of the eligible veteran, and counseling 
services shall be furnished after such date.
  (B) The [Secretaries] Secretary may, as part of the program, 
furnish to officials of penal institutions outreach information 
with respect to referral and counseling services for 
presentation to veterans in the custody of such officials 
during the 18-month period that precedes such date of release 
or discharge.
  (3) The [Secretaries] Secretary may make grants to carry out 
the referral and counseling services required under the program 
with entities or organizations that meet such requirements as 
the [Secretaries] Secretary may establish.
  (4) In developing the program, the [Secretaries] Secretary 
shall consult with officials of the Bureau of Prisons, 
officials of penal institutions of States and political 
subdivisions of States, and such other officials as the 
[Secretaries] Secretary [determine] determines appropriate.
  (d) Duration.--The authority of the [Secretaries] Secretary 
to enter into a contract to provide referral and counseling 
services under the demonstration program shall cease on 
September 30, 2015.
  (e) Definition.--In this section, the term ``eligible 
veteran'' means a veteran who--
          (1) is a resident of a penal institution or an 
        institution that provides long-term care for mental 
        illness; and
          (2) is at risk for homelessness absent referral and 
        counseling services provided under the demonstration 
        program (as determined under guidelines established by 
        the [Secretaries] Secretary).

           *       *       *       *       *       *       *


SUBCHAPTER VII--OTHER PROVISIONS

           *       *       *       *       *       *       *



Sec. 2065. Annual report on assistance to homeless veterans

  (a) Annual Report.--Not later than June 15 of each year, the 
Secretary shall submit to the Committees on Veterans' Affairs 
of the Senate and House of Representatives a report on the 
activities of the Department during the calendar year preceding 
the report under programs of the Department under this chapter 
and other programs of the Department for the provision of 
assistance to homeless veterans.
  (b) General Contents of Report.--Each report under subsection 
(a) shall include the following:
          (1) The number of homeless veterans provided 
        assistance under the programs referred to in subsection 
        (a).
          (2) The cost to the Department of providing such 
        assistance under those programs.
          (3) The Secretary's evaluation of the effectiveness 
        of the programs of the Department in providing 
        assistance to homeless veterans, including--
                  (A) residential work-therapy programs;
                  (B) programs combining outreach, community-
                based residential treatment, and case-
                management; and
                  (C) contract care programs for alcohol and 
                drug-dependence or use disabilities.
          (4) The Secretary's evaluation of the effectiveness 
        of programs established by recipients of grants under 
        section 2011 of this title and a description of the 
        experience of those recipients in applying for and 
        receiving grants from the Secretary of Housing and 
        Urban Development to serve primarily homeless persons 
        who are veterans.
          (5) Information on the efforts of the Secretary to 
        coordinate the delivery of housing and services to 
        homeless veterans with other Federal departments and 
        agencies, including--
                  (A) the Department of Defense;
                  (B) the Department of Health and Human 
                Services;
                  (C) the Department of Housing and Urban 
                Development;
                  (D) the Department of Justice;
                  [(E) the Department of Labor;]
                  [(F)] (E) the Interagency Council on 
                Homelessness;
                  [(G)] (F) the Social Security Administration; 
                and
                  [(H)] (G) any other Federal department or 
                agency with which the Secretary coordinates the 
                delivery of housing and services to homeless 
                veterans.
          (6) Any other information on those programs and on 
        the provision of such assistance that the Secretary 
        considers appropriate.
  (c) Health Care Contents of Report.--Each report under 
subsection (a) shall include, with respect to programs of the 
Department addressing health care needs of homeless veterans, 
the following:
          (1) Information about expenditures, costs, and 
        workload under the program of the Department known as 
        the Health Care for Homeless Veterans program (HCHV).
          (2) Information about the veterans contacted through 
        that program.
          (3) Information about program treatment outcomes 
        under that program.
          (4) Information about supported housing programs.
          (5) Information about the Department's grant and per 
        diem provider program under subchapter II of this 
        chapter.
          (6) The findings and conclusions of the assessments 
        of the medical needs of homeless veterans conducted 
        under section 2034(b) of this title.
          (7) Other information the Secretary considers 
        relevant in assessing those programs.
  (d) Benefits Content of Report.--Each report under subsection 
(a) shall include, with respect to programs and activities of 
the Veterans Benefits Administration in processing of claims 
for benefits of homeless veterans during the preceding year, 
the following:
          (1) Information on costs, expenditures, and workload 
        of Veterans Benefits Administration claims evaluators 
        in processing claims for benefits of homeless veterans.
          (2) Information on the filing of claims for benefits 
        by homeless veterans.
          (3) Information on efforts undertaken to expedite the 
        processing of claims for benefits of homeless veterans.
          (4) Other information that the Secretary considers 
        relevant in assessing the programs and activities.

Sec. 2066. Advisory Committee on Homeless Veterans

  (a) Establishment.--(1) There is established in the 
Department the Advisory Committee on Homeless Veterans 
(hereinafter in this section referred to as the ``Committee'').
  (2) The Committee shall consist of not more than 15 members 
appointed by the Secretary from among the following:
          (A) Veterans service organizations.
          (B) Advocates of homeless veterans and other homeless 
        individuals.
          (C) Community-based providers of services to homeless 
        individuals.
          (D) Previously homeless veterans.
          (E) State veterans affairs officials.
          (F) Experts in the treatment of individuals with 
        mental illness.
          (G) Experts in the treatment of substance use 
        disorders.
          (H) Experts in the development of permanent housing 
        alternatives for lower income populations.
          (I) Experts in vocational rehabilitation.
          (J) Such other organizations or groups as the 
        Secretary considers appropriate.
  (3) The Committee shall include, as ex officio members, the 
following:
          [(A) The Secretary of Labor (or a representative of 
        the Secretary selected after consultation with the 
        Assistant Secretary of Labor for Veterans' 
        Employment).]
          [(B)] (A) The Secretary of Defense (or a 
        representative of the Secretary).
          [(C)] (B) The Secretary of Health and Human Services 
        (or a representative of the Secretary).
          [(D)] (C) The Secretary of Housing and Urban 
        Development (or a representative of the Secretary).
          [(E)] (D) The Executive Director of the Interagency 
        Council on Homelessness (or a representative of the 
        Executive Director).
          [(F)] (E) The Under Secretary for Health (or a 
        representative of the Under Secretary after 
        consultation with the Director of the Office of 
        Homeless Veterans Programs).
          [(G)] (F) The Under Secretary for Benefits (or a 
        representative of the Under Secretary after 
        consultation with the Director of the Office of 
        Homeless Veterans Programs).
  (4)(A) The Secretary shall determine the terms of service and 
allowances of the members of the Committee, except that a term 
of service may not exceed three years. The Secretary may 
reappoint any member for additional terms of service.
  (B) Members of the Committee shall serve without pay. Members 
may receive travel expenses, including per diem in lieu of 
subsistence for travel in connection with their duties as 
members of the Committee.
  (b) Duties.--(1) The Secretary shall consult with and seek 
the advice of the Committee on a regular basis with respect to 
the provision by the Department of benefits and services to 
homeless veterans.
  (2) In providing advice to the Secretary under this 
subsection, the Committee shall--
          (A) assemble and review information relating to the 
        needs of homeless veterans;
          (B) provide an on-going assessment of the 
        effectiveness of the policies, organizational 
        structures, and services of the Department in assisting 
        homeless veterans; and
          (C) provide on-going advice on the most appropriate 
        means of providing assistance to homeless veterans.
  (3) The Committee shall--
          (A) review the continuum of services provided by the 
        Department directly or by contract in order to define 
        cross-cutting issues and to improve coordination of all 
        services with the Department that are involved in 
        addressing the special needs of homeless veterans;
          (B) identify (through the annual assessments under 
        section 2034 of this title and other available 
        resources) gaps in programs of the Department in 
        serving homeless veterans, including identification of 
        geographic areas with unmet needs, and provide 
        recommendations to address those gaps;
          (C) identify gaps in existing information systems on 
        homeless veterans, both within and outside the 
        Department, and provide recommendations about 
        redressing problems in data collection;
          (D) identify barriers under existing laws and 
        policies to effective coordination by the Department 
        with other Federal agencies and with State and local 
        agencies addressing homeless populations;
          (E) identify opportunities for increased liaison by 
        the Department with nongovernmental organizations and 
        individual groups providing services to homeless 
        populations;
          (F) with appropriate officials of the Department 
        designated by the Secretary, participate with the 
        Interagency Council on the Homeless under title II of 
        the McKinney-Vento Homeless Assistance Act (42 U.S.C. 
        11311 et seq.);
          (G) recommend appropriate funding levels for 
        specialized programs for homeless veterans provided or 
        funded by the Department;
          (H) recommend appropriate placement options for 
        veterans who, because of advanced age, frailty, or 
        severe mental illness, may not be appropriate 
        candidates for vocational rehabilitation or independent 
        living; and
          (I) perform such other functions as the Secretary may 
        direct.
  (c) Reports.--(1) Not later than March 31 of each year, the 
Committee shall submit to the Secretary a report on the 
programs and activities of the Department that relate to 
homeless veterans. Each such report shall include--
          (A) an assessment of the needs of homeless veterans;
          (B) a review of the programs and activities of the 
        Department designed to meet such needs;
          (C) a review of the activities of the Committee; and
          (D) such recommendations (including recommendations 
        for administrative and legislative action) as the 
        Committee considers appropriate.
  (2) Not later than 90 days after the receipt of a report 
under paragraph (1), the Secretary shall transmit to the 
Committees on Veterans' Affairs of the Senate and House of 
Representatives a copy of the report, together with any 
comments and recommendations concerning the report that the 
Secretary considers appropriate.
  (3) The Committee may also submit to the Secretary such other 
reports and recommendations as the Committee considers 
appropriate.
  (4) The Secretary shall submit with each annual report 
submitted to the Congress pursuant to section 529 of this title 
a summary of all reports and recommendations of the Committee 
submitted to the Secretary since the previous annual report of 
the Secretary submitted pursuant to that section.
  (d) Termination.--The Committee shall cease to exist December 
31, 2015.

           *       *       *       *       *       *       *


PART III--READJUSTMENT AND RELATED BENEFITS

           *       *       *       *       *       *       *


   CHAPTER 31--TRAINING AND REHABILITATION FOR VETERANS WITH SERVICE-
CONNECTED DISABILITIES

           *       *       *       *       *       *       *



Sec. 3104. Scope of services and assistance

  (a) Services and assistance which the Secretary may provide 
under this chapter, pursuant to regulations which the Secretary 
shall prescribe, include the following:
          (1) Evaluation, including periodic reevaluations as 
        appropriate with respect to a veteran participating in 
        a rehabilitation program, of the potential for 
        rehabilitation of a veteran, including diagnostic and 
        related services (A) to determine whether the veteran 
        has an employment handicap or a serious employment 
        handicap and whether a vocational goal is reasonably 
        feasible for such veteran, and (B) to provide a basis 
        for planning a suitable vocational rehabilitation 
        program or a program of services and assistance to 
        improve the vocational rehabilitation potential or 
        independent living status of such veteran, as 
        appropriate.
          (2) Educational, vocational, psychological, 
        employment, and personal adjustment counseling.
          (3) An allowance and other appropriate assistance, as 
        authorized by section 3108 of this title.
          (4) A work-study allowance as authorized by section 
        3485 of this title.
          (5) Placement services to effect suitable placement 
        in employment, and postplacement services to attempt to 
        insure satisfactory adjustment in employment.
          (6) Personal adjustment and work adjustment training.
          (7)(A) Vocational and other training services and 
        assistance, including individualized tutorial 
        assistance, tuition, fees, books, supplies, handling 
        charges, licensing fees, and equipment and other 
        training materials determined by the Secretary to be 
        necessary to accomplish the purposes of the 
        rehabilitation program in the individual case.
          (B) Payment for the services and assistance provided 
        under subparagraph (A) of this paragraph shall be made 
        from funds available for the payment of readjustment 
        benefits.
          (8) Loans as authorized by section 3112 of this 
        title.
          (9) Treatment, care, and services described in 
        chapter 17 of this title.
          (10) Prosthetic appliances, eyeglasses, and other 
        corrective and assistive devices.
          (11) Services to a veteran's family as necessary for 
        the effective rehabilitation of such veteran.
          (12) For veterans with the most severe service-
        connected disabilities who require homebound training 
        or self-employment, or both homebound training and 
        self-employment, such license fees and essential 
        equipment, supplies, and minimum stocks of materials as 
        the Secretary determines to be necessary for such a 
        veteran to begin employment and are within the criteria 
        and cost limitations that the Secretary shall prescribe 
        in regulations for the furnishing of such fees, 
        equipment, supplies, and stocks.
          (13) Travel and incidental expenses under the terms 
        and conditions set forth in section 111 of this title, 
        plus, in the case of a veteran who because of such 
        veteran's disability has transportation expenses in 
        addition to those incurred by persons not so disabled, 
        a special transportation allowance to defray such 
        additional expenses during rehabilitation, job seeking, 
        and the initial employment stage.
          (14) Special services (including services related to 
        blindness and deafness) including--
                  (A) language training, speech and voice 
                correction, training in ambulation, and one-
                hand typewriting;
                  (B) orientation, adjustment, mobility, 
                reader, interpreter, and related services; and
                  (C) telecommunications, sensory, and other 
                technical aids and devices.
          (15) Services necessary to enable a veteran to 
        achieve maximum independence in daily living.
          (16) Other incidental goods and services determined 
        by the Secretary to be necessary to accomplish the 
        purposes of a rehabilitation program in an individual 
        case.
  (b) A rehabilitation program (including individual courses) 
to be pursued by a veteran shall be subject to the approval of 
the Secretary. To the maximum extent practicable, a course of 
education or training may be pursued by a veteran as part of a 
rehabilitation program under this chapter only if the course is 
approved for purposes of chapter 30 or 33 of this title. The 
Secretary may waive the requirement under the preceding 
sentence to the extent the Secretary determines appropriate.
  (c)(1) The Secretary shall have the authority to administer 
this chapter by prioritizing the provision of services under 
this chapter based on need, as determined by the Secretary. In 
evaluating need for purposes of this subsection, the Secretary 
shall consider disability ratings, the severity of employment 
handicaps, qualification for a program of independent living, 
income, and any other factor the Secretary determines 
appropriate.
  (2) Not later than 90 days before making any changes to the 
prioritization of the provision of services under this chapter 
as authorized under paragraph (1), the Secretary shall submit 
to Congress a plan describing such changes.

           *       *       *       *       *       *       *


Sec. 3118. Personnel training, development, and qualifications

  (a) The Secretary shall provide a program of ongoing 
professional training and development for Department of 
Veterans Affairs counseling and rehabilitation personnel 
engaged in providing rehabilitation services under this 
chapter. The objective of such training shall be to insure that 
rehabilitation services for disabled veterans are provided in 
accordance with the most advanced knowledge, methods, and 
techniques available for the rehabilitation of handicapped 
persons. For this purpose, the Secretary may employ the 
services of consultants and may make grants to and contract 
with public or private agencies (including institutions of 
higher learning) to conduct such training and development.
  (b) The Secretary shall coordinate with the Commissioner of 
the Rehabilitation Services Administration in the Department of 
Education [and the Assistant Secretary for Veterans' Employment 
in the Department of Labor] in planning and carrying out 
personnel training in areas of mutual programmatic concern.
  (c) Notwithstanding any other provision of law, the Secretary 
shall establish such qualifications for personnel providing 
evaluation and rehabilitation services to veterans under this 
chapter and for employees performing the functions described in 
section 3106(f) of this title as the Secretary determines are 
necessary and appropriate to insure the quality of 
rehabilitation programs under this chapter. In establishing 
such qualifications, the Secretary shall take into account the 
qualifications established for comparable personnel under the 
Rehabilitation Act of 1973 (29 U.S.C. ch. 16).

Sec. 3119. Rehabilitation research and special projects

  (a) The Secretary shall carry out an ongoing program of 
activities for the purpose of advancing the knowledge, methods, 
techniques, and resources available for use in rehabilitation 
programs for veterans. For this purpose, the Secretary shall 
conduct and provide support for the development or conduct, or 
both the development and conduct, of--
          (1) studies and research concerning the 
        psychological, educational, employment, social, 
        vocational, industrial, and economic aspects of the 
        rehabilitation of disabled veterans, including new 
        methods of rehabilitation; and
          (2) projects which are designed to increase the 
        resources and potential for accomplishing the 
        rehabilitation of disabled veterans.
  (b) For the purpose specified in subsection (a) of this 
section, the Secretary is authorized to make grants to or 
contract with public or nonprofit agencies, including 
institutions of higher learning.
  (c) The Secretary shall cooperate with the Commissioner of 
the Rehabilitation Services Administration and the Director of 
the Institute of Handicapped Research in the Department of 
Education, [the Assistant Secretary for Veterans' Employment in 
the Department of Labor,] and the Secretary of Health and Human 
Services regarding rehabilitation studies, research, and 
special projects of mutual programmatic concern.

           *       *       *       *       *       *       *


Sec. 3121. Veterans' Advisory Committee on Rehabilitation

  (a)(1) The Secretary shall appoint an advisory committee to 
be known as the Veterans' Advisory Committee on Rehabilitation 
(hereinafter in this section referred to as the ``Committee'').
  (2) The members of the Committee shall be appointed by the 
Secretary from the general public and shall serve for terms to 
be determined by the Secretary not to exceed three years. 
Veterans with service-connected disabilities shall be 
appropriately represented in the membership of the Committee, 
and the Committee shall also include persons who have 
distinguished themselves in the public and private sectors in 
the fields of rehabilitation medicine, vocational guidance, 
vocational rehabilitation, and employment and training 
programs. The Secretary may designate one of the members of the 
Committee appointed under this paragraph to chair the 
Committee.
  (3) The Committee shall also include as ex officio members 
the following: (A) one representative from the Veterans Health 
Administration and one from the Veterans Benefits 
Administration, (B) one representative from the Rehabilitation 
Services Administration of the Department of Education and one 
from the National Institute for Handicapped Research of the 
Department of Education, and (C) one representative of [the 
Assistant Secretary of Labor for Veterans' Employment and 
Training of the Department of Labor] the Under Secretary for 
Veterans Economic Opportunity and Transition.
  (b) The Secretary shall, on a regular basis, consult with and 
seek the advice of the Committee with respect to the 
administration of veterans' rehabilitation programs under this 
title.
  (c) The Committee shall submit to the Secretary an annual 
report on the rehabilitation programs and activities of the 
Department of Veterans Affairs and shall submit such other 
reports and recommendations to the Secretary as the Committee 
determines appropriate. The annual report shall include an 
assessment of the rehabilitation needs of veterans and a review 
of the programs and activities of the Department of Veterans 
Affairs designed to meet such needs. The Secretary shall submit 
with each annual report submitted to the Congress pursuant to 
section 529 of this title a copy of all reports and 
recommendations of the Committee submitted to the Secretary 
since the previous annual report of the Secretary was submitted 
to the Congress pursuant to such section.

           *       *       *       *       *       *       *


              CHAPTER 33--POST-9/11 EDUCATIONAL ASSISTANCE


                        SUBCHAPTER I--DEFINITIONS

Sec.
3301. Definitions.
     * * * * * * *

                SUBCHAPTER III--ADMINISTRATIVE PROVISIONS

     * * * * * * *
3326. Election to receive educational assistance.

                       SUBCHAPTER I--DEFINITIONS


Sec. 3301. Definitions

   In this chapter:
          (1) The term ``active duty'' has the meanings as 
        follows (subject to the limitations specified in 
        sections 3002(6) and 3311(b)):
                  (A) In the case of members of the regular 
                components of the Armed Forces, the meaning 
                given such term in section 101(21)(A).
                  (B) In the case of members of the reserve 
                components of the Armed Forces, service on 
                active duty under a call or order to active 
                duty under section 688, 12301(a), 12301(d), 
                12301(g), 12301(h), 12302, or 12304 of title 10 
                or section 712 of title 14.
                  (C) In the case of a member of the Army 
                National Guard of the United States or Air 
                National Guard of the United States, in 
                addition to service described in subparagraph 
                (B), full-time service--
                          (i) in the National Guard of a State 
                        for the purpose of organizing, 
                        administering, recruiting, instructing, 
                        or training the National Guard; or
                          (ii) in the National Guard under 
                        section 502(f) of title 32 when 
                        authorized by the President or the 
                        Secretary of Defense for the purpose of 
                        responding to a national emergency 
                        declared by the President and supported 
                        by Federal funds.
          (2) The term ``entry level and skill training'' means 
        the following:
                  (A) In the case of members of the Army, Basic 
                Combat Training and Advanced Individual 
                Training or One Station Unit Training.
                  (B) In the case of members of the Navy, 
                Recruit Training (or Boot Camp) and Skill 
                Training (or so-called ``A'' School).
                  (C) In the case of members of the Air Force, 
                Basic Military Training and Technical Training.
                  (D) In the case of members of the Marine 
                Corps, Recruit Training and Marine Corps 
                Training (or School of Infantry Training).
                  (E) In the case of members of the Coast 
                Guard, Basic Training and Skill Training (or 
                so-called ``A'' School).
          (3) The term ``program of education'' has the meaning 
        given such term in section 3002, except to the extent 
        otherwise provided in section 3313.
          (4) The term ``Secretary of Defense'' means the 
        Secretary of Defense, except that the term means the 
        Secretary of Homeland Security with respect to the 
        Coast Guard when it is not operating as a service in 
        the Navy.

                 SUBCHAPTER II--EDUCATIONAL ASSISTANCE


Sec. 3311. Educational assistance for service in the Armed Forces 
                    commencing on or after September 11, 2001: 
                    entitlement

  (a) Entitlement.--Subject to subsections (d) and (e), each 
individual described in subsection (b) is entitled to 
educational assistance under this chapter.
  (b) Covered Individuals.--An individual described in this 
subsection is any individual as follows:
          (1) An individual who--
                  (A) commencing on or after September 11, 
                2001, serves an aggregate of at least 36 months 
                on active duty in the Armed Forces (including 
                service on active duty in entry level and skill 
                training); and
                  (B) after completion of service described in 
                subparagraph (A)--
                          (i) continues on active duty; or
                          (ii) is discharged or released from 
                        active duty as described in subsection 
                        (c).
          (2) An individual who--
                  (A) commencing on or after September 11, 
                2001, serves at least 30 continuous days on 
                active duty in the Armed Forces; and
                  (B) after completion of service described in 
                subparagraph (A), is discharged or released 
                from active duty in the Armed Forces for a 
                service-connected disability.
          (3) An individual who--
                  (A) commencing on or after September 11, 
                2001, serves an aggregate of at least 30 
                months, but less than 36 months, on active duty 
                in the Armed Forces (including service on 
                active duty in entry level and skill training); 
                and
                  (B) after completion of service described in 
                subparagraph (A)--
                          (i) continues on active duty for an 
                        aggregate of less than 36 months; or
                          (ii) before completion of service on 
                        active duty of an aggregate of 36 
                        months, is discharged or released from 
                        active duty as described in subsection 
                        (c).
          (4) An individual who--
                  (A) commencing on or after September 11, 
                2001, serves an aggregate of at least 24 
                months, but less than 30 months, on active duty 
                in the Armed Forces (including service on 
                active duty in entry level and skill training); 
                and
                  (B) after completion of service described in 
                subparagraph (A)--
                          (i) continues on active duty for an 
                        aggregate of less than 30 months; or
                          (ii) before completion of service on 
                        active duty of an aggregate of 30 
                        months, is discharged or released from 
                        active duty as described in subsection 
                        (c).
          (5) An individual who--
                  (A) commencing on or after September 11, 
                2001, serves an aggregate of at least 18 
                months, but less than 24 months, on active duty 
                in the Armed Forces (excluding service on 
                active duty in entry level and skill training); 
                and
                  (B) after completion of service described in 
                subparagraph (A)--
                          (i) continues on active duty for an 
                        aggregate of less than 24 months; or
                          (ii) before completion of service on 
                        active duty of an aggregate of 24 
                        months, is discharged or released from 
                        active duty as described in subsection 
                        (c).
          (6) An individual who--
                  (A) commencing on or after September 11, 
                2001, serves an aggregate of at least 12 
                months, but less than 18 months, on active duty 
                in the Armed Forces (excluding service on 
                active duty in entry level and skill training); 
                and
                  (B) after completion of service described in 
                subparagraph (A)--
                          (i) continues on active duty for an 
                        aggregate of less than 18 months; or
                          (ii) before completion of service on 
                        active duty of an aggregate of 18 
                        months, is discharged or released from 
                        active duty as described in subsection 
                        (c).
          (7) An individual who--
                  (A) commencing on or after September 11, 
                2001, serves an aggregate of at least 6 months, 
                but less than 12 months, on active duty in the 
                Armed Forces (excluding service on active duty 
                in entry level and skill training); and
                  (B) after completion of service described in 
                subparagraph (A)--
                          (i) continues on active duty for an 
                        aggregate of less than 12 months; or
                          (ii) before completion of service on 
                        active duty of an aggregate of 12 
                        months, is discharged or released from 
                        active duty as described in subsection 
                        (c).
          (8) An individual who--
                  (A) commencing on or after September 11, 
                2001, serves an aggregate of at least 90 days, 
                but less than 6 months, on active duty in the 
                Armed Forces (excluding service on active duty 
                in entry level and skill training); and
                  (B) after completion of service described in 
                subparagraph (A)--
                          (i) continues on active duty for an 
                        aggregate of less than 6 months; or
                          (ii) before completion of service on 
                        active duty of an aggregate of 6 
                        months, is discharged or released from 
                        active duty as described in subsection 
                        (c).
          (9) An individual who is the child or spouse of a 
        person who, on or after September 11, 2001, dies in 
        line of duty while serving on active duty as a member 
        of the Armed Forces.
  (c) Covered Discharges and Releases.--A discharge or release 
from active duty of an individual described in this subsection 
is a discharge or release as follows:
          (1) A discharge from active duty in the Armed Forces 
        with an honorable discharge.
          (2) A release after service on active duty in the 
        Armed Forces characterized by the Secretary concerned 
        as honorable service and placement on the retired list, 
        transfer to the Fleet Reserve or Fleet Marine Corps 
        Reserve, or placement on the temporary disability 
        retired list.
          (3) A release from active duty in the Armed Forces 
        for further service in a reserve component of the Armed 
        Forces after service on active duty characterized by 
        the Secretary concerned as honorable service.
          (4) A discharge or release from active duty in the 
        Armed Forces after service on active duty in the Armed 
        Forces characterized by the Secretary concerned as 
        honorable service for--
                  (A) a medical condition which preexisted the 
                service of the individual as described in the 
                applicable paragraph of subsection (b) and 
                which the Secretary determines is not service-
                connected;
                  (B) hardship; or
                  (C) a physical or mental condition that was 
                not characterized as a disability and did not 
                result from the individual's own willful 
                misconduct but did interfere with the 
                individual's performance of duty, as determined 
                by the Secretary concerned in accordance with 
                regulations prescribed by the Secretary of 
                Defense.
  (d) Prohibition on Treatment of Certain Service as Period of 
Active Duty.--The following periods of service shall not be 
considered a part of the period of active duty on which an 
individual's entitlement to educational assistance under this 
chapter is based:
          (1) A period of service on active duty of an officer 
        pursuant to an agreement under section 2107(b) of title 
        10.
          (2) A period of service on active duty of an officer 
        pursuant to an agreement under section 4348, 6959, or 
        9348 of title 10 or section 182 of title 14.
          (3) A period of service that is terminated because of 
        a defective enlistment and induction based on--
                  (A) the individual's being a minor for 
                purposes of service in the Armed Forces;
                  (B) an erroneous enlistment or induction; or
                  (C) a defective enlistment agreement.
  (e) Treatment of Individuals Entitled Under Multiple 
Provisions.--In the event an individual entitled to educational 
assistance under this chapter is entitled by reason of both 
paragraphs (4) and (5) of subsection (b), the individual shall 
be treated as being entitled to educational assistance under 
this chapter by reason of paragraph (5) of subsection (b).
  (f) Marine Gunnery Sergeant John David Fry Scholarship.--
          (1) In general.--Educational assistance payable by 
        reason of paragraph (9) of subsection (b) shall be 
        known as the ``Marine Gunnery Sergeant John David Fry 
        scholarship''.
          (2) Limitation.--The entitlement of an individual to 
        assistance under subsection (a) pursuant to paragraph 
        (9) of subsection (b) because the individual was a 
        spouse of a person described in such paragraph shall 
        expire on the earlier of--
                  (A) the date that is 15 years after the date 
                on which the person died; or
                  (B) the date on which the individual 
                remarries.
          (3) Election on receipt of certain benefits.--[A 
        surviving spouse] Except as provided in paragraph (4), 
        a surviving spouse entitled to assistance under 
        subsection (a) pursuant to paragraph (9) of subsection 
        (b) who is also entitled to educational assistance 
        under chapter 35 of this title may not receive 
        assistance under both this section and such chapter, 
        but shall make an irrevocable election (in such form 
        and manner as the Secretary may prescribe) under which 
        section or chapter to receive educational assistance.
          (4) Exception for certain elections.--
                  (A) In general.--An election made under 
                paragraph (3) by a spouse described in 
                subparagraph (B) may not be treated as 
                irrevocable if such election occurred before 
                the date of the enactment of this paragraph.
                  (B) Eligible surviving spouse.--A spouse 
                described in this subparagraph is an 
                individual--
                          (i) who is entitled to assistance 
                        under subsection (a) pursuant to 
                        paragraph (9) of subsection (b); and
                          (ii) who was the spouse of a member 
                        of the Armed Forces who died during the 
                        period beginning on September 11, 2001, 
                        and ending on December 31, 2005.
          [(4)] (5) Definition of child.--For purposes of [that 
        paragraph] paragraph (9) of subsection (b), the term 
        ``child'' includes a married individual or an 
        individual who is above the age of twenty-three years.

