WASHINGTON — Congress has backed legislation to provide the biggest expansion of college aid for military veterans in a decade.
The cleared the Wednesday by voice vote, sending it to President Donald Trump for his signature.
The measure expands benefits in a rapidly changing job market.
It would remove a 15-year time limit to tap into benefits, which guarantee a full-ride scholarship to any in-state public university — or a similar cash amount for private college students.
The legislation also increases money for thousands in the National Guard and Reserve. Veterans would get additional payments if they complete science, technology, and engineering courses.
The Harry W. Colmery Veterans Education Assistance Act does the following:
Extends the Yellow Ribbon Enhancement Program, which provides education benefits to survivors of those who died in the line of duty.
Transfers benefits to a dependent if the servicemember dies before being able to use them.
Restores benefits to student veterans who received credits or training from certain educational institutions that subsequently close.
Reinstates the Reserve Educational Assistance Program for Reservists.
Prorates licensing and certification benefits, rather than charging veterans a month’s worth of benefits.
Extends full education benefits to recipients of the Purple Heart.
Provides more on-campus educational and vocational counseling services for veterans.