National Guard benefits bill to get Tuesday House vote

WASHINGTON — The U.S. House will vote on a bill this week to reverse a Pentagon policy that reduced the amount of paid leave time members of the Minnesota National Guard receive.

The Department of Defense amended its leave policy last fall while some 2,700 members of the Minnesota National Guard were serving in the Middle East. Under the new policy, some members could lose up to 27 days of paid leave, according to Republican Rep. John Kline, who is the bill’s sponsor.

Kline’s bill would force the Defense Department to give soldiers the leave time they were eligible for when they were deployed.

“Promises made should be promises kept,” Kline said in a statement. “I look forward to my bipartisan bill becoming law so our heroic Minnesota troops receive the benefits they were promised and have earned.”

The bill is scheduled for a U.S. House vote on Tuesday, and it’s expected to pass. Democratic Sen. Amy Klobuchar sponsors a similar bill in the Senate.

Devin Henry can be reached at dhenry@minnpost.com.

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