           *       *       *       *       *       *       *


Sec. 3313. Programs of education leading to a degree pursued at 
                    institutions of higher learning on more than half-
                    time basis

  (a) Payment.--The Secretary shall pay to each individual 
entitled to educational assistance under this chapter who is 
pursuing an approved program of education (other than a program 
covered by subsections (e) and (f)) the amounts specified in 
subsection (c) to meet the expenses of such individual's 
subsistence, tuition, fees, and other educational costs for 
pursuit of such program of education.
  (b) Approved Programs of Education.--A program of education 
is an approved program of education for purposes of this 
chapter if the program of education is approved for purposes of 
chapter 30 (including approval by the State approving agency 
concerned).
  (c) Amount of Educational Assistance.--The amounts payable 
under this subsection for pursuit of an approved program of 
education leading to a degree at an institution of higher 
learning (as that term is defined in section 3452(f)) are 
amounts as follows:
          (1) In the case of an individual entitled to 
        educational assistance under this chapter by reason of 
        paragraph (1), (2), or (9) of section 3311(b), amounts 
        as follows:
                  (A) An amount equal to the following:
                          (i) [In the case of a program of 
                        education pursued at a public 
                        institution of higher learning] (I) 
                        Subject to subclause (II), in the case 
                        of a program of education pursued at a 
                        public institution of higher learning 
                        not described in clause (ii)(II)(bb), 
                        the actual net cost for in-State 
                        tuition and fees assessed by the 
                        institution for the program of 
                        education after the application of--
                                  [(I)] (aa) any waiver of, or 
                                reduction in, tuition and fees; 
                                and
                                  [(II)] (bb) any scholarship, 
                                or other Federal, State, 
                                institutional, or employer-
                                based aid or assistance (other 
                                than loans and any funds 
                                provided under section 401(b) 
                                of the Higher Education Act of 
                                1965 (20 U.S.C. 1070a)) that is 
                                provided directly to the 
                                institution and specifically 
                                designated for the sole purpose 
                                of defraying tuition and fees.
                          (II) In determining the actual net 
                        cost for in-State tuition and fees 
                        pursuant to subclause (I), the 
                        Secretary may not pay for tuition and 
                        fees relating to flight training.
                          (ii) [In the case of a program of 
                        education pursued at a non-public or 
                        foreign institution of higher learning] 
                        (I) In the case of a program of 
                        education described in subclause (II), 
                        the lesser of--
                                  [(I)] (aa) the actual net 
                                cost for tuition and fees 
                                assessed by the institution for 
                                the program of education after 
                                the application of--
                                          [(aa)] (AA) any 
                                        waiver of, or reduction 
                                        in, tuition and fees; 
                                        and
                                          [(bb)] (BB) any 
                                        scholarship, or other 
                                        Federal, State, 
                                        institutional, or 
                                        employer-based aid or 
                                        assistance (other than 
                                        loans and any funds 
                                        provided under section 
                                        401(b) of the Higher 
                                        Education Act of 1965) 
                                        that is provided 
                                        directly to the 
                                        institution and 
                                        specifically designated 
                                        for the sole purpose of 
                                        defraying tuition and 
                                        fees; or
                                  [(II)] (bb) the amount equal 
                                to--
                                          [(aa)] (AA) for the 
                                        academic year beginning 
                                        on August 1, 2011, 
                                        $17,500; or
                                          [(bb)] (BB) for an 
                                        academic year beginning 
                                        on any subsequent 
                                        August 1, the amount 
                                        for the previous 
                                        academic year beginning 
                                        on August 1 under this 
                                        subclause, as increased 
                                        by the percentage 
                                        increase equal to the 
                                        most recent percentage 
                                        increase determined 
                                        under section 3015(h).
                          (II) A program of education described 
                        in this subclause is any of the 
                        following:
                                  (aa) A program of education 
                                pursued at a non-public or 
                                foreign institution of higher 
                                learning.
                                  (bb) A program of education 
                                pursued at a public institution 
                                of higher learning in which 
                                flight training is required to 
                                earn the degree being pursued 
                                (including with respect to a 
                                dual major, concentration, or 
                                other element of such a 
                                degree).
                                  (cc) A program of education 
                                pursued at a public institution 
                                of higher learning in which the 
                                public institution of higher 
                                learning enters into a contract 
                                or agreement with an entity 
                                (other than another public 
                                institution of higher learning) 
                                to provide such program of 
                                education or a portion of such 
                                program of education.
                  (B) A monthly stipend in an amount as 
                follows:
                          (i) Except as provided in clauses 
                        (ii) and (iii), for each month an 
                        individual pursues a program of 
                        education on more than a half-time 
                        basis, a monthly housing stipend equal 
                        to the product of--
                                  (I) the monthly amount of the 
                                basic allowance for housing 
                                payable under section 403 of 
                                title 37 for a member with 
                                dependents in pay grade E-5 
                                residing in the military 
                                housing area that encompasses 
                                all or the majority portion of 
                                the ZIP code area in which is 
                                located the institution of 
                                higher learning at which the 
                                individual is enrolled, 
                                multiplied by
                                  (II) the lesser of--
                                          (aa) 1.0; or
                                          (bb) the number of 
                                        course hours borne by 
                                        the individual in 
                                        pursuit of the program 
                                        of education, divided 
                                        by the minimum number 
                                        of course hours 
                                        required for full-time 
                                        pursuit of the program 
                                        of education, rounded 
                                        to the nearest multiple 
                                        of 10.
                          (ii) In the case of an individual 
                        pursuing a program of education at a 
                        foreign institution of higher learning 
                        on more than a half-time basis, for 
                        each month the individual pursues the 
                        program of education, a monthly housing 
                        stipend equal to the product of--
                                  (I) the national average of 
                                the monthly amount of the basic 
                                allowance for housing payable 
                                under section 403 of title 37 
                                for a member with dependents in 
                                pay grade E-5, multiplied by
                                  (II) the lesser of--
                                          (aa) 1.0; or
                                          (bb) the number of 
                                        course hours borne by 
                                        the individual in 
                                        pursuit of the program 
                                        of education, divided 
                                        by the minimum number 
                                        of course hours 
                                        required for full-time 
                                        pursuit of the program 
                                        of education, rounded 
                                        to the nearest multiple 
                                        of 10.
                          (iii) In the case of an individual 
                        pursuing a program of education solely 
                        through distance learning on more than 
                        a half-time basis, a monthly housing 
                        stipend equal to 50 percent of the 
                        amount payable under clause (ii) if the 
                        individual were otherwise entitled to a 
                        monthly housing stipend under that 
                        clause for pursuit of the program of 
                        education.
                          (iv) For the first month of each 
                        quarter, semester, or term, as 
                        applicable, of the program of education 
                        pursued by the individual, a lump sum 
                        amount for books, supplies, equipment, 
                        and other educational costs with 
                        respect to such quarter, semester, or 
                        term in the amount equal to--
                                  (I) $1,000, multiplied by
                                  (II) the fraction which is 
                                the portion of a complete 
                                academic year under the program 
                                of education that such quarter, 
                                semester, or term constitutes.
          (2) In the case of an individual entitled to 
        educational assistance under this chapter by reason of 
        section 3311(b)(3), amounts equal to 90 percent of the 
        amounts that would be payable to the individual under 
        paragraph (1) for the program of education if the 
        individual were entitled to amounts for the program of 
        education under paragraph (1) rather than this 
        paragraph.
          (3) In the case of an individual entitled to 
        educational assistance under this chapter by reason of 
        section 3311(b)(4), amounts equal to 80 percent of the 
        amounts that would be payable to the individual under 
        paragraph (1) for the program of education if the 
        individual were entitled to amounts for the program of 
        education under paragraph (1) rather than this 
        paragraph.
          (4) In the case of an individual entitled to 
        educational assistance under this chapter by reason of 
        section 3311(b)(5), amounts equal to 70 percent of the 
        amounts that would be payable to the individual under 
        paragraph (1) for the program of education if the 
        individual were entitled to amounts for the program of 
        education under paragraph (1) rather than this 
        paragraph.
          (5) In the case of an individual entitled to 
        educational assistance under this chapter by reason of 
        section 3311(b)(6), amounts equal to 60 percent of the 
        amounts that would be payable to the individual under 
        paragraph (1) for the program of education if the 
        individual were entitled to amounts for the program of 
        education under paragraph (1) rather than this 
        paragraph.
          (6) In the case of an individual entitled to 
        educational assistance under this chapter by reason of 
        section 3311(b)(7), amounts equal to 50 percent of the 
        amounts that would be payable to the individual under 
        paragraph (1) for the program of education if the 
        individual were entitled to amounts for the program of 
        education under paragraph (1) rather than this 
        paragraph.
          (7) In the case of an individual entitled to 
        educational assistance under this chapter by reason of 
        section 3311(b)(8), amounts equal to 40 percent of the 
        amounts that would be payable to the individual under 
        paragraph (1) for the program of education if the 
        individual were entitled to amounts for the program of 
        education under paragraph (1) rather than this 
        paragraph.
  (d) Frequency of Payment.--
          (1) Quarter, semester, or term payments.--Payment of 
        the amounts payable under subsection (c)(1)(A), and of 
        similar amounts payable under paragraphs (2) through 
        (7) of subsection (c), for pursuit of a program of 
        education shall be made for the entire quarter, 
        semester, or term, as applicable, of the program of 
        education.
          (2) Monthly payments.--Payment of the amount payable 
        under subsection (c)(1)(B), and of similar amounts 
        payable under paragraphs (2) through (7) of subsection 
        (c), for pursuit of a program of education shall be 
        made on a monthly basis.
          (3) Regulations.--The Secretary shall prescribe in 
        regulations methods for determining the number of 
        months (including fractions thereof) of entitlement of 
        an individual to educational assistance under this 
        chapter that are chargeable under this chapter for an 
        advance payment of amounts under paragraphs (1) and (2) 
        for pursuit of a program of education on a quarter, 
        semester, term, or other basis.
  (e) Programs of Education Pursued on Active Duty.--
          (1) In general.--Educational assistance is payable 
        under this chapter for pursuit of an approved program 
        of education leading to a degree while on active duty.
          (2) Amount of assistance.--The amounts of educational 
        assistance payable under this chapter to an individual 
        pursuing a program of education leading to a degree 
        while on active duty are as follows:
                  (A) Subject to subparagraph (C), an amount 
                equal to the lesser of--
                          (i) in the case of a program of 
                        education pursued at a public 
                        institution of higher learning, the 
                        actual net cost for in-State tuition 
                        and fees assessed by the institution 
                        for the program of education after the 
                        application of--
                                  (I) any waiver of, or 
                                reduction in, tuition and fees; 
                                and
                                  (II) any scholarship, or 
                                other Federal, State, 
                                institutional, or employer-
                                based aid or assistance (other 
                                than loans and any funds 
                                provided under section 401(b) 
                                of the Higher Education Act of 
                                1965 (20 U.S.C. 1070a)) that is 
                                provided directly to the 
                                institution and specifically 
                                designated for the sole purpose 
                                of defraying tuition and fees;
                          (ii) in the case of a program of 
                        education pursued at a non-public or 
                        foreign institution of higher learning, 
                        the lesser of--
                                  (I) the actual net cost for 
                                tuition and fees assessed by 
                                the institution for the program 
                                of education after the 
                                application of--
                                          (aa) any waiver of, 
                                        or reduction in, 
                                        tuition and fees; and
                                          (bb) any scholarship, 
                                        or other Federal, 
                                        State, institutional, 
                                        or employer-based aid 
                                        or assistance (other 
                                        than loans and any 
                                        funds provided under 
                                        section 401(b) of the 
                                        Higher Education Act of 
                                        1965) that is provided 
                                        directly to the 
                                        institution and 
                                        specifically designated 
                                        for the sole purpose of 
                                        defraying tuition and 
                                        fees; or
                                  (II) the amount equal to--
                                                  (aa) for the 
                                                academic year 
                                                beginning on 
                                                August 1, 2011, 
                                                $17,500; or
                                                  (bb) for an 
                                                academic year 
                                                beginning on 
                                                any subsequent 
                                                August 1, the 
                                                amount for the 
                                                previous 
                                                academic year 
                                                beginning on 
                                                August 1 under 
                                                this subclause, 
                                                as increased by 
                                                the percentage 
                                                increase equal 
                                                to the most 
                                                recent 
                                                percentage 
                                                increase 
                                                determined 
                                                under section 
                                                3015(h); or
                  (iii) the amount of the charges of the 
                educational institution as elected by the 
                individual in the manner specified in section 
                3014(b)(1)..
                  (B) Subject to subparagraph (C), for the 
                first month of each quarter, semester, or term, 
                as applicable, of the program of education 
                pursued by the individual, a lump sum amount 
                for books, supplies, equipment, and other 
                educational costs with respect to such quarter, 
                semester, or term in the amount equal to--
                          (i) $1,000, multiplied by (ii) the 
                        fraction of a complete academic year 
                        under the program of education that 
                        such quarter, semester, or term 
                        constitutes.
                  (C) In the case of an individual entitled to 
                educational assistance by reason of paragraphs 
                (3) through (8) of section 3311(b), the amounts 
                payable to the individual pursuant to 
                subparagraphs (A)(i), (A)(ii), and (B) shall be 
                the amounts otherwise determined pursuant to 
                such subparagraphs multiplied by the same 
                percentage applicable to the monthly amounts 
                payable to the individual under paragraphs (2) 
                through (7) of subsection (c).
          (3) Quarter, semester, or term payments.--Payment of 
        the amount payable under paragraph (2) for pursuit of a 
        program of education shall be made for the entire 
        quarter, semester, or term, as applicable, of the 
        program of education.
          (4) Monthly payments.--For each month (as determined 
        pursuant to the methods prescribed under subsection 
        (d)(3)) for which amounts are paid an individual under 
        this subsection, the entitlement of the individual to 
        educational assistance under this chapter shall be 
        charged at the rate of one month for each such month.
  (f) Programs of Education Pursued on Half-Time Basis or 
Less.--
          (1) In general.--Educational assistance is payable 
        under this chapter for pursuit of an approved program 
        of education on half-time basis or less whether a 
        program of education pursued on active duty, a program 
        of education leading to a degree, or a program of 
        education other than a program of education leading to 
        a degree.
          (2) Amount of assistance.--The educational assistance 
        payable under this chapter to an individual pursuing a 
        program of education covered by this subsection on 
        half-time basis or less is the amounts as follows:
                  (A) The amount equal to the lesser of--
                          (i) the actual net cost for in-State 
                        tuition and fees assessed by the 
                        institution of higher learning for the 
                        program of education after the 
                        application of--
                                  (I) any waiver of, or 
                                reduction in, tuition and fees; 
                                and
                                  (II) any scholarship, or 
                                other Federal, State, 
                                institutional, or employer-
                                based aid or assistance (other 
                                than loans and any funds 
                                provided under section 401(b) 
                                of the Higher Education Act of 
                                1965 (20 U.S.C. 1070a)) that is 
                                provided directly to the 
                                institution and specifically 
                                designated for the sole purpose 
                                of defraying tuition and fees; 
                                or
                          (ii) the maximum amount that would be 
                        payable to the individual for the 
                        program of education under paragraph 
                        (1)(A) of subsection (c), or under the 
                        provisions of paragraphs (2) through 
                        (7) of subsection (c) applicable to the 
                        individual, for the program of 
                        education if the individual were 
                        entitled to amounts for the program of 
                        education under subsection (c) rather 
                        than this subsection.
                  (B) A stipend in an amount equal to the 
                amount of the appropriately reduced amount of 
                the lump sum amount for books, supplies, 
                equipment, and other educational costs 
                otherwise payable to the individual under 
                subsection (c).
          (3) Quarter, term, or semester payments.--Payment of 
        the amounts payable to an individual under paragraph 
        (2) for pursuit of a program of education on half-time 
        basis or less shall be made for the entire quarter, 
        semester, or term, as applicable, of the program of 
        education.
          (4) Monthly payments.--For each month (as determined 
        pursuant to the methods prescribed under subsection 
        (d)(3)) for which amounts are paid an individual under 
        this subsection, the entitlement of the individual to 
        educational assistance under this chapter shall be 
        charged at a percentage of a month equal to--
                  (A) the number of course hours borne by the 
                individual in pursuit of the program of 
                education involved, divided by
                  (B) the number of course hours for full-time 
                pursuit of such program of education.
  (g) Programs of Education Other Than Programs of Education 
Leading to a Degree.--
          (1) In general.--Educational assistance is payable 
        under this chapter for pursuit of an approved program 
        of education other than a program of education leading 
        to a degree at an institution other than an institution 
        of higher learning (as that term is defined in section 
        3452(f)).
          (2) Pursuit on half-time basis or less.--The payment 
        of educational assistance under this chapter for 
        pursuit of a program of education otherwise described 
        in paragraph (1) on a half-time basis or less is 
        governed by subsection (f).
          (3) Amount of assistance.--The amounts of educational 
        assistance payable under this chapter to an individual 
        entitled to educational assistance under this chapter 
        who is pursuing an approved program of education 
        covered by this subsection are as follows:
                  (A) In the case of an individual enrolled in 
                a program of education (other than a program 
                described in subparagraphs (B) through (D)) in 
                pursuit of a certificate or other non-college 
                degree, the following:
                          (i) Subject to clause (iv), an amount 
                        equal to the lesser of--
                                  (I) the actual net cost for 
                                in-State tuition and fees 
                                assessed by the institution 
                                concerned for the program of 
                                education after the application 
                                of--
                                          (aa) any waiver of, 
                                        or reduction in, 
                                        tuition and fees; and
                                          (bb) any scholarship, 
                                        or other Federal, 
                                        State, institutional, 
                                        or employer-based aid 
                                        or assistance (other 
                                        than loans and any 
                                        funds provided under 
                                        section 401(b) of the 
                                        Higher Education Act of 
                                        1965 (20 U.S.C. 1070a)) 
                                        that is provided 
                                        directly to the 
                                        institution and 
                                        specifically designated 
                                        for the sole purpose of 
                                        defraying tuition and 
                                        fees; or
                                  (II) the amount equal to--
                                          (aa) for the academic 
                                        year beginning on 
                                        August 1, 2011, 
                                        $17,500; or
                                          (bb) for an academic 
                                        year beginning on any 
                                        subsequent August 1, 
                                        the amount for the 
                                        previous academic year 
                                        beginning on August 1 
                                        under this subclause, 
                                        as increased by the 
                                        percentage increase 
                                        equal to the most 
                                        recent percentage 
                                        increase determined 
                                        under section 3015(h).
                          (ii) Except in the case of an 
                        individual pursuing a program of 
                        education on a half-time or less basis 
                        and subject to clause (iv), a monthly 
                        housing stipend equal to the product--
                                  (I) of--
                                          (aa) in the case of 
                                        an individual pursuing 
                                        resident training, the 
                                        monthly amount of the 
                                        basic allowance for 
                                        housing payable under 
                                        section 403 of title 37 
                                        for a member with 
                                        dependents in pay grade 
                                        E-5 residing in the 
                                        military housing area 
                                        that encompasses all or 
                                        the majority portion of 
                                        the ZIP code area in 
                                        which is located the 
                                        institution at which 
                                        the individual is 
                                        enrolled; or
                                          (bb) in the case of 
                                        an individual pursuing 
                                        a program of education 
                                        through distance 
                                        learning, a monthly 
                                        amount equal to 50 
                                        percent of the amount 
                                        payable under item 
                                        (aa), multiplied by 
                                        (II) the lesser of--
                                          (aa) 1.0; or
                                          (bb) the number of 
                                        course hours borne by 
                                        the individual in 
                                        pursuit of the program 
                                        of education involved, 
                                        divided by the minimum 
                                        number of course hours 
                                        required for full-time 
                                        pursuit of such program 
                                        of education, rounded 
                                        to the nearest multiple 
                                        of 10.
                          (iii) Subject to clause (iv), a 
                        monthly stipend in an amount equal to 
                        $83 for each month (or pro rata amount 
                        for a partial month) of training 
                        pursued for books supplies, equipment, 
                        and other educational costs.
                          (iv) In the case of an individual 
                        entitled to educational assistance by 
                        reason of paragraphs (3) through (8) of 
                        section 3311(b), the amounts payable 
                        pursuant to clauses (i), (ii), and 
                        (iii) shall be the amounts otherwise 
                        determined pursuant to such clauses 
                        multiplied by the same percentage 
                        applicable to the monthly amounts 
                        payable to the individual under 
                        paragraphs (2) through (7) of 
                        subsection (c).
                  (B) In the case of an individual pursuing a 
                full-time program of apprenticeship or other 
                on-job training, amounts as follows:
                          (i) Subject to clauses (iii) and 
                        (iv), for each month the individual 
                        pursues the program of education, a 
                        monthly housing stipend equal to--
                                  (I) during the first six-
                                month period of the program, 
                                the monthly amount of the basic 
                                allowance for housing payable 
                                under section 403 of title 37 
                                for a member with dependents in 
                                pay grade E-5 residing in the 
                                military housing area that 
                                encompasses all or the majority 
                                portion of the ZIP code area in 
                                which is located the employer 
                                at which the individual pursues 
                                such program;
                                  (II) during the second six-
                                month period of the program, 80 
                                percent of the monthly amount 
                                of the basic allowance for 
                                housing payable as described in 
                                subclause (I);
                                  (III) during the third six-
                                month period of the program, 60 
                                percent of the monthly amount 
                                of the basic allowance for 
                                housing payable as described in 
                                subclause (I);
                                  (IV) during the fourth six-
                                month period of such program, 
                                40 percent of the monthly 
                                amount of the basic allowance 
                                for housing payable as 
                                described in subclause (I); and
                                  (V) during any month after 
                                the first 24 months of such 
                                program, 20 percent of the 
                                monthly amount of the basic 
                                allowance for housing payable 
                                as described in subclause (I).
                          (ii) Subject to clauses (iii) and 
                        (iv), a monthly stipend in an amount 
                        equal to $83 for each month (or pro 
                        rata amount for each partial month) of 
                        training pursued for books supplies, 
                        equipment, and other educational costs.
                          (iii) In the case of an individual 
                        entitled to educational assistance by 
                        reason of paragraphs (3) through (8) of 
                        sections 3311(b), the amounts payable 
                        pursuant to clauses (i) and (ii) shall 
                        be the amounts otherwise determined 
                        pursuant to such clauses multiplied by 
                        the same percentage applicable to the 
                        monthly amounts payable to the 
                        individual under paragraphs (2) through 
                        (7) of subsection (c).
                          (iv) In any month in which an 
                        individual pursuing a program of 
                        education consisting of a program of 
                        apprenticeship or other on-job training 
                        fails to complete 120 hours of 
                        training, the amount of monthly 
                        educational assistance allowance 
                        payable under clauses (i) and (iii) to 
                        the individual shall be limited to the 
                        same proportion of the applicable rate 
                        determined under this subparagraph as 
                        the number of hours worked during such 
                        month, rounded to the nearest eight 
                        hours, bears to 120 hours.
                  (C) In the case of an individual enrolled in 
                a program of education consisting of flight 
                training (regardless of the institution 
                providing such program of education), an amount 
                equal to--
                          (i) the lesser of--
                                  (I) the actual net cost for 
                                in-State tuition and fees 
                                assessed by the institution 
                                concerned for the program of 
                                education after the application 
                                of--
                                          (aa) any waiver of, 
                                        or reduction in, 
                                        tuition and fees; and
                                          (bb) any scholarship, 
                                        or other Federal, 
                                        State, institutional, 
                                        or employer-based aid 
                                        or assistance (other 
                                        than loans and any 
                                        funds provided under 
                                        section 401(b) of the 
                                        Higher Education Act of 
                                        1965) that is provided 
                                        directly to the 
                                        institution and 
                                        specifically designated 
                                        for the sole purpose of 
                                        defraying tuition and 
                                        fees; or
                                  (II) the amount equal to--
                                          (aa) for the academic 
                                        year beginning on 
                                        August 1, 2011, 
                                        $10,000; or
                                          (bb) for an academic 
                                        year beginning on any 
                                        subsequent August 1, 
                                        the amount for the 
                                        previous academic year 
                                        beginning on August 1 
                                        under this subclause, 
                                        as increased by the 
                                        percentage increase 
                                        equal to the most 
                                        recent percentage 
                                        increase determined 
                                        under section 3015(h), 
                                        multiplied by--
                          (ii) either--
                                  (I) in the case of an 
                                individual entitled to 
                                educational assistance by 
                                reason of paragraphs (1), (2), 
                                or (9) of section 3311(b), 100 
                                percent; or
                                  (II) in the case of an 
                                individual entitled to 
                                educational assistance by 
                                reason of paragraphs (3) 
                                through (8) of section 3311(b), 
                                the same percentage as would 
                                otherwise apply to the monthly 
                                amounts payable to the 
                                individual under paragraphs (2) 
                                through (7) of subsection (c).
                  (D) In the case of an individual enrolled in 
                a program of education that is pursued 
                exclusively by correspondence (regardless of 
                the institution providing such program of 
                education), an amount equal to--
                          (i) the lesser of--
                                  (I) the actual net cost for 
                                tuition and fees assessed by 
                                the institution concerned for 
                                the program of education after 
                                the application of--
                                          (aa) any waiver of, 
                                        or reduction in, 
                                        tuition and fees; and
                                          (bb) any scholarship, 
                                        or other Federal, 
                                        State, institutional, 
                                        or employer-based aid 
                                        or assistance (other 
                                        than loans and any 
                                        funds provided under 
                                        section 401(b) of the 
                                        Higher Education Act of 
                                        1965) that is provided 
                                        directly to the 
                                        institution and 
                                        specifically designated 
                                        for the sole purpose of 
                                        defraying tuition and 
                                        fees.
                                  (II) the amount equal to--
                                          (aa) for the academic 
                                        year beginning on 
                                        August 1, 2011, $8,500; 
                                        or
                                          (bb) for an academic 
                                        year beginning on any 
                                        subsequent August 1, 
                                        the amount for the 
                                        previous academic year 
                                        beginning on August 1 
                                        under this subclause, 
                                        as increased by the 
                                        percentage increase 
                                        equal to the most 
                                        recent percentage 
                                        increase determined 
                                        under section 3015(h), 
                                        multiplied by--
                          (ii) either--
                                  (I) in the case of an 
                                individual entitled to 
                                educational assistance by 
                                reason of paragraphs (1), (2), 
                                or (9) of section 3311(b), 100 
                                percent; or
                                  (II) in the case of an 
                                individual entitled to 
                                educational assistance by 
                                reason of paragraphs (3) 
                                through (8) of section 3311(b), 
                                the same percentage as would 
                                otherwise apply to the monthly 
                                amounts payable to the 
                                individual under paragraphs (2) 
                                through (7) of subsection (c).
          (4) Frequency of payment.--
                  (A) Quarter, semester, or term payments.--
                Payment of the amounts payable under paragraph 
                (3)(A)(i) for pursuit of a program of education 
                shall be made for the entire quarter, semester, 
                or term, as applicable, of the program of 
                education.
                  (B) Monthly payments.--Payment of the amounts 
                payable under paragraphs (3)(A)(ii) and 
                (3)(B)(i) for pursuit of a program of education 
                shall be made on a monthly basis.
                  (C) Lump sum payments.--
                          (i) Payment for the amount payable 
                        under paragraphs (3)(A)(iii) and 
                        (3)(B)(ii) shall be paid to the 
                        individual for the first month of each 
                        quarter, semester, or term, as 
                        applicable, of the program education 
                        pursued by the individual.
                          (ii) Payment of the amount payable 
                        under paragraph (3)(C) for pursuit of a 
                        program of education shall be made upon 
                        receipt of certification for training 
                        completed by the individual and 
                        serviced by the training facility.
                  (D) Quarterly payments.--Payment of the 
                amounts payable under paragraph (3)(D) for 
                pursuit of a program of education shall be made 
                quarterly on a pro rata basis for the lessons 
                completed by the individual and serviced by the 
                institution.
          (5) Charge against entitlement for certificate and 
        other non-college degree programs.--
                  (A) In general.--In the case of amounts paid 
                under paragraph (3)(A)(i) for pursuit of a 
                program of education, the charge against 
                entitlement to educational assistance under 
                this chapter of the individual for whom such 
                payment is made shall be one month for each 
                of--
                          (i) the amount so paid, divided by 
                        (ii) subject to subparagraph (B), the 
                        amount equal to one-twelfth of the 
                        amount applicable in the academic year 
                        in which the payment is made under 
                        paragraph (3)(A)(i)(II).
                  (B) Pro rata adjustment based on certain 
                eligibility.--If the amount otherwise payable 
                with respect to an individual under paragraph 
                (3)(A)(i) is subject to a percentage adjustment 
                under paragraph (3)(A)(iv), the amount 
                applicable with respect to the individual under 
                subparagraph (A)(ii) shall be the amount 
                otherwise determined pursuant to such 
                subparagraph subject to a percentage adjustment 
                equal to the percentage adjustment applicable 
                with respect to the individual under paragraph 
                (3)(A)(iv).
  (h) Payment of Established Charges to Educational 
Institutions.--Amounts payable under subsections (c)(1)(A) (and 
of similar amounts payable under paragraphs (2) through (7) of 
subsection (c)), (e)(2), and (f)(2)(A), and under subparagraphs 
(A)(i), (C), and (D) of subsection (g)(3), shall be paid 
directly to the educational institution concerned.
  (i) Determination of Housing Stipend Payments for Academic 
Years.--Any monthly housing stipend payable under this section 
during the academic year beginning on August 1 of a calendar 
year shall be determined utilizing rates for basic allowances 
for housing payable under section 403 of title 37 in effect as 
of January 1 of such calendar year.

           *       *       *       *       *       *       *


Sec. 3317. Public-private contributions for additional educational 
                    assistance

  (a) Establishment of Program.--In instances where the 
educational assistance provided pursuant to section 
3313(c)(1)(A) does not cover the full cost of established 
charges (as specified in section 3313), the Secretary shall 
carry out a program under which colleges and universities can, 
voluntarily, enter into an agreement with the Secretary to 
cover a portion of those established charges not otherwise 
covered under section 3313(c)(1)(A), which contributions shall 
be matched by equivalent contributions toward such costs by the 
Secretary. The program shall only apply to covered individuals 
described in [paragraphs (1) and (2) of section 3311(b)] 
paragraphs (1), (2), and (9) of section 3311(b) of this title.
  (b) Designation of Program.--The program under this section 
shall be known as the ``Yellow Ribbon G.I. Education 
Enhancement Program''.
  (c) Agreements.--The Secretary shall enter into an agreement 
with each college or university seeking to participate in the 
program under this section. Each agreement shall specify the 
following:
          (1) The manner (whether by direct grant, scholarship, 
        or otherwise) of the contributions to be made by the 
        college or university concerned.
          (2) The maximum amount of the contribution to be made 
        by the college or university concerned with respect to 
        any particular individual in any given academic year.
          (3) The maximum number of individuals for whom the 
        college or university concerned will make contributions 
        in any given academic year.
          (4) Such other matters as the Secretary and the 
        college or university concerned jointly consider 
        appropriate.
  (d) Matching Contributions.--
          (1) In general.--In instances where the educational 
        assistance provided an individual under section 
        3313(c)(1)(A) does not cover the full cost of tuition 
        and mandatory fees at a college or university, the 
        Secretary shall provide up to 50 percent of the 
        remaining costs for tuition and mandatory fees if the 
        college or university voluntarily enters into an 
        agreement with the Secretary to match an equal 
        percentage of any of the remaining costs for such 
        tuition and fees.
          (2) Use of appropriated funds.--Amounts available to 
        the Secretary under section 3324(b) for payment of the 
        costs of this chapter shall be available to the 
        Secretary for purposes of paragraph (1).
  (e) Outreach.--The Secretary shall make available on the 
Internet website of the Department available to the public a 
current list of the colleges and universities participating in 
the program under this section. The list shall specify, for 
each college or university so listed, appropriate information 
on the agreement between the Secretary and such college or 
university under subsection (c).

           *       *       *       *       *       *       *


Sec. 3319. Authority to transfer unused education benefits to family 
                    members

  (a) In General.--(1) Subject to the provisions of this 
section, the Secretary concerned may permit an individual 
described in subsection (b) who is entitled to educational 
assistance under this chapter to elect to transfer to one or 
more of the dependents specified in subsection (c) a portion of 
such individual's entitlement to such assistance, subject to 
the limitation under subsection (d).
  (2) The purpose of the authority in paragraph (1) is to 
promote recruitment and retention in the uniformed services. 
The Secretary concerned may exercise the authority for that 
purpose when authorized by the Secretary of Defense in the 
national security interests of the United States.
  (b) Eligible Individuals.--An individual referred to in 
subsection (a) is any member of the uniformed services who, at 
the time of the approval of the individual's request to 
transfer entitlement to educational assistance under this 
section, has completed at least--
          (1) [six years] ten years of service in the [armed 
        forces] Armed Forces and enters into an agreement to 
        serve at least [four more years] two more years as a 
        member of the uniformed services; or
          (2) the years of service as determined in regulations 
        pursuant to subsection (j).
  (c) Eligible Dependents.--An individual approved to transfer 
an entitlement to educational assistance under this section may 
transfer the individual's entitlement as follows:
          (1) To the individual's spouse.
          (2) To one or more of the individual's children.
          (3) To a combination of the individuals referred to 
        in paragraphs (1) and (2).
  (d) Limitation on Months of Transfer.--The total number of 
months of entitlement transferred by a individual under this 
section may not exceed 36 months. The Secretary of Defense may 
prescribe regulations that would limit the months of 
entitlement that may be transferred under this section to no 
less than 18 months.
  (e) Designation of Transferee.--An individual transferring an 
entitlement to educational assistance under this section 
shall--
          (1) designate the dependent or dependents to whom 
        such entitlement is being transferred;
          (2) designate the number of months of such 
        entitlement to be transferred to each such dependent; 
        and
          (3) specify the period for which the transfer shall 
        be effective for each dependent designated under 
        paragraph (1).
  (f) Time for Transfer; Revocation and Modification.--
          (1) Time for transfer.--Subject to the time 
        limitation for use of entitlement under section 3321 an 
        individual approved to transfer entitlement to 
        educational assistance under this section may transfer 
        such entitlement only while serving as a member of the 
        [armed forces] Armed Forces when the transfer is 
        executed.
          (2) Modification or revocation.--
                  (A) In general.--An individual transferring 
                entitlement under this section may modify or 
                revoke at any time the transfer of any unused 
                portion of the entitlement so transferred.
                  (B) Notice.--The modification or revocation 
                of the transfer of entitlement under this 
                paragraph shall be made by the submittal of 
                written notice of the action to both the 
                Secretary concerned and the Secretary of 
                Veterans Affairs.
          (3) Prohibition on treatment of transferred 
        entitlement as marital property.--Entitlement 
        transferred under this section may not be treated as 
        marital property, or the asset of a marital estate, 
        subject to division in a divorce or other civil 
        proceeding.
  (g) Commencement of Use.--A dependent to whom entitlement to 
educational assistance is transferred under this section may 
not commence the use of the transferred entitlement until--
          (1) in the case of entitlement transferred to a 
        spouse, the completion by the individual making the 
        transfer of at least--
                  (A) [six years] ten years of service in the 
                [armed forces] Armed Forces; or
                  (B) the years of service as determined in 
                regulations pursuant to subsection (j); or
          (2) in the case of entitlement transferred to a 
        child, both--
                  (A) the completion by the individual making 
                the transfer of at least--
                          (i) ten years of service in the 
                        [armed forces] Armed Forces; or
                          (ii) the years of service as 
                        determined in regulations pursuant to 
                        subsection (j); and
                  (B) either--
                          (i) the completion by the child of 
                        the requirements of a secondary school 
                        diploma (or equivalency certificate); 
                        or
                          (ii) the attainment by the child of 
                        18 years of age.
  (h) Additional Administrative Matters.--
          (1) Use.--The use of any entitlement to educational 
        assistance transferred under this section shall be 
        charged against the entitlement of the individual 
        making the transfer at the rate of one month for each 
        month of transferred entitlement that is used.
          (2) Nature of transferred entitlement.--Except as 
        provided under subsection (e)(2) and subject to 
        paragraphs (5) and (6)--
                  (A) in the case of entitlement transferred to 
                a spouse under this section, the spouse is 
                entitled to educational assistance under this 
                chapter in the same manner as the individual 
                from whom the entitlement was transferred; or
                  (B) in the case of entitlement transferred to 
                a child under this section, the child is 
                entitled to educational assistance under this 
                chapter in the same manner as the individual 
                from whom the entitlement was transferred as if 
                the individual were not on active duty.
          (3) Rate of payment.--The monthly rate of educational 
        assistance payable to a dependent to whom entitlement 
        referred to in paragraph (2) is transferred under this 
        section shall be payable--
                  (A) in the case of a spouse, at the same rate 
                as such entitlement would otherwise be payable 
                under this chapter to the individual making the 
                transfer; or
                  (B) in the case of a child, at the same rate 
                as such entitlement would otherwise be payable 
                under this chapter to the individual making the 
                transfer as if the individual were not on 
                active duty, except that the amount of the 
                monthly stipend described in subsection 
                (c)(1)(B) or (g)(3)(A)(ii) of section 3313, as 
                the case may be, shall be payable in an amount 
                equal to 50 percent of the amount of such 
                stipend that would otherwise be payable under 
                this chapter to the individual making the 
                transfer.
          (4) Death of transferor.--The death of an individual 
        transferring an entitlement under this section shall 
        not affect the use of the entitlement by the dependent 
        to whom the entitlement is transferred.
          (5) Limitation on age of use by child transferees.--
                  (A) In general.--A child to whom entitlement 
                is transferred under this section may use the 
                benefits transferred without regard to the 15-
                year delimiting date specified in section 3321, 
                but may not, except as provided in subparagraph 
                (B), use any benefits so transferred after 
                attaining the age of 26 years.
                          (B) Primary caregivers of seriously 
                        injured members of the armed forces and 
                        veterans.--
                                  (i) In general.--Subject to 
                                clause (ii), in the case of a 
                                child who, before attaining the 
                                age of 26 years, is prevented 
                                from pursuing a chosen program 
                                of education by reason of 
                                acting as the primary provider 
                                of personal care services for a 
                                veteran or member of the Armed 
                                Forces under section 1720G(a), 
                                the child may use the benefits 
                                beginning on the date specified 
                                in clause (iii) for a period 
                                whose length is specified in 
                                clause (iv).
                                  (ii) Inapplicability for 
                                revocation.--Clause (i) shall 
                                not apply with respect to the 
                                period of an individual as a 
                                primary provider of personal 
                                care services if the period 
                                concludes with the revocation 
                                of the individual's designation 
                                as such a primary provider 
                                under section 1720G(a)(7)(D).
                                  (iii) Date for commencement 
                                of use.--The date specified in 
                                this clause for the beginning 
                                of the use of benefits by a 
                                child under clause (i) is the 
                                later of--
                                          (I) the date on which 
                                        the child ceases acting 
                                        as the primary provider 
                                        of personal care 
                                        services for the 
                                        veteran or member 
                                        concerned as described 
                                        in clause (i);
                                          (II) the date on 
                                        which it is reasonably 
                                        feasible, as determined 
                                        under regulations 
                                        prescribed by the 
                                        Secretary, for the 
                                        child to initiate or 
                                        resume the use of 
                                        benefits; or
                                          (III) the date on 
                                        which the child attains 
                                        the age of 26 years.
                                  (iv) Length of use.--The 
                                length of the period specified 
                                in this clause for the use of 
                                benefits by a child under 
                                clause (i) is the length equal 
                                to the length of the period 
                                that--
                                          (I) begins on the 
                                        date on which the child 
                                        begins acting as the 
                                        primary provider of 
                                        personal care services 
                                        for the veteran or 
                                        member concerned as 
                                        described in clause 
                                        (i); and
                                          (II) ends on the 
                                        later of--
                                                  (aa) the date 
                                                on which the 
                                                child ceases 
                                                acting as the 
                                                primary 
                                                provider of 
                                                personal care 
                                                services for 
                                                the veteran or 
                                                member as 
                                                described in 
                                                clause (i); or
                                                  (bb) the date 
                                                on which it is 
                                                reasonably 
                                                feasible, as so 
                                                determined, for 
                                                the child to 
                                                initiate or 
                                                resume the use 
                                                of benefits.
          (6) Scope of use by transferees.--The purposes for 
        which a dependent to whom entitlement is transferred 
        under this section may use such entitlement shall 
        include the pursuit and completion of the requirements 
        of a secondary school diploma (or equivalency 
        certificate).
          (7) Additional administrative provisions.--The 
        administrative provisions of this chapter shall apply 
        to the use of entitlement transferred under this 
        section, except that the dependent to whom the 
        entitlement is transferred shall be treated as the 
        eligible individual for purposes of such provisions.
  (i) Overpayment.--
          (1) Joint and several liability.--In the event of an 
        overpayment of educational assistance with respect to a 
        dependent to whom entitlement is transferred under this 
        section, the dependent and the individual making the 
        transfer shall be jointly and severally liable to the 
        United States for the amount of the overpayment for 
        purposes of section 3685.
          (2) Failure to complete service agreement.--
                  (A) In general.--Except as provided in 
                subparagraph (B), if an individual transferring 
                entitlement under this section fails to 
                complete the service agreed to by the 
                individual under subsection (b)(1) in 
                accordance with the terms of the agreement of 
                the individual under that subsection, the 
                amount of any transferred entitlement under 
                this section that is used by a dependent of the 
                individual as of the date of such failure shall 
                be treated as an overpayment of educational 
                assistance under paragraph (1).
                  (B) Exception.--Subparagraph (A) shall not 
                apply in the case of an individual who fails to 
                complete service agreed to by the individual--
                          (i) by reason of the death of the 
                        individual; or
                          (ii) for a reason referred to in 
                        section 3311(c)(4).
  (j) Regulations.--(1) The Secretary of Defense, in 
coordination with the Secretary of Veterans Affairs, shall 
prescribe regulations for purposes of this section.
  (2) Such regulations shall specify--
          (A) the manner of authorizing the transfer of 
        entitlements under this section;
          (B) the eligibility criteria in accordance with 
        subsection (b); and
          (C) the manner and effect of an election to modify or 
        revoke a transfer of entitlement under subsection 
        (f)(2).

