Senator Boxer:  VA Taking Applications for Post 9-11 GI Bill   

Monday, August 24, 2009  


Dear Friend:

August 1 marked the implementation day for the new Post 9-11 GI Bill. I was proud to cosponsor this important legislation, authored by Senator Jim Webb, which fundamentally altered veterans benefits. The Post 9-11 GI Bill:

- Extends educational benefits to all members of the military who have served on active duty since September 11, 2001, including activated reservists and National Guardsmen. To qualify, veterans must have served at least 90 consecutive days of qualified active duty, beginning on or after September 11, 2001, or have been discharged with a service-connected disability after 30 days.
- Provides educational benefits to be paid in amounts proportional to time served on active duty in the military after September 11, 2001, with a maximum entitlement of 36 months of full-time education benefits—the equivalent of a four-year undergraduate degree.
- Allows veterans pursuing an approved program of education to receive payments covering the program’s tuition, up to the cost of the most expensive instate public school, plus a monthly stipend equivalent to housing costs in their area. Veterans may also be entitled to a books and supplies stipend, tutoring, testing and certification fees, and, in some cases, certain relocation and travel expenses.
- Creates a new program in which the Department of Veterans Affairs agrees to match, dollar for dollar, any voluntary additional contributions to veterans from institutions whose tuition is more expensive than the maximum educational assistance provided—up to 50 percent of the difference between the student’s tuition benefit and the total cost of tuition and mandatory fees.
- Increases eligibility to fifteen years, compared to ten years under the Montgomery GI Bill, after a veteran leaves active duty to use his or her  educational assistance entitlement.
- Allows servicemembers who have served at least six years and who agree to serve at least four more years to transfer unused educational benefits to a spouse and/or child.

The Veterans Administration is now taking applications for benefits. You can learn more at http://www.gibill.va.gov/

I also encourage you to share this information with anyone you believe could be eligible for this program.

Sincerely,

Barbara Boxer, US Senator, California
U.S. Senator Barbara Boxer