MONTHLY MINUTES FOR: 10 May 2022
This meeting was also conducted face to face and using group video conferencing with the Zoom Application. The opening ceremony for a regular meeting was conducted in accordance with the Veterans of Foreign Wars Ritual; the meeting opened at 1010 hours by Commander Webber Opening prayers were given by comrade Dzurissin.
ROLL CALL OF OFFICERS
• Commander – Rhett Webber – Present
• Senior Vice Commander – Andrew Dzurissin - Present
• Junior Vice Commander – Edward “Pete” Brozowski - Excused
• Quartermaster – Tim Aukshun - Present
• Chaplain - James Rodgers - Absent
• Trustee One – Garret Bridges - Present
• Trustee Two – Fred Russian – Excused
• Trustee Three –Roscoe McGlynn – Present
• Adjutant – Bud St.Onge - Excused
• Judge Advocate – Bud St.Onge – Excused
• Surgeon –Andrew Dzurissin - Present
• Safety Officer – Rhett Webber – Present
• Service Officer – Bobby Reyes – Present
• Assistant Service Officer – Rhett Webber - Present
• Scholarship Committee Chairman—Tim Aukshun - Present
• Seam Squirrel – Rhett Webber – Present
• National Home/POW/MIA Chairman - Rhett Webber – Present
• Webmaster – Pete Brozowski – Excused
• Historian—Pete Brozowski - Excused
• OOD – Garret Bridges - Present
There were 8 members in attendance.
Commander Webber recognized the following distinguished attendees:
• All past Department, District and Post Commanders.
o Current District 7 Commander and past Post Commander: Bobby Reyes
o Past All American District Commander: Charlie Spain
o Past All American District 7 Commander and Post Commander: Tim Aukshun
o Past Department, District 7 and Post Commander: Rhett Webber
DRAPING THE CHARTER: The Charter was undraped in honor of our departed life member, Alberto Villanueva, who passed away in December, 2021.
READING, REFERRING MEMBERSHIP APPLICATIONS: We received a membership application for Steven Myers. A motion was made by Comrade Aukshun, as approved by 2 of 3 comrades on the membership committee (one member was not available). Motion seconded by Comrade Bridges, no discussion, motion approved. Welcome aboard Comrade Myers.
READING OF MINUTES: The Minutes from the April 12, 2022 meeting have been posted on the Post website and distributed via email. A motion to accept the minutes, as distributed and posted, was made by comrade Aukshun, seconded by comrade Reyes, no discussion, motion approved.
QUARTERMASTER’S REPORT: Comrade Aukshun provided us a comprehensive report on the Post financials and made a motion to accept the report, as audited, seconded by comrade Reyes, no discussion, motion approved.
READING OF BILLS: DPA delegate fees ($54) and Roger Limles burial wreath (P1800)
OFFICIAL CORRESPONDENCE: None
COMRADE OR FAMILY OF A COMRADE IN DISTRESS:
• The following comrades are still convalescing Larry Purdy, Jim Kiper and Howard Williams.
• Comrade St.Onge underwent a medical procedure this week. We wish him the best of health and a speedy recovery.
REPORT OF SERVICE OFFICER:
• VAOPC Manila has commenced physical appointments for enrolled veterans. Covid restrictions are constantly changing in the Philippines, we urge you to contact VAOPC Manila to find out what the latest information is. You may still request for a telephone appointment. In most cases they will approve it, but it is on a case-by-case basis.
• VFW Post 9892 Service Officer continues to provide assistance to veterans and their spouses in filing claims with VA and filing appeals. Presently active in six claims with more coming in.
• There is a rumor going around that the VAOPC Manila will be closing. Presently the VAOPC Manila Staff are saying that those rumors are false. We encourage all veterans and families to contact their legislators (Senators and Congresspersons) letting them know that the VAOPC Manila provides important services to the veterans located in Manila.
• The Assistant Department Service Officer is doing Face to Face consultation for VA claims on an appointment basis.
• The VA is proposing changes in how they rate Sleep Apnea, Tinnitus, and Mental Health. It will be more challenging to be "service-connected" with a claim of Sleep Apnea and Tinnitus, and easier for a claim of Mental Health. (See attached).
• The VAOPC Manila has veterans come in for their annual or semi-annual physicals. A reminder to veterans, if you can not make it to the VAOPC for your physical request for a phone or virtual physical. If you are having coughing and other COVID symptoms, let the VA know so that they can cancel your appointment and give it to somebody else.
• The Post Service Officer continues to provide assistance for veterans and families if filing for VA claims. Contact SO9892@vfwpacific to set up available appointments, either via Zoom or physical VA proposes updates to rating schedule for respiratory, auditory and mental disorders
WASHINGTON — The Department of Veterans Affairs is proposing changes to the VA Schedule for Rating Disabilities specifically pertaining to the respiratory, auditory and mental disorders body systems.
The proposed updates to the rating schedule for these conditions will enable VA to incorporate modern medical data and terminology to provide Veterans with more accurate and consistent decisions.
“Veterans who currently receive compensation for a service-connected condition in these body systems will not have their disability rating impacted when the VA Schedule for Rating Disabilities is updated,” said Thomas Murphy, Northeast district director, performing the delegable duties of the undersecretary for benefits.
“Updating the rating schedule allows Veterans to receive decisions based on the most current medical knowledge relating to their condition.” By incorporating modern medical data in the assessment of disabilities and how they impact earning capacity, Veterans will receive evaluations which more accurately compensate them for their service-connected disabilities. Proposed updates include:
• Modernizing the evaluative rating criteria for sleep apnea, using developments in medical knowledge to evaluate it based on its responsiveness to treatment, bringing the rating criteria for sleep apnea more closely in line with the stated purpose of the rating schedule.