SUBCHAPTER III--ADMINISTRATIVE PROVISIONS

           *       *       *       *       *       *       *



Sec. 3326. Election to receive educational assistance

  (a) Individuals Eligible to Elect Participation in Post-9/11 
Educational Assistance.--An individual may elect to receive 
educational assistance under this chapter if such individual--
          (1) as of August 1, 2009--
                  (A) is entitled to basic educational 
                assistance under chapter 30 of the title and 
                has used, but retains unused, entitlement under 
                that chapter;
                  (B) is entitled to educational assistance 
                under chapter 107, 1606, or 1607 of title 10 
                and has used, but retains unused, entitlement 
                under the applicable chapter;
                  (C) is entitled to basic educational 
                assistance under chapter 30 of this title but 
                has not used any entitlement under that 
                chapter;
                  (D) is entitled to educational assistance 
                under chapter 107, 1606, or 1607 of title 10 
                but has not used any entitlement under such 
                chapter;
                  (E) is a member of the Armed Forces who is 
                eligible for receipt of basic educational 
                assistance under chapter 30 this title and is 
                making contributions toward such assistance 
                under section 3011(b) or 3012(c) of this title; 
                or
                  (F) is a member of the Armed Forces who is 
                not entitled to basic educational assistance 
                under chapter 30 of this title by reason of an 
                election under section 3011(c)(1) or 3012(d)(1) 
                of this title; and
          (2) as of the date of the individual's election under 
        this paragraph, meets the requirements for entitlement 
        to educational assistance under this chapter.
  (b) Cessation of Contributions Toward GI Bill.--Effective as 
of the first month beginning on or after the date of an 
election under subsection (a) of an individual described by 
paragraph (1)(E) of that subsection, the obligation of the 
individual to make contributions under section 3011(b) or 
3012(c) of this title, as applicable, shall cease, and the 
requirements of such section shall be deemed to be no longer 
applicable to the individual.
  (c) Revocation of Remaining Transferred Entitlement.--
          (1) Election to revoke.--If, on the date an 
        individual described in paragraph (1)(A) or (1)(C) of 
        subsection (a) makes an election under that subsection, 
        a transfer of the entitlement of the individual to 
        basic educational assistance under section 3020 of this 
        title is in effect and a number of months of the 
        entitlement so transferred remain unutilized, the 
        individual may elect to revoke all or a portion of the 
        entitlement so transferred that remains unutilized.
          (2) Availability of revoked entitlement.--Any 
        entitlement revoked by an individual under this 
        paragraph shall no longer be available to the dependent 
        to whom transferred, but shall be available to the 
        individual instead for educational assistance under 
        chapter 33 of this title in accordance with the 
        provisions of this section.
          (3) Availability of unrevoked entitlement.--Any 
        entitlement described in paragraph (1) that is not 
        revoked by an individual in accordance with that 
        paragraph shall remain available to the dependent or 
        dependents concerned in accordance with the current 
        transfer of such entitlement under section 3020 of this 
        title.
  (d) Post-9/11 Educational Assistance.--
          (1) In general.--Subject to paragraph (2) and except 
        as provided in subsection (e), an individual making an 
        election under subsection (a) shall be entitled to 
        educational assistance under this chapter in accordance 
        with the provisions of this chapter, instead of basic 
        educational assistance under chapter 30 this title, or 
        educational assistance under chapter 107, 1606, or 1607 
        of title 10, as applicable.
          (2) Limitation on entitlement for certain 
        individuals.--In the case of an individual making an 
        election under subsection (a) who is described by 
        paragraph (1)(A) of that subsection, the number of 
        months of entitlement of the individual to educational 
        assistance under this chapter 33 shall be the number of 
        months equal to--
                  (A) the number of months of unused 
                entitlement of the individual under chapter 30 
                of this title, as of the date of the election, 
                plus
                  (B) the number of months, if any, of 
                entitlement revoked by the individual under 
                subsection (c)(1).
  (e) Continuing Entitlement to Educational Assistance Not 
Available Under 9/11 Assistance Program.--
          (1) In general.--In the event educational assistance 
        to which an individual making an election under 
        subsection (a) would be entitled under chapter 30 of 
        this title, or chapter 107, 1606, or 1607 of title 10, 
        as applicable, is not authorized to be available to the 
        individual under the provisions of this chapter the 
        individual shall remain entitled to such educational 
        assistance in accordance with the provisions of the 
        applicable chapter.
          (2) Charge for use of entitlement.--The utilization 
        by an individual of entitlement under paragraph (1) 
        shall be chargeable against the entitlement of the 
        individual to educational assistance under this chapter 
        at the rate of one month of entitlement under this 
        chapter for each month of entitlement utilized by the 
        individual under paragraph (1) (as determined as if 
        such entitlement were utilized under the provisions of 
        chapter 30 of this title, or chapter 107, 1606, or 1607 
        of title 10, as applicable).
  (f) Additional Post-9/11 Assistance for Members Having Made 
Contributions Toward GI Bill.--
          (1) Additional assistance.--In the case of an 
        individual making an election under subsection (a) who 
        is described by subparagraph (A), (C), or (E) of 
        paragraph (1) of that subsection, the amount of 
        educational assistance payable to the individual under 
        this chapter 33 as a monthly stipend payable under 
        paragraph (1)(B) of section 3313(c) of this title, or 
        under paragraphs (2) through (7) of that section (as 
        applicable), shall be the amount otherwise payable as a 
        monthly stipend under the applicable paragraph 
        increased by the amount equal to--
                  (A) the total amount of contributions toward 
                basic educational assistance made by the 
                individual under section 3011(b) or 3012(c) of 
                this title, as of the date of the election, 
                multiplied by
                  (B) the fraction--
                          (i) the numerator of which is--
                                  (I) the number of months of 
                                entitlement to basic 
                                educational assistance under 
                                chapter 30 of this title 
                                remaining to the individual at 
                                the time of the election; plus
                                  (II) the number of months, if 
                                any, of entitlement under such 
                                chapter 30 revoked by the 
                                individual under subsection 
                                (c)(1); and
                          (ii) the denominator of which is 36 
                        months.
          (2) Months of remaining entitlement for certain 
        individuals.--In the case of an individual covered by 
        paragraph (1) who is described by subsection (a)(1)(E), 
        the number of months of entitlement to basic 
        educational assistance remaining to the individual for 
        purposes of paragraph (1)(B)(i)(II) shall be 36 months.
          (3) Timing of payment.--The amount payable with 
        respect to an individual under paragraph (1) shall be 
        paid to the individual together with the last payment 
        of the monthly stipend payable to the individual under 
        paragraph (1)(B) of section 3313(c) of this title, or 
        under subsections (b) through (g) of that section (as 
        applicable), before the exhaustion of the individual's 
        entitlement to educational assistance under this 
        chapter.
  (g) Continuing Entitlement to Additional Assistance for 
Critical Skills or Speciality and Additional Service.--An 
individual making an election under subsection (a)(1) who, at 
the time of the election, is entitled to increased educational 
assistance under section 3015(d) of this title, or section 
16131(i) of title 10, or supplemental educational assistance 
under subchapter III of chapter 30 of this title, shall remain 
entitled to such increased educational assistance or 
supplemental educational assistance in the utilization of 
entitlement to educational assistance under this chapter, in an 
amount equal to the quarter, semester, or term, as applicable, 
equivalent of the monthly amount of such increased educational 
assistance or supplemental educational assistance payable with 
respect to the individual at the time of the election.
  (h) Alternative Election by Secretary.--
          (1) In general.--In the case of an individual who, on 
        or after January 1, 2016, submits to the Secretary an 
        election under this section that the Secretary 
        determines is clearly against the interests of the 
        individual, or who fails to make an election under this 
        section, the Secretary may make an alternative election 
        on behalf of the individual that the Secretary 
        determines is in the best interests of the individual.
          (2) Notice.--If the Secretary makes an election on 
        behalf of an individual under this subsection, the 
        Secretary shall notify the individual by not later than 
        seven days after making such election and shall provide 
        the individual with a 30-day period, beginning on the 
        date of the individual's receipt of such notice, during 
        which the individual may modify or revoke the election 
        made by the Secretary on the individual's behalf. The 
        Secretary shall include, as part of such notice, a 
        clear statement of why the alternative election made by 
        the Secretary is in the best interests of the 
        individual as compared to the election submitted by the 
        individual. The Secretary shall provide the notice 
        required under this paragraph by electronic means 
        whenever possible.
  (i) Irrevocability of Elections.--An election under 
subsection (a) or (c)(1) is irrevocable.

           *       *       *       *       *       *       *


CHAPTER 34--VETERANS' EDUCATIONAL ASSISTANCE

           *       *       *       *       *       *       *



SUBCHAPTER IV--PAYMENTS TO ELIGIBLE VETERANS; VETERAN-STUDENT SERVICES

           *       *       *       *       *       *       *



Sec. 3485. Work-study allowance

  (a)(1) Individuals utilized under the authority of subsection 
(b) shall be paid an additional educational assistance 
allowance (hereinafter in this section referred to as ``work-
study allowance''). Such allowance shall be paid in return for 
an individual's entering into an agreement described in 
paragraph (3).
  (2) Such work-study allowance shall be paid in an amount 
equal to the product of--
          (A) the applicable hourly minimum wage; and
          (B) the number of hours worked during the applicable 
        period.
  (3) An agreement described in this paragraph is an agreement 
of an individual to perform services, during or between periods 
of enrollment, aggregating not more than a number of hours 
equal to 25 times the number of weeks in the semester or other 
applicable enrollment period, required in connection with a 
qualifying work-study activity.
  (4) For the purposes of this section, the term ``qualifying 
work-study activity'' means any of the following:
          (A) The outreach services program under chapter 63 of 
        this title as carried out under the supervision of a 
        Department employee or, during the period preceding 
        [June 30, 2013] June 30, 2013, or the period beginning 
        on June 30, 2016, and ending on June 30, 2021, outreach 
        services to servicemembers and veterans furnished by 
        employees of a State approving agency.
          (B) The preparation and processing of necessary 
        papers and other documents at educational institutions 
        or regional offices or facilities of the Department.
          (C) The provision of hospital and domiciliary care 
        and medical treatment under chapter 17 of this title, 
        including, during the period preceding [June 30, 2013] 
        June 30, 2013, or the period beginning on June 30, 
        2016, and ending on June 30, 2021, the provision of 
        such care to veterans in a State home for which payment 
        is made under section 1741 of this title.
          (D) Any other activity of the Department as the 
        Secretary determines appropriate.
          (E) In the case of an individual who is receiving 
        educational assistance under chapter 1606 or 1607 of 
        title 10, an activity relating to the administration of 
        that chapter at Department of Defense, Coast Guard, or 
        National Guard facilities.
          (F) During the period preceding [June 30, 2013] June 
        30, 2013, or the period beginning on June 30, 2016, and 
        ending on June 30, 2021, an activity relating to the 
        administration of a national cemetery or a State 
        veterans' cemetery.
          (G) Any activity of a State veterans agency related 
        to providing assistance to veterans in obtaining any 
        benefit under the laws administered by the Secretary or 
        the laws of the State.
          (H) A position working in a Center of Excellence for 
        Veteran Student Success, as established pursuant to 
        part T of title VIII of the Higher Education Act of 
        1965 (20 U.S.C. 1161t et seq.).
          (I) A position working in a cooperative program 
        carried out jointly by the Department and an 
        institution of higher learning.
          (J) Any other veterans-related position in an 
        institution of higher learning.
  (5) An individual may elect, in a manner prescribed by the 
Secretary, to be paid in advance an amount equal to 40 percent 
of the total amount of the work-study allowance agreed to be 
paid under the agreement in return for the individual's 
agreement to perform the number of hours of work specified in 
the agreement (but not more than an amount equal to 50 times 
the applicable hourly minimum wage).
  (6) For the purposes of this subsection and subsection (e), 
the term ``applicable hourly minimum wages'' means--
          (A) the hourly minimum wage under section 6(a) of the 
        Fair Labor Standards Act of 1938 (29 U.S.C. 206(a)); or
          (B) the hourly minimum wage under comparable law of 
        the State in which the services are to be performed, if 
        such wage is higher than the wage referred to in 
        subparagraph (A) and the Secretary has made a 
        determination to pay such higher wage.
  (b) Notwithstanding any other provision of law, the Secretary 
shall, subject to the provisions of subsection (e) of this 
section, utilize, in connection with the activities specified 
in subsection (a)(1) of this section, the service of 
individuals who are pursuing programs of rehabilitation, 
education, or training under chapter 30, 31, 32, 33, or 34 of 
this title or chapter 1606 or 1607 of title 10, at a rate equal 
to at least three-quarters of that required of a full-time 
student. In carrying out this section, the Secretary, wherever 
feasible, shall give priority to veterans with disabilities 
rated at 30 percent or more for purposes of chapter 11 of this 
title. In the event an individual ceases to be at least a 
three-quarter-time student before completing such agreement, 
the individual may, with the approval of the Secretary, be 
permitted to complete such agreement.
  (c) The Secretary shall determine the number of individuals 
whose services the Department of Veterans Affairs can 
effectively utilize and the types of services that such 
individuals may be required to perform, on the basis of a 
survey, which the Secretary shall conduct annually, of each 
Department of Veterans Affairs regional office in order to 
determine the numbers of individuals whose services can 
effectively be utilized during an enrollment period in each 
geographical area where Department of Veterans Affairs 
activities are conducted, and shall determine which individuals 
shall be offered agreements under this section in accordance 
with regulations which the Secretary shall prescribe, including 
as criteria (1) the need of the individual to augment the 
veteran's educational assistance or subsistence allowance; (2) 
the availability to the individual of transportation to the 
place where the individual's services are to be performed; (3) 
the motivation of the individual; and (4) in the case of a 
disabled veteran pursuing a course of vocational rehabilitation 
under chapter 31 of this title, the compatibility of the work 
assignment to the veteran's physical condition.
  (d) While performing the services authorized by this section, 
individuals shall be deemed employees of the United States for 
the purposes of the benefits of chapter 81 of title 5 but not 
for the purposes of laws administrated by the Office of 
Personnel Management.
  (e)(1) Subject to paragraph (2) of this subsection, the 
Secretary may, notwithstanding any other provision of law, 
enter into an agreement with an individual under this section, 
or a modification of such an agreement, whereby the individual 
agrees to perform a qualifying work-study activity described in 
subsection (a)(4) and agrees that the Secretary shall, in lieu 
of paying the work-study allowance payable for such services, 
as provided in subsection (a) of this section, deduct the 
amount of the allowance from the amount which the individual 
has been determined to be indebted to the United States by 
virtue of such individual's participation in a benefits program 
under this chapter, chapter 30, 31, 32, 33, 35, or 36 of this 
title, or chapter 1606 or 1607 of title 10 (other than an 
indebtedness arising from a refund penalty imposed under 
section 2135 of such title).
  (2)(A) Subject to subparagraph (B) of this paragraph, the 
provisions of this section (other than those provisions which 
are determined by the Secretary to be inapplicable to an 
agreement under this subsection) shall apply to any agreement 
authorized under paragraph (1) of this subsection.
  (B) For the purposes of this subsection, the Secretary may--
          (i) waive, in whole or in part, the limitations in 
        subsection (a) of this section concerning the number of 
        hours and periods during which services can be 
        performed by the individual and the provisions of 
        subsection (b) of this section requiring the 
        individual's pursuit of a program of rehabilitation, 
        education, or training;
          (ii) in accordance with such terms and conditions as 
        may be specified in the agreement under this 
        subsection, waive or defer charging interest and 
        administrative costs pursuant to section 5315 of this 
        title on the indebtedness to be satisfied by 
        performance of the agreement; and
          (iii) notwithstanding the indebtedness offset 
        provisions of section 5314 of this title, waive or 
        defer until the termination of an agreement under this 
        subsection the deduction of all or any portion of the 
        amount of indebtedness covered by the agreement from 
        future payments to the individual as described in 
        section 5314 of this title.
  (3)(A) Subject to the provisions of subparagraphs (B) and (C) 
of this paragraph, an agreement authorized under this 
subsection shall terminate in accordance with the provisions of 
this section and the terms and conditions of the agreement 
which are consistent with this subsection.
  (B) In no event shall an agreement under this subsection 
continue in force after the total amount of the individual's 
indebtedness described in paragraph (1) of this subsection has 
been recouped, waived, or otherwise liquidated.
  (C) Notwithstanding the provisions of subparagraphs (A) and 
(B) of this paragraph, if the Secretary finds that an 
individual was without fault and was allowed to perform 
services described in the agreement after its termination, the 
Secretary shall, as reasonable compensation therefor, pay the 
individual at the applicable hourly minimum wage rate for such 
services as the Secretary determines were satisfactorily 
performed.
  (4) The Secretary shall promulgate regulations to carry out 
this subsection.

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           CHAPTER 36--ADMINISTRATION OF EDUCATIONAL BENEFITS


                 SUBCHAPTER I--STATE APPROVING AGENCIES

Sec.
3670. Scope of approval.
     * * * * * * *

                 SUBCHAPTER II--MISCELLANEOUS PROVISIONS

     * * * * * * *
3699. Provision of certain information to educational institutions.

SUBCHAPTER I--STATE APPROVING AGENCIES

           *       *       *       *       *       *       *



Sec. 3672. Approval of courses

  (a) An eligible person or veteran shall receive the benefits 
of this chapter and chapters 34 and 35 of this title while 
enrolled in a course of education offered by an educational 
institution only if (1) such course is approved as provided in 
this chapter and chapters 34 and 35 of this title by the State 
approving agency for the State where such educational 
institution is located, or by the Secretary, or (2) such course 
is approved (A) for the enrollment of the particular individual 
under the provisions of section 3536 of this title or (B) for 
special restorative training under subchapter V of chapter 35 
of this title. Approval of courses by State approving agencies 
shall be in accordance with the provisions of this chapter and 
chapters 34 and 35 of this title and such other regulations and 
policies as the State approving agency may adopt. Each State 
approving agency shall furnish the Secretary with a current 
list of educational institutions specifying courses which it 
has approved, and, in addition to such list, it shall furnish 
such other information to the Secretary as it and the Secretary 
may determine to be necessary to carry out the purposes of this 
chapter and chapters 34 and 35 of this title. Each State 
approving agency shall notify the Secretary of the disapproval 
of any course previously approved and shall set forth the 
reasons for such disapproval.
  (b)(1) The Secretary shall be responsible for the approval of 
courses of education offered by any agency of the Federal 
Government authorized under other laws to supervise such 
education. The Secretary may approve any course in any other 
educational institution in accordance with the provisions of 
this chapter and chapters 34 and 35 of this title.
  (2)(A) Subject to sections 3675(b)(1) and (b)(2), 3680A, 
3684, and 3696 of this title, [the following programs are 
deemed to be approved for purposes of this chapter:] a program 
of education is deemed to be approved for purposes of this 
chapter if a State approving agency determines that the program 
is one of the following programs:
          (i) An accredited standard college degree program 
        offered at a public or not-for-profit proprietary 
        educational institution that is accredited by an agency 
        or association recognized for that purpose by the 
        Secretary of Education.
          (ii) A flight training course approved by the Federal 
        Aviation Administration that is offered by a certified 
        pilot school that possesses a valid Federal Aviation 
        Administration pilot school certificate.
          (iii) An apprenticeship program registered with the 
        Office of Apprenticeship (OA) of the Employment 
        Training Administration of the Department of Labor or a 
        State apprenticeship agency recognized by the Office of 
        Apprenticeship pursuant to the Act of August 16, 1937 
        (popularly known as the ``National Apprenticeship 
        Act''; 29 U.S.C. 50 et seq.).
          (iv) A program leading to a secondary school diploma 
        offered by a secondary school approved in the State in 
        which it is operating.
  (B) A licensure test offered by a Federal, State, or local 
government is deemed to be approved for purposes of this 
chapter.
  (c)(1) In the case of programs of apprenticeship where--
          (A) the apprenticeship standards have been approved 
        by the Secretary of Labor pursuant to section 2 of the 
        Act of August 16, 1937 (popularly known as the 
        ``National Apprenticeship Act'') (29 U.S.C. 50a), as a 
        national apprenticeship program for operation in more 
        than one State, and
          (B) the training establishment is a carrier directly 
        engaged in interstate commerce which provides such 
        training in more than one State,
the Secretary shall act as a ``State approving agency'' as such 
term is used in section 3687(a)(1) of this title and shall be 
responsible for the approval of all such programs.
  (2) The period of a program of apprenticeship may be 
determined based upon a specific period of time (commonly 
referred to as a ``time-based program''), based upon the 
demonstration of successful mastery of skills (commonly 
referred to as a ``competency-based program''), or based upon a 
combination thereof.
  (3)(A) In the case of a competency-based program of 
apprenticeship, State approving agencies shall determine the 
period for which payment may be made for such a program under 
chapters 30 and 35 of this title and chapter 1606 of title 10. 
In determining the period of such a program, State approving 
agencies shall take into consideration the approximate term of 
the program recommended in registered apprenticeship program 
standards recognized by the Secretary of Labor.
  (B) The sponsor of a competency-based program of 
apprenticeship shall provide notice to the State approving 
agency involved of any such standards that may apply to the 
program and the proposed approximate period of training under 
the program.
  (4) The sponsor of a competency-based program of 
apprenticeship shall notify the Secretary upon the successful 
completion of a program of apprenticeship by an individual 
under chapter 30 or 35 of this title, or chapter 1606 of title 
10, as the case may be.
  (d)(1) Pursuant to regulations prescribed by the Secretary in 
consultation with the Secretary of Labor, the Secretary and 
State approving agencies shall actively promote the development 
of apprenticeship and on the job training programs for the 
purposes of sections 3677 and 3687 of this title and shall 
utilize the services of disabled veterans' outreach program 
specialists under section 4103A of this title to promote the 
development of such programs. The Secretary of Labor shall 
provide assistance and services to the Secretary, and to State 
approving agencies, to increase the use of apprenticeships.
  (2) In conjunction with outreach services provided by the 
Secretary under chapter 77 of this title for education and 
training benefits, each State approving agency shall conduct 
outreach programs and provide outreach services to eligible 
persons and veterans about education and training benefits 
available under applicable Federal and State law.
  (e) A program of education exclusively by correspondence, and 
the correspondence portion of a combination correspondence-
residence course leading to a vocational objective, that is 
offered by an educational institution (as defined in section 
3452(c) of this title) may be approved only if (1) the 
educational institution is accredited by an entity recognized 
by the Secretary of Education, and (2) at least 50 percent of 
those pursuing such a program or course require six months or 
more to complete the program or course.

           *       *       *       *       *       *       *


Sec. 3675. Approval of accredited courses

  (a)(1) [The Secretary or a State approving agency] A State 
approving agency, or the Secretary when acting in the role of a 
State approving agency, may approve accredited programs 
(including non-degree accredited programs) [offered by 
proprietary for-profit educational institutions] not covered by 
section 3672 of this title when--
          (A) such courses have been accredited and approved by 
        a nationally recognized accrediting agency or 
        association;
          (B) such courses are conducted under the Act of 
        February 23, 1917 (20 U.S.C. 11 et seq.);
          (C) such courses are accepted by the State department 
        of education for credit for a teacher's certificate or 
        a teacher's degree; or
          (D) such courses are approved by the State as meeting 
        the requirement of regulations prescribed by the 
        Secretary of Health and Human Services under sections 
        1819(f)(2)(A)(i) and 1919(f)(2)(A)(i) of the Social 
        Security Act (42 U.S.C. 1395i-3(f)(2)(A)(i) and 
        1396r(f)(2)(A)(i)).
  (2)(A) For the purposes of this chapter, the Secretary of 
Education shall publish a list of nationally recognized 
accrediting agencies and associations which that Secretary 
determines to be reliable authority as to the quality of 
training offered by an educational institution.
  (B) Except as provided in section 3672(e) of this title, a 
State approving agency may utilize the accreditation of any 
accrediting association or agency listed pursuant to 
subparagraph (A) of this paragraph for approval of courses 
specifically accredited and approved by such accrediting 
association or agency.
  (3)(A) An educational institution shall submit an application 
for approval of courses to the appropriate State approving 
agency. In making application for approval, the institution 
(other than an elementary school or secondary school) shall 
transmit to the State approving agency copies of its catalog or 
bulletin which must be certified as true and correct in content 
and policy by an authorized representative of the institution.
  (B) Each catalog or bulletin transmitted by an institution 
under subparagraph (A) of this paragraph shall--
          (i) state with specificity the requirements of the 
        institution with respect to graduation;
          (ii) include the information required under 
        paragraphs (6) and (7) of section 3676(b) of this 
        title; and
          (iii) include any attendance standards of the 
        institution, if the institution has and enforces such 
        standards.
  (b) As a condition of approval under this section, [the 
Secretary or the State approving agency] the State approving 
agency, or the Secretary when acting in the role of a State 
approving agency, must find the following:
          (1) The educational institution keeps adequate 
        records, as prescribed by [the Secretary or the State 
        approving agency] the State approving agency, or the 
        Secretary when acting in the role of a State approving 
        agency,, to show the progress and grades of the 
        eligible person or veteran and to show that 
        satisfactory standards relating to progress and conduct 
        are enforced.
          (2) The educational institution maintains a written 
        record of the previous education and training of the 
        eligible person or veteran that clearly indicates that 
        appropriate credit has been given by the educational 
        institution for previous education and training, with 
        the training period shortened proportionately.
          (3) The educational institution and its approved 
        courses meet the criteria of paragraphs (1), (2), [and 
        (3)] (3), and (14) of section 3676(c) of this title.
  (c)(1) A State approving agency may approve the 
entrepreneurship courses offered by a qualified provider of 
entrepreneurship courses.
  (2) For purposes of this subsection, the term 
``entrepreneurship course'' means a non-degree, non-credit 
course of business education that enables or assists a person 
to start or enhance a small business concern (as defined 
pursuant to section 3(a) of the Small Business Act (15 U.S.C. 
632(a))).
  (3) Subsection (a) and paragraphs (1) and (2) of subsection 
(b) shall not apply to--
          (A) an entrepreneurship course offered by a qualified 
        provider of entrepreneurship courses; and
          (B) a qualified provider of entrepreneurship courses 
        by reason of such provider offering one or more 
        entrepreneurship courses.
  (4) Notwithstanding paragraph (3), a qualified provider of 
entrepreneurship courses shall maintain such records as the 
Secretary determines to be necessary to comply with reporting 
requirements that apply under section 3684(a)(1) of this title 
with respect to eligible persons and veterans enrolled in an 
entrepreneurship course offered by the provider.

