Reducing the VA Backlog
Posted by on October 28, 2013
Congressman Scott is committed to making sure that veterans have timely access to benefits they have earned and he is working to end the disability claims backlog at the Department of Veterans Affairs’ (VA).
The number of VA disabilities claims has increased in the last few years as more veterans from the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan began seeking benefits, and as eligibility for benefits was provided for new diseases associated with exposure to Agent Orange during the Vietnam War. There are over 700,000 disability claims pending, with over 400,000 in the backlog. Over the last six months, the backlog had been reduced by over 30%, or 190,000 claims. However, the unnecessary government shutdown reduced the progress made on the veterans backlog and halted appeals.
Today the House passed H.R 2189 by a vote of 404-1. H.R. 2189 establishes a special panel to seek ways of eliminating the VA's backlog of disability claims and speeding up the claims appeal process. It also requires the VA to take a number of actions to speed up claims by prioritizing the processing of claims for the elderly and those with life-threatening illnesses. It also directs the VA to enter into agreements with other agencies to expedite the transfer of medical records and it establishes a training program for newly hired claims processors.
We have an obligation to care for and honor America's servicemen and women, their families, and our veterans for their bravery and sacrifice. If you have a concern with your VA case, please contact Congressman Scott's office.
Congressman David Scott is Accepting U.S. Military Academy Applications
Posted by on October 09, 2013
Today Congressman David Scott (GA-13) announced that his District Offices are accepting applications from students interested in receiving a nomination to attend one of our nation’s military service academies.
“The privilege of nominating qualified students to the United States Air Force, Military, Merchant Marine, and Naval Academies is one of my most important and rewarding responsibilities,” said Congressman Scott. “The education provided at our nation’s prestigious service academies is of the highest quality and offers challenges that develop our young people into future leaders.”
Interested students should contact Congressman Scott’s Office and complete applications available online on the Congressman's military academy page link. Applicants will be evaluated on the basis of academic performance, leadership ability, moral character, adequacy of preparation, and commitment to attend a service academy. All completed applications must be mailed to or delivered by Friday, October 25, 2013 to Congressman David Scott’s Jonesboro or Smyrna District Office.
To be considered for an appointment to a service academy, an applicant must meet the eligibility requirements established by law and be nominated from an authorized person including a Member of the United States Senate or the House of Representatives.
Applicants must also meet the following eligibility requirements as of July 1 of the year of admission to a service academy: must be at least 17 years old, but not have passed the 23rd birthday; must be a United States citizen; must be a legal resident of Georgia’s Thirteenth Congressional District; and must be unmarried, not pregnant, and have no legal obligation to support children or other dependents.
Mental Health Coverage and the Affordable Care Act
Posted by on September 25, 2013
According to the National Alliance on Mental Illness, adults with mental illness lack coverage at significantly higher rates than those without mental illness. In addition, about a quarter of young adults between the ages of 19-25 are uninsured during the years that many will experience their first mental health condition.
Plans in the health insurance Marketplace include mental health and substance use disorder services. This includes behavioral health treatment, counseling, and psychotherapy. Under the Affordable Care Act, you cannot be denied insurance due to a preexisting conditions such as a mental health condition.
For more information about how the Affordable Care Act can help you or your loved ones obtain mental health coverage, visit https://www.healthcare.gov/
History of 225 Cannon Office Building
Posted by on September 20, 2013
Congressman Scott currently uses 225 Cannon House Office Building as the office for the constituents of the 13th Congressional District. The Cannon Building, completed in 1908, is the oldest congressional office building and is a significant example of the Beaux Arts style of architecture. After the Cannon Building opened in 1908, all members of the House of Representatives had an office for the first time. Before the Cannon Building, some committee chairmen used their committee room as an office, but most members worked at their desk in the House Chamber.The Office of the Clerk researched the history of 225 Cannon and found some notable occupants, including former Vice President Dick Cheney. You can research past Members of Congress on the Clerk's website.
225 Cannon occupants
Charles Tirrell of Massachusetts 1909-1910
John Mitchell of Massachusetts 1911
Frank Wood of Iowa 1909-1919
George Lindsay of New York 1909-1913
John Moore of Texas 1911-1913
Harry Dale of New York 1913-1919
Robert Thomas of Kentucky 1913-1915
William Rodenberg of Illinois 1915-1922
Christian Ramseyer of Iowa 1919-1932
Charles Faust of Missouri 1924-1925
Edward Fenn of Connecticut 1926-1931
Charles Millard of New York 1932
Charles Underhill of New York 1932
Edward Kelly of Illinois 1933-1942
John Burke of California 1933-1934
James McAndrews of Illinois 1935-1940
Alfred Beiter of New York 1941
Robert Rockwell of Colorado 1942-1944
Winifred Stanley of New York 1943-1944
Michael Mansfield of Montana 1945-1948
- Senate Majority Leader, serving sixteen years, from 1961 until his retirement in 1977, (longest-serving Majority Leader)
- Senate Majority Whip under Majority Leader Lyndon B. Johnson from 1957 to 1961.
