WASHINGTON, DC – Congressman Sanford D. Bishop, Jr. (GA-02) delivered the following statement on the passage of the Veterans Cemetery Benefit Correction Act (H.R. 4910):
“Currently, when veterans are buried in a federal cemetery outside the jurisdiction of the VA, a number of our veteran’s families are left to pay the burial costs that typically would be afforded to them under most other circumstances.
“The current law requires that, when a veteran is buried in a national cemetery under the control of the National Cemetery Administration, the VA will provide an outer burial receptacle – known in other terms as a grave liner – or provide reimbursement to the family for purchase.
“However, the current law inexplicably excludes national cemeteries under the control of the National Park Service. The Andersonville National Cemetery is one of the two remaining national cemeteries controlled by the National Park Service.
“The passage of this legislation will fix this oversight and ensure all veterans and their families are provided appropriate benefits at all our federal cemeteries.”
The legislation, which Congressman Bishop introduced with Congressman Austin Scott (GA-08) on January 30, 2018, will correct a technical error that limits access to burial benefits for veterans buried in cemeteries under the jurisdiction of the National Park Service, instead of the Department of Veterans Affairs.
The legislation was approved by the full U.S. House of Representatives by a vote of 388 to 0.