Military spouses seek residency benefits

By Kimberly Hefling: The Associated Press SPRINGFIELD, Va. — Don’t expect a rush order if you call Joanna Williamson’s jewelry business. She’s a military spouse, and it’s moving season. About 800,000 service members move each year — nearly half during the summer. Moving is a ritual repeated nearly every three years on average for military […]

G.I. Bill benefits transfer now easier

By Tom Philpott: FNM columnist Service members nearing the end of their careers will find it easier than first thought to transfer new Post-9/11 GI Bill education benefits to their spouse or children, under Department of Defense regulations. And service members who elect to transfer GI Bill benefits will be allowed to modify or revoke […]

Rep. Luj

Washington, DC – Rep. Ben Ray Luj

Rep. Luj

Washington, DC – Today, Rep. Ben Ray Luj

Reservists offered coverage

By Brian P. Smith: TriWest Healthcare Alliance When National Guard or Reserve sponsors are not on active duty, they may be eligible for healthcare coverage by purchasing and enrolling in TRICARE Reserve Select (TRS). TRICARE Reserve Select TRS includes medical and behavioral health coverage and access to TRICARE pharmacy benefits. TRS allows enrollees to choose […]

Open enrollment ongoing for civilian benefits

Air Force News Service RANDOLPH AIR FORCE BASE, Texas — Air Force officials here announced the open season for three civilian benefit programs continues until Dec. 8. The three programs are the Federal Employees Health Benefits Program, or FEHB; the Federal Employees Dental and Vision Insurance Program, or FEDVIP; and the Federal Flexible Spending Account, […]

TRICARE enhances autism services coverage

By Brian Smith: TriWest Healthcare Alliance Active duty military families now have access to expanded services for autistic children under TRICARE. A new set of behavioral and educational benefits — the Enhanced Access to Autism Services Demonstration benefit — allows eligible beneficiaries to see a new category of providers as part of the Extended Care […]

Military feature: Veterans say medical benefits major issue in election

k9hhts-1029electionveteran2.jpg

CNJ staff photo: Liliana Castillo Bill Maciejewski, the senior vice commander for the Veterans of Foreign Wars Post no. 3280 in Clovis, said that the next president should provide more for veterans and those currently in the service. By Gabriel Monte: CNJ staff writer Veterans of Foreign Wars Post 3280 Commander Vernon Luce said veterans […]

Ag Sense: Strip tillage may be alternative to no-till

By Sangu Angadi Sustainability of agriculture in the southern High Plains depends on improved agronomic practices that protect our limited soil and water resources, and reduce the cost of production. Unreliable precipitation patterns, high intensity rains causing erosion and declining irrigation resources make water the most important factor for limiting agriculture sustainability in the region. […]

Policy benefits spouses

By Jim Garamone: American Forces Press Service WASHINGTON — President Bush has signed an executive order that will make it easier for spouses of servicemembers to get federal jobs. The order authorizes noncompetitive hiring of spouses and should make the hiring process easier and faster for those in this category, said Patricia Bradshaw, deputy undersecretary […]

Widows ineligible for dual benefits

By Tom Philpott: CNJ columnist By a 94-to-2 vote, the Senate for a fourth straight year has agreed to repeal a law that bans “concurrent receipt” for military surviving spouses. The intent is to end reduced annuities under the military Survivor Benefit Plan (SBP) when a surviving spouse opts to draw Dependency and Indemnity Compensation […]

Proposed act expands VA benefits

By Tom Philpott: CNJ columnist Congress is moving to reopen the VA health care system to many more thousands of Priority Group 8 veterans — those who aren’t poor, at least by government standards, and have no service-related ailments. Disabled American Veterans and some partner organizations support such a move but with two caveats, explained […]

‘Bonus’ forfeits retirement dollars

By Tom Philpott: CNJ columnist Thousands of military members entering their 15th year of service continue to be enticed by a wily government offer: a $30,000 bonus if they agree to take a deep and permanent cut in future retirement benefits. The offer, called a Career Status Bonus, takes advantage of service people who are […]

Volunteering benefits everyone

By Clyde Davis: CNJ columnist What has between 700 and 800 heads, represents New Mexico’s civic leaders, has never been to Clovis before, and will be coming to town Aug. 12-14? The answer, should your curiosity be excited, is the New Mexico Municipal League. Your curiosity, or at least your civic pride, should indeed be […]

Revised bill could boost recruiting

By Tom Philpott: CNJ columnist The quality and number of American youth drawn to military service should climb soon because of enhanced education benefits to be provided under the new Post-9/11 GI Bill, say Pentagon recruiting experts. “It is a very attractive incentive package, there’s no question about that. So individuals will be very interested […]

Alcohol sales being considered by Texico officials

By CNJ staff writer: Gabriel Monte Texico city officials are looking into allowing alcohol sales in the city. Proponents say alcohol sales could increase city revenues. Detractors say burdens outweigh benefits. The idea was brought up last month during a roundtable discussion regarding the city’s budget, according to Texico City Clerk Carolyn Johnson. She said […]

DeCA brings benefits to soldiers

By Tom Philpott: CNJ Columnist On a weekend in early April, Staff Sgt. Ingrid Rice drove to her North Carolina Air National Guard facility in Charlotte and bought $250 worth of groceries at commissary discount prices. After filling one shopping cart and checking out, Rice, a mother of two, returned and shopped again.

GI Bill may receive sizable boost

By Tom Philpott: CNJ Columnist The Bush administration has endorsed a House bill that would improve the Montgomery GI Bill (MGIB) education benefits in several ways including with a 31 percent jump in monthly benefits and a new $500-a-month stipend to help cover college living expenses. The administration’s aim is not only to improve veterans’ […]

IRS to begin mailing stimulus notices

The Associated Press WASHINGTON — Don’t be alarmed. More than 130 million households will get letters from the Internal Revenue Service beginning next week and the news is good. The letters are part of an effort to ensure people do not miss out if they are eligible for a tax rebate check under the recently […]

Social Security workers brace for boomers

CNJ staff Social Security offices nationwide are bracing for the first round of baby boomers to hit retirement age. Local Social Security officials are urging individuals to utilize the Internet to file their application. “Staffing levels are at an all-time low,” Social Security District Manager Tony Romero said. “So, we are really pushing the E-Services […]