Sec. 3676. Approval of nonaccredited courses

  (a) No course of education which has not been approved by a 
State approving agency pursuant to section 3675 of this title, 
which is offered by a public or private, profit or nonprofit, 
educational institution shall be approved for the purposes of 
this chapter unless the educational institution offering such 
course submits to the appropriate State approving agency a 
written application for approval of such course in accordance 
with the provisions of this chapter.
  (b) Such application shall be accompanied by not less than 
two copies of the current catalog or bulletin which is 
certified as true and correct in content and policy by an 
authorized owner or official and includes the following:
          (1) Identifying data, such as volume number and date 
        of publication;
          (2) Names of the institution and its governing body, 
        officials and faculty;
          (3) A calendar of the institution showing legal 
        holidays, beginning and ending date of each quarter, 
        term, or semester, and other important dates;
          (4) Institution policy and regulations on enrollment 
        with respect to enrollment dates and specific entrance 
        requirements for each course;
          (5) Institution policy and regulations relative to 
        leave, absences, class cuts, makeup work, tardiness and 
        interruptions for unsatisfactory attendance;
          (6) Institution policy and regulations relative to 
        standards of progress required of the student by the 
        institution (this policy will define the grading system 
        of the institution, the minimum grades considered 
        satisfactory, conditions for interruption for 
        unsatisfactory grades or progress and a description of 
        the probationary period, if any, allowed by the 
        institution, and conditions of reentrance for those 
        students dismissed for unsatisfactory progress. A 
        statement will be made regarding progress records kept 
        by the institution and furnished the student);
          (7) Institution policy and regulations relating to 
        student conduct and conditions for dismissal for 
        unsatisfactory conduct;
          (8) Detailed schedules of fees, charges for tuition, 
        books, supplies, tools, student activities, laboratory 
        fees, service charges, rentals, deposits, and all other 
        charges;
          (9) Policy and regulations of the institution 
        relative to the refund of the unused portion of 
        tuition, fees, and other charges in the event the 
        student does not enter the course or withdraws or is 
        discontinued therefrom;
          (10) A description of the available space, 
        facilities, and equipment;
          (11) A course outline for each course for which 
        approval is requested, showing subjects or units in the 
        course, type of work or skill to be learned, and 
        approximate time and clock hours to be spent on each 
        subject or unit; and
          (12) Policy and regulations of the institution 
        relative to granting credit for previous educational 
        training.
  (c) The appropriate State approving agency may approve the 
application of such institution when the institution and its 
non-accredited courses are found upon investigation to have met 
the following criteria:
          (1) The courses, curriculum, and instruction are 
        consistent in quality, content, and length with similar 
        courses in public schools and other private schools in 
        the State, with recognized accepted standards.
          (2) There is in the institution adequate space, 
        equipment, instructional material, and instructor 
        personnel to provide training of good quality.
          (3) Educational and experience qualifications of 
        directors, administrators, and instructors are 
        adequate.
          (4) The institution maintains a written record of the 
        previous education and training of the eligible person 
        and clearly indicates that appropriate credit has been 
        given by the institution for previous education and 
        training, with the training period shortened 
        proportionately and the eligible person so notified.
          (5) A copy of the course outline, schedule of 
        tuition, fees, and other charges, regulations 
        pertaining to absence, grading policy, and rules of 
        operation and conduct will be furnished the eligible 
        person upon enrollment.
          (6) Upon completion of training, the eligible person 
        is given a certificate by the institution indicating 
        the approved course and indicating that training was 
        satisfactorily completed.
          (7) Adequate records as prescribed by the State 
        approving agency are kept to show attendance and 
        progress or grades, and satisfactory standards relating 
        to attendance, progress, and conduct are enforced.
          (8) The institution complies with all local, city, 
        county, municipal, State, and Federal regulations, such 
        as fire codes, building and sanitation codes. The State 
        approving agency may require such evidence of 
        compliance as is deemed necessary.
          (9) The institution is financially sound and capable 
        of fulfilling its commitments for training.
          (10) The institution does not utilize advertising of 
        any type which is erroneous or misleading, either by 
        actual statement, omission, or intimation. The 
        institution shall not be deemed to have met this 
        requirement until the State approving agency (A) has 
        ascertained from the Federal Trade Commission whether 
        the Commission has issued an order to the institution 
        to cease and desist from any act or practice, and (B) 
        has, if such an order has been issued, given due weight 
        to that fact.
          (11) The institution does not exceed its enrollment 
        limitations as established by the State approving 
        agency.
          (12) The institution's administrators, directors, 
        owners, and instructors are of good reputation and 
        character.
          (13) The institution has and maintains a policy for 
        the refund of the unused portion of tuition, fees, and 
        other charges in the event the eligible person fails to 
        enter the course or withdraws or is discontinued 
        therefrom at any time before completion and--
                  (A) in the case of an institution (other than 
                (i) a Federal, State, or local Government 
                institution or (ii) an institution described in 
                subparagraph (B)), such policy provides that 
                the amount charged to the eligible person for 
                tuition, fees, and other charges for a portion 
                of the course shall not exceed the approximate 
                pro rata portion of the total charges for 
                tuition, fees, and other charges that the 
                length of the completed portion of the course 
                bears to its total length; or
                  (B) in the case of an institution that is a 
                nonaccredited public educational institution, 
                the institution has and maintains a refund 
                policy regarding the unused portion of tuition, 
                fees, and other charges that is substantially 
                the same as the refund policy followed by 
                accredited public educational institutions 
                located within the same State as such 
                institution.
          (14) Such additional criteria as may be deemed 
        necessary by the State approving agency if the 
        Secretary, in consultation with the State approving 
        agency and pursuant to regulations prescribed to carry 
        out this paragraph, determines such criteria are 
        necessary and treat public, private, and proprietary 
        for-profit educational institutions equitably.
  (d) The Secretary may waive, in whole or in part, the 
requirements of subsection (c)(13) of this section in the case 
of an educational institution which--
          (1) is a college, university, or similar institution 
        offering postsecondary level academic instruction that 
        leads to an associate or higher degree,
          (2) is operated by an agency of a State or of a unit 
        of local government,
          (3) is located within such State or, in the case of 
        an institution operated by an agency of a unit of local 
        government, within the boundaries of the area over 
        which such unit has taxing jurisdiction, and
          (4) is a candidate for accreditation by a regional 
        accrediting association,
if the Secretary determines, pursuant to regulations which the 
Secretary shall prescribe, that such requirements would work an 
undue administrative hardship because the total amount of 
tuition, fees, and other charges at such institution is 
nominal.
  (e) Notwithstanding any other provision of this title, a 
course of education shall not be approved under this section if 
it is to be pursued in whole or in part by independent study.

           *       *       *       *       *       *       *


Sec. 3679. Disapproval of courses

  (a) Any course approved for the purposes of this chapter 
which fails to meet any of the requirements of this chapter 
shall be immediately disapproved by the Secretary or the 
appropriate State approving agency. An educational institution 
which has its courses disapproved by the Secretary or a State 
approving agency will be notified of such disapproval by a 
certified or registered letter of notification and a return 
receipt secured.
  (b) Each State approving agency shall notify the Secretary of 
each course which it has disapproved under this section. The 
Secretary shall notify the State approving agency of the 
Secretary's disapproval of any educational institution under 
chapter 31 of this title.
  (c)(1) Notwithstanding any other provision of this chapter 
and subject to paragraphs (3) through (6), the Secretary shall 
disapprove a course of education provided by a public 
institution of higher learning if the institution charges 
tuition and fees for that course for covered individuals who 
are pursuing the course with educational assistance under 
chapter 30 or 33 of this title while living in the State in 
which the institution is located at a rate that is higher than 
the rate the institution charges for tuition and fees for that 
course for residents of the State in which the institution is 
located, regardless of the covered individual's State of 
residence.
  (2) For purposes of this subsection, a covered individual is 
any individual as follows:
          (A) A veteran who was discharged or released from a 
        period of not fewer than 90 days of service in the 
        active military, naval, or air service less than three 
        years before the date of enrollment in the course 
        concerned.
          (B) An individual who is entitled to assistance under 
        section 3311(b)(9) [or 3319 of this title by virtue of 
        such individual's relationship to a veteran described 
        in subparagraph (A).] of this title or to whom 
        educational assistance is transferred under section 
        3319 of this title.
  (3) If after enrollment in a course of education that is 
subject to disapproval under paragraph (1) by reason of 
paragraph (2)(A) or (2)(B) a covered individual pursues one or 
more courses of education at the same public institution of 
higher learning while remaining continuously enrolled (other 
than during regularly scheduled breaks between courses, 
semesters or terms) at that institution of higher learning, any 
course so pursued by the covered individual at that institution 
of higher learning while so continuously enrolled shall also be 
subject to disapproval under paragraph (1).
  (4) It shall not be grounds to disapprove a course of 
education under paragraph (1) if a public institution of higher 
learning requires a covered individual pursuing a course of 
education at the institution to demonstrate an intent, by means 
other than satisfying a physical presence requirement, to 
establish residency in the State in which the institution is 
located, or to satisfy other requirements not relating to the 
establishment of residency, in order to be charged tuition and 
fees for that course at a rate that is equal to or less than 
the rate the institution charges for tuition and fees for that 
course for residents of the State.
  (5) The Secretary may waive such requirements of paragraph 
(1) as the Secretary considers appropriate.
  (6) Disapproval under paragraph (1) shall apply only with 
respect to educational assistance under chapters 30 and 33 of 
this title.

SUBCHAPTER II--MISCELLANEOUS PROVISIONS

           *       *       *       *       *       *       *



Sec. 3684. Reports by veterans, eligible persons, and institutions; 
                    reporting fee

  (a)(1) Except as provided in paragraph (2) of this 
subsection, the veteran or eligible person and the educational 
institution offering a course in which such veteran or eligible 
person is enrolled under chapter 31, 32, 33, 34, 35, or 36 of 
this title shall, without delay, report to the Secretary, in 
the form prescribed by the Secretary, such enrollment and any 
interruption or termination of the education of each such 
veteran or eligible person. The date of such interruption or 
termination will be the last date of pursuit, or, in the case 
of correspondence training, the last date a lesson was serviced 
by a school.
  (2)(A) In the case of a program of independent study pursued 
on less than a half-time basis in an educational institution, 
the Secretary may approve a delay by the educational 
institution in reporting the enrollment or reenrollment of an 
eligible veteran or eligible person until the end of the term, 
quarter, or semester if the educational institution requests 
the delay and the Secretary determines that it is not feasible 
for the educational institution to monitor interruption or 
termination of the veteran's or eligible person's pursuit of 
such program.
  (B) An educational institution which, pursuant to 
subparagraph (A) of this paragraph, is delaying the reporting 
of the enrollment or reenrollment of a veteran shall provide 
the veteran with notice of the delay at the time that the 
veteran enrolls or reenrolls.
  (3)(A) Subject to subparagraph (B) of this paragraph, an 
educational institution offering courses on a term, quarter, or 
semester basis may certify the enrollment of a veteran who is 
not on active duty, or of an eligible person, in such courses 
for more than one term, quarter, or semester at a time, but not 
for a period extending beyond the end of a school year 
(including the summer enrollment period).
  (B) Subparagraph (A) of this paragraph shall not apply with 
respect to any term, quarter, or semester for which the veteran 
or eligible person is enrolled on a less than half-time basis 
and shall not be construed as restricting the Secretary from 
requiring that an educational institution, in reporting an 
enrollment for more than one term, quarter, or semester, 
specify the dates of any intervals within or between any such 
terms, quarters, or semesters.
  (4) For purposes of this subsection, the term ``educational 
institution'' may include a group, district, or consortium of 
separately accredited educational institutions located in the 
same State that are organized in a manner that facilitates the 
centralized reporting of the enrollments in such group, 
district, or consortium of institutions.
  (b) The Secretary, prior to making payment of a reporting fee 
to an educational institution, as provided for in subsection 
(c) of this section, shall require such institution to certify 
that it has exercised reasonable diligence in determining 
whether such institution or any course offered by such 
institution approved for the enrollment of veterans or eligible 
persons meets all of the applicable requirements of chapters 
31, 34, 35, and 36 of this title and that it will, without 
delay, report any failure to meet any such requirement to the 
Secretary.
  (c) The Secretary may pay to any educational institution, or 
to the sponsor of a program of apprenticeship, furnishing 
education or training under either this chapter or chapter 31, 
34, or 35 of this title, a reporting fee which will be in lieu 
of any other compensation or reimbursement for reports or 
certifications which such educational institution or joint 
apprenticeship training committee is required to submit to the 
Secretary by law or regulation. Such reporting fee shall be 
computed for each calendar year by multiplying $12 by the 
number of eligible veterans or eligible persons enrolled under 
this chapter or chapter 31, 34, or 35 of this title, or $15 in 
the case of those eligible veterans and eligible persons whose 
educational assistance checks are directed in care of each 
institution for temporary custody and delivery and are 
delivered at the time of registration as provided under section 
3680(d)(4) of this title, during the calendar year. The 
reporting fee shall be paid to such educational institution or 
joint apprenticeship training committee as soon as feasible 
after the end of the calendar year for which it is applicable. 
No reporting fee payable to an educational institution under 
this subsection shall be subject to offset by the Secretary 
against any liability of such institution for any overpayment 
for which such institution may be administratively determined 
to be liable under section 3685 of this title unless such 
liability is not contested by such institution or has been 
upheld by a final decree of a court of appropriate 
jurisdiction. Any reporting fee paid an educational institution 
or joint apprenticeship training committee after the date of 
the enactment of the Post-9/11 Veterans Educational Assistance 
Improvements Act of 2011 shall be utilized by such institution 
or committee solely for the making of certifications required 
under this chapter or chapter 31, 34, or 35 of this title or 
for otherwise supporting programs for veterans. The reporting 
fee payable under this subsection shall be paid from amounts 
appropriated for readjustment benefits.
  (d) Not later than 90 days after the date of the enactment of 
this subsection, the Secretary shall ensure that the Department 
provides personnel of educational institutions who are charged 
with submitting reports or certifications to the Secretary 
under this section with assistance in preparing and submitting 
such reports or certifications.

           *       *       *       *       *       *       *


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, 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 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] an ex officio member of the advisory committee.
  (b) The Secretary shall consult with and seek the advice of 
the committee from time to time with respect to the 
administration of this chapter, chapters 30, 32, 33, and 35 of 
this title, and chapter 1606 of title 10. The committee may 
make such reports and recommendations as it considers desirable 
to the Secretary and the Congress.
  (c) The committee shall remain in existence until December 
31, 2015.

Sec. 3693. Compliance surveys

  [(a) Except as provided in subsection (b) of this section, 
the Secretary shall conduct an annual compliance survey of each 
institution offering one or more courses approved for the 
enrollment of eligible veterans or persons if at least 300 
veterans or persons are enrolled in such course or courses 
under provisions of this title or if any such course does not 
lead to a standard college degree. Such compliance survey shall 
be designed to ensure that the institution and approved courses 
are in compliance with all applicable provisions of chapters 30 
through 36 of this title. The Secretary shall assign at least 
one education compliance specialist to work on compliance 
surveys in any year for each 40 compliance surveys required to 
be made under this section for such year.]
  (a)(1) Except as provided in subsection (b), the Secretary 
shall conduct an annual compliance survey of educational 
institutions and training establishments offering one or more 
courses approved for the enrollment of eligible veterans or 
persons if at least 20 such veterans or persons are enrolled in 
any such course. The Secretary shall--
          (A) design the compliance surveys to ensure that such 
        institutions or establishments, as the case may be, and 
        approved courses are in compliance with all applicable 
        provisions of chapters 30 through 36 of this title;
          (B) survey each such educational institution and 
        training establishment not less than once during every 
        two-year period; and
          (C) assign not fewer than one education compliance 
        specialist to work on compliance surveys in any year 
        for each 40 compliance surveys required to be made 
        under this section for such year.
  (2) The Secretary, in consultation with the State approving 
agencies, shall--
          (A) annually determine the parameters of the surveys 
        required under paragraph (1); and
          (B) not later than September 1 of each year, make 
        available to the State approving agencies a list of the 
        educational institutions and training establishments 
        that will be surveyed during the fiscal year following 
        the date of making such list available.
  (b) The Secretary may waive the requirement in [subsection 
(a) of this section for an annual compliance survey] subsection 
(a)(1) for a compliance survey with respect to an [institution] 
educational institution or training establishment if the 
Secretary determines, based on the [institution's demonstrated 
record of compliance] record of compliance of such institution 
or establishment with all the applicable provisions of chapters 
30 through 36 of this title, that the waiver would be 
appropriate and in the best interest of the United States 
Government.
  (c) In this section, the terms ``educational institution'' 
and ``training establishment'' have the meaning given such 
terms in section 3452 of this title.

           *       *       *       *       *       *       *


Sec. 3699. Provision of certain information to educational institutions

  For each veteran or other individual pursuing a course of 
education that has been approved under this chapter using 
educational assistance to which the veteran or other individual 
is entitled under chapter 30, 32, 33, or 35 of this title, the 
Secretary shall make available to the educational institution 
offering the course information about the amount of such 
educational assistance to which the veteran or other individual 
is entitled. Such information shall be provided to such 
educational institution through a secure information technology 
system accessible by the educational institution and shall be 
regularly updated to reflect any amounts used by the veteran or 
other individual.

           *       *       *       *       *       *       *


              CHAPTER 37--HOUSING AND SMALL BUSINESS LOANS


SUBCHAPTER I--GENERAL

           *       *       *       *       *       *       *



Sec. 3703. Basic provisions relating to loan guaranty and insurance

  (a)(1)(A) Any loan to a veteran eligible for benefits under 
this chapter, if made for any of the purposes specified in 
section 3710 of this title and in compliance with the 
provisions of this chapter, is automatically guaranteed by the 
United States in an amount not to exceed the lesser of--
          (i)(I) in the case of any loan of not more than 
        $45,000, 50 percent of the loan;
          (II) in the case of any loan of more than $45,000, 
        but not more than $56,250, $22,500;
          (III) except as provided in subclause (IV) of this 
        clause, in the case of any loan of more than $56,250, 
        the lesser of $36,000 or 40 percent of the loan; or
          (IV) in the case of any loan of more than $144,000 
        for a purpose specified in clause (1), (2), (3), (5), 
        (6), or (8) of section 3710(a) of this title, [the 
        lesser of] the maximum guaranty amount (as defined in 
        subparagraph (C)) [or 25 percent of the loan]; or
          (ii) the maximum amount of guaranty entitlement 
        available to the veteran as specified in subparagraph 
        (B) of this paragraph.
  (B) The maximum amount of guaranty entitlement available to a 
veteran for purposes specified in section 3710 of this title 
shall be $36,000, or in the case of a loan described in 
subparagraph (A)(i)(IV) of this paragraph, the maximum guaranty 
amount (as defined in subparagraph (C)), reduced by the amount 
of entitlement previously used by the veteran under this 
chapter and not restored as a result of the exclusion in 
section 3702(b) of this title.
  (C) In this paragraph, the term ``maximum guaranty amount'' 
means the dollar amount that is equal to 25 percent of the 
[Freddie Mac conforming loan limit limitation determined under 
section 305(a)(2) of the Federal Home Loan Mortgage Corporation 
Act (12 U.S.C. 1454(a)(2)) for a single-family residence, as 
adjusted for the year involved.] amount of the loan.
  (2)(A) Any housing loan which might be guaranteed under the 
provisions of this chapter, when made or purchased by any 
financial institution subject to examination and supervision by 
any agency of the United States or of any State may, in lieu of 
such guaranty, be insured by the Secretary under an agreement 
whereby the Secretary will reimburse any such institution for 
losses incurred on such loan up to 15 per centum of the 
aggregate of loans so made or purchased by it.
  (B) Loans insured under this section shall be made on such 
other terms, conditions, and restrictions as the Secretary may 
prescribe within the limitations set forth in this chapter.
  (b) The liability of the United States under any guaranty, 
within the limitations of this chapter, shall decrease or 
increase pro rata with any decrease or increase of the amount 
of the unpaid portion of the obligation.
  (c)(1) Loans guaranteed or insured under this chapter shall 
be payable upon such terms and conditions as may be agreed upon 
by the parties thereto, subject to the provisions of this 
chapter and regulations of the Secretary issued pursuant to 
this chapter, and shall bear interest not in excess of such 
rate as the Secretary may from time to time find the loan 
market demands, except that in establishing the rate of 
interest that shall be applicable to such loans, the Secretary 
shall consult with the Secretary of Housing and Urban 
Development regarding the rate of interest applicable to home 
loans insured under section 203(b) of the National Housing Act 
(12 U.S.C. 1709(b)). In establishing rates of interest under 
this paragraph for one or more of the purposes described in 
clauses (4) and (7) of section 3710(a) of this title, the 
Secretary may establish a rate or rates higher than the rate 
specified for other purposes under such section, but any such 
rate may not exceed such rate as the Secretary may from time to 
time find the loan market demands for loans for such purposes.
  (2) The provisions of the Servicemen's Readjustment Act of 
1944 which were in effect before April 1, 1958, with respect to 
the interest chargeable on loans made or guaranteed under such 
Act shall, notwithstanding the provisions of paragraph (1) of 
this subsection, continue to be applicable--
          (A) to any loan made or guaranteed before April 1, 
        1958; and
          (B) to any loan with respect to which a commitment to 
        guarantee was entered into by the Secretary before 
        April 1, 1958.
  (3) This section shall not be construed to prohibit a veteran 
from paying to a lender any reasonable discount required by 
such lender, when the proceeds from the loan are to be used--
          (A) to refinance indebtedness pursuant to clause (5), 
        (8), or (9)(B)(i) of section 3710(a) of this title or 
        section 3712(a)(1)(F) of this title;
          (B) to repair, alter, or improve a farm residence or 
        other dwelling pursuant to clauses (4) and (7) of 
        section 3710(a) of this title;
          (C) to construct a dwelling or farm residence on land 
        already owned or to be acquired by the veteran except 
        where the land is directly or indirectly acquired from 
        a builder or developer who has contracted to construct 
        such dwelling for the veteran;
          (D) to purchase a dwelling from a class of sellers 
        which the Secretary determines are legally precluded 
        under all circumstances from paying such a discount if 
        the best interest of the veteran would be so served; or
          (E) to refinance indebtedness and purchase a 
        manufactured-home lot pursuant to section 
        3710(a)(9)(B)(ii) or 3712(a)(1)(G) of this title, but 
        only with respect to that portion of the loan used to 
        refinance such indebtedness.
  (4)(A) In guaranteeing or insuring loans under this chapter, 
the Secretary may elect whether to require that such loans bear 
interest at a rate that is--
          (i) agreed upon by the veteran and the mortgagee; or
          (ii) established under paragraph (1).
The Secretary may, from time to time, change the election under 
this subparagraph.
  (B) Any veteran, under a loan described in subparagraph 
(A)(i), may pay reasonable discount points in connection with 
the loan. Except in the case of a loan for the purpose 
specified in section 3710(a)(8), 3710(b)(7), or 3712(a)(1)(F) 
of this title, discount points may not be financed as part of 
the principal amount of a loan guaranteed or insured under this 
chapter.
  (C) Not later than 10 days after an election under 
subparagraph (A), the Secretary shall transmit to the 
Committees on Veterans' Affairs of the Senate and House of 
Representatives a notification of the election, together with 
an explanation of the reasons therefor.
  (d)(1) The maturity of any housing loan at the time of 
origination shall not be more than thirty years and thirty-two 
days.
  (2)(A) Any loan for a term of more than five years shall be 
amortized in accordance with established procedure.
  (B) The Secretary may guarantee loans with provisions for 
various rates of amortization corresponding to anticipated 
variations in family income. With respect to any loan 
guaranteed under this subparagraph--
          (i) the initial principal amount of the loan may not 
        exceed the reasonable value of the property as of the 
        time the loan is made; and
          (ii) the principal amount of the loan thereafter 
        (including the amount of all interest to be deferred 
        and added to principal) may not at any time be 
        scheduled to exceed the projected value of the 
        property.
  (C) For the purposes of subparagraph (B) of this paragraph, 
the projected value of the property shall be calculated by the 
Secretary by increasing the reasonable value of the property as 
of the time the loan is made at a rate not in excess of 2.5 
percent per year, but in no event may the projected value of 
the property for the purposes of such subparagraph exceed 115 
percent of such reasonable value. A loan made for a purpose 
other than the acquisition of a single-family dwelling unit may 
not be guaranteed under such subparagraph.
  (3)(A) Any real estate housing loan (other than for repairs, 
alterations, or improvements) shall be secured by a first lien 
on the realty. In determining whether a loan is so secured, the 
Secretary may either disregard or allow for subordination to a 
superior lien created by a duly recorded covenant running with 
the realty in favor of either of the following:
          (i) A public entity that has provided or will provide 
        assistance in response to a major disaster as 
        determined by the President under the Robert T. 
        Stafford Disaster Relief and Emergency Assistance Act 
        (42 U.S.C. 5121 et seq.).
          (ii) A private entity to secure an obligation to such 
        entity for the homeowner's share of the costs of the 
        management, operation, or maintenance of property, 
        services, or programs within and for the benefit of the 
        development or community in which the veteran's realty 
        is located, if the Secretary determines that the 
        interests of the veteran borrower and of the Government 
        will not be prejudiced by the operation of such 
        covenant.
  (B) With respect to any superior lien described in 
subparagraph (A) created after June 6, 1969, the Secretary's 
determination under clause (ii) of such subparagraph shall have 
been made prior to the recordation of the covenant.
  (e)(1) Except as provided in paragraph (2) of this 
subsection, an individual who pays a fee under section 3729 of 
this title, or who is exempted under section 3729(c)(1) of this 
title from paying such fee, with respect to a housing loan 
guaranteed or insured under this chapter that is closed after 
December 31, 1989, shall have no liability to the Secretary 
with respect to the loan for any loss resulting from any 
default of such individual except in the case of fraud, 
misrepresentation, or bad faith by such individual in obtaining 
the loan or in connection with the loan default.
  (2) The exemption from liability provided by paragraph (1) of 
this subsection shall not apply to--
          (A) an individual from whom a fee is collected (or 
        who is exempted from such fee) under section 
        3729(b)(2)(I) of this title; or
          (B) a loan made for any purpose specified in section 
        3712 of this title.
  (f) The application for or obtaining of a loan made, insured, 
or guaranteed under this chapter shall not be subject to 
reporting requirements applicable to requests for, or receipts 
of, Federal contracts, grants, loans, loan guarantees, loan 
insurance, or cooperative agreements except to the extent that 
such requirements are provided for in, or by the Secretary 
pursuant to, this title.

           *       *       *       *       *       *       *


    CHAPTER 41--JOB COUNSELING, TRAINING, AND PLACEMENT SERVICE FOR 
                                VETERANS


Sec.
4100. Findings.
     * * * * * * *
[4102A. Assistant Secretary of Labor for Veterans' Employment and 
          Training; program functions; Regional Administrators.]
4102A. Deputy Under Secretary for Veterans' Employment, Training, and 
          Transition; program functions; Regional Administrators.
     * * * * * * *
[4108. Cooperation and coordination.]
     * * * * * * *
4115. Longitudinal study of job counseling, training, and placement 
          service for veterans.

Sec. 4100. Findings

   The Congress makes the following findings:
          (1) As long as unemployment and underemployment 
        continue as serious problems among disabled veterans 
        and Vietnam-era veterans, alleviating unemployment and 
        underemployment among such veterans is a national 
        responsibility.
          (2) Because of the special nature of employment and 
        training needs of such veterans and the national 
        responsibility to meet those needs, policies and 
        programs to increase opportunities for such veterans to 
        obtain employment, job training, counseling, and job 
        placement services and assistance in securing 
        advancement in employment should be effectively and 
        vigorously implemented by the [Secretary of Labor] 
        Secretary and such implementation should be 
        accomplished through the [Assistant Secretary of Labor 
        for Veterans' Employment and Training] Deputy Under 
        Secretary for Employment, Training, and Transition.

Sec. 4101. Definitions

   For the purposes of this chapter--
          (1) The term ``special disabled veteran'' has the 
        same meaning provided in section 4211(1) of this title.
          (2) The term ``veteran of the Vietnam era'' has the 
        same meaning provided in section 4211(2) of this title.
          (3) The term ``disabled veteran'' has the same 
        meaning provided in section 4211(3) of this title.
          (4) The term ``eligible veteran'' has the same 
        meaning provided in section 4211(4) of this title.
          (5) The term ``eligible person'' means--
                  (A) the spouse of any person who died of a 
                service-connected disability,
                  (B) the spouse of any member of the Armed 
                Forces serving on active duty who, at the time 
                of application for assistance under this 
                chapter, is listed, pursuant to section 556 of 
                title 37 and regulations issued thereunder, by 
                the Secretary concerned in one or more of the 
                following categories and has been so listed for 
                a total of more than ninety days: (i) missing 
                in action, (ii) captured in line of duty by a 
                hostile force, or (iii) forcibly detained or 
                interned in line of duty by a foreign 
                government or power, or
                  (C) the spouse of any person who has a total 
                disability permanent in nature resulting from a 
                service-connected disability or the spouse of a 
                veteran who died while a disability so 
                evaluated was in existence.
          (6) The term ``State'' means each of the several 
        States of the United States, the District of Columbia, 
        and the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico, and may include, 
        to the extent determined necessary and feasible, Guam, 
        American Samoa, the Virgin Islands, the Commonwealth of 
        the Northern Marianas Islands, and the Trust Territory 
        of the Pacific Islands.
          (7) The term ``employment service delivery system'' 
        means a service delivery system at which or through 
        which labor exchange services, including employment, 
        training, and placement services, are offered in 
        accordance with the Wagner-Peyser Act.
          [(8) The term ``Secretary'' means the Secretary of 
        Labor.]
          (9) The term ``career services'' means local 
        employment and training services of the type described 
        in section 134(c)(2) of the Workforce Innovation and 
        Opportunity Act.

Sec. 4102. Purpose

  The Congress declares as its intent and purpose that there 
shall be an effective (1) job and job training intensive 
services program, (2) employment placement service program, and 
(3) job training placement service program for eligible 
veterans and eligible persons and that, to this end policies 
and regulations shall be promulgated and administered by an 
[Assistant Secretary of Labor for Veterans' Employment and 
Training] Deputy Under Secretary for Employment, Training, and 
Transition, established by section 4102A of this title, through 
a Veterans' Employment and Training Service within the 
[Department of Labor] Department, so as to provide such 
veterans and persons the maximum of employment and training 
opportunities, with priority given to the needs of disabled 
veterans and veterans who served on active duty during a war or 
in a campaign or expedition for which a campaign badge has been 
authorized through existing programs, coordination and merger 
of programs and implementation of new programs, including 
programs carried out by the Veterans' Employment and Training 
Service to implement all efforts to ease the transition of 
servicemembers to civilian careers that are consistent with, or 
an outgrowth of, the military experience of the servicemembers.

[Sec. 4102A. Assistant Secretary of Labor for Veterans' Employment and 
                    Training; program functions; Regional 
                    Administrators]

Sec. 4102A. Deputy Under Secretary for Veterans' Employment, Training, 
                    and Transition; program functions; Regional 
                    Administrators

