House Joint Resolution No. 12
Introduced By _______________________________________________________________________________
A Joint Resolution of the Senate and the House of Representatives of the state of Montana urging Congress to enact legislation to allow disabled military retirees concurrent receipt of full longevity retirement benefits and service-connected disability compensation.
WHEREAS, thousands of American military personnel have dedicated their careers to protect the rights that we all enjoy; and
WHEREAS, military personnel endure hardships, privation, the threat of disability and death, and long separation from their families in service to their country; and
WHEREAS, career military personnel earn retirement benefits based on their respective number of years of service and rank at retirement; and
WHEREAS, service-connected disability compensation serves a different purpose from longevity retirement pay and is intended to compensate for pain, suffering, disfigurement, and impaired earning ability because of the disability; and
WHEREAS, retired, disabled military personnel endure a reduction in longevity retirement pay for any service-connected disability compensation that they receive; and
WHEREAS, the offset of retirement benefits by service-connected disability compensation presents an economic hardship to disabled military retirees, often reducing them to a poverty-level existence; and
WHEREAS, similarly situated federal civil service retirees do not face a reduction in civil service retirement benefits if they receive compensation for a service-connected disability; and
WHEREAS, it is fundamentally unfair to require disabled military retirees essentially to fund their own disability compensation.
NOW, THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED BY THE SENATE AND THE HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES OF THE STATE OF MONTANA:
That the Montana Legislature, on behalf of all Montanans, urge Congress to enact legislation to eliminate this inequity and to allow disabled military retirees concurrent receipt of full longevity retirement benefits and service-connected disability compensation.
BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED, that the Secretary of State transmit a copy of this resolution to the President of the United States, the Speaker of the U.S. House of Representatives, the Majority Leader of the U.S. Senate, and the members of Montana's Congressional Delegation.