H. R. 1413
IN THE HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES
March 7, 2023
Mrs. McClain (for herself, Ms. Houlahan, Mr. Jackson of North Carolina, Ms. Ross, and Mr. Wittman) introduced the following bill; which was referred to the Committee on Veterans' Affairs, and in addition to the Committee on Armed Services, for a period to be subsequently determined by the Speaker, in each case for consideration of such provisions as fall within the jurisdiction of the committee concerned
To require the Secretary of Veterans Affairs to expand or otherwise modify an existing national cemetery to ensure that full military honors are provided at such cemetery, to require the Secretary of Defense and the Secretary of Veterans Affairs to jointly submit to Congress a report containing a proposal to increase national cemetery capacity and an assessment of the criteria for interment at Arlington National Cemetery, and for other purposes.
This Act may be cited as the
Expanding America’s National Cemetery Act of 2023.
Modification of existing national cemetery to continue provision of full military honors
Before Arlington National Cemetery reaches capacity, the Secretary of Veterans Affairs shall expand or otherwise modify a national cemetery described in subsection (b) to ensure that full military honors are provided at such cemetery—
in a manner that is consistent with the full military honors provided for interment in Arlington National Cemetery as of March 31, 2023; and
using the eligibility criteria in effect as of March 31, 2023, for providing full military honors for interment in Arlington National Cemetery.
National cemetery described
A national cemetery described in this subsection is a national cemetery that is—
in use as of the date of the enactment of this Act; and
under the control of the National Cemetery Administration.
Report on criteria for interment in Arlington National Cemetery and proposal to increase national cemetery capacity
Not later than one year after the date of the enactment of this Act, the Secretary of Defense and the Secretary of Veterans Affairs shall jointly submit to Congress a report that contains each of the following:
A proposal to increase national cemetery capacity through the expansion or modification of a national cemetery described in section 2(b) that has, or will have, the capacity to provide full military honors.
The assessment of the Secretary of Defense, in consultation with the Secretary of the Army, with respect to any revisions that should be made to the revised criteria for interment in Arlington National Cemetery prescribed pursuant to section 598 of the John S. McCain National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2019 (Public Law 115–232; 38 U.S.C. 2402 note) in order to ensure that such criteria recognize exceptional service and honors.
An assessment of how the revised criteria described in paragraph (2) will affect—
veterans who served in non-combat occupations as members of the Armed Forces;
veterans who did not serve in combat as members of the Armed Forces; and
such other groups as the Secretaries consider relevant.