President Obama signed a law today providing Veteran Service Organizations better access to federal surplus property, such as spare vehicles and equipment for use at their facility.
Representative Dan Benishek, R-MI, who sponsored the legislation called it "common sense."
"The passage of this law will help our local veterans' organizations better serve their members," said Rep. Benishek. "This new law will eliminate needless Washington regulations that were preventing our veterans from getting access to surplus property that can be put to good use at local posts."
Benishek, who worked at the Iron Mountain VA Medical Center for 20 years, said the veterans "deserve" to have access to these items.
Under previous law, veteran's organizations are eligible for surplus property, but all organizations were required to "demonstrate that they are acquiring for educational or public health purposes. Because of what Rep. Benishek calls "strict interpretation of the law," many groups were prevented from getting surplus properties such as office supplies, furniture and vehicles.
This new law will remove the education or public health restriction to allow organizations to recieve more property.
"Having access to surplus items like refridgerators and furniture and spare vehicles will make it easier for our VSO's to save some money and operate in this tough economy," Benishek said. "I was glad to lead this bipartisan effort in Congress. It will help our veterans up here in northern Michigan."