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Thursday, May 21, 2015

USA - Buchanan's Bill to Replace DD-214 With Veterans ID Card Passes House

             By: Kevin Derby

Vern Buchanan
Vern Buchanan
On Monday night, the U.S. House passed a bill from a Florida congressman which ensures every veteran receives an ID card from the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs without burdening taxpayers. The House passed the vote with 402 representatives backing it and no votes cast against it.
U.S. Rep. Vern Buchanan, R-Fla., introduced the “Veterans ID Card Act” earlier this year. Buchanan’s bill would ensure all veterans receive ID cards from the VA instead of just those who served 20 years in the armed forces or are seeking medical treatment for service-related wounds. Buchanan said veterans are forced to carry DD-214 paperwork, which contains sensitive information including Social Security numbers, and an ID card would be more convenient and would do a better job of keeping their personal information secure.
“Over the years, I have heard from countless veterans in Florida and across the country who have expressed frustration over their inability to document their service to our country without carrying around their official military records,” Buchanan said on Monday. “My bill would correct that problem, enabling all veterans to obtain their own simple, standardized ID card at no cost to the taxpayers.”
Buchanan insisted his bill was budget neutral since veterans who opted for the ID card would have a “small fee” which the VA secretary would examine every five years.
Congressional co-sponsors of the bill included U.S. Rep. Jeff Miller, R-Fla., the chairman of the House Veterans Affairs Committee and U.S. Rep. Corrine Brown, D-Fla., the ranking Democrat on the committee. Other congressional representatives from Florida who co-sponsored the bill include Republican U.S. Reps. Ander Crenshaw, Ron DeSantis, Mario Diaz-Balart, David Jolly, Bill Posey, Dennis Ross and Ted Yoho, and Democratic U.S. Reps. Ted Deutch and Alcee Hastings. The bill has also won the backing of veterans groups including AMVETS and Veterans for Common Sense (VCS).
Anthony Hardie, the director of VCS, cheered the House vote on Monday.
“VCS was an immediate supporter of this smart and helpful bill,” Hardie said. “We thank Rep. Buchanan and the many House cosponsors for leading the way to making this good idea a reality.”
Buchanan’s office told Sunshine State News on Monday that they are speaking to various senators and expect a sponsor in the Senate in the immediate future.

Reach Kevin Derby at or follow him on Twitter: @KevinDerbySSN