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Advocacy in Action - 2024

MOAA's annual advocacy event will bring members from across the nation in contact with their lawmakers April 17 in Washington, D.C., to address critical topics on MOAA’s legislative agenda. 

Three issues being highlighted to members of Congress this year are:

  • Concurrent Receipt (H.R. 1282|S. 344):  The Major Richard Star Act (currently all but one lawmaker from IL are co-sponsors of these bills)

  • Full Housing Allowance (H.R. 2537|S. 1823):  BAH Restoration Act (no Illinois lawmakers co-sponsoring)

  • Protecting TRICARE for Life (holding fast on any enrollment fees)

Advocacy Papers for these issues can be downloaded and read via the links below:

Concurrent Receipt

Full Housing Allowance

Protecting TRICARE for Life

Please send messages to the Illinois contingent on these issues from the Legislative Action Center if you have not already done so this month. Your voice is important to pushing these issues to completion.   The Illinois Council of Chapters point of contact for legislative affairs is: Col Richard V. Smith, USAF (Ret) who may be reached at: smithrv75@gmail.c

Left to Right: Bob Norman, SWIL, Shelita Spady, MOAA staff, Jim Murphy, MOAA Board, Elizabeth Limarzi, MOAA Staff, Bob Tyler, IL CoC

Here's the team for Illinois. Please encourage your members to send the MOAA emails for our three issues

Col Tyler received challenge coin from Congressman Jackson (IL-1st District (D)) at MOAA's 2024 Advocacy in action event


Representive Foster (IL-11th District (D)) (Center) stands with Sheila Spady (Left) and Col Bob Norman (Right) in his office in the Rayburn Building

Representative Schakowsky (IL-9th District (D)) (Center) stands with Col Bob Norman (Left) and Shelita Spady (Right) in her office in the Rayburn Building

Left  to Right: Shelita Spady, William Miles, and Bob Norman stand outside Representative Danny Davis' (IL-7th District (D)) office in the Rayburn Building

Left to Right: Representative Mike Bost (IL-12th District (R)) and his Legislative Director, Noah Barger, sit with Col Bob Norman as he explains the MOAA issues.

Left to Right: Col Bob Norman, Representative Bost (IL-12th District (R), Shelita Spady in Representative Bost's office in the Cannon Building

Left to Right: Shelita Spady, William Dwyer, Col Bob Norman standing outside Representative Kelly's (IL-2nd District (D)) office in the Rayburn Building

Col Bob Norman sitting with Ethan Gunnlaugsson, staff member for Representative Schneider (IL-10th District (D)) in the Cannon Building

Left to Right: Col Bob Norman, Marshele Bryant, Shelita Spady standing outside Representative Quigley's (IL-5th District (D)) office in the Rayburn Building

FROM ROBERT TYLER, COL, USMC (Ret), Illinois Council of Chapters President and Lincoln Land Chapter Legislative LIason.​


Advocacy in Action  (AinA) 2024 was a successful event.  Colonel Norman and I got to all 19 of the Illinois Congressional offices.  He managed to meet with three members, while I only met with one (Cong. Jackson IL-01).  As Col Norman noted he was successful in getting the last Illinois Representative to sign on to the Richard Star Act.  All of the Illinois House members are now co-signers of this legislation! My meetings with both senators' staffers were productive and very engaging. Watch for more summaries of the day on the MOAA website, the MOAA e-newsletter, and in the MOAA magazine. The post-AinA dinner's keynote speaker, Pennsylvania Representative Chrissy Houlahan and a USAF veteran, spoke about the just released Quality of Life Congressional study. Info about the study, its impact on next year's NDAA, and MOAA's advocacy for elements of the study are highlighted on the home page - check it out.  


A big topic revolved around the copyright infringement issue that the Hawaii chapter experienced, and that four other chapters have since encountered.  We really need to scrub our newsletters and websites to make sure that the pictures posted there are not from copyrighted sources.  It could be costly if we don't.


​The Council Presidents seminar following AinA was very informative.  Beyond the new AMS database coming on line this week, MOAA National has several initiatives in the works to reach out to those MOAA members who are not associated with a chapter.  You will note one of the changes already in this month's MOAA magazine.


Last night's MOAA Roundtable covered several of the initiatives MOAA is pursuing with our affinity partners.  MOAA Vacations is offering the advertisement stipend to 100 chapters this year along with several rebates to chapters and MOAA members who book travel with them.  The MOAA Store has added several items and will add items that members want in the store.  Several other partners provide value added to MOAA membership through life planning programs, emergency medical care / transportation, the new AMBA insurance efforts to get Chapter liability insurance at reasonable rates and more.  You may want to view the video of the Roundtable on the MOAA website.


I am pleased to see all the effort at National to add value to MOAA membership; to reach out to MOAA members encouraging them to become more connected and engaged; and to provide chapter support. Last week was a good week both on the Hill and for the information Col Norman and I came away with.  Be looking for more information and support on the MOAA website and in the e-newsletters and MOAA magazine.  At the same time, let's continue to encourage the usage of the advocacy links on the MOAA site.  Congress still has work to do on the issues we discussed last week, for this year and when the new Congress is seated following November's elections.


Semper Fi - Bob 

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