Tester Delivers Good News for Veterans, Troops, Farmers & Ranchers
Senator Jon Tester held a press call on Thursday, Oct. 6th; Congress has recessed due to the pending election, leaving unresolved issues on the table such as the necessary appointment of a Supreme Court justice, Tester’s Veteran’s First Act, and a solution to wildfire funding, just to name a few.
However, Congress did pass an appropriations bill that will invest $3.3 billion in the VA, which will improve facilities, speed up disability appeals, strengthen telehealth services, increase medical research, and improve the treatment of traumatic brain injuries. Tester, who is one of two leading members on the Milcon VA Appropriations Subcommittee, is optimistic that the new legislation will allow for an increase of VA staff, and will improve VA services across the board for veterans and troops.
Additionally, $14.6 million was secured for a new missile maintenance facility at Malmstrom, along with a guarantee that the Red Horse Squadron will serve there for years to come.
“As Montana’s senator I take all of my responsibilities seriously, but the responsibility we have to our troops is sacred. I am proud to have passed this bipartisan piece of legislation,” Tester stated. “In Montana we have the 2nd highest per capita population of veterans, a statistic that we are all proud of.”
Both the House of Representatives and the Senate also passed Tester’s Barn Card Technology Act.
“With technology changing on the ranch it is time for our laws to reflect that. I heard it from ranchers from Willsall to Wibaux; the livestock auction laws in our country were antiquated and outdated. Farmers and ranchers already face enough obstacles trying to sell their product, they shouldn’t have to worry about not being able to ask ‘cash or credit?’,’’ Tester commented.
The Barn Card Technology Act is legislation that is intended to modernize the livestock auction industry. This will make it possible to purchase livestock using debit and credit cards, rather than the current law, which only allows payment via check and wire transfers.
“I was glad to get some work done even in a broken Washington D.C. We may not have fixed the Choice program or given the Supreme Court the Justices they need, but we delivered for our troops and veterans and made life easier for Montana farmers and ranchers,” he concluded.