John Sheridan of Pennsylvania 1945-1946
Angier Goodwin of Massachusetts 1947
Harold Donohue of Massachusetts 1948-1960
Theodore Irving of Missouri 1949
Earl Chudhoff of Pennsylvania 1950-1956
Harry Haskell, Jr., of Delaware 1957-1958
Cornelius Gallagher of New Jersey 1959-1966
Richard Schweiker of Pennsylvania 1961-1962
Louis Wyman of New Hampshire 1963-1964
James Howard of New Jersey 1965-1968
Joe Skubitz of Kansas 1967-1968
John Wydler of New York 1969-1970
Nick Galifianakis of North Carolina 1971-1972
-uncle of comedian Zach Galifianakis
Wilmer Mizell of North Carolina 1973-1974
James Jones of Oklahoma 1975-1978
John LaFalce of New York 1979-1980
Dick Cheney of Wyoming 1981-1986
-House Minority Whip
-Chairman of the House Republican Conference.
William Lowery of California 1987-1988
Douglas Bosco of California 1989-1990
Richard Ray of Georgia 1991-1992
-Mayor, Perry, Georgia
-Administrative Assistant to Senator Sam Nunn
James McCrery III of Louisiana 1993-1996
Robert Franks of New Jersey 1997-2000
Frank LoBiondo of New Jersey 2001-2006
Timothy Bishop of New York 2007-2008
David Scott of Georgia 2009-Present
Small Business Health Insurance Plans
Posted by on August 16, 2013
The Small Business Health Options Program (SHOP) is a new program that simplifies the process of buying health insurance for small businesses. The SHOP program enrollment launches on October 1 to give small businesses new ways to provide health coverage to their employees. To learn about how SHOP can work for your small business, visit: https://www.healthcare.gov/small-businesses/
Benefits of the SHOP Marketplace
You can get high-quality coverage: All SHOP plans offer your employees a set of 10 comprehensive benefits. They cover things like pre-existing conditions, pregnancy, hospitalizations, doctor's visits, preventive care, prescriptions, and more.
You control coverage and costs: The SHOP Marketplace makes it easy to discover and compare your insurance options. You control the coverage you offer and how much you pay toward employee premiums. And you may qualify for a tax credit worth up to 50% of your premium costs.
Coverage is available in every state: No matter what state you do business in, you’ll have access to the SHOP Marketplace. Find the SHOP Marketplace that serves you.
Are you self-employed? You qualify for the Health Insurance Marketplace for individuals and families instead of the SHOP program.
You can also call to ask a customer service representative about small business insurance at 1-800-706-7893 or (TTY: 1-800-706-7915 ). The call center is open Monday through Friday, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. EST.
Do you plan on checking out the small business plans? What concerns do you have about the new health plans? Have you had trouble finding affordalbe insurance before now due to age or preexisting condition?
Recent Grant Announcements
Posted by on August 15, 2013
These grant announcements are just a few that were recently announced for Georgia. If you are interested to know more about federal grant applications, please visit Congressman Scott's grant page at: http://davidscott.house.gov/constituentservices/grants.htm
On August 15, the US Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) announced grant awards to health care Navigator grant applicants. These Navigator grantees and their staff will serve as an in-person resources for Americans who want additional assistance in shopping for and enrolling in plans in the Health Insurance Marketplace beginning this fall. Two grantees in Georgia were announced. The Structured Employment Economic Development Corporation (SEEDCO) will receive an anticipated grant amount of $2,159,360 and the University of Georgia will receive an anticipated grant amount of $1,657,378. UGAs College of Family and Consumer Sciences and Cooperative Extension Service plans to place navigators in several offices outside the Atlanta metro region to create awareness through community workshops, engage a network of existing partners to reach uninsured Georgia residents and provide direct services to consumers seeking assistance.
August 9. Georgia will benefit from $3.2 million in affordable housing funding from the Federal Home Loan Bank of Atlanta. The grants will assist in funding seven affordable housing projects in Georgia including the YWCA of Northwest Georgia Renovation Project, the Albany AME Bethel Housing Complex, and the Ashley House redevelopment and preservation project in Valdosta. The funds will go toward building renovations, property improvements, and new construction.