  [(a) Establishment of Position of Assistant Secretary of 
Labor for Veterans' Employment and Training.--(1) There is 
established within the Department of Labor an Assistant 
Secretary of Labor for Veterans' Employment and Training, 
appointed by the President by and with the advice and consent 
of the Senate, who shall formulate and implement all 
departmental policies and procedures to carry out (A) the 
purposes of this chapter, chapter 42, and chapter 43 of this 
title, and (B) all other Department of Labor employment, 
unemployment, and training programs to the extent they affect 
veterans.
  [(2) The employees of the Department of Labor administering 
chapter 43 of this title shall be administratively and 
functionally responsible to the Assistant Secretary of Labor 
for Veterans' Employment and Training.
  [(3)(A) There shall be within the Department of Labor a 
Deputy Assistant Secretary of Labor for Veterans' Employment 
and Training. The Deputy Assistant Secretary shall perform such 
functions as the Assistant Secretary of Labor for Veterans' 
Employment and Training prescribes.
  [(B) No individual may be appointed as a Deputy Assistant 
Secretary of Labor for Veterans' Employment and Training unless 
the individual has at least five years of service in a 
management position as an employee of the Federal civil service 
or comparable service in a management position in the Armed 
Forces. For purposes of determining such service of an 
individual, there shall be excluded any service described in 
subparagraphs (A), (B), and (C) of section 308(d)(2) of this 
title.]
  (a) Deputy Under Secretary for Veterans' Employment, 
Training, and Transition.--(1) The Deputy Under Secretary for 
Employment, Training, and Transition established by subsection 
(c)(2) of section 8001 of this title shall formulate and 
implement all departmental policies and procedures to carry out 
this chapter and the other programs described in such 
subsection.
  (2) The employees of the Department administering chapter 43 
of this title shall be administratively and functionally 
responsible to the Deputy Under Secretary for Employment, 
Training, and Transition.
  (b) Program Functions.--The Secretary shall carry out the 
following functions:
          (1) Except as expressly provided otherwise, carry out 
        all provisions of this chapter and chapter 43 of this 
        title through the [Assistant Secretary of Labor for 
        Veterans' Employment and Training] Deputy Under 
        Secretary for Employment, Training, and Transition and 
        administer through [such Assistant Secretary] such 
        Deputy Under Secretary all programs under the 
        jurisdiction of the Secretary for the provision of 
        employment and training services designed to meet the 
        needs of all veterans and persons eligible for services 
        furnished under this chapter.
          (2) In order to make maximum use of available 
        resources in meeting such needs, encourage all such 
        programs, and all grantees and contractors under such 
        programs to enter into cooperative arrangements with 
        private industry and business concerns (including small 
        business concerns owned by veterans or disabled 
        veterans), educational institutions, trade 
        associations, and labor unions.
          (3) Ensure that maximum effectiveness and efficiency 
        are achieved in providing services and assistance to 
        eligible veterans under all such programs by 
        coordinating [and consulting with the Secretary of 
        Veterans Affairs] with respect to (A) programs 
        conducted under other provisions of this title, with 
        particular emphasis on coordination of such programs 
        with readjustment counseling activities carried out 
        under section 1712A of this title, apprenticeship or 
        other on-the-job training programs carried out under 
        section 3687 of this title, and rehabilitation and 
        training activities carried out under chapter 31 of 
        this title and (B) determinations covering veteran 
        population in a State.
          (4) Ensure that employment, training, and placement 
        activities are carried out in coordination and 
        cooperation with appropriate State public employment 
        service officials.
          (5) Subject to subsection (c), make available for use 
        in each State by grant or contract such funds as may be 
        necessary to support--
                  (A) disabled veterans' outreach program 
                specialists appointed under section 4103A(a)(1) 
                of this title,
                  (B) local veterans' employment 
                representatives assigned under section 4104(b) 
                of this title, and
                  (C) the reasonable expenses of such 
                specialists and representatives described in 
                subparagraphs (A) and (B), respectively, for 
                training, travel, supplies, and other business 
                expenses, including travel expenses and per 
                diem for attendance at the National Veterans' 
                Employment and Training Services Institute 
                established under section 4109 of this title.
          (6) Monitor and supervise on a continuing basis the 
        distribution and use of funds provided for use in the 
        States under paragraph (5).
          (7) Establish, and update as appropriate, a 
        comprehensive performance accountability system (as 
        described in subsection (f)) and carry out annual 
        performance reviews of veterans employment, training, 
        and placement services provided through employment 
        service delivery systems, including through disabled 
        veterans' outreach program specialists and through 
        local veterans' employment representatives in States 
        receiving grants, contracts, or awards under this 
        chapter.
          (8) With advice and assistance from the Advisory 
        Committee on Veterans Employment, Training, and 
        Employer Outreach established under section 4110 of 
        this title, furnish information to employers (through 
        meetings in person with hiring executives of 
        corporations and otherwise) with respect to the 
        training and skills of veterans and disabled veterans, 
        and the advantages afforded employers by hiring 
        veterans with such training and skills, and to 
        facilitate employment of veterans and disabled veterans 
        through participation in labor exchanges (Internet-
        based and otherwise), and other means.
  (c) Conditions for Receipt of Funds.--(1) The distribution 
and use of funds under subsection (b)(5) in order to carry out 
sections 4103A(a) and 4104(a) of this title shall be subject to 
the continuing supervision and monitoring of the Secretary and 
shall not be governed by the provisions of any other law, or 
any regulations prescribed thereunder, that are inconsistent 
with this section or section 4103A or 4104 of this title.
  (2)(A) A State shall submit to the Secretary an application 
for a grant or contract under subsection (b)(5). The 
application shall contain the following information:
          (i) A plan that describes the manner in which the 
        State shall furnish employment, training, and placement 
        services required under this chapter for the program 
        year, including a description of--
                  (I) duties assigned by the State to disabled 
                veterans' outreach program specialists and 
                local veterans' employment representatives 
                consistent with the requirements of sections 
                4103A and 4104 of this title;
                  (II) the manner in which such specialists and 
                representatives are integrated in the 
                employment service delivery systems in the 
                State; and
                  (III) the program of performance incentive 
                awards described in section 4112 of this title 
                in the State for the program year.
          (ii) The veteran population to be served.
          (iii) For each employee of the State who is assigned 
        to perform the duties of a disabled veterans' outreach 
        program specialist or a local veterans' employment 
        representative under this chapter--
                  (I) the date on which the employee is so 
                assigned; and
                  (II) whether the employee has satisfactorily 
                completed such training by the National 
                Veterans' Employment and Training Services 
                Institute as the Secretary requires for 
                purposes of paragraph (8).
          (iv) Such additional information as the Secretary may 
        require to make a determination with respect to 
        awarding a grant or contract to the State.
  (B)(i) Subject to the succeeding provisions of this 
subparagraph, of the amount available under subsection (b)(5) 
for a fiscal year, the Secretary shall make available to each 
State with an application approved by the Secretary an amount 
of funding in proportion to the number of veterans seeking 
employment using such criteria as the Secretary may establish 
in regulation, including civilian labor force and unemployment 
data, for the State on an annual basis. The proportion of 
funding shall reflect the ratio of--
          (I) the total number of veterans residing in the 
        State that are seeking employment; to
          (II) the total number of veterans seeking employment 
        in all States.
  (ii) The Secretary shall phase in over the three fiscal-year 
period that begins on October 1, 2003, the manner in which 
amounts are made available to States under subsection (b)(5) 
and this subsection, as amended by the Jobs for Veterans Act.
  (iii) In carrying out this paragraph, the Secretary may 
establish minimum funding levels and hold-harmless criteria for 
States.
  (3)(A)(i) As a condition of a grant or contract under this 
section for a program year, in the case of a State that the 
Secretary determines has an entered-employment rate for 
veterans that is deficient for the preceding program year, the 
State shall develop a corrective action plan to improve that 
rate for veterans in the State.
  (ii) The State shall submit the corrective action plan to the 
Secretary for approval, and if approved, shall expeditiously 
implement the plan.
  (iii) If the Secretary does not approve a corrective action 
plan submitted by the State under clause (i), the Secretary 
shall take such steps as may be necessary to implement 
corrective actions in the State to improve the entered-
employment rate for veterans in that State.
  (B) To carry out subparagraph (A), the Secretary shall 
establish in regulations a uniform national threshold entered-
employment rate for veterans for a program year by which 
determinations of deficiency may be made under subparagraph 
(A).
  (C) In making a determination with respect to a deficiency 
under subparagraph (A), the Secretary shall take into account 
the applicable annual unemployment data for the State and 
consider other factors, such as prevailing economic conditions, 
that affect performance of individuals providing employment, 
training, and placement services in the State.
  (4) In determining the terms and conditions of a grant or 
contract under which funds are made available to a State in 
order to carry out section 4103A or 4104 of this title, the 
Secretary shall take into account--
          (A) the results of reviews, carried out pursuant to 
        subsection (b)(7), of the performance of the 
        employment, training, and placement service delivery 
        system in the State, and
          (B) the monitoring carried out under this section.
  (5) Each grant or contract by which funds are made available 
to a State shall contain a provision requiring the recipient of 
the funds--
          (A) to comply with the provisions of this chapter; 
        and
          (B) on an annual basis, to notify the Secretary of, 
        and provide supporting rationale for, each nonveteran 
        who is employed as a disabled veterans' outreach 
        program specialist and local veterans' employment 
        representative for a period in excess of 6 months.
  (6) Each State shall coordinate employment, training, and 
placement services furnished to veterans and eligible persons 
under this chapter with such services furnished with respect to 
such veterans and persons under the Workforce Investment Act of 
1998 and the Wagner-Peyser Act.
  (7) Of the amount of a grant or contract under which funds 
are made available to a State in order to carry out section 
4103A or 4104 of this title for any program year, one percent 
shall be for the purposes of making cash awards under the 
program of performance incentive awards described in section 
4112 of this title in the State.
  (8)(A) As a condition of a grant or contract under which 
funds are made available to a State in order to carry out 
section 4103A or 4104 of this title, the Secretary shall 
require the State to require each employee hired by the State 
who is assigned to perform the duties of a disabled veterans' 
outreach program specialist or a local veterans' employment 
representative under this chapter to satisfactorily complete 
training provided by the National Veterans' Employment and 
Training Services Institute during the 18-month period that 
begins on the date on which the employee is so assigned.
  (B) For any employee described in subparagraph (A) who does 
not complete such training during such period, the Secretary 
may reduce by an appropriate amount the amount made available 
to the State employing that employee.
  (C) The Secretary may establish such reasonable exceptions to 
the completion of training otherwise required under 
subparagraph (A) as the Secretary considers appropriate.
  (9)(A) As a condition of a grant or contract under which 
funds are made available to a State in order to carry out 
section 4103A or 4104 of this title for any program year, the 
Secretary may require the State--
          (i) to demonstrate that when the State approves or 
        denies a certification or license described in 
        subparagraph (B) for a veteran the State takes into 
        consideration any training received or experience 
        gained by the veteran while serving on active duty in 
        the Armed Forces; and
          (ii) to disclose to the Secretary in writing the 
        following:
                  (I) Criteria applicants must satisfy to 
                receive a certification or license described in 
                subparagraph (B) by the State.
                  (II) A description of the standard practices 
                of the State for evaluating training received 
                by veterans while serving on active duty in the 
                Armed Forces and evaluating the documented work 
                experience of such veterans during such service 
                for purposes of approving or denying a 
                certification or license described in 
                subparagraph (B).
                  (III) Identification of areas in which 
                training and experience described in subclause 
                (II) fails to meet criteria described in 
                subclause (I)."
  (B) A certification or license described in this subparagraph 
is any of the following:
          (i) A license to be a nonemergency medical 
        professional.
          (ii) A license to be an emergency medical 
        professional.
          (iii) A commercial driver's license.
  (C) The Secretary shall share the information the Secretary 
receives under subparagraph (A)(ii) with the Secretary of 
Defense to help the Secretary of Defense improve training for 
military occupational specialties so that individuals who 
receive such training are able to receive a certification or 
license described in subparagraph (B) from a State.
  (D) The Secretary shall publish on the Internet website of 
the Department available to the public--
          (i) any guidance the Secretary gives the Secretary of 
        Defense with respect to carrying out this section; and
          (ii) any information the Secretary receives from a 
        State pursuant to subparagraph (A).
  (d) Participation in Other Federally Funded Job Training 
Programs.--The [Assistant Secretary of Labor for Veterans' 
Employment and Training] Deputy Under Secretary for Employment, 
Training, and Transition shall promote and monitor 
participation of qualified veterans and eligible persons in 
employment and training opportunities under title I of the 
Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act and other federally 
funded employment and training programs.
  (e) Regional Administrators.--(1) The Secretary shall assign 
to each region for which the Secretary operates a regional 
office a representative of the Veterans' Employment and 
Training Service to serve as the Regional Administrator for 
Veterans' Employment and Training in such region.
  (2) Each such Regional Administrator shall carry out such 
duties as the Secretary may require to promote veterans 
employment and reemployment within the region that the 
Administrator serves.
  (f) Establishment of Performance Standards and Outcomes 
Measures.--(1) The [Assistant Secretary of Labor for Veterans' 
Employment and Training] Deputy Under Secretary for Employment, 
Training, and Transition shall establish and implement a 
comprehensive performance accountability system to measure the 
performance of employment service delivery systems, including 
disabled veterans' outreach program specialists and local 
veterans' employment representatives providing employment, 
training, and placement services under this chapter in a State 
to provide accountability of that State to the Secretary for 
purposes of subsection (c).
  (2) Such standards and measures shall--
          (A) be consistent with State performance 
        accountability measures applicable under section 116(b) 
        of the Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act; and
          (B) be appropriately weighted to provide special 
        consideration for placement of (i) veterans requiring 
        intensive services (as defined in section 4101(9) of 
        this title), such as special disabled veterans and 
        disabled veterans, and (ii) veterans who enroll in 
        readjustment counseling under section 1712A of this 
        title.
  (g) Authority to Provide Technical Assistance to States.--The 
Secretary may provide such technical assistance as the 
Secretary determines appropriate to any State that the 
Secretary determines has, or may have, an entered-employment 
rate in the State that is deficient, as determined under 
subsection (c)(3) with respect to a program year, including 
assistance in the development of a corrective action plan under 
that subsection.
  (h) Consolidation of Disabled Veterans' Outreach Program 
Specialists and Veterans' Employment Representatives.--The 
Secretary may allow the Governor of a State receiving funds 
under subsection (b)(5) to support specialists and 
representatives as described in such subsection to consolidate 
the functions of such specialists and representatives if--
          (1) the Governor determines, and the Secretary 
        concurs, that such consolidation--
                  (A) promotes a more efficient administration 
                of services to veterans with a particular 
                emphasis on services to disabled veterans; and
                  (B) does not hinder the provision of services 
                to veterans and employers; and
          (2) the Governor submits to the Secretary a proposal 
        therefor at such time, in such manner, and containing 
        such information as the Secretary may require.

           *       *       *       *       *       *       *


Sec. 4105. Cooperation of Federal agencies

  (a) All Federal agencies shall furnish the Secretary such 
records, statistics, or information as the Secretary may deem 
necessary or appropriate in administering the provisions of 
this chapter, and shall otherwise cooperate with the Secretary 
in providing continuous employment and training opportunities 
for eligible veterans and eligible persons.
  (b) For the purpose of assisting the Secretary [and the 
Secretary of Veterans Affairs] in identifying employers with 
potential job training opportunities under the Veterans' Job 
Training Act (Public Law 98-77; 29 U.S.C. 1721 note) and 
otherwise in order to carry out this chapter, the Secretary of 
Defense shall, on the 15th day of each month, provide the 
Secretary [and the Secretary of Veterans Affairs] with updated 
information regarding any list maintained by the Secretary of 
Defense of employers participating in the National Committee 
for Employer Support of the Guard and Reserve.

Sec. 4106. Estimate of funds for administration; authorization of 
                    appropriations

  (a) The Secretary shall estimate the funds necessary for the 
proper and efficient administration of this chapter and 
chapters 42 and 43 of this title. Such estimated sums shall 
include the annual amounts necessary for salaries, rents, 
printing and binding, travel, and communications. Sums thus 
estimated shall be included as a special item in the annual 
budget for the [Department of Labor] Department. Estimated 
funds necessary for proper intensive services, placement, and 
training services to eligible veterans and eligible persons 
provided by the various State public employment service 
agencies shall each be separately identified in the budgets of 
those agencies as approved by the [Department of Labor] 
Department. Funds estimated pursuant to the first sentence of 
this subsection shall include amounts necessary in all of the 
States for the purposes specified in paragraph (5) of section 
4102A(b) of this title and to fund the National Veterans' 
Employment and Training Services Institute under section 4109 
of this title and shall be approved by the Secretary only if 
the level of funding proposed is in compliance with such 
sections. Each budget submission with respect to such funds 
shall include a separate listing of the amount for the National 
Veterans' Employment and Training Services Institute together 
with information demonstrating the compliance of such budget 
submission with the funding requirements specified in the 
preceding sentence.
  (b) There are authorized to be appropriated such sums as may 
be necessary for the proper and efficient administration of 
this chapter.
  (c) In the event that the regular appropriations Act making 
appropriations for administrative expenses for the [Department 
of Labor] Department with respect to any fiscal year does not 
specify an amount for the purposes specified in subsection (b) 
of this section for that fiscal year, then of the amounts 
appropriated in such Act there shall be available only for the 
purposes specified in subsection (b) of this section such 
amount as was set forth in the budget estimate submitted 
pursuant to subsection (a) of this section.
  (d) Any funds made available pursuant to subsections (b) and 
(c) of this section shall not be available for any purpose 
other than those specified in such subsections.

Sec. 4107. Administrative controls; annual report

  (a) The Secretary shall establish administrative controls for 
the following purposes:
          (1) To insure that each eligible veteran, especially 
        veterans of the Vietnam era and disabled veterans, and 
        each eligible person who requests assistance under this 
        chapter shall promptly be placed in a satisfactory job 
        or job training opportunity or receive some other 
        specific form of assistance designed to enhance such 
        veteran's and eligible person's employment prospects 
        substantially, such as individual job development or 
        intensive services.
          (2) To determine whether or not the employment 
        service agencies in each State have committed the 
        necessary staff to insure that the provisions of this 
        chapter are carried out; and to arrange for necessary 
        corrective action where staff resources have been 
        determined by the Secretary to be inadequate.
  (b) The Secretary shall apply performance standards 
established under section 4102A(f) of this title for 
determining compliance by the State public employment service 
agencies with the provisions of this chapter and chapter 42 of 
this title. Not later than February 1 of each year, the 
Secretary shall report to the Committees on Veterans' Affairs 
of the Senate and the House of Representatives on the 
performance of States and organizations and entities carrying 
out employment, training, and placement services under this 
chapter, as measured under subsection (b)(7) of section 4102A 
of this title. In the case of a State that the Secretary 
determines has not met the minimum standard of performance 
(established by the Secretary under subsection (f) of such 
section), the Secretary shall include an analysis of the extent 
and reasons for the State's failure to meet that minimum 
standard, together with the State's plan for corrective action 
during the succeeding year.
  (c) Not later than February 1 of each year, the Secretary 
shall report to the Committees on Veterans' Affairs of the 
Senate and the House of Representatives on the success during 
the preceding program year of the [Department of Labor] 
Department and its affiliated State employment service agencies 
in carrying out the provisions of this chapter and programs for 
the provision of employment and training services to meet the 
needs of eligible veterans and eligible persons. The report 
shall include--
          (1) specification, by State and by age group, of the 
        numbers of eligible veterans, disabled veterans, 
        special disabled veterans, eligible persons, recently 
        separated veterans (as defined in section 4211(6) of 
        this title), and servicemembers transitioning to 
        civilian careers who registered for assistance with, or 
        who are identified as veterans by, the public 
        employment service system and, for each of such 
        categories, the numbers referred to and placed in 
        permanent and other jobs, the numbers referred to and 
        placed in jobs and job training programs supported by 
        the Federal Government, the number who received 
        intensive services, and the number who received some, 
        and the number who received no, reportable service;
          (2) a comparison of the rate of entered employment 
        (as determined in a manner consistent with State 
        performance measures applicable under section 136(b) of 
        the Workforce Investment Act of 1998) for each of the 
        categories of veterans and persons described in 
        paragraph (1) of this subsection with such rate of 
        entered employment (as so determined) for nonveterans 
        of the same age groups registered for assistance with 
        the public employment system in each State;
          (3) any determination made by the Secretary during 
        the preceding fiscal year under section 4106 of this 
        title or subsection (a)(2) of this section and a 
        statement of the reasons for such determination;
          (4) a report on activities carried out during the 
        preceding program year under section 4212(d) of this 
        title;
          (5) a report on the operation during the preceding 
        program year of programs for the provision of 
        employment and training services designed to meet the 
        needs of eligible veterans and eligible persons, 
        including an evaluation of the effectiveness of such 
        programs during such program year in meeting the 
        requirements of section 4102A(b) of this title, the 
        efficiency with which services were provided through 
        such programs during such year, and such 
        recommendations for further legislative action relating 
        to veterans' employment and training as the Secretary 
        considers appropriate;
          (6) a report on the operation during the preceding 
        program year of the program of performance incentive 
        awards for quality employment services under section 
        4112 of this title; and
          (7) performance measures for the provision of 
        assistance under this chapter, including--
                  (A) the percentage of participants in 
                programs under this chapter who find employment 
                before the end of the first 90-day period 
                following their completion of the program;
                  (B) the percentage of participants described 
                in subparagraph (A) who are employed during the 
                first 180-day period following the period 
                described in such subparagraph;
                  (C) the median earnings of participants 
                described in subparagraph (A) during the period 
                described in such subparagraph;
                  (D) the median earnings of participants 
                described in subparagraph (B) during the period 
                described in such subparagraph; and
                  (E) the percentage of participants in 
                programs under this chapter who obtain a 
                certificate, degree, diploma, licensure, or 
                industry-recognized credential relating to the 
                program in which they participated under this 
                chapter during the third 90-day period 
                following their completion of the program.

[Sec. 4108. Cooperation and coordination

  [(a) In carrying out the Secretary's responsibilities under 
this chapter, the Secretary shall from time to time consult 
with the Secretary of Veterans Affairs and keep the Secretary 
of Veterans Affairs fully advised of activities carried out and 
all data gathered pursuant to this chapter to insure maximum 
cooperation and coordination between the Department of Labor 
and the Department of Veterans Affairs.
  [(b) The Secretary of Veterans Affairs shall provide to 
appropriate employment service offices and Department of Labor 
offices, as designated by the Secretary, on a monthly or more 
frequent basis, the name and address of each employer located 
in the areas served by such offices that offer a program of job 
training which has been approved by the Secretary of Veterans 
Affairs under section 7 of the Veterans' Job Training Act (29 
U.S.C. 1721 note).]

           *       *       *       *       *       *       *


Sec. 4110. Advisory Committee on Veterans Employment, Training, and 
                    Employer Outreach

  (a)(1) There is hereby established within the [Department of 
Labor] Department an advisory committee to be known as the 
Advisory Committee on Veterans Employment, Training, and 
Employer Outreach.
  (2) The advisory committee shall--
          (A) assess the employment and training needs of 
        veterans and their integration into the workforce;
          (B) determine the extent to which the programs and 
        activities of the [Department of Labor] Department are 
        meeting such needs;
          (C) assist the [Assistant Secretary of Labor for 
        Veterans' Employment and Training] Deputy Under 
        Secretary for Employment, Training, and Transition in 
        carrying out outreach activities to employers with 
        respect to the training and skills of veterans and the 
        advantages afforded employers by hiring veterans;
          (D) make recommendations to the Secretary, through 
        the [Assistant Secretary of Labor for Veterans' 
        Employment and Training] Deputy Under Secretary for 
        Employment, Training, and Transition, with respect to 
        outreach activities and the employment and training of 
        veterans; and
          (E) carry out such other activities that are 
        necessary to make the reports and recommendations 
        referred to in subsection (f) of this section.
  (b) The [Secretary of Labor] Secretary shall, on a regular 
basis, consult with and seek the advice of the advisory 
committee with respect to the matters referred to in subsection 
(a)(2) of this section.
  (c)(1) The [Secretary of Labor] Secretary shall appoint at 
least 12, but no more than 16, individuals to serve as members 
of the advisory committee as follows:
          (A) Seven individuals, one each from among 
        representatives nominated by each of the following 
        organizations:
                  (i) The National Society of Human Resource 
                Managers.
                  (ii) The Business Roundtable.
                  (iii) The National Association of State 
                Workforce Agencies.
                  (iv) The United States Chamber of Commerce.
                  (v) The National Federation of Independent 
                Business.
                  (vi) A nationally recognized labor union or 
                organization.
                  (vii) The National Governors Association.
          (B) Not more than five individuals from among 
        representatives nominated by veterans service 
        organizations that have a national employment program.
          (C) Not more than five individuals who are recognized 
        authorities in the fields of business, employment, 
        training, rehabilitation, or labor and who are not 
        employees of the [Department of Labor] Department.
  (2) A vacancy in the advisory committee shall be filled in 
the manner in which the original appointment was made.
  (d) The following, or their representatives, shall be ex 
officio, nonvoting members of the advisory committee:
          [(1) The Secretary of Veterans Affairs.]
          [(2)] (1) The Secretary of Defense.
          [(3)] (2) The Director of the Office of Personnel 
        Management.
          [(4)] (3) The Assistant [Secretary of Labor] 
        Secretary for Veterans Employment and Training.
          [(5)] (4) The Assistant [Secretary of Labor] 
        Secretary for Employment and Training.
          [(6)] (5) The Administrator of the Small Business 
        Administration.
  (e)(1) The advisory committee shall meet at least quarterly.
  (2) The [Secretary of Labor] Secretary shall appoint the 
chairman of the advisory committee who shall serve in that 
position for no more than 2 consecutive years.
  (3)(A) Members of the advisory committee shall serve without 
compensation.
  (B) Members of the advisory committee shall be allowed 
reasonable and necessary travel expenses, including per diem in 
lieu of subsistence, at rates authorized for persons serving 
intermittently in the Government service in accordance with the 
provisions of subchapter I of chapter 57 of title 5 while away 
from their homes or regular places of business in the 
performance of the responsibilities of the advisory committee.
  (4) The [Secretary of Labor] Secretary shall provide staff 
and administrative support to the advisory committee through 
the Veterans Employment and Training Service.
  (f)(1) Not later than December 31 of each year, the advisory 
committee shall submit to the Secretary and to the Committees 
on Veterans' Affairs of the Senate and House of Representatives 
a report on the employment and training needs of veterans, with 
special emphasis on disabled veterans, for the previous fiscal 
year. Each such report shall contain--
          (A) an assessment of the employment and training 
        needs of veterans and their integration into the 
        workforce;
          (B) an assessment of the outreach activities carried 
        out by the [Secretary of Labor] Secretary to employers 
        with respect to the training and skills of veterans and 
        the advantages afforded employers by hiring veterans;
          (C) an evaluation of the extent to which the programs 
        and activities of the [Department of Labor] Department 
        are meeting such needs;
          (D) a description of the activities of the advisory 
        committee during that fiscal year;
          (E) a description of activities that the advisory 
        committee proposes to undertake in the succeeding 
        fiscal year; and
          (F) any recommendations for legislation, 
        administrative action, and other action that the 
        advisory committee considers appropriate.
  (2) In addition to the annual reports made under paragraph 
(1), the advisory committee may make recommendations to the 
[Secretary of Labor] Secretary with respect to the employment 
and training needs of veterans at such times and in such manner 
as the advisory committee determines appropriate.
  (g) Within 60 days after receiving each annual report 
referred to in subsection (f)(1), the [Secretary of Labor] 
Secretary shall transmit to Congress a copy of the report 
together with any comments concerning the report that the 
Secretary considers appropriate.
  (h) The advisory committee shall continue until terminated by 
law.

Sec. 4110A. Special unemployment study

  (a)(1) The Secretary, through the Bureau of Labor Statistics, 
shall conduct an annual study of unemployment among each of the 
following categories of veterans:
          (A) Veterans who were called to active duty while 
        members of the National Guard or a Reserve Component.
          (B) Veterans who served in combat or in a war zone in 
        the Post 9/11 Global Operations theaters.
          (C) Veterans who served on active duty during the 
        Post 9/11 Global Operations period who did not serve in 
        the Post 9/11 Global Operations theaters.
          (D) Veterans of the Vietnam era who served in the 
        Vietnam theater of operations during the Vietnam era.
          (E) Veterans who served on active duty during the 
        Vietnam era who did not serve in the Vietnam theater of 
        operations.
          (F) Veterans discharged or released from active duty 
        within four years of the applicable study.
          (G) Special disabled veterans.
  (2) Within each of the categories of veterans specified in 
paragraph (1), the Secretary shall include a separate category 
for women who are veterans.
  (b) The Secretary shall promptly submit to [Congress] the 
Committees on Veterans' Affairs of the Senate and House of 
Representatives a report on the results of each study under 
subsection (a).
  (c) In this section:
          (1) The term ``Post 9/11 Global Operations period'' 
        means the period of the Persian Gulf War beginning on 
        September 11, 2001, and ending on the date thereafter 
        prescribed by Presidential proclamation or law.
          (2) The term ``Post 9/11 Global Operations theaters'' 
        means Afghanistan, Iraq, or any other theater in which 
        the Global War on Terrorism Expeditionary Medal is 
        awarded for service.

           *       *       *       *       *       *       *


Sec. 4112. Performance incentive awards for quality employment, 
                    training, and placement services

  (a) Criteria for Performance Incentive Awards.--(1) For 
purposes of carrying out a program of performance incentive 
awards under section 4102A(c)(2)(A)(i)(III) of this title, the 
Secretary, acting through the [Assistant Secretary of Labor for 
Veterans' Employment and Training] Deputy Under Secretary for 
Employment, Training, and Transition, shall establish criteria 
for performance incentive awards programs to be administered by 
States to--
          (A) encourage the improvement and modernization of 
        employment, training, and placement services provided 
        under this chapter; and
          (B) recognize eligible employees and employment 
        service offices for excellence in the provision of such 
        services or for having made demonstrable improvements 
        in the provision of such services.
  (2) The Secretary shall establish such criteria in 
consultation with representatives of States, political 
subdivisions of States, and other providers of employment, 
training, and placement services under the Workforce Investment 
Act of 1998 consistent with the performance measures 
established under section 4102A(b)(7) of this title.
  (b) Form of Awards.--Under the criteria established by the 
Secretary for performance incentive awards to be administered 
by States, an award under such criteria may be a cash award or 
such other nonfinancial awards as the Secretary may specify.
  (c) Administration and Use of Awards.--Performance incentive 
cash awards under this section--
          (1) shall be made from amounts allocated from the 
        grant or contract amount for a State for a program year 
        under section 4102A(c)(7) of this title;
          (2) in the case of such an award made to an eligible 
        employee, shall be in addition to the regular pay of 
        the recipient; and
          (3) in the case of such an award made to an 
        employment service office, may be used by that 
        employment service office for any purpose.
  (d) Eligible Employee Defined.--In this section, the term 
``eligible employee'' means any of the following:
          (1) A disabled veterans' outreach program specialist.
          (2) A local veterans' employment representative.
          (3) An individual providing employment, training, and 
        placement services to veterans under the Workforce 
        Investment Act of 1998 or through an employment service 
        delivery system (as defined in section 4101(7) of this 
        title).

           *       *       *       *       *       *       *


Sec. 4114. Credentialing and licensure of veterans: demonstration 
                    project

  (a) Demonstration Project Authorized.--The [Assistant 
Secretary for Veterans' Employment and Training] Deputy Under 
Secretary for Employment, Training, and Transition shall carry 
out a demonstration project on credentialing in accordance with 
this section for the purpose of facilitating the seamless 
transition of members of the Armed Forces from service on 
active duty to civilian employment.
  (b) Identification of Military Occupational Specialties and 
Associated Credentials and Licenses.--(1) The [Assistant 
Secretary for Veterans' Employment and Training] Deputy Under 
Secretary for Employment, Training, and Transition shall, in 
consultation with the [Assistant Secretary for Employment and 
Training] Deputy Under Secretary for Employment, Training, and 
Transition, select not more than five military occupational 
specialties for purposes of the demonstration project. Each 
specialty so selected by the [Assistant Secretary for Veterans' 
Employment and Training] Deputy Under Secretary for Employment, 
Training, and Transition shall require a skill or set of skills 
that is required for civilian employment in an industry with 
high growth or high worker demand.
  (2) The [Assistant Secretary] Deputy Under Secretary shall 
enter into a contract with an appropriate entity representing a 
coalition of State governors to consult with appropriate 
Federal, State, and industry officials and identify 
requirements for credentials, certifications, and licenses that 
require a skill or set of skills required by a military 
occupational specialty selected under paragraph (1).
  (3) The [Assistant Secretary] Deputy Under Secretary shall 
analyze the requirements identified under paragraph (2) to 
determine which requirements may be satisfied by the skills, 
training, or experience acquired by members of the Armed Forces 
with the military occupational specialties selected under 
paragraph (1).
  (c) Elimination of Barriers to Credentialing and Licensure.--
The [Assistant Secretary] Deputy Under Secretary shall 
cooperate with appropriate Federal, State, and industry 
officials to reduce or eliminate any barriers to providing a 
credential, certification, or license to a veteran who acquired 
any skill, training, or experience while serving as a member of 
the Armed Forces with a military occupational specialty 
selected under subsection (b)(1) that satisfies the Federal and 
State requirements for the credential, certification, or 
license.
  (d) Period of Project.--The period during which the 
[Assistant Secretary] Deputy Under Secretary shall carry out 
the demonstration project under this section shall be the two-
year period beginning on the date of the enactment of the VOW 
to Hire Heroes Act of 2011.

Sec. 4115. Longitudinal study of job counseling, training, and 
                    placement service for veterans

  (a) Study Required.--(1) The Secretary shall enter into a 
contract with a non-government entity to conduct a longitudinal 
study of a statistically valid sample of each of the groups of 
individuals described in paragraph (2). The contract shall 
provide for the study of each such group over a period of at 
least five years.
  (2) The groups of individuals described in this paragraph are 
the following:
          (A) Veterans who have received intensive services.
          (B) Veterans who did not receive intensive services 
        but who otherwise received services under this chapter.
          (C) Veterans who did not seek or receive services 
        under this chapter.
  (3) The study required by this subsection shall include the 
collection of the following information for each individual who 
participates in the study:
          (A) The average number of months such individual 
        served on active duty.
          (B) The distribution of disability ratings of such 
        individual.
          (C) Any unemployment benefits received by such 
        individual.
          (D) The average number of months such individual was 
        employed during the year covered by the report.
          (E) The average annual starting and ending salaries 
        of any such individual who was employed during the year 
        covered by the report.
          (F) The average annual income of such individual.
          (G) The average total household income of such 
        individual for the year covered by the report.
          (H) The percentage of such individuals who own their 
        principal residences.
          (I) The employment status of such individual.
          (J) In the case of such an individual who received 
        services under this chapter, whether the individual 
        believes that any service provided by a disabled 
        veterans' outreach specialist or local veterans' 
        employment representative helped the individual to 
        become employed.
          (K) In the case of such an individual who believes 
        such a service helped the individual to become 
        employed, whether--
                  (i) the individual retained the position of 
                employment for a period of one year or longer; 
                and
                  (ii) the individual believes such a service 
                helped the individual to secure a higher wage 
                or salary.
          (L) The conditions under which such individual was 
        discharged or released from the Armed Forces.
          (M) Whether such individual has used any educational 
        assistance to which the individual is entitled under 
        this title.
          (N) Whether such individual has participated in a 
        rehabilitation program under chapter 31 of this title.
          (O) Demographic information about such individual.
          (P) Such other information as the Secretary 
        determines appropriate.
  (b) Annual Reports.--(1) By not later than July 1 of each 
year covered by the study required under subsection (a), the 
Secretary shall submit to the Committees on Veterans' Affairs 
of the Senate and House of Representatives a report on the 
outcomes of the study during the preceding year.
  (2) The Secretary shall include in each annual report 
submitted under paragraph (1) any information the Secretary 
determines is necessary to determine the long-term outcomes of 
the individuals in the groups described in subsection (a)(2).

           *       *       *       *       *       *       *


CHAPTER 42--EMPLOYMENT AND TRAINING OF VETERANS

           *       *       *       *       *       *       *



Sec. 4211. Definitions

   As used in this chapter--
  (1) The term ``special disabled veteran'' means--
          (A) a veteran who is entitled to compensation (or who 
        but for the receipt of military retired pay would be 
        entitled to compensation) under laws administered by 
        the Secretary for a disability (i) rated at 30 percent 
        or more, or (ii) rated at 10 or 20 percent in the case 
        of a veteran who has been determined under section 3106 
        of this title to have a serious employment handicap; or
          (B) a person who was discharged or released from 
        active duty because of service-connected disability.
  (2) The term ``veteran of the Vietnam era'' means an eligible 
veteran any part of whose active military, naval, or air 
service was during the Vietnam era.
  (3) The term ``disabled veteran'' means (A) a veteran who is 
entitled to compensation (or who but for the receipt of 
military retired pay would be entitled to compensation) under 
laws administered by the Secretary, or (B) a person who was 
discharged or released from active duty because of a service-
connected disability.
  (4) The term ``eligible veteran'' means a person who--
          (A) served on active duty for a period of more than 
        180 days and was discharged or released therefrom with 
        other than a dishonorable discharge;
          (B) was discharged or released from active duty 
        because of a service-connected disability;
          (C) as a member of a reserve component under an order 
        to active duty pursuant to section 12301(a), (d), or 
        (g), 12302, or 12304 of title 10, served on active duty 
        during a period of war or in a campaign or expedition 
        for which a campaign badge is authorized and was 
        discharged or released from such duty with other than a 
        dishonorable discharge; or
          (D) was discharged or released from active duty by 
        reason of a sole survivorship discharge (as that term 
        is defined in section 1174(i) of title 10).
  (5) The term ``department or agency'' means any agency of the 
Federal Government or the District of Columbia, including any 
Executive agency as defined in section 105 of title 5 and the 
United States Postal Service and the Postal Regulatory 
Commission, and the term ``department, agency, or 
instrumentality in the executive branch'' includes the United 
States Postal Service and the Postal Regulatory Commission.
  (6) The term ``recently separated veteran'' means any veteran 
during the three-year period beginning on the date of such 
veteran's discharge or release from active duty.