• Evaluating tinnitus (ringing in the ears) as a symptom of the underlying disease which causes it, rather than as a stand-alone disability.
• Evaluating mental health conditions based on a more robust and holistic approach that assesses how impactful the disability is to cognition, interpersonal relationships, task completion, life activities and self-care. Additionally, the proposed evaluation criteria include a 10% minimum evaluation for having one or more service-connected mental health conditions and will no longer require “total occupational and social impairment” to attain a 100% evaluation. No change to a Veteran’s current rating would occur due to these proposed changes. If the proposed changes are finalized, Veterans who currently receive compensation for a service-connected condition can apply for increased compensation, but no reductions shall be made unless an improvement in the Veteran’s disability is shown to have occurred. The public has 60 days to provide comments to VA regarding the two proposed updates via the Federal Register notices located here and here.
REPORTS OF OFFICERS:
• COMMANDERS REPORT: Attached. The Commander has advised us that the VA Manila will issue a receipt for qualifying patients who require hearing aids. The receipt can be taken to the Marquis Mall (Manila Hearing) in Angeles for fitting and issuing of the hearing aids. Contact VA Manila for more info.
• SURGEON: Attached
• JUDGE ADVOCATE: None
• CHAPLAIN: None
• HISTORIAN: None
• SAFETY OFFICER: Attached COMMITTEE CHAIRMAN REPORTS:
COMMITTEE CHAIRMAN REPORTS:
• COMMUNITY SERVICE: All CSRs shall be inputted on the new VFW DPA page at www.vfwpacific.org
o Community Service Report Totals: Hours-2,218, Miles-12,255, Member’s-1,612, Donated- $23,940.99 "We exceeded our required CSR 110% by achieving 122%" • BUDDY POPPY: 350 pesos collected at today’s meeting.
• NATIONAL HOME: Attached
• POW/MIA: Attached • MEMBERSHIP COMMITTEE REPORT: One approved: Steven M. Myers
• BUDGET COMMITTEE: The new terms budget is attached. If you have comments, let us know before or at the June meeting. We will vote to accept it at the meeting.
• SCHOLARSHIP COMMITTEE: None • SEAM SQUIRREL: None
• CCO COMMITTEE: The committee approved the Sunset View Resort (formally JD’s) and now under Bellas management, in Bauang. The event will take place on November 26th. Comrade Spain made a motion to have the event at this location, seconded by comrade Aukshun, no discussion, motion approved.
REMEMBER OUR NATIONAL HOME:A motion was made by comrade Spain to accept all committee reports, seconded by comrade Aukshun, no discussion. motion approved.
UNFINISHED BUSINESS: None
• A motion was made by comrade Dzurissin to donate 5,000 pesos to the Hash for their annual fireworks display at Bella’s Resort. This event will be held at the closest Saturday to the 4th of July. He further requested that this be an annual contribution to celebrate the 4th of July, seconded by comrade Spain, no discussion, motion approved.
• Comrade Spain made a motion to allocate 15,000 pesos for the district meeting on 13 July 2022, seconded by comrade Dzurissin, no discussion, motion approved.
• A committee was appointed to check into the Borroro WWII memorial near the river for a possible future refurbishing project, as follows: Chairman Bridges, comrade Aukshun and comrade Spain.
GOOD OF THE ORDER:
• Comrade Bridges commented on Turman Limles (deceased life member Roger Limles son) desire to join the USN. It will require him to lose some weight first. Please give any moral support you can to help him accomplish this.
• Roger Limles funeral will be on 12 May at 1000, Clark Cemetery. Comrades Aukshun, Spain, Bridges, Webber and Reyes will be attending.
• The DPA convention will be held at the Oasis Hotel, Angeles City, June 12 – 15. Cootie Swarm will be a part of this event, check the DPA website for more details.
• Comrade Reyes encourages all post members to follow/friend the two DPA Facebook Pages: "DPA Official Communications" and "DPA Around the Pacific" and to sign up for the VFW Action Weekly on www.vfw.org up to date information on what the VFW is doing on the legislative front and to get involved in the VFW “running membership drive”.
• The new Department of Pacific Areas Webpage is www.vfwpacific.org Log in to Members Only to input CSR data using the member’s VFW membership number and your last name as the password. The post must report 110% from last year’s CSR reports to maintain eligibility for All-American. The deadline for submissions is April 30th.
• See our VFW 9892 Website entitled, “VA Survivors Benefits”. Here veterans and survivors can find information on filing and be able to download forms. There are many links to documents on our Website. We have been receiving positive feedback on its content. Of interest is the link “Planning Your Legacy”. It is a rather large download as this is a book that will give guidance to the veteran and family. www.vfwpost9892.com We have a link to the page on our Facebook also.
• VA ID: Make sure you have two photo IDs (Retirement ID/ card, US Passport, etc.), in addition to the photo ID that you will need to leave at the check-in desk.
50/50 DRAWING: 50/50: Total 800 pesos. Comrade Dzurissin won the drawing and received 400 pesos and the post received 400 pesos.
The meeting closed at 1115 hours in accordance with the VFW ritual. The next Col B.J. Smith VFW Post 9892 meeting will be June 21, 2022 @ 1000, at Crown & Anchor Resto, # 475 National Highway, Barangay Pagdalagan Sur, Bauang, La Union and also via Zoom