WASHINGTON, D.C. - U.S. Senator Daniel K. Akaka (D-HI), Chairman of the Veterans' Affairs Committee, introduced legislation today to increase veterans' compensation through a cost-of-living adjustment (COLA). A bipartisan group of Veterans' Affairs Committee Members signed on as original cosponsors of this legislation, including Ranking Member Burr, and Senators Rockefeller, Murray, Obama, Sanders, Brown, Webb, Tester, Craig, and Isakson.
"The COLA increase must be understood as a continuing cost of war. This legislation is necessary to protect the value of the compensation disabled veterans and their survivors receive and rely upon," said Senator Akaka.
The Veterans' Compensation Cost-of-Living Adjustment Act of 2008 directs the Secretary of Veterans Affairs to increase, as of December 1, 2008, the rates of:
The COLA increase for veterans will match the annual increase provided to Social Security recipients. The COLA is designed to offset inflation and other factors that alter the cost of living over time. The COLA calculation is based on the Bureau of Labor Statistics "Consumer Price Index." The increase for 2008 was 2.3 percent. The 2009 increase has yet to be determined.
February 8, 2008