Sec. 4212. Veterans' employment emphasis under Federal contracts

  (a)(1) Any contract in the amount of $100,000 or more entered 
into by any department or agency of the United States for the 
procurement of personal property and nonpersonal services 
(including construction) for the United States, shall contain a 
provision requiring that the party contracting with the United 
States take affirmative action to employ and advance in 
employment qualified covered veterans. This section applies to 
any subcontract in the amount of $100,000 or more entered into 
by a prime contractor in carrying out any such contract.
  (2) In addition to requiring affirmative action to employ 
such qualified covered veterans under such contracts and 
subcontracts and in order to promote the implementation of such 
requirement, the [Secretary of Labor] Secretary shall prescribe 
regulations requiring that--
          (A) each such contractor for each such contract shall 
        immediately list all of its employment openings with 
        the appropriate employment service delivery system (as 
        defined in section 4101(7) of this title), and may also 
        list such openings with one-stop career centers under 
        the Workforce Investment Act of 1998, other appropriate 
        service delivery points, or America's Job Bank (or any 
        additional or subsequent national electronic job bank 
        established by the [Department of Labor] Department), 
        except that the contractor may exclude openings for 
        executive and senior management positions and positions 
        which are to be filled from within the contractor's 
        organization and positions lasting three days or less;
          (B) each such employment service delivery system 
        shall give such qualified covered veterans priority in 
        referral to such employment openings; and
          (C) each such employment service delivery system 
        shall provide a list of such employment openings to 
        States, political subdivisions of States, or any 
        private entities or organizations under contract to 
        carry out employment, training, and placement services 
        under chapter 41 of this title.
  (3) In this section:
          (A) The term ``covered veteran'' means any of the 
        following veterans:
                  (i) Disabled veterans.
                  (ii) Veterans who served on active duty in 
                the Armed Forces during a war or in a campaign 
                or expedition for which a campaign badge has 
                been authorized.
                  (iii) Veterans who, while serving on active 
                duty in the Armed Forces, participated in a 
                United States military operation for which an 
                Armed Forces service medal was awarded pursuant 
                to Executive Order No. 12985 (61 Fed. Reg. 
                1209).
                  (iv) Recently separated veterans.
          (B) The term ``qualified'', with respect to an 
        employment position, means having the ability to 
        perform the essential functions of the position with or 
        without reasonable accommodation for an individual with 
        a disability.
  (b) If any special disabled veteran or veteran of the Vietnam 
era believes any contractor of the United States has failed to 
comply or refuses to comply with the provisions of the 
contractor's contract relating to the employment of veterans, 
the veteran may file a complaint with the [Secretary of Labor] 
Secretary, who shall promptly investigate such complaint and 
take appropriate action in accordance with the terms of the 
contract and applicable laws and regulations.
  (c) The [Secretary of Labor] Secretary shall include as part 
of the annual report required by section 4107(c) of this title 
the number of complaints filed pursuant to subsection (b) of 
this section, the actions taken thereon and the resolutions 
thereof. Such report shall also include the number of 
contractors listing employment openings, the nature, types, and 
number of positions listed and the number of veterans receiving 
priority pursuant to subsection (a)(2)(B).
  (d)(1) Each contractor to whom subsection (a) applies shall, 
in accordance with regulations which the [Secretary of Labor] 
Secretary shall prescribe, report at least annually to the 
[Secretary of Labor] Secretary on--
          (A) the number of employees in the workforce of such 
        contractor, by job category and hiring location, and 
        the number of such employees, by job category and 
        hiring location, who are qualified covered veterans;
          (B) the total number of new employees hired by the 
        contractor during the period covered by the report and 
        the number of such employees who are qualified covered 
        veterans; and
          (C) the maximum number and the minimum number of 
        employees of such contractor during the period covered 
        by the report.
  (2) The [Secretary of Labor] Secretary shall ensure that the 
administration of the reporting requirement under paragraph (1) 
is coordinated with respect to any requirement for the 
contractor to make any other report to the [Secretary of Labor] 
Secretary.
  (3) The [Secretary of Labor] Secretary shall establish and 
maintain an Internet website on which the [Secretary of Labor] 
Secretary shall publicly disclose the information reported to 
the [Secretary of Labor] Secretary by contractors under 
paragraph (1).

           *       *       *       *       *       *       *


Sec. 4214. Employment within the Federal Government

  (a)(1) The United States has an obligation to assist veterans 
of the Armed Forces in readjusting to civilian life. The 
Federal Government is also continuously concerned with building 
an effective work force, and veterans constitute a uniquely 
qualified recruiting source. It is, therefore, the policy of 
the United States and the purpose of this section to promote 
the maximum of employment and job advancement opportunities 
within the Federal Government for qualified covered veterans 
(as defined in paragraph (2)(B)) who are qualified for such 
employment and advancement.
  (2) In this section:
          (A) The term ``agency'' has the meaning given the 
        term ``department or agency'' in section 4211(5) of 
        this title.
          (B) The term ``qualified covered veteran'' means a 
        veteran described in section 4212(a)(3) of this title.
  (b)(1) To further the policy stated in subsection (a) of this 
section, veterans referred to in paragraph (2) of this 
subsection shall be eligible, in accordance with regulations 
which the Office of Personnel Management shall prescribe, for 
veterans recruitment appointments, and for subsequent career-
conditional appointments, under the terms and conditions 
specified in Executive Order Numbered 11521 (March 26, 1970), 
except that--
          (A) such an appointment may be made up to and 
        including the level GS-11 or its equivalent;
          (B) a veteran shall be eligible for such an 
        appointment without regard to the number of years of 
        education completed by such veteran;
          (C) a veteran who is entitled to disability 
        compensation under the laws administered by the 
        Department of Veterans Affairs or whose discharge or 
        release from active duty was for a disability incurred 
        or aggravated in line of duty shall be given a 
        preference for such an appointment over other veterans;
          (D) a veteran receiving such an appointment shall--
                  (i) in the case of a veteran with less than 
                15 years of education, receive training or 
                education; and
                  (ii) upon successful completion of the 
                prescribed probationary period, acquire a 
                competitive status; and
          (E) a veteran given an appointment under the 
        authority of this subsection whose employment under the 
        appointment is terminated within one year after the 
        date of such appointment shall have the same right to 
        appeal that termination to the Merit Systems Protection 
        Board as a career or career-conditional employee has 
        during the first year of employment.
  (2) This subsection applies to qualified covered veterans.
  (3) A qualified covered veteran may receive such an 
appointment at any time.
  (c) Each agency shall include in its affirmative action plan 
for the hiring, placement, and advancement of handicapped 
individuals in such agency as required by section 501(b) of the 
Rehabilitation Act of 1973 (29 U.S.C. 791(b)), a separate 
specification of plans (in accordance with regulations which 
the Office of Personnel Management shall prescribe in 
consultation with the Secretary, the [Secretary of Labor] 
Secretary, and the Secretary of Health and Human Services, 
consistent with the purposes, provisions, and priorities of 
such Act) to promote and carry out such affirmative action with 
respect to disabled veterans in order to achieve the purpose of 
this section.
  (d) The Office of Personnel Management shall be responsible 
for the review and evaluation of the implementation of this 
section and the activities of each agency to carry out the 
purpose and provisions of this section. The Office shall 
periodically obtain (on at least an annual basis) information 
on the implementation of this section by each agency and on the 
activities of each agency to carry out the purpose and 
provisions of this section. The information obtained shall 
include specification of the use and extent of appointments 
made by each agency under subsection (b) of this section and 
the results of the plans required under subsection (c) of this 
section.
  (e)(1) The Office of Personnel Management shall submit to the 
Congress annually a report on activities carried out under this 
section. Each such report shall include the following 
information with respect to each agency:
          (A) The number of appointments made under subsection 
        (b) of this section since the last such report and the 
        grade levels in which such appointments were made.
          (B) The number of individuals receiving appointments 
        under such subsection whose appointments were converted 
        to career or career-conditional appointments, or whose 
        employment under such an appointment has terminated, 
        since the last such report, together with a complete 
        listing of categories of causes of appointment 
        terminations and the number of such individuals whose 
        employment has terminated falling into each such 
        category.
          (C) The number of such terminations since the last 
        such report that were initiated by the agency involved 
        and the number of such terminations since the last such 
        report that were initiated by the individual involved.
          (D) A description of the education and training 
        programs in which individuals appointed under such 
        subsection are participating at the time of such 
        report.
  (2) Information shown for an agency under clauses (A) through 
(D) of paragraph (1) of this subsection--
          (A) shall be shown for all veterans; and
          (B) shall be shown separately (i) for veterans who 
        are entitled to disability compensation under the laws 
        administered by the Secretary or whose discharge or 
        release from active duty was for a disability incurred 
        or aggravated in line of duty, and (ii) for other 
        veterans.
  (f) Notwithstanding section 4211 of this title, the terms 
``veteran'' and ``disabled veteran'' as used in subsection (a) 
of this section shall have the meaning provided for under 
generally applicable civil service law and regulations.
  (g) To further the policy stated in subsection (a) of this 
section, the Secretary may give preference to qualified covered 
veterans for employment in the Department as veterans' benefits 
counselors and veterans' claims examiners and in positions to 
provide the outreach services required under section 6303 of 
this title, to serve as veterans' representatives at certain 
educational institutions as provided in section 6305 of this 
title, or to provide readjustment counseling under section 
1712A of this title.

Sec. 4215. Priority of service for veterans in Department of Labor job 
                    training programs

  (a) Definitions.--In this section:
          (1) The term ``covered person'' means any of the 
        following individuals:
                  (A) A veteran.
                  (B) The spouse of any of the following 
                individuals:
                          (i) Any veteran who died of a 
                        service-connected disability.
                          (ii) Any member of the Armed Forces 
                        serving on active duty who, at the time 
                        of application for assistance under 
                        this section, is listed, pursuant to 
                        section 556 of title 37 and regulations 
                        issued thereunder, by the Secretary 
                        concerned in one or more of the 
                        following categories and has been so 
                        listed for a total of more than 90 
                        days: (I) missing in action, (II) 
                        captured in line of duty by a hostile 
                        force, or (III) forcibly detained or 
                        interned in line of duty by a foreign 
                        government or power.
                          (iii) Any veteran who has a total 
                        disability resulting from a service-
                        connected disability.
                          (iv) Any veteran who died while a 
                        disability so evaluated was in 
                        existence.
          (2) The term ``qualified job training program'' means 
        any workforce preparation, development, or delivery 
        program or service that is directly funded, in whole or 
        in part, by the [Department of Labor] Department and 
        includes the following:
                  (A) Any such program or service that uses 
                technology to assist individuals to access 
                workforce development programs (such as job and 
                training opportunities, labor market 
                information, career assessment tools, and 
                related support services).
                  (B) Any such program or service under the 
                public employment service system, one-stop 
                career centers, the Workforce Investment Act of 
                1998, a demonstration or other temporary 
                program, and those programs implemented by 
                States or local service providers based on 
                Federal block grants administered by the 
                [Department of Labor] Department.
                  (C) Any such program or service that is a 
                workforce development program targeted to 
                specific groups.
          (3) The term ``priority of service'' means, with 
        respect to any qualified job training program, that a 
        covered person shall be given priority over nonveterans 
        for the receipt of employment, training, and placement 
        services provided under that program, notwithstanding 
        any other provision of law. Such priority includes 
        giving access to such services to a covered person 
        before a non-covered person or, if resources are 
        limited, giving access to such services to a covered 
        person instead of a non-covered person.
  (b) Entitlement to Priority of Service.--(1) A covered person 
is entitled to priority of service under any qualified job 
training program if the person otherwise meets the eligibility 
requirements for participation in such program.
  (2) The [Secretary of Labor] Secretary may establish 
priorities among covered persons for purposes of this section 
to take into account the needs of disabled veterans and special 
disabled veterans, and such other factors as the Secretary 
determines appropriate.
  (c) Administration of Programs at State and Local Levels.--An 
entity of a State or a political subdivision of the State that 
administers or delivers services under a qualified job training 
program shall--
          (1) provide information and priority of service to 
        covered persons regarding benefits and services that 
        may be obtained through other entities or service 
        providers; and
          (2) ensure that each covered person who applies to or 
        who is assisted by such a program is informed of the 
        employment-related rights and benefits to which the 
        person is entitled under this section.
  (d) Addition to Annual Report.--(1) In the annual report 
required under section 4107(c) of this title for the program 
year beginning in 2003 and each subsequent program year, the 
[Secretary of Labor] Secretary shall evaluate whether covered 
persons are receiving priority of service and are being fully 
served by qualified job training programs. Such evaluation 
shall include--
          (A) an analysis of the implementation of providing 
        such priority at the local level;
          (B) whether the representation of veterans in such 
        programs is in proportion to the incidence of 
        representation of veterans in the labor market, 
        including within groups that the Secretary may 
        designate for priority under such programs, if any; and
          (C) performance measures, as determined by the 
        Secretary, to determine whether veterans are receiving 
        priority of service and are being fully served by 
        qualified job training programs.
  (2) The Secretary may not use the proportion of 
representation of veterans described in subparagraph (B) of 
paragraph (1) as the basis for determining under such paragraph 
whether veterans are receiving priority of service and are 
being fully served by qualified job training programs.

           *       *       *       *       *       *       *


   CHAPTER 43--EMPLOYMENT AND REEMPLOYMENT RIGHTS OF MEMBERS OF THE 
UNIFORMED SERVICES

           *       *       *       *       *       *       *



SUBCHAPTER I--GENERAL

           *       *       *       *       *       *       *



Sec. 4303. Definitions

   For the purposes of this chapter--
          (1) The term ``Attorney General'' means the Attorney 
        General of the United States or any person designated 
        by the Attorney General to carry out a responsibility 
        of the Attorney General under this chapter.
          (2) The term ``benefit'', ``benefit of employment'', 
        or ``rights and benefits'' means the terms, conditions, 
        or privileges of employment, including any advantage, 
        profit, privilege, gain, status, account, or interest 
        (including wages or salary for work performed) that 
        accrues by reason of an employment contract or 
        agreement or an employer policy, plan, or practice and 
        includes rights and benefits under a pension plan, a 
        health plan, an employee stock ownership plan, 
        insurance coverage and awards, bonuses, severance pay, 
        supplemental unemployment benefits, vacations, and the 
        opportunity to select work hours or location of 
        employment.
          (3) The term ``employee'' means any person employed 
        by an employer. Such term includes any person who is a 
        citizen, national, or permanent resident alien of the 
        United States employed in a workplace in a foreign 
        country by an employer that is an entity incorporated 
        or otherwise organized in the United States or that is 
        controlled by an entity organized in the United States, 
        within the meaning of section 4319(c) of this title.
          (4)(A) Except as provided in subparagraphs (B) and 
        (C), the term ``employer'' means any person, 
        institution, organization, or other entity that pays 
        salary or wages for work performed or that has control 
        over employment opportunities, including--
                  (i) a person, institution, organization, or 
                other entity to whom the employer has delegated 
                the performance of employment-related 
                responsibilities;
                  (ii) the Federal Government;
                  (iii) a State;
                  (iv) any successor in interest to a person, 
                institution, organization, or other entity 
                referred to in this subparagraph; and
                  (v) a person, institution, organization, or 
                other entity that has denied initial employment 
                in violation of section 4311.
          (B) In the case of a National Guard technician 
        employed under section 709 of title 32, the term 
        ``employer'' means the adjutant general of the State in 
        which the technician is employed.
          (C) Except as an actual employer of employees, an 
        employee pension benefit plan described in section 3(2) 
        of the Employee Retirement Income Security Act of 1974 
        (29 U.S.C. 1002(2)) shall be deemed to be an employer 
        only with respect to the obligation to provide benefits 
        described in section 4318.
          (D)(i) Whether the term ``successor in interest'' 
        applies with respect to an entity described in 
        subparagraph (A) for purposes of clause (iv) of such 
        subparagraph shall be determined on a case-by-case 
        basis using a multi-factor test that considers the 
        following factors:
                  (I) Substantial continuity of business 
                operations.
                  (II) Use of the same or similar facilities.
                  (III) Continuity of work force.
                  (IV) Similarity of jobs and working 
                conditions.
                  (V) Similarity of supervisory personnel.
                  (VI) Similarity of machinery, equipment, and 
                production methods.
                  (VII) Similarity of products or services.
          (ii) The entity's lack of notice or awareness of a 
        potential or pending claim under this chapter at the 
        time of a merger, acquisition, or other form of 
        succession shall not be considered when applying the 
        multi-factor test under clause (i).
          (5) The term ``Federal executive agency'' includes 
        the United States Postal Service, the Postal Regulatory 
        Commission, any nonappropriated fund instrumentality of 
        the United States, any Executive agency (as that term 
        is defined in section 105 of title 5) other than an 
        agency referred to in section 2302(a)(2)(C)(ii) of 
        title 5, and any military department (as that term is 
        defined in section 102 of title 5) with respect to the 
        civilian employees of that department.
          (6) The term ``Federal Government'' includes any 
        Federal executive agency, the legislative branch of the 
        United States, and the judicial branch of the United 
        States.
          (7) The term ``health plan'' means an insurance 
        policy or contract, medical or hospital service 
        agreement, membership or subscription contract, or 
        other arrangement under which health services for 
        individuals are provided or the expenses of such 
        services are paid.
          (8) The term ``notice'' means (with respect to 
        subchapter II) any written or verbal notification of an 
        obligation or intention to perform service in the 
        uniformed services provided to an employer by the 
        employee who will perform such service or by the 
        uniformed service in which such service is to be 
        performed.
          (9) The term ``qualified'', with respect to an 
        employment position, means having the ability to 
        perform the essential tasks of the position.
          (10) The term ``reasonable efforts'', in the case of 
        actions required of an employer under this chapter, 
        means actions, including training provided by an 
        employer, that do not place an undue hardship on the 
        employer.
          [(11) Notwithstanding section 101, the term 
        ``Secretary'' means the Secretary of Labor or any 
        person designated by such Secretary to carry out an 
        activity under this chapter.]
          (12) The term ``seniority'' means longevity in 
        employment together with any benefits of employment 
        which accrue with, or are determined by, longevity in 
        employment.
          (13) The term ``service in the uniformed services'' 
        means the performance of duty on a voluntary or 
        involuntary basis in a uniformed service under 
        competent authority and includes active duty, active 
        duty for training, initial active duty for training, 
        inactive duty training, full-time National Guard duty, 
        a period for which a person is absent from a position 
        of employment for the purpose of an examination to 
        determine the fitness of the person to perform any such 
        duty, and a period for which a person is absent from 
        employment for the purpose of performing funeral honors 
        duty as authorized by section 12503 of title 10 or 
        section 115 of title 32.
          (14) The term ``State'' means each of the several 
        States of the United States, the District of Columbia, 
        the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico, Guam, the Virgin 
        Islands, and other territories of the United States 
        (including the agencies and political subdivisions 
        thereof).
          (15) The term ``undue hardship'', in the case of 
        actions taken by an employer, means actions requiring 
        significant difficulty or expense, when considered in 
        light of--
                  (A) the nature and cost of the action needed 
                under this chapter;
                  (B) the overall financial resources of the 
                facility or facilities involved in the 
                provision of the action; the number of persons 
                employed at such facility; the effect on 
                expenses and resources, or the impact otherwise 
                of such action upon the operation of the 
                facility;
                  (C) the overall financial resources of the 
                employer; the overall size of the business of 
                an employer with respect to the number of its 
                employees; the number, type, and location of 
                its facilities; and
                  (D) the type of operation or operations of 
                the employer, including the composition, 
                structure, and functions of the work force of 
                such employer; the geographic separateness, 
                administrative, or fiscal relationship of the 
                facility or facilities in question to the 
                employer.
          (16) The term ``uniformed services'' means the Armed 
        Forces, the Army National Guard and the Air National 
        Guard when engaged in active duty for training, 
        inactive duty training, or full-time National Guard 
        duty, the commissioned corps of the Public Health 
        Service, and any other category of persons designated 
        by the President in time of war or national emergency.

           *       *       *       *       *       *       *


  SUBCHAPTER II--EMPLOYMENT AND REEMPLOYMENT RIGHTS AND LIMITATIONS; 
PROHIBITIONS

           *       *       *       *       *       *       *



Sec. 4317. Health plans

  (a)(1) In any case in which a person (or the person's 
dependents) has coverage under a health plan in connection with 
the person's position of employment, including a group health 
plan (as defined in section 607(1) of the Employee Retirement 
Income Security Act of 1974), and such person is absent from 
such position of employment by reason of service in the 
uniformed services, or such person becomes eligible for medical 
and dental care under chapter 55 of title 10 by reason of 
subsection (d) of section 1074 of that title, the plan shall 
provide that the person may elect to continue such coverage as 
provided in this subsection. The maximum period of coverage of 
a person and the person's dependents under such an election 
shall be the lesser of--
          (A) the 24-month period beginning on the date on 
        which the person's absence begins; or
          (B) the day after the date on which the person fails 
        to apply for or return to a position of employment, as 
        determined under section 4312(e).
  (2) A person who elects to continue health-plan coverage 
under this paragraph may be required to pay not more than 102 
percent of the full premium under the plan (determined in the 
same manner as the applicable premium under section 4980B(f)(4) 
of the Internal Revenue Code of 1986) associated with such 
coverage for the employer's other employees, except that in the 
case of a person who performs service in the uniformed services 
for less than 31 days, such person may not be required to pay 
more than the employee share, if any, for such coverage.
  (3) In the case of a health plan that is a multiemployer 
plan, as defined in section 3(37) of the Employee Retirement 
Income Security Act of 1974, any liability under the plan for 
employer contributions and benefits arising under this 
paragraph shall be allocated--
          (A) by the plan in such manner as the plan sponsor 
        shall provide; or
          (B) if the sponsor does not provide--
                  (i) to the last employer employing the person 
                before the period served by the person in the 
                uniformed services, or
                  (ii) if such last employer is no longer 
                functional, to the plan.
  (b)(1) Except as provided in paragraph (2), in the case of a 
person whose coverage under a health plan was terminated by 
reason of service in the uniformed services, or by reason of 
the person's having become eligible for medical and dental care 
under chapter 55 of title 10 by reason of subsection (d) of 
section 1074 of that title, an exclusion or waiting period may 
not be imposed in connection with the reinstatement of such 
coverage upon reemployment under this chapter if an exclusion 
or waiting period would not have been imposed under a health 
plan had coverage of such person by such plan not been 
terminated as a result of such service or eligibility. This 
paragraph applies to the person who is reemployed and to any 
individual who is covered by such plan by reason of the 
reinstatement of the coverage of such person.
  (2) Paragraph (1) shall not apply to the coverage of any 
illness or injury determined by the [Secretary of Veterans 
Affairs] Secretary to have been incurred in, or aggravated 
during, performance of service in the uniformed services.
  (3) In the case of a person whose coverage under a health 
plan is terminated by reason of the person having become 
eligible for medical and dental care under chapter 55 of title 
10 by reason of subsection (d) of section 1074 of that title 
but who subsequently does not commence a period of active duty 
under the order to active duty that established such 
eligibility because the order is canceled before such active 
duty commences, the provisions of paragraph (1) relating to any 
exclusion or waiting period in connection with the 
reinstatement of coverage under a health plan shall apply to 
such person's continued employment, upon the termination of 
such eligibility for medical and dental care under chapter 55 
of title 10 that is incident to the cancellation of such order, 
in the same manner as if the person had become reemployed upon 
such termination of eligibility.

           *       *       *       *       *       *       *


      SUBCHAPTER III--PROCEDURES FOR ASSISTANCE, ENFORCEMENT, AND 
                             INVESTIGATION


Sec. 4321. Assistance in obtaining reemployment or other employment 
                    rights or benefits

  The Secretary [(through the Veterans' Employment and Training 
Service)] shall provide assistance to any person with respect 
to the employment and reemployment rights and benefits to which 
such person is entitled under this chapter. In providing such 
assistance, the Secretary may request the assistance of 
existing Federal and State agencies engaged in similar or 
related activities and utilize the assistance of volunteers.

           *       *       *       *       *       *       *


SUBCHAPTER IV--MISCELLANEOUS PROVISIONS

           *       *       *       *       *       *       *



Sec. 4332. Reports

  (a) Annual Report by Secretary.--The Secretary shall, after 
consultation with the Attorney General and the Special Counsel 
referred to in section 4324(a)(1), transmit to Congress not 
later than July 1 each year a report on matters for the fiscal 
year ending in the year before the year in which such report is 
transmitted as follows:
          (1) The number of cases reviewed by the Department 
        [of Labor] under this chapter during the fiscal year 
        for which the report is made.
          (2) The number of cases reviewed by the Secretary of 
        Defense under the National Committee for Employer 
        Support of the Guard and Reserve of the Department of 
        Defense during the fiscal year for which the report is 
        made.
          (3) The number of cases referred to the Attorney 
        General or the Special Counsel pursuant to section 4323 
        or 4324, respectively, during such fiscal year and the 
        number of actions initiated by the Office of Special 
        Counsel before the Merit Systems Protection Board 
        pursuant to section 4324 during such fiscal year.
          (4) The number of complaints filed by the Attorney 
        General pursuant to section 4323 during such fiscal 
        year.
          (5) The number of cases reviewed by the Secretary and 
        the Secretary of Defense through the National Committee 
        for Employer Support of the Guard and Reserve of the 
        Department of Defense that involve the same person.
          (6) With respect to the cases reported on pursuant to 
        paragraphs (1), (2), (3), (4), and (5)--
                  (A) the number of such cases that involve a 
                disability-related issue; and
                  (B) the number of such cases that involve a 
                person who has a service-connected disability.
          (7) The nature and status of each case reported on 
        pursuant to paragraph (1), (2), (3), (4), or (5).
          (8) With respect to the cases reported on pursuant to 
        paragraphs (1), (2), (3), (4), and (5) the number of 
        such cases that involve persons with different 
        occupations or persons seeking different occupations, 
        as designated by the Standard Occupational 
        Classification System.
          (9) An indication of whether there are any apparent 
        patterns of violation of the provisions of this 
        chapter, together with an explanation thereof.
          (10) Recommendations for administrative or 
        legislative action that the Secretary, the Attorney 
        General, or the Special Counsel considers necessary for 
        the effective implementation of this chapter, including 
        any action that could be taken to encourage mediation, 
        before claims are filed under this chapter, between 
        employers and persons seeking employment or 
        reemployment.
  (b) Quarterly Reports.--
          (1) Quarterly report by Secretary.--Not later than 30 
        days after the end of each fiscal quarter, the 
        Secretary shall submit to Congress, the Secretary of 
        Defense, the Attorney General, and the Special Counsel 
        a report setting forth, for the previous full quarter, 
        the following:
                  (A) The number of cases for which the 
                Secretary did not meet the requirements of 
                section 4322(f) of this title.
                  (B) The number of cases for which the 
                Secretary received a request for a referral 
                under paragraph (1) of section 4323(a) of this 
                title but did not make such referral within the 
                time period required by such paragraph.
          (2) Quarterly report by Attorney General.--Not later 
        than 30 days after the end of each fiscal quarter, the 
        Attorney General shall submit to Congress, the 
        Secretary, the Secretary of Defense, and the Special 
        Counsel a report setting forth, for the previous full 
        quarter, the number of cases for which the Attorney 
        General received a referral under paragraph (1) of 
        section 4323(a) of this title but did not meet the 
        requirements of paragraph (2) of section 4323(a) of 
        this title for such referral.
          (3) Quarterly report by Special Counsel.--Not later 
        than 30 days after the end of each fiscal quarter, the 
        Special Counsel shall submit to Congress, the 
        Secretary, the Secretary of Defense, and the Attorney 
        General a report setting forth, for the previous full 
        quarter, the number of cases for which the Special 
        Counsel received a referral under paragraph (1) of 
        section 4324(a) of this title but did not meet the 
        requirements of paragraph (2)(B) of section 4324(a) of 
        this title for such referral.
  (c) Uniform Categorization of Data.--The Secretary shall 
coordinate with the Secretary of Defense, the Attorney General, 
and the Special Counsel to ensure that--
          (1) the information in the reports required by this 
        section is categorized in a uniform way; and
          (2) the Secretary, the Secretary of Defense, the 
        Attorney General, and the Special Counsel each have 
        electronic access to the case files reviewed under this 
        chapter by the Secretary, the Secretary of Defense, the 
        Attorney General, and the Special Counsel with due 
        regard for the provisions of section 552a of title 5.

Sec. 4333. Outreach

  The Secretary[, the Secretary of Defense, and the Secretary 
of Veterans Affairs] and the Secretary of Defense shall take 
such actions as such Secretaries determine are appropriate to 
inform persons entitled to rights and benefits under this 
chapter and employers of the rights, benefits, and obligations 
of such persons and such employers under this chapter.

           *       *       *       *       *       *       *


PART IV--GENERAL ADMINISTRATIVE PROVISIONS

           *       *       *       *       *       *       *


CHAPTER 63--OUTREACH ACTIVITIES

           *       *       *       *       *       *       *



Sec. 6306. Use of other agencies

  (a) In carrying out this chapter, the Secretary [shall 
arrange with the Secretary of Labor for the State employment 
service to match] shall ensure that the State employment 
service matches the particular qualifications of an eligible 
veteran or eligible dependent with an appropriate job or job 
training opportunity, including, where possible, arrangements 
for outstationing the State employment personnel who provide 
such assistance at appropriate facilities of the Department.
  (b) In carrying out this chapter, the Secretary shall[, in 
consultation with the Secretary of Labor,] actively seek to 
promote the development and establishment of employment 
opportunities, training opportunities, and other opportunities 
for veterans, with particular emphasis on the needs of veterans 
with service-connected disabilities and other eligible 
veterans, taking into account applicable rates of unemployment 
and the employment emphases set forth in chapter 42 of this 
title.
  (c) In carrying out this chapter, the Secretary shall 
cooperate with and use the services of any Federal department 
or agency or any State or local governmental agency or 
recognized national or other organization.
  (d) In carrying out this chapter, the Secretary shall, where 
appropriate, make referrals to any Federal department or agency 
or State or local governmental unit or recognized national or 
other organization.
  (e) In carrying out this chapter, the Secretary may furnish 
available space and office facilities for the use of authorized 
representatives of such governmental unit or other organization 
providing services.
  (f) In carrying out this chapter, the Secretary shall conduct 
and provide for studies, in consultation with appropriate 
Federal departments and agencies, to determine the most 
effective program design to carry out the purposes of this 
chapter.

           *       *       *       *       *       *       *


             PART V--BOARDS, ADMINISTRATIONS, AND SERVICES

Chap.                                                               Sec.
      Board of Veterans' Appeals....................................7101
     * * * * * * *
8001Veterans Economic Opportunity and Transition Administration.......

           *       *       *       *       *       *       *


CHAPTER 73--ORGANIZATION AND FUNCTIONS

           *       *       *       *       *       *       *



           SUBCHAPTER II--GENERAL AUTHORITY AND ADMINISTRATION

     * * * * * * *
7330B. Comptroller General audit of VHA budget.

           *       *       *       *       *       *       *


SUBCHAPTER I--ORGANIZATION

           *       *       *       *       *       *       *



Sec. 7306. Office of the Under Secretary for Health

  (a) The Office of the Under Secretary for Health shall 
consist of the following:
          (1) The Deputy Under Secretary for Health, who shall 
        be the principal assistant of the Under Secretary for 
        Health and who shall be a qualified doctor of medicine.
          (2) The Associate Deputy Under Secretary for Health, 
        who shall be an assistant to the Under Secretary for 
        Health and the Deputy Under Secretary for Health and 
        who shall be a qualified doctor of medicine.
          (3) Not to exceed eight Assistant Under Secretaries 
        for Health.
          (4) Such Medical Directors as may be appointed to 
        suit the needs of the Department, who shall be either a 
        qualified doctor of medicine, doctor of podiatric 
        medicine, or a qualified doctor of dental surgery or 
        dental medicine.
          (5) A Director of Nursing Service, who shall be a 
        qualified registered nurse and who shall be responsible 
        to, and report directly to, the Under Secretary for 
        Health for the operation of the Nursing Service.
          (6) A Director of Pharmacy Service, a Director of 
        Dietetic Service, a Director of Podiatric Service, and 
        a Director of Optometric Service, who shall be 
        responsible to the Under Secretary for Health for the 
        operation of their respective Services.
          (7) Such directors of such other professional or 
        auxiliary services as may be appointed to suit the 
        needs of the Department, who shall be responsible to 
        the Under Secretary for Health for the operation of 
        their respective services.
          (8) The Director of the National Center for 
        Preventive Health, who shall be responsible to the 
        Under Secretary for Health for the operation of the 
        Center.
          (9) The Advisor on Physician Assistants, who shall be 
        a physician assistant with appropriate experience and 
        who shall advise the Under Secretary for Health on all 
        matters relating to the utilization and employment of 
        physician assistants in the Administration.
          (10) Such other personnel as may be authorized by 
        this chapter.
  (b) Of the Assistant Under Secretaries for Health appointed 
under subsection (a)(3)--
          (1) not more than two may be persons qualified in the 
        administration of health services who are not doctors 
        of medicine, dental surgery, or dental medicines;
          (2) one shall be a qualified doctor of dental surgery 
        or dental medicine who shall be directly responsible to 
        the Under Secretary for Health for the operation of the 
        Dental Service; and
          (3) one shall be a qualified physician trained in, or 
        having suitable extensive experience in, geriatrics who 
        shall be responsible to the Under Secretary for Health 
        for evaluating all research, educational, and clinical 
        health-care programs carried out in the Administration 
        in the field of geriatrics and who shall serve as the 
        principal advisor to the Under Secretary for Health 
        with respect to such programs.
  (c) Appointments under subsection (a) shall be made by the 
Secretary. In the case of appointments under paragraphs (1), 
(2), (3), (4), and (8) of that subsection, such appointments 
shall be made upon the recommendation of the Under Secretary 
for Health.
  (d) Except as provided in subsection (e)--
          (1) any appointment under this section shall be for a 
        period of four years, with reappointment permissible 
        for successive like periods,
          (2) any such appointment or reappointment may be 
        extended by the Secretary for a period not in excess of 
        three years, and
          (3) any person so appointed or reappointed or whose 
        appointment or reappointment is extended shall be 
        subject to removal by the Secretary for cause.
  (e)(1) The Secretary may designate a member of the Chaplain 
Service of the Department as Director, Chaplain Service, for a 
period of two years, subject to removal by the Secretary for 
cause. Redesignation under this subsection may be made for 
successive like periods or for any period not exceeding two 
years.
          (2) A person designated as Director, Chaplain 
        Service, shall at the end of such person's period of 
        service as Director revert to the position, grade, and 
        status which such person held immediately before being 
        designated Director, Chaplain Service, and all service 
        as Director, Chaplain Service, shall be creditable as 
        service in the former position.
  (f) In organizing the Office and appointing persons to 
positions in the Office, the Under Secretary shall ensure 
that--
          (1) the Office is staffed so as to provide the Under 
        Secretary, through a designated clinician in the 
        appropriate discipline in each instance, with expertise 
        and direct policy guidance on--
                  (A) unique programs operated by the 
                Administration to provide for the specialized 
                treatment and rehabilitation of disabled 
                veterans (including blind rehabilitation, care 
                of spinal cord dysfunction, mental illness, and 
                long-term care); and
                  (B) the programs established under section 
                1712A of this title; and
          (2) with respect to the programs established under 
        section 1712A of this title, a clinician with 
        appropriate expertise in those programs is responsible 
        to the Under Secretary for the management of those 
        programs.

