Tim Sproles - American Legion Department of Indiana
Legionnaires representing every American Legion department reported to the American Legion National Headquarters this week for the organization’s annual Fall Meetings.
After four days of various commissions, committee meetings and discussions on updates to American Legion programs, proposed resolutions and reports were delivered to the Legion’s National Executive Committee.
Members of the NEC met on October 11th and 12th in the NEC Room at National Headquarters to review the reports and vote on resolutions.
One of the approved resolutions that came from that meeting is bringing major changes to the American Legion’s Temporary Financial Assistance Program.
The purpose of the American Legion’s Temporary Financial Assistance program is to provide cash grants to ensure the health and well-being for the children of eligible veterans in times of need. This program has grown quickly over the years. TFA has issued an average of $820,000 in assistance each year since its establishment in 1925.
However, due to a steadily decline in membership along with a majority of current TFA request coming from “repeat customers” who have received a substantial amount from the program, changes to the program had to be made.
The National Executive Committee voted to establish the TFA as a single “one-time” non-repayable grant of up to $1,500.
They have also set a cap for the amount of annual benefits given out through the TFA.
The resolution states, “Annual cumulative expenditure of TFA grant may not exceed $700,000 without the prior approval of each chairman of the Americanism and Finance Commissions and national commander”.
By far the biggest change in the resolution is that an individual can only qualify for a TFA grant if they are currently on active duty (Title 10 orders) or a current member of the American Legion.
Programs Director for the American Legion Department of Indiana and Past Legion National Commander, Butch Miller, said he thinks the changes will help fund the TFA.
He said, “The American Legion is continuing to help veterans to the maximum of their resources and capabilities. Through multiple examples of people who have abused the program in the past I believe that the Legion has seen it was time to tighten the rules. The restructuring of the program ensures that veterans who need to use TFA will have it available”.
To view a copy of the TFA resolution, Click Here.
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