November 13, 2020  ImageImageImage

Dear Friend,



This week we celebrated those who honored our country with its highest form of service. To those who once wore the uniform of our Army, Navy, Air Force, Marines or Coast Guard, we owe you our thanks, our respect, and our freedom. Thank you to you and your families for your service to this nation. 

Texas’ 34th congressional district is home to more than 22,000 veterans. It is my honor to represent them in Congress and ensure that their service is not only recognized, but rewarded with the benefits and honor they rightfully deserve.

For this reason, caseworkers in my office stand ready to help resolve federal issues faced by U.S. veterans, including claims for disability, retirement, medical, burial, spousal and dependents' benefits. Texas servicemembers, veterans, and their families with questions relating to Veterans Affairs benefits or case mitigation are encouraged to contact my office at (202) 225-9901 or by visiting  



Working on Behalf of Veterans

Veterans and their families have made immeasurable sacrifices in defense of our nation, and they deserve to have access to topnotch healthcare and other benefits, such as disability compensation through the Veterans Administration. I will continue to work with the Department of Veteran Affairs (VA) and local communities to find ways to improve access to VA services in the South Texas area. For example, I worked to add bus stops at the VA clinic in Harlingen and to establish the Cameron County Veterans Court with Judge David Sanchez.  

Over the past year it has been a privilege to recognize, talk with, and listen to the stories of hundreds of Vietnam Veterans during multiple Vietnam Pinning Ceremonies across the district.  It is important that we support our veterans within our communities, and I look forward to holding other events to recognize those within our district that have sacrificed to protect our nation.

To further help the veterans in my district, my office holds annual Congressional Veteran Summits that focus on employment, health care, and veteran’s resources. You can find upcoming veteran events by following my Facebook page.

Key Legislation I Support:

Veterans COMPACT Act of 2020 (HR8247) – This bill builds on the provisions in the Commander John Scott Hannon Veterans Mental Health Care Improvement Act to ensure veterans and their families receive the support, care, and services they need to live full, healthy lives following their brave service.

Veteran Deportation Prevention and Reform Act (HR 4890) – No Veteran of the US Armed Services who has served honorably should be susceptible to deportation.

Reduce Unemployment for Veterans of All Ages Act (HR 444) – The VA Vocational Rehabilitation Education program provides valuable education to Veterans looking for a new job.  The program should be available to Veterans regardless of when they separated.

Blue Water Navy Vietnam Veterans Act (HR 299) – This bill extends the presumption of Agent Orange exposure to veterans who served offshore of Vietnam or near the Korean Demilitarized Zone

Disabled Veterans Tax Termination Act (HR 333) – This bill authorizes veterans with service-connected disability of less that 50% to concurrently receive both retirement pay and disability compensation and makes qualified retirees with less that 20 years of service eligible for concurrent receipt.  

Violence Against Women Veterans Act (HR 6869) – This bill requires the Department of Veteran Affairs to improve and expand its services to veterans that have been subjected to domestic violence or sexual assault.



Veteran Resources

Service Academy Nominations

My office stands ready to assist veterans with issues they may have navigating the U.S. Department of Veteran Affairs.  It is also important for me to work closely with local veteran organizations to ensure that #TX34 veterans receive all the assistance they deserve.  Click below to learn more about what veteran resources are available.

Are you interested in the U.S. Service Academies? The deadline to submit a Military Academy nomination application and corresponding documentation to our office is November 20, 2020. Click the link below to download the nomination packet on my website today.
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Filemon Vela
Member of Congress

307 Cannon HOB
Washington, D.C. 20515
(202) 225-9901


800 N. Expwy
77-83 Suite 9
Brownsville, TX 78521
(956) 544-8352

500 East Main St.
Alice, TX 78332
(361) 230-9776
301 West Railroad
Weslaco, TX 78596
(956) 520-8273
1390 W. Expwy 83
San Benito, TX 78586
(956) 276-4497