NGAI Alert; 5 December 2015

Dear NGAI Members and Friends,
As we bring 2015 to a close, there is still much legislative action in progress both in Washington, D.C. and Indianapolis.
In Washington, while the two-year budget may not seem like a good thing, the deal does bring some stability to the military by not having to operate under a continuing resolution. That, along with a successful signing of the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) for 2016, give our leadership a plan to execute while the Commission on the Future of the Army completes its study, due Feb 1.

Meanwhile, EANGUS and NGAUS have both been busy monitoring all the proceedings on the Hill and testifying when needed. Changes to the retirement system and health care are just a couple of the critical issues going forward.
One outstanding issue that remains, is honorary veteran status for qualifying guard and reserve members. While it was not included in the NDAA, the house and senate both still have bills that we hope to see resolved in conference before the end of the year.

In Indianapolis, we have a similar issue with the lack of a consistent definition of veteran in the Indiana Code. This will be our number one issue for the 2016 Indiana General Assembly; establishing the definition of “Hoosier Veteran.”
For years, well intended legislators have authored good laws using the term veteran, not understanding that many National Guard and Reserve members are unintentionally excluded. Indeed, it is shocking to most legislators when they learn that they have excluded many of their own Indiana Guardsmen from state laws that were intended to cover all military members, active and reserve.

Please check our website, www.NGAI.net, to review our Policy Objectives for the 2016 Indiana General Assembly.
We will continue to forward alerts when any significant actions may be needed, and ask you to contact your national and state legislators as appropriate.

Need a great Christmas gift idea? Maybe for yourself and a friend??

How about a chance to win one or more weapons for as little as $1.50 per chance? Friends of the NRA have joined with NGAI for a 2016 NGAI/FNRA Calendar raffle. Your calendar is your raffle ticket for $50. We will draw for 36 weapons, and if you win the first weapon, you still have equal opportunity on the next 35. So, for as little as $1.50 per weapon chance, you will have an opportunity to win multiple weapons, plus receive a cool calendar. Calendars are available from any NGAI Board member and many on our CGO and Enlisted Committees. Or you can order on line at https://www.ngai.net/2016-calendar.

2016 Membership for NGAI/EANGUS & NGAUS
We’ve made membership in both your state and national associations easier than ever. Simply use your smart phone and go to the www.NGAI.net homepage and click on Join Now to enter our secure membership system. Read the instructions closely then follow the directions. It just takes two minutes! Our membership is key to our legislative success. Be informed and get involved.

2nd Annual Military and Veterans Day at the Indiana Statehouse, 11 January 2016, 9am – noon.
Please mark your calendars and plan to join us for this second annual event. We had over 250 attendees last year with NGAI members leading the way. Come and meet your state legislators and educate them on why they should be investing to keep all military members as Hoosiers. And how supporting our 2016 Policy Objectives will improve Indiana’s standing as a military and veteran friendly place to live.

Have a safe and happy holiday season. Stay tuned to www.NGAI.net or www.facebook.com/NGAIndiana. Thank you for your continued support.

Mike Sturm
Executive Director
National Guard Association of Indiana