Trump Signs Bill Expanding Education Benefits for Veterans

August 17, 2017 Updated: August 17, 2017

President Donald Trump signed a bill that will expand education opportunities for veterans.

The bill, called the Forever GI Bill, eliminates the 15-year period that veterans currently have to use their education benefits.

The bill also extends benefits to recipients of the Purple Heart who couldn’t get the benefits because they didn’t have their time in service as a result of injury.

If a service member is killed in combat, under the new bill, the benefits can be moved to an eligible dependent.

Secretary of Veterans Affairs David Shulkin praised the bill as an example of bipartisanship in remarks on Aug. 16.

Shulkin said the current Post-9/11 bill has resulted in spending $75 billion on veterans and their dependents. The bill in its current form offered veterans up to 36 months of educational benefits, payable for 15 years.

Charles E. Schmidt, national commander of The American Legion, said the bill, officially named the Harry W. Colmery Veterans Educational Assistance Act of 2017, “marks a new era for all who have honorably served in uniform.”

The bill was named after a past national commander of The American Legion.

“This lifetime benefit will allow veterans, and their families, to earn degrees and begin rewarding careers that can lead our economy,” Schmidt said in a statement.

President Trump wrote in a Twitter post announcing the signing of the bill: “Thank you to all of our amazing veterans! American heroes!”