Student Loan Agreement
Posted by on August 12, 2013
Congress finally found a reason to agree on something - student loan rates. Democrats and Republicans passed a bipartisan bill that will keep student loan interest rates low for borrowers. H.R. 1911, the Bipartisan Student Loan Certainty Act of 2013, passed the House by a vote of 392-31 and on August 9 was signed into law (P.L.113-28) by the President. Congressman Scott supported this compromise.
The law will cut rates on all new loans this year and save a typical undergraduate $1,500 over the life of those loans. The plan allows borrowers to benefit from the current low interest rates and guarantees that borrowers are able to lock in these rates over the life of their loans. In the future, fixed rates would be determined each year by market conditions, helping ensure that borrowers’ rates are more in line with the government’s own cost of borrowing, while capping how high rates can rise.
Lower Interest Rates Now: Under the compromise plan, nearly 11 million borrowers will see their interest rates decrease on new loans after July 1, 2013. About 8.8 million undergraduate borrowers will see their rates on new loans drop from 6.8 to 3.86 percent, and about 1.5 million Graduate Unsubsidized Stafford borrowers will see their rates drop on new loans from 6.8 percent to 5.41 percent. And over 1 million GradPLUS and Parent PLUS borrowers will see their rates on new loans drop from 7.9 percent to 6.41 percent.
Protections Against High Rates: The plan caps how high student loan interest rates can rise which protects students against future economic conditions. Undergraduate loans are capped at 8.25 percent, graduate loans at 9.5 percent, and PLUS loans at 10.5 percent. These loans also include fixed interest rates over the life of the loan, protecting students from the risk that rates will fluctuate over time and providing certainty for borrowers.
Are you going to refinance your student loans? What concerns do you have about student loans?
Congressman David Scott Applauds Robert Wood Johnson Foundation Grant Award for Clayton County Juvenile Court
Posted by on August 05, 2013
Today Congressman David Scott is pleased to congratulate the Clayton County Juvenile Court in securing $499,723 in grant funding from the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation’s Forward Promise initiative.
Forward Promise is a newly created program by the Foundation that promotes innovative, community-based projects working to strengthen health, education, and employment outcomes for middle school- and high school-aged boys and young men of color.
“I am confident this grant award will help continue the nationally-acclaimed work that Clayton’s Juvenile Court Chief Judge Steve Teske is undertaking,” Congressman Scott said. “Judge Teske’s tireless efforts to reduce recidivism have resulted in fewer referrals to the criminal justice system, and consequently, higher graduation rates and fewer school arrests among juveniles in Clayton County. I am proud to partner with Judge Teske to identify key resources, like federal grants and private funding, that allow him to enhance his vital initiatives to divert juvenile offenders into community-based programs rather than locking them up.”
The Clayton County Juvenile Court is one of ten grantees nationwide selected from over 1,500 applications. The funding will support the Court’s System of Care Approach Project, which provides alternatives to the juvenile court system for troubled youth. Under Judge Teske’s leadership, the Court has gained national attention and become a model for the State of Georgia.
For guidance and resources to help eligible grantseekers find information on federal grants, loans, and nonfinancial assistance, as well as on private funding, please contact Congressman David Scott’s Office at 770/432-5405.
Posted by on June 14, 2013
Today is Flag Day, which is celebrated annually on June 14th to honor the history of the United States flag. Our flag represents hope, courage and freedom to all Americans.
A constituent contacted me once to point out the discrepancy in the US Flag Code in that Mothers Day was an official day to fly the flag, but Fathers Day was not. I introduced a bill to officially commemorate Fathers Day by flying the flag and it was passed through Congress without opposition (P.L. No: 110-239). So, fly Old Glory today and on this coming Fathers Day!
-Order a flag to be flown over the US Capitol: http://www.davidscott.hous
-A short history of the US flag can be found at the Smithsonian website: http://www.si.edu/Encyclop
-Flag Code on time and occasions for display: http://www.law.cornell.edu
What does the flag mean to you?
Student Loan Rates Could Increase on July 1st
Posted by on May 31, 2013
Over $1 trillion in student loan debt is being carried by American families. If Congress fails to act by July 1st, that debt could become more burdensome. On that date, interest rates for student loans are set to double from 3.4% to 6.8%, placing an even heavier burden on students.
Failure to act will add $4.3 billion to students’ debt burden for next year’s loans alone. The House Republicans recently passed a partisan bill that does not help families pay their loans. The bill, H.R. 1911, would make college more expensive by charging students and families nearly $4 billion more in higher interest payments. The legislation would also force students into loans with interest rates that reset every year of the loan, similar to adjustable-rate mortgages. For more information about the bill, click here.
Congress needs to go back to the table and find bi-partisan agreement on stopping the loan increases. Are you having trouble paying student loans? Add your comments below.