The Intersect
March 23, 2010

House votes to exempt TRICARE from health reform bill
Gov. Exec.
House lawmakers over the weekend voted to protect TRICARE and Defense non-appropriated fund health care beneficiaries from unintended consequences of national health reform. The exemption (H.R. 4887) applies to the health care coverage provided by the Defense Department to military service members, retirees and their families.More

White House assures veterans health reform will not reduce benefits
The Gov. Monitor
As Assistant Secretary of the Department of Veterans Affairs, a constant concern is having our Veterans dragged into partisan politics. Unfortunately the debate over health reform has seen that happen far too many times, and at the VA we often have to correct misinformation and assure Veterans that the care they rely on will not be taken away from them.More

VA system should start over, official says
The Navy Times
Baling wire and bandages can't save the veterans disability claims process, the Veterans Affairs Department's chief technology officer said at a round table discussion about ways to cut the growing backlog of claims and improve accuracy. "In my judgment, it cannot be fixed," said Peter Levin. "We need to build a new system, and that is exactly what we are going to do."More

EADS may make bid for tanker contract
The Associated Press via The Seattle Times
Aerospace and defense company EADS said it is considering a new bid for a $35 billion Pentagon contract for midair refueling tankers but will only compete if it has a fair chance against rival Boeing Co. A consortium of EADS and Northrop Grumman pulled out of the bidding for the long-awaited, 179-tanker contract earlier this month. They said the terms of the deal appeared designed to favor a smaller jet offered by Boeing.More

Boeing could face competition after all for Air Force tanker
Barely a week after French, German and British leaders pounced on the Pentagon for its handling of a $35 billion contract for aerial refueling tankers, the Defense Department said that it's considering extending the deadline for bids and a European company now says it may compete. The decision did not sit well with Boeing supporters on Capitol Hill.More

Army Reserve leaders visit troops in Germany
Army Reserve
Top U.S. Army Reserve leaders visited Germany-based Soldiers of the 7th Civil Support Command in Kaiserslautern and Wiesbaden, Germany. Brig. Gen. Jimmie Jaye Wells, the commanding general of the 7th CSC, welcomed Lt. Gen. Jack Stultz, the chief of the Army Reserve, and Command Sgt. Maj. Michael Schultz, who recently took over the top Army Reserve enlisted position.More

Coast Guard cutters to guide ships through Lake Huron ice in Michigan
The Detroit Free Press
Coast Guard cutters are expected to return to Lake Huron near Port Huron, Mich., to guide ships through thick ice built up in the lower end of the lake. Winds are again predicted to blow out of the northeast, similar to conditions that paralyzed ships passing to the St. Clair River over the weekend, Petty Officer Bill Colclough said.More

National Guard (In Federal Status) And Reserve Activated as of March 16, 2010
The U.S. Department of Defense
This week the Navy, Marine Corps and Air Force announced a decrease in activated reservists, while the Coast Guard announced an increase. The Army had no change. The net collective result is 51 fewer reservists activated than last week. At any given time, services may activate some units and individuals while deactivating others, making it possible for these figures to either increase or decrease.More