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Servicemembers Improved Transition through Reforms for Ensuring Progress Act or the SIT-REP Act
This bill authorizes the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) to require educational institutions, in order to be eligible for educational payments, to adopt policies that prohibit penalizing student veterans for late VA assistance payments.
Such policies shall: (1) permit a veteran who provides the institution with a certificate of VA assistance eligibility to attend courses for a period without VA payment; and (2) ensure that the educational institution will not impose penalties such as late fees, course denial, or requiring an individual to borrow additional funds because of delayed VA payments.
Received; read twice and referred to the Committee on Veterans' Affairs
To amend title 38, United States Code, to provide for the disapproval of any course of education for purposes of the educational assistance programs of the Department of Veterans Affairs unless the educational institution providing the course permits individuals to attend or participate in courses pending payment by Department, and for other purposes.
Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives of the United States of America in Congress assembled,
This Act may be cited as the “Servicemembers Improved Transition through Reforms for Ensuring Progress Act” or the “SIT-REP Act”.
Section 3679 of title 38, United States Code, is amended by adding at the end the following new subsection:
“(e)(1) Notwithstanding any other provision of this chapter, beginning on August 1, 2018, a State approving agency, or the Secretary when acting in the role of the State approving agency, shall disapprove a course of education provided by an educational institution unless the educational institution has adopted the following policies:
“(A) A policy that permits any covered individual to attend or participate in the course of education during the period beginning on the date on which the individual provides to the educational institution a certificate of eligibility for entitlement to educational assistance under chapter 31 or 33 of this title and ending on the earlier of the following dates:
“(i) The date on which the Secretary provides payment for such course of education to such institution.
“(ii) The date that is 90 days after the date on which the individual provides to the educational institution such certificate of eligibility.
“(B) A policy that ensures that the educational institution will not impose any penalty, including the assessment of late fees, the denial of access to classes, libraries, or other institutional facilities, or the requirement that a covered individual borrow additional funds, on any covered individual because of the individual’s inability to meet his or her financial obligations to the institution as a result of the delayed disbursement of any payment to be provided by the Secretary.
“(2) For purposes of this subsection, a covered individual is any individual who is entitled to educational assistance under chapter 31 or 33 of this title.
“(3) The Secretary may waive such requirements of paragraph (1) as the Secretary considers appropriate.”.
The section heading for section 302 of the Harry W. Colmery Veterans Educational Assistance Act of 2017 (Public Law 115–48) is amended to read as follows (and the table of contents for such Act is conformed accordingly):
Passed the House of Representatives May 21, 2018.
|Attest:||karen l. haas,|