SUBCHAPTER II--GENERAL AUTHORITY AND ADMINISTRATION

           *       *       *       *       *       *       *



Sec. 7330B. Comptroller General audit of VHA budget

  (a) In General.--The Comptroller General of the United States 
shall periodically conduct an audit of elements of the budget 
of the Veterans Health Administration, including the budget 
formulation, execution, allocation, and use of funds.
  (b) Selection of Elements.--(1) In selecting elements of the 
budget of the Veterans Health Administration for purposes of an 
audit under subsection (a), the Comptroller General shall take 
into consideration--
          (A) knowledge of the programs of the Veterans Health 
        Administration;
          (B) current issues;
          (C) national priorities; and
          (D) priorities expressed by the appropriate 
        congressional committees.
  (2) Not later than 30 days before conducting an audit under 
subsection (a), the Comptroller General shall submit to the 
appropriate congressional committees notice of the elements 
selected by the Comptroller General for purposes of the audit.
  (c) Appropriate Congressional Committees.--In this section, 
the term ``appropriate congressional committees'' means--
          (1) the Committee on Veterans' Affairs, the Committee 
        on Appropriations, and the Committee on the Budget of 
        the Senate; and
          (2) the Committee on Veterans' Affairs, the Committee 
        on Appropriations, and the Committee on the Budget of 
        the House of Representatives.

           *       *       *       *       *       *       *


         CHAPTER 74--VETERANS HEALTH ADMINISTRATION - PERSONNEL


                       SUBCHAPTER I--APPOINTMENTS

Sec.
7401. Appointments in Veterans Health Administration.
     * * * * * * *
7413. Treatment of podiatrists.
     * * * * * * *

            SUBCHAPTER VI--REGIONAL MEDICAL EDUCATION CENTERS

     * * * * * * *

                       SUBCHAPTER I--APPOINTMENTS


Sec. 7401. Appointments in Veterans Health Administration

   There may be appointed by the Secretary such personnel as 
the Secretary may find necessary for the health care of 
veterans (in addition to those in the Office of the Under 
Secretary for Health appointed under section 7306 of this 
title), as follows:
          (1) [Physicians, dentists, podiatrists,] Physicians, 
        dentists, chiropractors, optometrists, registered 
        nurses, physician assistants, and expanded-function 
        dental auxiliaries.
          (2) Scientific and professional personnel, such as 
        microbiologists, chemists, and biostatisticians.
          (3) Audiologists, speech pathologists, and 
        audiologist-speech pathologists, biomedical engineers, 
        certified or registered respiratory therapists, 
        dietitians, licensed physical therapists, licensed 
        practical or vocational nurses, nurse assistants, 
        medical instrument technicians, medical records 
        administrators or specialists, medical records 
        technicians, medical technologists, dental hygienists, 
        dental assistants, nuclear medicine technologists, 
        occupational therapists, occupational therapy 
        assistants, kinesiotherapists, orthotist-prosthetists, 
        pharmacists, pharmacy technicians, physical therapy 
        assistants, prosthetic representatives, psychologists, 
        diagnostic radiologic technologists, therapeutic 
        radiologic technologists, social workers, marriage and 
        family therapists, licensed professional mental health 
        counselors, blind rehabilitation specialists, blind 
        rehabilitation outpatient specialists, and such other 
        classes of health care occupations as the Secretary 
        considers necessary for the recruitment and retention 
        needs of the Department subject to the following 
        requirements:
                  (A) Such other classes of health care 
                occupations--
                          (i) are not occupations relating to 
                        administrative, clerical, or physical 
                        plant maintenance and protective 
                        services;
                          (ii) that would otherwise receive 
                        basic pay in accordance with the 
                        General Schedule under section 5332 of 
                        title 5;
                          (iii) provide, as determined by the 
                        Secretary, direct patient care services 
                        or services incident to direct patient 
                        services; and
                          (iv) would not otherwise be available 
                        to provide medical care or treatment 
                        for veterans.
                  (B) Not later than 45 days before the 
                Secretary appoints any personnel for a class of 
                health care occupations that is not 
                specifically listed in this paragraph, the 
                Secretary shall submit to the Committee on 
                Veterans' Affairs of the Senate, the Committee 
                on Veterans' Affairs of the House of 
                Representatives, and the Office of Management 
                and Budget notice of such appointment.
                  (C) Before submitting notice under 
                subparagraph (B), the Secretary shall solicit 
                comments from any labor organization 
                representing employees in such class and 
                include such comments in such notice.

Sec. 7402. Qualifications of appointees

  (a) To be eligible for appointment to the positions in the 
Administration covered by subsection (b), a person must have 
the applicable qualifications set forth in that subsection.
  (b)(1) Physician.--To be eligible to be appointed to a 
physician position, a person must--
          (A) hold the degree of doctor of medicine [or of 
        doctor of osteopathy], doctor of osteopathy, or doctor 
        of podiatric medicine from a college or university 
        approved by the Secretary,
          (B) have completed an internship satisfactory to the 
        Secretary, and
          (C) be licensed to practice medicine, surgery, 
        podiatry, or osteopathy in a State.
  (2) Dentist.--To be eligible to be appointed to a dentist 
position, a person must--
          (A) hold the degree of doctor of dental surgery or 
        dental medicine from a college or university approved 
        by the Secretary, and
          (B) be licensed to practice dentistry in a State.
  (3) Nurse.--To be eligible to be appointed to a nurse 
position, a person must--
          (A) have successfully completed a full course of 
        nursing in a recognized school of nursing, approved by 
        the Secretary, and
          (B) be registered as a graduate nurse in a State.
  (4) Director of a Hospital, Domiciliary, Center, or 
Outpatient Clinic.--To be eligible to be appointed to a 
director position, a person must have such business and 
administrative experience and qualifications as the Secretary 
shall prescribe.
  [(5) Podiatrist.--To be eligible to be appointed to a 
podiatrist position, a person must--
          [(A) hold the degree of doctor of podiatric medicine, 
        or its equivalent, from a school of podiatric medicine 
        approved by the Secretary, and
          [(B) be licensed to practice podiatry in a State.]
  [(6)] (5) Optometrist.--To be eligible to be appointed to an 
optometrist position, a person must--
          (A) hold the degree of doctor of optometry, or its 
        equivalent, from a school of optometry approved by the 
        Secretary, and
          (B) be licensed to practice optometry in a State.
  [(7)] (6) Pharmacist.--To be eligible to be appointed to a 
pharmacist position, a person must--
          (A) hold the degree of bachelor of science in 
        pharmacy, or its equivalent, from a school of pharmacy, 
        approved by the Secretary, and
          (B) be registered as a pharmacist in a State.
  [(8)] (7) Psychologist.--To be eligible to be appointed to a 
psychologist position, a person must--
          (A) hold a doctoral degree in psychology from a 
        college or university approved by the Secretary,
          (B) have completed study for such degree in a 
        specialty area of psychology and an internship which 
        are satisfactory to the Secretary, and
          (C) be licensed or certified as a psychologist in a 
        State, except that the Secretary may waive the 
        requirement of licensure or certification for an 
        individual psychologist for a period not to exceed two 
        years on the condition that that psychologist provide 
        patient care only under the direct supervision of a 
        psychologist who is so licensed or certified.
  [(9)] (8) Social Worker.--To be eligible to be appointed to a 
social worker position, a person must--
          (A) hold a master's degree in social work from a 
        college or university approved by the Secretary; and
          (B) be licensed or certified to independently 
        practice social work in a State, except that the 
        Secretary may waive the requirement of licensure or 
        certification for an individual social worker for a 
        reasonable period of time recommended by the Under 
        Secretary for Health.
  [(10)] (9) Marriage and Family Therapist.--To be eligible to 
be appointed to a marriage and family therapist position, a 
person must--
          (A) hold a master's degree in marriage and family 
        therapy, or a comparable degree in mental health, from 
        a college or university approved by the Secretary; and
          (B) be licensed or certified to independently 
        practice marriage and family therapy in a State, except 
        that the Secretary may waive the requirement of 
        licensure or certification for an individual marriage 
        and family therapist for a reasonable period of time 
        recommended by the Under Secretary for Health.
  [(11)] (10) Licensed Professional Mental Health Counselor.--
To be eligible to be appointed to a licensed professional 
mental health counselor position, a person must--
          (A) hold a master's degree in mental health 
        counseling, or a related field, from a college or 
        university approved by the Secretary; and
          (B) be licensed or certified to independently 
        practice mental health counseling.
  [(12)] (11) Chiropractor.--To be eligible to be appointed to 
a chiropractor position, a person must--
          (A) hold the degree of doctor of chiropractic, or its 
        equivalent, from a college of chiropractic approved by 
        the Secretary; and
          (B) be licensed to practice chiropractic in a State.
  [(13)] (12) Peer Specialist.--To be eligible to be appointed 
to a peer specialist position, a person must--
          (A) be a veteran who has recovered or is recovering 
        from a mental health condition; and
          (B) be certified by--
                  (i) a not-for-profit entity engaged in peer 
                specialist training as having met such criteria 
                as the Secretary shall establish for a peer 
                specialist position; or
                  (ii) a State as having satisfied relevant 
                State requirements for a peer specialist 
                position.
  [(14)] (13) Other Health-Care Positions.--To be appointed as 
a physician assistant, expanded-function dental auxiliary, 
certified or registered respiratory therapist, licensed 
physical therapist, licensed practical or vocational nurse, 
occupational therapist, dietitian, microbiologist, chemist, 
biostatistician, medical technologist, dental technologist, or 
other position, a person must have such medical, dental, 
scientific, or technical qualifications as the Secretary shall 
prescribe.
  (c) Except as provided in section 7407(a) of this title, a 
person may not be appointed in the Administration to a position 
listed in section 7401(1) of this title unless the person is a 
citizen of the United States.
  (d) A person may not be appointed under section 7401(1) of 
this title to serve in the Administration in any direct 
patient-care capacity unless the Under Secretary for Health 
determines that the person possesses such basic proficiency in 
spoken and written English as will permit such degree of 
communication with patients and other health-care personnel as 
will enable the person to carry out the person's health-care 
responsibilities satisfactorily. Any determination by the Under 
Secretary for Health under this subsection shall be in 
accordance with regulations which the Secretary shall 
prescribe.
  (e) A person may not serve as Chief of Staff of a Department 
health-care facility if the person is not serving on a full-
time basis.
  (f) A person may not be employed in a position under 
subsection (b) (other than under paragraph (4) of that 
subsection) if--
          (1) the person is or has been licensed, registered, 
        or certified (as applicable to such position) in more 
        than one State; and
          (2) either--
                  (A) any of those States has terminated such 
                license, registration, or certification for 
                cause; or
                  (B) the person has voluntarily relinquished 
                such license, registration, or certification in 
                any of those States after being notified in 
                writing by that State of potential termination 
                for cause.
  (g) The Secretary may enter into contracts with not-for-
profit entities to provide--
          (1) peer specialist training to veterans; and
          (2) certification for veterans under subsection 
        (b)(13)(B)(i).

Sec. 7403. Period of appointments; promotions

  (a)(1) Appointments under this chapter of health-care 
professionals to whom this section applies may be made only 
after qualifications have been satisfactorily established in 
accordance with regulations prescribed by the Secretary, 
without regard to civil-service requirements.
  (2) This section applies to the following persons appointed 
under this chapter:
          (A) Physicians.
          (B) Dentists.
          [(C) Podiatrists.]
          [(D)] (C) Optometrists.
          [(E)] (D) Nurses.
          [(F)] (E) Physician assistants.
          [(G)] (F) Expanded-function dental auxiliaries.
          [(H)] (G) Chiropractors.
  (b)(1) Except as otherwise provided in this subsection, 
appointments described in subsection (a) shall be for a 
probationary period of two years.
  (2) With respect to the appointment of a registered nurse 
under this chapter, paragraph (1) shall apply with respect to 
such appointment regardless of whether such appointment is on a 
full-time basis or a part-time basis.
  (3) An appointment described in subsection (a) on a part-time 
basis of a person who has previously served on a full-time 
basis for the probationary period for the position concerned 
shall be without a probationary period.
  (4) The record of each person serving under such an 
appointment in the Medical, Dental, and Nursing Services shall 
be reviewed from time to time by a board, appointed in 
accordance with regulations of the Secretary. If such a board 
finds that such person is not fully qualified and satisfactory, 
such person shall be separated from the service.
  (c) Promotions of persons to whom this section applies shall 
be made only after examination given in accordance with 
regulations prescribed by the Secretary. Advancement within 
grade may be made in increments of the minimum rate of basic 
pay of the grade in accordance with regulations prescribed by 
the Secretary.
  (d) In determining eligibility for reinstatement in the 
Federal civil service of persons appointed to positions in the 
Administration under this chapter who at the time of 
appointment have a civil-service status, and whose employment 
in the Administration is terminated, the period of service 
performed in the Administration shall be included in computing 
the period of service under applicable civil-service rules and 
regulations.
  (e) In accordance with regulations prescribed by the 
Secretary, the grade and annual rate of basic pay of a person 
to whom this section applies whose level of assignment is 
changed from a level of assignment in which the grade level is 
based on both the nature of the assignment and personal 
qualifications may be adjusted to the grade and annual rate of 
basic pay otherwise appropriate.
  (f)(1) Upon the recommendation of the Under Secretary for 
Health, the Secretary may--
          (A) use the authority in subsection (a) to establish 
        the qualifications for and (subject to paragraph (2)) 
        to appoint individuals to positions listed in section 
        7401(3) of this title; and
          (B) use the authority provided in subsection (c) for 
        the promotion and advancement of Department employees 
        serving in such positions.
  (2) In using such authority to appoint individuals to such 
positions, the Secretary shall apply the principles of 
preference for the hiring of veterans and other persons 
established in subchapter I of chapter 33 of title 5.
  (3) Notwithstanding any other provision of this title or 
other law, all matters relating to adverse actions, reductions-
in-force, the applicability of the principles of preference 
referred to in paragraph (2), rights of part-time employees, 
disciplinary actions, and grievance procedures involving 
individuals appointed to such positions, whether appointed 
under this section or section 7405(a)(1)(B) of this title 
(including similar actions and procedures involving an employee 
in a probationary status), shall be resolved under the 
provisions of title 5 as though such individuals had been 
appointed under that title.
  (g)(1) The Secretary may appoint in the competitive civil 
service without regard to the provisions of subchapter I of 
chapter 33 of title 5 (other than sections 3303 and 3328 of 
such title) an individual who--
          (A) has a recognized degree or certificate from an 
        accredited institution in a health-care profession or 
        occupation; and
          (B) has successfully completed a clinical education 
        program affiliated with the Department.
  (2) In using the authority provided by this subsection, the 
Secretary shall apply the principles of preference for the 
hiring of veterans and other persons established in subchapter 
I of chapter 33 of title 5.
  (h)(1) If the Secretary uses the authority provided in 
subsection (c) for the promotion and advancement of an 
occupational category of employees described in section 7401(3) 
of this title, as authorized by subsection (f)(1)(B), the 
Secretary shall do so through one or more systems prescribed by 
the Secretary. Each such system shall be planned, developed, 
and implemented in collaboration with, and with the 
participation of, exclusive employee representatives of such 
occupational category of employees.
  (2)(A) Before prescribing a system of promotion and 
advancement of an occupational category of employees under 
paragraph (1), the Secretary shall provide to exclusive 
employee representatives of such occupational category of 
employees a written description of the proposed system.
  (B) Not later than 30 days after receipt of the description 
of a proposed system under subparagraph (A), exclusive employee 
representatives may submit to the Secretary the 
recommendations, if any, of such exclusive employee 
representatives with respect to the proposed system.
  (C) The Secretary shall give full and fair consideration to 
any recommendations received under subparagraph (B) in deciding 
whether and how to proceed with a proposed system.
  (3) The Secretary shall implement immediately any part of a 
system of promotion and advancement under paragraph (1) that is 
proposed under paragraph (2) for which the Secretary receives 
no recommendations from exclusive employee representatives 
under paragraph (2).
  (4) If the Secretary receives recommendations under paragraph 
(2) from exclusive employee representatives on any part of a 
proposed system of promotion and advancement under that 
paragraph, the Secretary shall determine whether or not to 
accept the recommendations, either in whole or in part. If the 
Secretary determines not to accept all or part of the 
recommendations, the Secretary shall--
          (A) notify the congressional veterans' affairs 
        committees of the recommendations and of the portion of 
        the recommendations that the Secretary has determined 
        not to accept;
          (B) meet and confer with such exclusive employee 
        representatives, for a period not less than 30 days, 
        for purposes of attempting to reach an agreement on 
        whether and how to proceed with the portion of the 
        recommendations that the Secretary has determined not 
        to accept;
          (C) at the election of the Secretary, or of a 
        majority of such exclusive employee representatives who 
        are participating in negotiations on such matter, 
        employ the services of the Federal Mediation and 
        Conciliation Service during the period referred to in 
        subparagraph (B) for purposes of reaching such 
        agreement; and
          (D) if the Secretary determines that activities under 
        subparagraph (B), (C), or both are unsuccessful at 
        reaching such agreement and determines (in the sole and 
        unreviewable discretion of the Secretary) that further 
        meeting and conferral under subparagraph (B), mediation 
        under subparagraph (C), or both are unlikely to reach 
        such agreement--
                  (i) notify the congressional veterans' 
                affairs committees of such determinations, 
                identify for such committees the portions of 
                the recommendations that the Secretary has 
                determined not to accept, and provide such 
                committees an explanation and justification for 
                determining to implement the part of the system 
                subject to such portions of the recommendations 
                without regard to such portions of the 
                recommendations; and
                  (ii) commencing not earlier than 30 days 
                after notice under clause (i), implement the 
                part of the system subject to the 
                recommendations that the Secretary has 
                determined not to accept without regard to 
                those recommendations.
  (5) If the Secretary and exclusive employee representatives 
reach an agreement under paragraph (4) providing for the 
resolution of a disagreement on one or more portions of the 
recommendations that the Secretary had determined not to accept 
under that paragraph, the Secretary shall immediately implement 
such resolution.
  (6) In implementing a system of promotion and advancement 
under this subsection, the Secretary shall--
          (A) develop and implement mechanisms to permit 
        exclusive employee representatives to participate in 
        the periodic review and evaluation of the system, 
        including peer review, and in any further planning or 
        development required with respect to the system as a 
        result of such review and evaluation; and
          (B) provide exclusive employee representatives 
        appropriate access to information to ensure that the 
        participation of such exclusive employee representative 
        in activities under subparagraph (A) is productive.
  (7)(A) The Secretary may from time to time modify a system of 
promotion and advancement under this subsection.
  (B) In modifying a system, the Secretary shall take into 
account any recommendations made by the exclusive employee 
representatives concerned.
  (C) In modifying a system, the Secretary shall comply with 
paragraphs (2) through (5) and shall treat any proposal for the 
modification of a system as a proposal for a system for 
purposes of such paragraphs.
  (D) The Secretary shall promptly submit to the congressional 
veterans' affairs committees a report on any modification of a 
system. Each report shall include--
          (i) an explanation and justification of the 
        modification; and
          (ii) a description of any recommendations of 
        exclusive employee representatives with respect to the 
        modification and a statement whether or not the 
        modification was revised in light of such 
        recommendations.
  (8) In the case of employees who are not within a unit with 
respect to which a labor organization is accorded exclusive 
recognition, the Secretary may develop procedures for input 
from representatives under this subsection from any appropriate 
organization that represents a substantial percentage of such 
employees or, if none, in such other manner as the Secretary 
considers appropriate, consistent with the purposes of this 
subsection.
  (9) In this subsection, the term ``congressional veterans' 
affairs committees'' means the Committees on Veterans' Affairs 
of the Senate and the House of Representatives.

Sec. 7404. Grades and pay scales

  (a)(1) The annual rates or ranges of rates of basic pay for 
positions provided in section 7306 of this title shall be 
prescribed from time to time by Executive order as authorized 
by chapter 53 of title 5 or as otherwise authorized by law.
  (2) The pay of physicians and dentists serving in positions 
to which an Executive order applies under paragraph (1) shall 
be determined under subchapter III of this chapter instead of 
such Executive order.
  (3)(A) The rate of basic pay for a position to which an 
Executive order applies under paragraph (1) and is not 
described by paragraph (2) shall be set in accordance with 
section 5382 of title 5 as if such position were a Senior 
Executive Service position (as such term is defined in section 
3132(a) of title 5).
  (B) A rate of basic pay for a position may not be set under 
subparagraph (A) in excess of--
          (i) in the case the position is not described in 
        clause (ii), the rate of basic pay payable for level 
        III of the Executive Schedule; or
          (ii) in the case that the position is covered by a 
        performance appraisal system that meets the 
        certification criteria established by regulation under 
        section 5307(d) of title 5, the rate of basic pay 
        payable for level II of the Executive Schedule.
  (C) Notwithstanding the provisions of subsection (d) of 
section 5307 of title 5, the Secretary may make any 
certification under that subsection instead of the Office of 
Personnel Management and without concurrence of the Office of 
Management and Budget.
  (b) The grades for positions provided for in paragraph (1) of 
section 7401 of this title shall be as follows. The annual 
ranges of rates of basic pay for those grades shall be 
prescribed from time to time by Executive order as authorized 
by chapter 53 of title 5 or as otherwise authorized by law:
          PHYSICIAN AND DENTIST SCHEDULE
          Physician grade.
          Dentist grade.
          NURSE SCHEDULE
          Nurse V.
          Nurse IV.
          Nurse III.
          Nurse II.
          Nurse I.
          [CLINICAL PODIATRIST, CHIROPRACTOR, AND OPTOMETRIST 
        SCHEDULE] CLINICAL CHIROPRACTOR AND OPTOMETRIST 
        SCHEDULE
          Chief grade.
          Senior grade.
          Intermediate grade.
          Full grade.
          Associate grade.
  (c) Notwithstanding the provisions of section 7425(a) of this 
title, a person appointed under section 7306 of this title who 
is not eligible for pay under subchapter III shall be deemed to 
be a career appointee for the purposes of sections 4507 and 
5384 of title 5.
  (d) Except as provided under subsection (e), subchapter III, 
and section 7457 of this title, pay for positions for which 
basic pay is paid under this section may not be paid at a rate 
in excess of the rate of basic pay authorized by section 5316 
of title 5 for positions in Level V of the Executive Schedule.
  (e) The position of Chief Nursing Officer, Office of Nursing 
Services, shall be exempt from the provisions of section 7451 
of this title and shall be paid at a rate determined by the 
Secretary, not to exceed the maximum rate established for the 
Senior Executive Service under section 5382 of title 5.

           *       *       *       *       *       *       *


Sec. 7409. Contracts for scarce medical specialist services

  (a) The Secretary may enter into contracts with institutions 
and persons described in subsection (b) to provide scarce 
medical specialist services at Department facilities. Such 
services may include the services of physicians, dentists, 
[podiatrists,] optometrists, chiropractors, nurses, physician 
assistants, expanded-function dental auxiliaries, technicians, 
and other medical support personnel.
  (b) Institutions and persons with whom the Secretary may 
enter into contracts under subsection (a) are the following:
          (1) Schools and colleges of medicine, osteopathy, 
        dentistry, podiatry, optometry, and nursing.
          (2) Clinics.
          (3) Any other group or individual capable of 
        furnishing such scarce medical specialist services.

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Sec. 7413. Treatment of podiatrists

  For purposes of this chapter, the term ``physician'' includes 
a podiatrist.

   SUBCHAPTER II--COLLECTIVE BARGAINING AND PERSONNEL ADMINISTRATION


Sec. 7421. Personnel administration: in general

  (a) Notwithstanding any law, Executive order, or regulation, 
the Secretary shall prescribe by regulation the hours and 
conditions of employment and leaves of absence of employees 
appointed under any provision of this chapter in positions in 
the Veterans Health Administration listed in subsection (b).
  (b) Subsection (a) refers to the following positions:
          (1) Physicians.
          (2) Dentists.
          [(3) Podiatrists.]
          [(4)] (3) Optometrists.
          [(5)] (4) Registered nurses.
          [(6)] (5) Physician assistants.
          [(7)] (6) Expanded-duty dental auxiliaries.
          [(8)] (7) Chiropractors.

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              CHAPTER 77--VETERANS BENEFITS ADMINISTRATION


                  SUBCHAPTER I--ORGANIZATION; GENERAL


Sec. 7701. Organization of the Administration

  (a) There is in the Department of Veterans Affairs a Veterans 
Benefits Administration. The primary function of the Veterans 
Benefits Administration is the administration of nonmedical 
benefits programs of the Department which provide assistance, 
other than assistance related to Economic Opportunity and 
Transition, to veterans and their dependents and survivors.
  (b) The Veterans Benefits Administration is under the Under 
Secretary for Benefits, who is directly responsible to the 
Secretary for the operations of the Administration. The Under 
Secretary for Benefits may be referred to as the Chief Benefits 
Director.

Sec. 7703. Functions of the Administration

   The Veterans Benefits Administration is responsible for the 
administration of the following programs of the Department:
          (1) Compensation and pension programs.
          [(2) Vocational rehabilitation and educational 
        assistance programs.
          [(3) Veterans' housing loan programs.]
          [(4)] (2) Veterans' and servicemembers' life 
        insurance programs.
          [(5)] (3) Outreach programs and other veterans' 
        services programs.

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CHAPTER 80--VETERANS ECONOMIC OPPORTUNITY AND TRANSITION ADMINISTRATION

Sec.
8001. Organization of Administration.
8002. Functions of Administration.

Sec. 8001. Organization of Administration

  (a) Veterans Economic Opportunity and Transition 
Administration There is in the Department of Veterans Affairs a 
Veterans Economic Opportunity and Transition Administration. 
The primary function of the Veterans Economic Opportunity and 
Transition Administration is the administration of the programs 
of the Department that provide assistance related to economic 
opportunity to veterans and their dependents and survivors.
  (b) Under Secretary for Economic Opportunity and Transition 
The Veterans Economic Opportunity and Transition Administration 
is under the Under Secretary for Veterans Economic Opportunity 
and Transition, who is directly responsible to the Secretary 
for the operations of the Administration.
  (c) Deputy Under Secretaries The Veterans Economic 
Opportunity and Transition Administration shall have two Deputy 
Under Secretaries as follows:
          (1) The Deputy Under Secretary for Readjustment, who 
        shall be the principal assistant of the Under Secretary 
        for Veterans Economic Opportunity and Transition with 
        respect to the programs specified in paragraphs (1) 
        through (4) of section 8002 of this title.
          (2) The Deputy Under Secretary for Employment, 
        Training, and Transition, who shall be the principal 
        assistant of the Under Secretary for Veterans Economic 
        Opportunity and Transition with respect to the programs 
        specified in paragraphs (5) through (9) of section 8002 
        of this title.

Sec. 8002. Functions of AdministrationThe Veterans Economic Opportunity 
                    and Transition Administration is responsible for 
                    the administration of the following programs of the 
                    Department:

          (1) Vocational rehabilitation and employment 
        programs.
          (2) Educational assistance programs.
          (3) Veterans' housing loan and related programs.
          (4) The verification of small businesses owned and 
        controlled by veterans pursuant to subsection (f) of 
        section 8127 of this title, including the 
        administration of the database of veteran-owned 
        businesses described in such subsection.
          (5) Job counseling, training, and placement services 
        for veterans under chapter 41 of this title.
          (6) Employment and training of veterans under chapter 
        42 of this title.
          (7) Administration of employment and employment 
        rights of members of the uniformed services under 
        chapter 43 of this title.
          (8) Homeless veterans reintegration programs under 
        chapter 20 of this title.
          (9) The Transition Assistance Program under section 
        1144 of title 10.
          (10) Any other program of the Department that the 
        Secretary determines appropriate.

