Opening Statement of Congressman John M. McHugh

Feb 27, 2007
Press Release

Contact: Josh Holly; 202.226.3988

WASHINGTON, D.C. Congressman John McHugh (R-NY), ranking Republican on the Military Personnel Subcommittee, today released the following statement for the subcommittee’s hearing on the impact of changes to the Montgomery GI Bill for the Selected Reserve:

“I begin by commending the Chairman for his perseverance in improving the education programs available to members of our reserve components.  I share Dr. Snyder’s view that the reality of serving in the Reserves or National Guard today is completely different than in 1985 when Congress established an educational assistance program for members of the Selected Reserve.  There is no group more deserving of a robust GI Bill than the members of the reserve who equally share the burden and sacrifice of defending this nation.

“This hearing continues the process that we began during the 109th Congress to gather information, overcome the challenges usually associated with modernizing benefits, and work toward developing an education assistance program deserving of today’s brave reserve warriors.

“Clearly there are several well thought-out recommendations proposed for fundamentally changing the Montgomery GI Bill for the Selected Reserve.  Both Dr. Snyder and Rep. Bartlett on this committee have introduced separate reform legislation.  These and other proposals deserve our careful consideration to ensure that whatever emerges this session in the form of subcommittee recommendations not only enhances the benefit for reserve component members in way that is affordable and sustainable, but also contributes to the recruiting and retention of the all-volunteer military. 
“I look forward to hearing from our two witnesses this afternoon and I thank the Chairman again for holding this hearing.”