I don’t normally provide congressional legislation that is pending until it becomes law, but the legislation that just passed the Senate 84-14 and will pass the House probably this week and expected to be signed by President Joe Biden shortly there after is critically important and affects some Vietnam veterans in this region so I am giving a heads up now. The bill adds hypertension and monoclonal gammopathy of undetermined significance, or MGUS, to the list of illnesses linked to Agent Orange exposure. It also expands the geographic areas and service dates for eligibility for benefits, including Thailand, Laos, Cambodia, Guam and American Samoa and their territorial waters, and Johnston Atoll or any ship that called on the atoll, on certain dates. At the time, our presence in Thailand, Laos, and Cambodia was not something our veterans could discuss and sometimes not shown in documents typically used by the VA to determine benefits. This bill, when it becomes law, should rectify this. This bill will also improve access to benefits for post-911 veterans exposed to burn pits. Once this bill becomes law, if you think it might apply to medical conditions you are facing now, you should file a claim with the VA. Ed Harmon, our Post Service Officer, or I can help you with that process.
Some may not know that the American Legion Hall in Boothbay is not owned by the American Legion organization. When generous members of our community provided funds for the Post to relocate from “the Harbor” to the location at the Industrial Park in Boothbay, it was decided to establish another 501(C) non-profit corporation. The sole purpose of this Corporation is to hold the real estate for the Post. The American Legion Post 36 “rents” (essentially at no cost) the Hall from the Corporation. Up to seven people are part of the Corporation and they are all required to be members of Post 36. Why this is important is because the Corporation exists from the income from Hall rentals. So, by renting the Hall, you enable the Post to continue to have a location from which to serve our veterans and community. When you donate to the Post by coming to our breakfasts, donating to the Yard Sale, providing financial support to send boys and girls to Dirigo State, your donation goes to support the Post and our mission and does not go to cover the overhead associated with the Hall property.
The Yard Sale is Aug. 6. This is a community yard sale; $25 will buy you a 10-foot by 20-foot section of the yard. Call the Post (633-4487) to participate.
The next breakfast is July 3. Yes, we will be having breakfast the 4th of July weekend! So, if this is a big weekend with family coming from all over the country to celebrate the 4th, why not bring them all over the Legion on Sunday morning and have a relaxing breakfast ... no cooking and no dishes to wash!