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PART VI--ACQUISITION AND DISPOSITION OF PROPERTY

           *       *       *       *       *       *       *


   CHAPTER 81--ACQUISITION AND OPERATION OF HOSPITAL AND DOMICILIARY 
    FACILITIES; PROCUREMENT AND SUPPLY; ENHANCED-USE LEASES OF REAL 
PROPERTY

           *       *       *       *       *       *       *



SUBCHAPTER II--PROCUREMENT AND SUPPLY

           *       *       *       *       *       *       *



Sec. 8127. Small business concerns owned and controlled by veterans: 
                    contracting goals and preferences

  (a) Contracting Goals.--(1) In order to increase contracting 
opportunities for small business concerns owned and controlled 
by veterans and small business concerns owned and controlled by 
veterans with service-connected disabilities, the Secretary 
shall--
          (A) establish a goal for each fiscal year for 
        participation in Department contracts (including 
        subcontracts) by small business concerns owned and 
        controlled by veterans who are not veterans with 
        service-connected disabilities in accordance with 
        paragraph (2); and
          (B) establish a goal for each fiscal year for 
        participation in Department contracts (including 
        subcontracts) by small business concerns owned and 
        controlled by veterans with service-connected 
        disabilities in accordance with paragraph (3).
  (2) The goal for a fiscal year for participation under 
paragraph (1)(A) shall be determined by the Secretary.
  (3) The goal for a fiscal year for participation under 
paragraph (1)(B) shall be not less than the Government-wide 
goal for that fiscal year for participation by small business 
concerns owned and controlled by veterans with service-
connected disabilities under section 15(g)(1) of the Small 
Business Act (15 U.S.C. 644(g)(1)).
  (4) The Secretary shall establish a review mechanism to 
ensure that, in the case of a subcontract of a Department 
contract that is counted for purposes of meeting a goal 
established pursuant to this section, the subcontract was 
actually awarded to a business concern that may be counted for 
purposes of meeting that goal.
  (b) Use of Noncompetitive Procedures for Certain Small 
Contracts.--For purposes of meeting the goals under subsection 
(a), and in accordance with this section, in entering into a 
contract with a small business concern owned and controlled by 
veterans for an amount less than the simplified acquisition 
threshold (as defined in section 134 of title 41), a 
contracting officer of the Department may use procedures other 
than competitive procedures.
  (c) Sole Source Contracts for Contracts Above Simplified 
Acquisition Threshold.--For purposes of meeting the goals under 
subsection (a), and in accordance with this section, a 
contracting officer of the Department may award a contract to a 
small business concern owned and controlled by veterans using 
procedures other than competitive procedures if--
          (1) such concern is determined to be a responsible 
        source with respect to performance of such contract 
        opportunity;
          (2) the anticipated award price of the contract 
        (including options) will exceed the simplified 
        acquisition threshold (as defined in section 134 of 
        title 41) but will not exceed $5,000,000; and
          (3) in the estimation of the contracting officer, the 
        contract award can be made at a fair and reasonable 
        price that offers best value to the United States.
  (d) Use of Restricted Competition.--Except as provided in 
subsections (b) and (c), for purposes of meeting the goals 
under subsection (a), and in accordance with this section, a 
contracting officer of the Department shall award contracts on 
the basis of competition restricted to small business concerns 
owned and controlled by veterans if the contracting officer has 
a reasonable expectation that two or more small business 
concerns owned and controlled by veterans will submit offers 
and that the award can be made at a fair and reasonable price 
that offers best value to the United States.
  (e) Eligibility of Small Business Concerns.--A small business 
concern may be awarded a contract under this section only if 
the small business concern and the veteran owner of the small 
business concern are listed in the database of veteran-owned 
businesses maintained by the Secretary under subsection (f).
  (f) Database of Veteran-Owned Businesses.--(1) Subject to 
paragraphs (2) through (6), the Secretary shall maintain a 
database of small business concerns owned and controlled by 
veterans and the veteran owners of such business concerns.
  (2)(A) To be eligible for inclusion in the database, such a 
veteran shall submit to the Secretary such information as the 
Secretary may require with respect to the small business 
concern or the veteran. Application for inclusion in the 
database shall constitute permission under section 552a of 
title 5 (commonly referred to as the Privacy Act) for the 
Secretary to access such personal information maintained by the 
Secretary as may be necessary to verify the information 
contained in the application.
  (B) If the Secretary receives an application for inclusion in 
the database from an individual whose status as a veteran 
cannot be verified because the Secretary does not maintain 
information with respect to the veteran status of the 
individual, the Secretary may not include the small business 
concern owned and controlled by the individual in the database 
maintained by the Secretary until the Secretary receives such 
information as may be necessary to verify that the individual 
is a veteran.
  (3) Information maintained in the database shall be submitted 
on a voluntary basis by such veterans.
  (4) No small business concern may be listed in the database 
until the Secretary has verified that--
          (A) the small business concern is owned and 
        controlled by veterans; and
          (B) in the case of a small business concern for which 
        the person who owns and controls the concern indicates 
        that the person is a veteran with a service-connected 
        disability, that the person is a veteran with a 
        service-connected disability.
  (5) The Secretary shall make the database available to all 
Federal departments and agencies and shall notify each such 
department and agency of the availability of the database.
  (6) If the Secretary determines that the public dissemination 
of certain types of information maintained in the database is 
inappropriate, the Secretary shall take such steps as are 
necessary to maintain such types of information in a secure and 
confidential manner.
  (g) Enforcement Penalties for Misrepresentation.--(1) Any 
business concern that is determined by the Secretary to have 
willfully and intentionally misrepresented the status of that 
concern as a small business concern owned and controlled by 
veterans or as a small business concern owned and controlled by 
service-disabled veterans for purposes of this subsection shall 
be debarred from contracting with the Department for a period 
of not less than five years.
  (2) In the case of a debarment under paragraph (1), the 
Secretary shall commence debarment action against the business 
concern by not later than 30 days after determining that the 
concern willfully and intentionally misrepresented the status 
of the concern as described in paragraph (1) and shall complete 
debarment actions against such concern by not later than 90 
days after such determination.
  (3) The debarment of a business concern under paragraph (1) 
includes the debarment of all principals in the business 
concern for a period of not less than five years.
  (h) Treatment of Businesses After Death of Veteran-Owner.--
(1) Subject to paragraph (3), if the death of a veteran causes 
a small business concern to be less than 51 percent owned by 
one or more veterans, the surviving spouse of such veteran who 
acquires ownership rights in such small business concern shall, 
for the period described in paragraph (2), be treated as if the 
surviving spouse were that veteran for the purpose of 
maintaining the status of the small business concern as a small 
business concern owned and controlled by veterans.
  (2) The period referred to in paragraph (1) is the period 
beginning on the date on which the veteran dies and ending on 
the earliest of the following dates:
          (A) The date on which the surviving spouse remarries.
          (B) The date on which the surviving spouse 
        relinquishes an ownership interest in the small 
        business concern.
          (C) The date that is ten years after the date of the 
        veteran's death.
  (3) Paragraph (1) only applies to a surviving spouse of a 
veteran with a service-connected disability rated as 100 
percent disabling or who dies as a result of a service-
connected disability.
  (i) Priority for Contracting Preferences.--Preferences for 
awarding contracts to small business concerns shall be applied 
in the following order of priority:
          (1) Contracts awarded pursuant to subsection (b), 
        (c), or (d) to small business concerns owned and 
        controlled by veterans with service-connected 
        disabilities.
          (2) Contracts awarded pursuant to subsection (b), 
        (c), or (d) to small business concerns owned and 
        controlled by veterans that are not covered by 
        paragraph (1).
          (3) Contracts awarded pursuant to--
                  (A) section 8(a) of the Small Business Act 
                (15 U.S.C. 637(a)); or
                  (B) section 31 of such Act (15 U.S.C. 657a).
          (4) Contracts awarded pursuant to any other small 
        business contracting preference.
  (j) Applicability of Requirements to Contracts.--(1) If after 
December 31, 2008, the Secretary enters into a contract, 
memorandum of understanding, agreement, or other arrangement 
with any governmental entity to acquire goods or services, the 
Secretary shall include in such contract, memorandum, 
agreement, or other arrangement a requirement that the entity 
will comply, to the maximum extent feasible, with the 
provisions of this section in acquiring such goods or services.
  (2) Nothing in this subsection shall be construed to 
supersede or otherwise affect the authorities provided under 
the Small Business Act (15 U.S.C. 631 et seq.).
  (k) Annual Reports.--Not later than December 31 each year, 
the Secretary shall submit to Congress a report on small 
business contracting during the fiscal year ending in such 
year. Each report shall include, for the fiscal year covered by 
such report, the following:
          (1) The percentage of the total amount of all 
        contracts awarded by the Department during that fiscal 
        year that were awarded to small business concerns owned 
        and controlled by veterans.
          (2) The percentage of the total amount of all such 
        contracts awarded to small business concerns owned and 
        controlled by veterans with service-connected 
        disabilities.
          (3) The percentage of the total amount of all 
        contracts awarded by each Administration of the 
        Department during that fiscal year that were awarded to 
        small business concerns owned and controlled by 
        veterans.
          (4) The percentage of the total amount of all 
        contracts awarded by each such Administration during 
        that fiscal year that were awarded to small business 
        concerns owned and controlled by veterans with service-
        connected disabilities.
  (l) Limitations on Subcontracting.--(1)(A) The requirements 
applicable to a covered small business concern under section 46 
of the Small Business Act (15 U.S.C. 657s) shall apply with 
respect to a small business concern owned and controlled by a 
veteran with a service-connected disability or a small business 
concern owned and controlled by a veteran that is awarded a 
contract that is counted for purposes of meeting the goals 
under subsection (a).
  (B) For purposes of applying the requirements of section 46 
of the Small Business Act (15 U.S.C. 657s) pursuant to 
subparagraph (A), the term ``similarly situated entity'' used 
in such section 46 includes a subcontractor for a small 
business concern owned and controlled by a veteran with a 
service-connected disability or a small business concern owned 
and controlled by a veteran described in such subparagraph (A).
  (2) Before awarding a contract that is counted for purposes 
of meeting the goals under subsection (a), the Secretary shall 
obtain from an offeror a certification that the offeror will 
comply with the requirements described in paragraph (1)(A) if 
awarded the contract. Such certification shall--
          (A) specify the exact performance requirements 
        applicable under such paragraph; and
          (B) explicitly acknowledge that the certification is 
        subject to section 1001 of title 18.
  (3) If the Secretary determines that a small business concern 
that is awarded a contract that is counted for purposes of 
meeting the goals under subsection (a) did not act in good 
faith with respect to the requirements described in paragraph 
(1)(A), the small business concern shall be subject to the 
penalties specified in--
          (A) section 16(g)(1) of the Small Business Act (15 
        U.S.C. 645(g)(1)); and
          (B) section 1001 of title 18.
  (4)(A) The Director of Small and Disadvantaged Business 
Utilization for the Department, established pursuant to section 
15(k) of the Small Business Act (15 U.S.C. 644(k)), and the 
Chief Acquisition Officer of the Department, established 
pursuant to section 1702 of title 41, shall jointly implement a 
process using the systems described in section 16(g)(2) of the 
Small Business Act (15 U.S.C. 645(g)(2)), or any other systems 
available, to monitor compliance with this subsection. The 
Chief Acquisition Officer shall refer any violations of this 
subsection to the Inspector General of the Department.
  (B) Not later than November 30 of each year, the Inspector 
General shall submit to the Committees on Veterans' Affairs of 
the Senate and House of Representatives a report for the fiscal 
year preceding the fiscal year during which the report is 
submitted that includes, for the fiscal year covered by the 
report--
          (i) the number of referred violations received under 
        subparagraph (A); and
          (ii) the disposition of such referred violations, 
        including the number of small business concerns 
        suspended or debarred from Federal contracting or 
        referred to the Attorney General for prosecution.
  [(l)] (m) Definitions.--In this section:
          (1) The term ``small business concern'' has the 
        meaning given that term under section 3 of the Small 
        Business Act (15 U.S.C. 632).
          (2) The term ``small business concern owned and 
        controlled by veterans'' means a small business 
        concern--
                  (A)(i) not less than 51 percent of which is 
                owned by one or more veterans or, in the case 
                of a publicly owned business, not less than 51 
                percent of the stock of which is owned by one 
                or more veterans; and
                  (ii) the management and daily business 
                operations of which are controlled by one or 
                more veterans; or
                  (B) not less than 51 percent of which is 
                owned by one or more veterans with service-
                connected disabilities that are permanent and 
                total who are unable to manage the daily 
                business operations of such concern or, in the 
                case of a publicly owned business, not less 
                than 51 percent of the stock of which is owned 
                by one or more such veterans.

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                              ----------                              


SOCIAL SECURITY ACT

           *       *       *       *       *       *       *



TITLE IV--GRANTS TO STATES FOR AID AND SERVICES TO NEEDY FAMILIES WITH 
CHILDREN AND FOR CHILD-WELFARE SERVICES

           *       *       *       *       *       *       *



Part D--Child Support and Establishment of Paternity

           *       *       *       *       *       *       *



SEC. 453A. STATE DIRECTORY OF NEW HIRES.

  (a) Establishment.--
          (1) In general.--
                  (A) Requirement for States that have no 
                directory.--Except as provided in subparagraph 
                (B), not later than October 1, 1997, each State 
                shall establish an automated directory (to be 
                known as the ``State Directory of New Hires'') 
                which shall contain information supplied in 
                accordance with subsection (b) by employers on 
                each newly hired employee.
                  (B) States with new hire reporting law in 
                existence.--A State which has a new hire 
                reporting law in existence on the date of the 
                enactment of this section may continue to 
                operate under the State law, but the State must 
                meet the requirements of subsection (g)(2) not 
                later than October 1, 1997, and the 
                requirements of this section (other than 
                subsection (g)(2)) not later than October 1, 
                1998.
          (2) Definitions.--As used in this section:
                  (A) Employee.--The term ``employee''--
                          (i) means an individual who is an 
                        employee within the meaning of chapter 
                        24 of the Internal Revenue Code of 
                        1986; and
                          (ii) does not include an employee of 
                        a Federal or State agency performing 
                        intelligence or counterintelligence 
                        functions, if the head of such agency 
                        has determined that reporting pursuant 
                        to paragraph (1) with respect to the 
                        employee could endanger the safety of 
                        the employee or compromise an ongoing 
                        investigation or intelligence mission.
                  (B) Employer.--
                          (i) In general.--The term 
                        ``employer'' has the meaning given such 
                        term in section 3401(d) of the Internal 
                        Revenue Code of 1986 and includes any 
                        governmental entity and any labor 
                        organization.
                          (ii) Labor organization.--The term 
                        ``labor organization'' shall have the 
                        meaning given such term in section 2(5) 
                        of the National Labor Relations Act, 
                        and includes any entity (also known as 
                        a ``hiring hall'') which is used by the 
                        organization and an employer to carry 
                        out requirements described in section 
                        8(f)(3) of such Act of an agreement 
                        between the organization and the 
                        employer.
                  (C) Newly hired employee.--The term ``newly 
                hired employee'' means an employee who--
                          (i) has not previously been employed 
                        by the employer; or
                          (ii) was previously employed by the 
                        employer but has been separated from 
                        such prior employment for at least 60 
                        consecutive days.
  (b) Employer Information.--
          (1) Reporting requirement.--
                  (A) In general.--Except as provided in 
                subparagraphs (B) and (C), each employer shall 
                furnish to the Directory of New Hires of the 
                State in which a newly hired employee works, a 
                report that contains the name, address, and 
                social security number of the employee, the 
                date services for remuneration were first 
                performed by the employee, and the name and 
                address of, and identifying number assigned 
                under section 6109 of the Internal Revenue Code 
                of 1986 to, the employer.
                  (B) Multistate employers.--An employer that 
                has employees who are employed in 2 or more 
                States and that transmits reports magnetically 
                or electronically may comply with subparagraph 
                (A) by designating 1 State in which such 
                employer has employees to which the employer 
                will transmit the report described in 
                subparagraph (A), and transmitting such report 
                to such State. Any employer that transmits 
                reports pursuant to this subparagraph shall 
                notify the Secretary in writing as to which 
                State such employer designates for the purpose 
                of sending reports.
                  (C) Federal government employers.--Any 
                department, agency, or instrumentality of the 
                United States shall comply with subparagraph 
                (A) by transmitting the report described in 
                subparagraph (A) to the National Directory of 
                New Hires established pursuant to section 453.
          (2) Timing of report.--Each State may provide the 
        time within which the report required by paragraph (1) 
        shall be made with respect to an employee, but such 
        report shall be made--
                  (A) not later than 20 days after the date the 
                employer hires the employee; or
                  (B) in the case of an employer transmitting 
                reports magnetically or electronically, by 2 
                monthly transmissions (if necessary) not less 
                than 12 days nor more than 16 days apart.
  (c) Reporting Format and Method.--Each report required by 
subsection (b) shall, to the extent practicable, be made on a 
W-4 form or, at the option of the employer, an equivalent form, 
and may be transmitted by 1st class mail, magnetically, or 
electronically.
  (d) Civil Money Penalties on Noncomplying Employers.--The 
State shall have the option to set a State civil money penalty 
which shall not exceed--
          (1) $25 per failure to meet the requirements of this 
        section with respect to a newly hired employee; or
          (2) $500 if, under State law, the failure is the 
        result of a conspiracy between the employer and the 
        employee to not supply the required report or to supply 
        a false or incomplete report.
  (e) Entry of Employer Information.--Information shall be 
entered into the data base maintained by the State Directory of 
New Hires within 5 business days of receipt from an employer 
pursuant to subsection (b).
  (f) Information Comparisons.--
          (1) In general.--Not later than May 1, 1998, an 
        agency designated by the State shall, directly or by 
        contract, conduct automated comparisons of the social 
        security numbers reported by employers pursuant to 
        subsection (b) and the social security numbers 
        appearing in the records of the State case registry for 
        cases being enforced under the State plan.
          (2) Notice of match.--When an information comparison 
        conducted under paragraph (1) reveals a match with 
        respect to the social security number of an individual 
        required to provide support under a support order, the 
        State Directory of New Hires shall provide the agency 
        administering the State plan approved under this part 
        of the appropriate State with the name, address, and 
        social security number of the employee to whom the 
        social security number is assigned, and the name and 
        address of, and identifying number assigned under 
        section 6109 of the Internal Revenue Code of 1986 to, 
        the employer.
  (g) Transmission of Information.--
          (1) Transmission of wage withholding notices to 
        employers.--Within 2 business days after the date 
        information regarding a newly hired employee is entered 
        into the State Directory of New Hires, the State agency 
        enforcing the employee's child support obligation shall 
        transmit a notice to the employer of the employee 
        directing the employer to withhold from the income of 
        the employee an amount equal to the monthly (or other 
        periodic) child support obligation (including any past 
        due support obligation) of the employee, unless the 
        employee's income is not subject to withholding 
        pursuant to section 466(b)(3).
          (2) Transmissions to the national directory of new 
        hires.--
                  (A) New hire information.--Within 3 business 
                days after the date information regarding a 
                newly hired employee is entered into the State 
                Directory of New Hires, the State Directory of 
                New Hires shall furnish the information to the 
                National Directory of New Hires.
                  (B) Wage and unemployment compensation 
                information.--The State Directory of New Hires 
                shall, on a quarterly basis, furnish to the 
                National Directory of New Hires information 
                concerning the wages and unemployment 
                compensation paid to individuals, by such 
                dates, in such format, and containing such 
                information as the Secretary of Health and 
                Human Services shall specify in regulations.
          (3) Business day defined.--As used in this 
        subsection, the term ``business day'' means a day on 
        which State offices are open for regular business.
  (h) Other Uses of New Hire Information.--
          (1) Location of child support obligors.--The agency 
        administering the State plan approved under this part 
        shall use information received pursuant to subsection 
        (f)(2) to locate individuals for purposes of 
        establishing paternity and establishing, modifying, and 
        enforcing child support obligations, and may disclose 
        such information to any agent of the agency that is 
        under contract with the agency to carry out such 
        purposes.
          (2) Verification of eligibility for certain 
        programs.--A State agency responsible for administering 
        a program specified in section 1137(b) shall have 
        access to information reported by employers pursuant to 
        subsection (b) of this section for purposes of 
        verifying eligibility for the program.
          (3) Administration of employment security and 
        workers' compensation.--State agencies operating 
        employment security and workers' compensation programs 
        shall have access to information reported by employers 
        pursuant to subsection (b) for the purposes of 
        administering such programs.
          (4) Secretary of veterans affairs.--The Secretary of 
        Veterans Affairs shall have access to information 
        reported by employers pursuant to subsection (b) of 
        this section.

           *       *       *       *       *       *       *

                              ----------                              


VETERANS ACCESS, CHOICE, AND ACCOUNTABILITY ACT OF 2014

           *       *       *       *       *       *       *



                   TITLE VII--OTHER VETERANS MATTERS

SEC. 701. EXPANSION OF MARINE GUNNERY SERGEANT JOHN DAVID FRY 
                    SCHOLARSHIP.

  (a) Expansion of Entitlement.--Subsection (b)(9) of section 
3311 of title 38, United States Code, is amended by inserting 
``or spouse'' after ``child''.
  (b) Limitation and Election on Certain Benefits.--Subsection 
(f) of such section is amended--
          (1) by redesignating paragraph (2) as paragraph (4); 
        and
          (2) by inserting after paragraph (1) the following 
        new paragraphs:
          ``(2) Limitation.--The entitlement of an individual 
        to assistance under subsection (a) pursuant to 
        paragraph (9) of subsection (b) because the individual 
        was a spouse of a person described in such paragraph 
        shall expire on the earlier of--
                  ``(A) the date that is 15 years after the 
                date on which the person died; or
                  ``(B) the date on which the individual 
                remarries.
          ``(3) Election on receipt of certain benefits.--A 
        surviving spouse entitled to assistance under 
        subsection (a) pursuant to paragraph (9) of subsection 
        (b) who is also entitled to educational assistance 
        under chapter 35 of this title may not receive 
        assistance under both this section and such chapter, 
        but shall make an irrevocable election (in such form 
        and manner as the Secretary may prescribe) under which 
        section or chapter to receive educational 
        assistance.''.
  (c) Conforming Amendment.--Section 3321(b)(4) of such title 
is amended--
          (1) by striking ``an individual'' and inserting ``a 
        child''; and
          (2) by striking ``such individual's'' each time it 
        appears and inserting ``such child's''.
  [(d) Effective Date.--The amendments made by this section 
shall apply with respect to a quarter, semester, or term, as 
applicable, commencing on or after January 1, 2015.]
  (d) Applicability.--
          (1) In general.--The amendments made by this section 
        shall apply with respect to a quarter, semester, or 
        term, as applicable, commencing on or after January 1, 
        2015.
          (2) Deaths that occurred between september 11, 2001, 
        and december 31, 2005.--For purposes of section 
        3311(f)(2) of title 38, United States Code, any member 
        of the Armed Forces who died during the period 
        beginning on September 11, 2001, and ending on December 
        31, 2005, is deemed to have died on January 1, 2006.

           *       *       *       *       *       *       *

                              ----------                              


 SECTION 5003 OF THE POST-9/11 VETERANS EDUCATIONAL ASSISTANCE ACT OF 
                                  2008


SEC. 5003. EDUCATIONAL ASSISTANCE FOR MEMBERS OF THE ARMED FORCES WHO 
                    SERVE AFTER SEPTEMBER 11, 2001.

   [Subsections (a) and (b) provide for amendments to law.]
  [(c) Applicability to Individuals Under Montgomery Gi Bill 
Program.--
          [(1)  Individuals eligible to elect participation in 
        post-9/11 educational assistance.--An individual may 
        elect to receive educational assistance under chapter 
        33 of title 38, United States Code (as added by 
        subsection (a)), if such individual--
                  [(A) as of August 1, 2009--
                          [(i) is entitled to basic educational 
                        assistance under chapter 30 of title 
                        38, United States Code, and has used, 
                        but retains unused, entitlement under 
                        that chapter;
                          [(ii) is entitled to educational 
                        assistance under chapter 107, 1606, or 
                        1607 of title 10, United States Code, 
                        and has used, but retains unused, 
                        entitlement under the applicable 
                        chapter;
                          [(iii) is entitled to basic 
                        educational assistance under chapter 30 
                        of title 38, United States Code, but 
                        has not used any entitlement under that 
                        chapter;
                          [(iv) is entitled to educational 
                        assistance under chapter 107, 1606, or 
                        1607 of title 10, United States Code, 
                        but has not used any entitlement under 
                        such chapter;
                          [(v) is a member of the Armed Forces 
                        who is eligible for receipt of basic 
                        educational assistance under chapter 30 
                        of title 38, United States Code, and is 
                        making contributions toward such 
                        assistance under section 3011(b) or 
                        3012(c) of such title; or
                          [(vi) is a member of the Armed Forces 
                        who is not entitled to basic 
                        educational assistance under chapter 30 
                        of title 38, United States Code, by 
                        reason of an election under section 
                        3011(c)(1) or 3012(d)(1) of such title; 
                        and
                  [(B) as of the date of the individual's 
                election under this paragraph, meets the 
                requirements for entitlement to educational 
                assistance under chapter 33 of title 38, United 
                States Code (as so added).
          [(2) Cessation of contributions toward gi bill.--
        Effective as of the first month beginning on or after 
        the date of an election under paragraph (1) of an 
        individual described by subparagraph (A)(v) of that 
        paragraph, the obligation of the individual to make 
        contributions under section 3011(b) or 3012(c) of title 
        38, United States Code, as applicable, shall cease, and 
        the requirements of such section shall be deemed to be 
        no longer applicable to the individual.
          [(3) Revocation of remaining transferred 
        entitlement.--
                  [(A)  Election to revoke.--If, on the date an 
                individual described in subparagraph (A)(i) or 
                (A)(iii) of paragraph (1) makes an election 
                under that paragraph, a transfer of the 
                entitlement of the individual to basic 
                educational assistance under section 3020 of 
                title 38, United States Code, is in effect and 
                a number of months of the entitlement so 
                transferred remain unutilized, the individual 
                may elect to revoke all or a portion of the 
                entitlement so transferred that remains 
                unutilized.
                  [(B) Availability of revoked entitlement.--
                Any entitlement revoked by an individual under 
                this paragraph shall no longer be available to 
                the dependent to whom transferred, but shall be 
                available to the individual instead for 
                educational assistance under chapter 33 of 
                title 38, United States Code (as so added), in 
                accordance with the provisions of this 
                subsection.
                  [(C) Availability of unrevoked entitlement.--
                Any entitlement described in subparagraph (A) 
                that is not revoked by an individual in 
                accordance with that subparagraph shall remain 
                available to the dependent or dependents 
                concerned in accordance with the current 
                transfer of such entitlement under section 3020 
                of title 38, United States Code.
          [(4) Post-9/11 educational assistance.--
                  [(A)  In general.--Subject to subparagraph 
                (B) and except as provided in paragraph (5), an 
                individual making an election under paragraph 
                (1) shall be entitled to educational assistance 
                under chapter 33 of title 38, United States 
                Code (as so added), in accordance with the 
                provisions of such chapter, instead of basic 
                educational assistance under chapter 30 of 
                title 38, United States Code, or educational 
                assistance under chapter 107, 1606, or 1607 of 
                title 10, United States Code, as applicable.
                  [(B) Limitation on entitlement for certain 
                individuals.--In the case of an individual 
                making an election under paragraph (1) who is 
                described by subparagraph (A)(i) of that 
                paragraph, the number of months of entitlement 
                of the individual to educational assistance 
                under chapter 33 of title 38, United States 
                Code (as so added), shall be the number of 
                months equal to--
                          [(i) the number of months of unused 
                        entitlement of the individual under 
                        chapter 30 of title 38, United States 
                        Code, as of the date of the election, 
                        plus
                          [(ii) the number of months, if any, 
                        of entitlement revoked by the 
                        individual under paragraph (3)(A).
          [(5) Continuing entitlement to educational assistance 
        not available under 9/11 assistance program.--
                  [(A) In general.--  In the event educational 
                assistance to which an individual making an 
                election under paragraph (1) would be entitled 
                under chapter 30 of title 38, United States 
                Code, or chapter 107, 1606, or 1607 of title 
                10, United States Code, as applicable, is not 
                authorized to be available to the individual 
                under the provisions of chapter 33 of title 38, 
                United States Code (as so added), the 
                individual shall remain entitled to such 
                educational assistance in accordance with the 
                provisions of the applicable chapter.
                  [(B) Charge for use of entitlement.--The 
                utilization by an individual of entitlement 
                under subparagraph (A) shall be chargeable 
                against the entitlement of the individual to 
                educational assistance under chapter 33 of 
                title 38, United States Code (as so added), at 
                the rate of one month of entitlement under such 
                chapter 33 for each month of entitlement 
                utilized by the individual under subparagraph 
                (A) (as determined as if such entitlement were 
                utilized under the provisions of chapter 30 of 
                title 38, United States Code, or chapter 107, 
                1606, or 1607 of title 10, United States Code, 
                as applicable).
          [(6) Additional post-9/11 assistance for members 
        having made contributions toward gi bill.--
                  [(A) Additional assistance.--In the case of 
                an individual making an election under 
                paragraph (1) who is described by clause (i), 
                (iii), or (v) of subparagraph (A) of that 
                paragraph, the amount of educational assistance 
                payable to the individual under chapter 33 of 
                title 38, United States Code (as so added), as 
                a monthly stipend payable under paragraph 
                (1)(B) of section 3313(c) of such title, or 
                under paragraphs (2) through (7) of that 
                section (as applicable), shall be the amount 
                otherwise payable as a monthly stipend under 
                the applicable paragraph increased by the 
                amount equal to--
                          [(i) the total amount of 
                        contributions toward basic educational 
                        assistance made by the individual under 
                        section 3011(b) or 3012(c) of title 38, 
                        United States Code, as of the date of 
                        the election, multiplied by
                          [(ii) the fraction--
                                  [(I) the numerator of which 
                                is--
                                          [(aa) the number of 
                                        months of entitlement 
                                        to basic educational 
                                        assistance under 
                                        chapter 30 of title 38, 
                                        United States Code, 
                                        remaining to the 
                                        individual at the time 
                                        of the election; plus
                                          [(bb) the number of 
                                        months, if any, of 
                                        entitlement under such 
                                        chapter 30 revoked by 
                                        the individual under 
                                        paragraph (3)(A); and
                                  [(II) the denominator of 
                                which is 36 months.
                  [(B) Months of remaining entitlement for 
                certain individuals.--In the case of an 
                individual covered by subparagraph (A) who is 
                described by paragraph (1)(A)(v), the number of 
                months of entitlement to basic educational 
                assistance remaining to the individual for 
                purposes of subparagraph (A)(ii)(I)(aa) shall 
                be 36 months.
                  [(C) Timing of payment.--The amount payable 
                with respect to an individual under 
                subparagraph (A) shall be paid to the 
                individual together with the last payment of 
                the monthly stipend payable to the individual 
                under paragraph (1)(B) of section 3313(c) of 
                title 38, United States Code (as so added), or 
                under paragraphs (2) through (7) of that 
                section (as applicable), before the exhaustion 
                of the individual's entitlement to educational 
                assistance under chapter 33 of such title (as 
                so added).
          [(7) Continuing entitlement to additional assistance 
        for critical skills or speciality and additional 
        service.--An individual making an election under 
        paragraph (1)(A) who, at the time of the election, is 
        entitled to increased educational assistance under 
        section 3015(d) of title 38, United States Code, or 
        section 16131(i) of title 10, United States Code, or 
        supplemental educational assistance under subchapter 
        III of chapter 30 of title 38, United States Code, 
        shall remain entitled to such increased educational 
        assistance or supplemental educational assistance in 
        the utilization of entitlement to educational 
        assistance under chapter 33 of title 38, United States 
        Code (as so added), in an amount equal to the quarter, 
        semester, or term, as applicable, equivalent of the 
        monthly amount of such increased educational assistance 
        or supplemental educational assistance payable with 
        respect to the individual at the time of the election.
          [(8) Irrevocability of elections.--An election under 
        paragraph (1) or (3)(A) is irrevocable.]
  (d) Effective Date.--This section and the amendments made by 
this section shall take effect on August 1, 2009.

                            DISSENTING VIEWS

    We respectfully oppose two provisions of H.R. 3016, the 
Veterans Employment, Education, and Health Care Improvement Act 
of 2015, as amended.

                         TITLE II, SECTION 203

    Section 203 would create within the Department of Veterans 
Affairs (VA) an entirely new bureaucracy, the Veterans Economic 
Opportunity and Transition Administration (VEOTA). H.R. 3016 
would consolidate various programs and transfer the Veterans 
Employment and Training Services (VETS) from the Department of 
Labor (DOL) to the VA.
    This section mandates a reorganization of two agencies of 
the Executive Branch without providing a concrete plan as to 
how the VA and DOL should make these significant changes. 
What's more, as of November 6, 2015, veteran unemployment is at 
3.9 percent, lower than the national unemployment rate of 5.0 
percent and down from 6.2 percent last year.\1\ Mandating this 
reorganization is simply an attempt to fix something that 
clearly is not broken and risks major disruptions to our 
efforts to ensure that veterans find employment.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------
    \1\Veterans Benefits Administration Office of Economic Opportunity, 
Employment Facts and Statistics, BLS Employment Data, October 2015.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------
    This proposed change is opposed by Executive Branch. On 
September 16, 2015 VA Secretary Bob McDonald and DOL Secretary 
Tom Perez sent a joint letter articulating their belief that 
``the proposal to move VETS to VA undermines the collective 
progress we have made over the past several years to ensure 
that all veterans have access to good-paying civilian jobs.'' 
The Secretaries emphasize the different but complementary roles 
and expertise that DOL and VA bring to veterans' employment 
efforts, including DOL's focus on issues relating to employment 
and training, and VA's responsibility for veterans.
    The joint letter confirms that moving DOL VETS to VA would 
unnecessarily duplicate DOL resources within VA, thus adding on 
redundant layers of bureaucracy. ``Rather than consolidating 
government programs, the proposal before the Committee 
separates veterans' job training, job search, and job placement 
services from similar services being provided to non-veteran 
job seekers, thus creating a parallel workforce system [within 
VA] that ultimately will be more expensive and less 
effective.'' Yet in spite of the Secretaries' insistence that 
transferring DOL VETS to VA would ``generate worse outcomes for 
veterans by not leveraging existing infrastructure and 
expertise,'' this legislation persists in promoting this costly 
and misguided policy.
    Moving DOL VETS to VA would give VA more responsibility 
that it does not want, while undermining DOL's significant 
progress in helping veterans find quality employment. This 
apparent vote of confidence in VA's ability to manage important 
programs and their corresponding budgets contradicts the often-
heard narrative that VA is unable to effectively care for our 
nation's veterans
    If there are problems with DOL VETS then it is Congress's 
duty to exercise oversight and address those problems directly. 
Lacking a detailed and concrete plan as to how this 
reorganization would occur, including the manner in which these 
programs are funded and what happens to employees, there is 
simply not enough information to feel confident that VA would 
do a better job in this area than DOL.
    At the Full Committee markup on September 17, 2015, we 
supported an amendment introduced by Representative Titus to 
strike Section 203 and instead require three studies be 
conducted to carefully evaluate this issue. Such studies would 
allow Congress to better understand how the VA and DOL programs 
can help veterans in their job search, employment training, and 
career development. This amendment was defeated.

                         TITLE III, SECTION 301

    Section 301 would change the terms of eligibility for 
servicemembers who elect to transfer Post-9/11 GI Bill benefits 
to their dependents. Currently, servicemembers can elect to 
transfer their valuable Post-9/11 education benefits to 
dependents upon completing six years of military service and 
committing to four more years. Section 301 would change the 
transfer eligibility criteria to a completion of ten years plus 
a commitment of two more years. In addition, the provision 
would reduce GI Bill living stipend payments to children 
transferees by half. These changes are based on the 
recommendations in the 2015 Military Compensation and 
Retirement Modernization Commission report.\2\
---------------------------------------------------------------------------
    \2\Report of the Military Compensation and Retirement Modernization 
Commission, Final Report. January 29, 2015.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------
    These changes would go into effect 180 days after 
enactment. A current servicemember who had not served six years 
by that date would have to wait to hit the ten-year mark, even 
if he or she had been planning to elect to transfer education 
benefits at the six-year mark. This incomplete grandfathering 
of current servicemembers would create a reach-back that 
violates elements of the contract we made with the individuals 
who signed up to serve in our military and defend our country.
    These changes to GI Bill transferability exist largely to 
save money, not to meet the educational needs of veterans or 
their dependents. It is crucial to note that the savings would 
not be re-invested to enhance veterans' access to quality 
higher education and job training. Rather, the savings would 
pay for the ill-advised policy to move DOL VETS to VA, among 
other provisions unrelated to veterans' education. Chipping 
away at the hard-earned VA education benefits that veterans, 
servicemembers and their dependents rely on, without 
reinvesting in veterans' education programs, would simply erode 
veterans' educational opportunities and ultimately make it more 
difficult for them to succeed in their transition to civilian 
life.
    Further, given that the Department of Defense (DOD) relies 
on GI Bill transferability as a recruitment and retention tool, 
these changes would be better decided after consideration and 
approval from the House Armed Services Committee.
    At the September 17, 2015 Full Committee markup, we 
supported an amendment offered by Representative Takano to 
remove Section 301 and keep in place the current rules 
governing Post-
9/11 GI Bill transferability. This amendment was defeated.

                                   Corrine Brown,
                                           Ranking Member.
                                   Julia Brownley.
                                   Ann Kuster.
                                   Mark Takano.
                                   Dina Titus.
                                   Tim Walz.

                                  [all]