H.R.969 – To amend title 38, United States Code, to clarify presumptions relating to the exposure of certain veterans who served in the vicinity of the Republic of Vietnam, and for other purposes.
The Blue Water Navy Vietnam Veterans Act was introduced in the House by Rep. Chris Gibson (D-NY) along with the signatures of 131 strongly bipartisan original co-sponsors on February 13, 2015. This legislation will return the presumption of exposure to herbicide to Navy and Marine veterans who served in the off shore waters of Vietnam. HR-969 now replaces HR-543, which was the number used in the previous 113th Congress. The wording is the same, but the new designating number is HR-969.
A Senate Companion Bill is expected later in February.
HR-543 of the previous 113th Congress died in the House Veterans Affairs Committee, led by Congressman Jeff Miller (FL) with 258 co-sponsors. Only 218 co-sponsors represents 1/2 the voting member of the House. Miller would not release the Bill for a vote on the floor of the House.