urgent legislative alert!!
From: Jim Gashel <email@example.com>
Subject: urgent legislative alert!!
RANDOLPH-SHEPPARD PROGRAM UNDER FIRE IN CONGRESS
FROM: James Gashel
DATE: October 4, 1997
This notice explains a legislative challenge to the federal
Randolph-Sheppard Act. Action in the form of as many phone calls
and fax messages as possible to protect the blind vendor priority
must be taken by as many people as possible when Congressional
Offices open on Monday morning. The message should be simple: "do
not vote in favor of passing H. R. 2206, the Veterans health care
amendments, when this bill is presented on the suspension
Section 8 of H. R. 2206 has been written deliberately to
exclude the blind vendor program from acquiring vending facility
sites in veterans' hospitals. In fact, Section 8 is a purposeful,
"back-door" attempt to overturn a decision reached by the United
States Court of Appeals for the eighth Circuit which held that the
Randolph-Sheppard Act's blind vendor priority applies to veterans'
hospitals. the specific site in question was the Department of
Veterans Affairs Medical Center in St. Cloud Minnesota, and the
blind vendor at that site is Dennis Groshel. Because of a
cooperative effort between the National Federation of the Blind and
the state licensing agency in Minnesota, we were able to secure a
favorable interpretation of the law by the Courts, but the
Department of Veterans Affairs is now trying to make an end run
around the law by way of Section 8 of H. R. 2206.
This bill is scheduled to be voted on on the floor of the
House of Representatives on Monday under a procedure known as
"suspension of the rules." Under this procedure, two-thirds of the
House must agree to vote in favor of the bill for it to pass that
way. Unless Section 8 is amended, members should not vote in favor
of the bill. No amendments are permitted on the floor under the
All members of the House should be contacted and asked to vote
"no" on H. R. 2206. The bill should be sent back to the Committee
on Veterans Affairs or otherwise brought up under a procedure that
would permit amendments.
This is a battle that can be won, but it will only be won if
we really work hard to make it so. Meanwhile, the necessary
contacts have been made to prevent a similar provision from being
considered in the Senate. Contacts should be made with Senators,
but the absolute maximum effort on Monday should be directed at the
House. Watch for additional information on the need for Senate
contacts at a later time.
David Andrews (firstname.lastname@example.org)
or BBS: Fidonet 1:282/1045 (612) 696-1975
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