NEWS FROM THE ADJUTANT
Officers and Board members were voted in at the June meeting. All incumbents remained for 2018-19 with the exception of the Historian which is now vacant.
Parade was a success! Total cost was about $26,000. Dopnations were about the same, which is a good thing. Threat of rain keep the crowd down a bit for the Community celebrations; anyone need a hot dog?! We also have some mug and t-shirts available. Call Ron Stone (215-836-7184) if you wish to purchase one.
Liquor prices at the bar will be going up very soon due to increases in our prices to purchase.
Flags were placed by us at Holy Sepulchre's Veteran's graves members of Post 100 and Hiberians.
We were audited by Officers regarding our Liquor Control and Games of Chance. They examined all of our record keeping and procedures. No one can have the kind of examination they conducted without them finding something wrong, BUT because of Commander's Marlin's great control over our records and insistence on following the rules, what they found was minimal. Jim overwhelmed them with things we do right! We owe Jim Marlin a big "Thank You".
We sponsored four boys to attend Boys State-Angelo Pearson, Dawson Zerfing, Felix Li and Rory Loftus.
At the February General Meeting (which most of the Executive Committeee attended) a motion was made and passed to eliminate smoking in any form inside the Post building. As of April 1st...the Legion Post will become NON-SMOKING!
The General Meeting time has been re-established as the first Sunday at 1 pm. However, because of the Labor Day Weekend, our next meeting will be Sept 9th instead of the 2nd. Have a great summer.
Members of the Sons cleaned the bar area and brightened the place. As always, they were an invaluable help with the Parade. Thanks!
We had to replace our "beer box" which cost us $4700. Money that we did not have, so Frank "Star" Kownacki fronted the money to us to be paid back to him monthly.
We also must replace our electrical panel box to the tune of $1500. It has worn and presents a fire hazard.
See notes under "News You Can Use" below to find out about signing up for the Legion Insurance Trust and for tax free and shipping free ONLINE shopping at the Army-Air Force Exchange service.
A new key fog system has been installed. See Jim Marlin for a fob. These fobs are more sophisticated and will record names and times when used. They can also be turned off if a member is suspended for non-payment of dues. Some fobs will only work just before bar opening time.
The Post's new email address is: email@example.com
Ron Stone represents our Post as a District Deputy Commander.
Bartenders now have an Applications Book for all types of members of the Post. Compiled by Ron Stone, it should make it easier for the bartenders to find the appropriate application when asked.
Currently, only about 85% of our total membership (this includes Legionnaire, Sons, Auxiliary and Social) have filled out and submitted the necessary application form for Home Assoc. membership as required by the PA Liquor Control Board. We MUST maintain a file record of all those who are eligible to use our bar facilities. If you have not yet filled out this required application form, please do so ASAP and submitted to the Adjutant (can give to the bartender). There are applications at the Post or call Ron Stone at 215-836-7184 to have one mailed to you. Except for Social members, this is a one time requirement.
As of June 2018, the Post has 204 active Legionnaires. We are at 96% renewal for the 2018 membership year. Currently, 21 members are delinquent with 2018 dues. New members this past month: James Bailey VN-Marines, Don Harris VN-AF and Tom O'Neill Active duty Marine. One transfer: Brian Loftus Gulf- Army. We also have a new Social member (who happens to be a Vet during the late 50's) Walter Newman.
We lost 14 members since last Memorial Day. We will have gained approximately the same number of new Legionnaires this past year.
Membership dues mail payments should be sent to the home of the Adjutant, Ron Stone, instead of to the Post's address. Send to: 7701 Gate Rd Wyndmoor PA 19038-7628.
Social Memberships are now being handled by Ron Stone. See him or the bartender to fill out a Home Association membership form and pay dues of $30 ($15 if you are a Vet) to get your annual membership card.
Per our Post Bylaws as dictated by PA Department, annual membership renewal payment is due by October 20th of each year. After Jan 1, 2017, you will be considered delinquent and if not paid by the end of January your Legion privileges will be suspended. This also means that you will not be able to use the Post bar. In addition, at the Febuary Meeting, your continued membership in Post 100 will have to voted upon by the Legion members present at that time. If voted out, your membership in the Legion could be transferred to the State Post known as "945". If still not paid by June 30th, membership in the Legion is forfeited.
There are four ways to pay your dues:
1. Annually by direct payment to the Adjutant
2. Online at the American Legion website using a credit card.
3. Annual automatic deduction from your account
4. Purchasing a life membership (Note: the method for obtaining a Life Membership has changed as of 7/1/15. All Life membership applications are handled by and must go through National Headquarters).
The Phila VA Hospital will be renamed in honor of Michael Crescenz, a Medal of Honor receipient from PA.
The VA will be issuing a Veterans ID card to those who request one even though they are not in the VA health system. In addition, Bucks and Montgomery Counties are issuing Vet picture ID cards at their Recorder of Deeds office. They will place your DD-214 in their files for you and give a list of places that will honor your card with discounts. IT IS VERY IMPORTANT THAT FAMILY MEMBERS KNOW WHERE YOUR DD-214 IS LOCATED IN YOUR HOME. IT IS NEEDED TO HAVE MILITARY HONORS AT FUNERALS.
MILITARY RECORDS can be obtained either by writing to:
National Personnel Record Center 1 Archives Drive St Louis MO 63138, calling 1-314-801-0800 or you can request a Form 180 to send in to get your DD214 from Ron Stone or Fred Kluxen. You can also go to this website to handle the process: www.archives.gov/veterans/evetrecs/index.html
The Post can provide you with applications for applying for VA health benefits. See Fred Kluxen or Ron Stone for the forms.
The Dept of Veteran Affairs in Norristown can issue all vets an ID card that will allow for discounts in many places of business. Call 610-278-3285 for info.
You can access VA health care at www.va.gov or call the Health Benefits Center at 1-800-222-8387.
If you are a low income vet with lots of medical expenses and have a NON-service related disability, you may be eligible for a VA pension. Call 1-800-827-1000 or go to : www.vba.va.gov/bin/21/Milsvc/Docs/Pensoneg.doc
The VA has a program called "Aid and Attendance" with can provide as much as $1949 per month to Vets who need care, either at home, in a nursing facility or assisted living facility. Go to www.ebenefits.va.gov and www.veteransaid.org for information. Also see the link below for Montgomery County's website which explains the three types of VA Pensions available to you.
Funeral and burial expense money can be received from the VA in the amount of $700 for each item as well as $100 from Montgomery County. Make sure your family is aware of this since some Funeral Directors are not.
Pennsylvania recently passed a referendum permitting the State to award bonuses to Gulf War era vets (1991-2) who are PA residents. Applications are posted at the Post BB and can also be obtained from Ron Stone.
If you are receiving 100% disability from the VA, you are eligible for an exemption for your Property and School taxes. You must contact the VA to get the necessary forms to get an Awards Letter certifying your disability. This benefit is not being advertised, you must inquire to get it.
Montgomery County has many benefits for Veterans such as: Burial allowance, headstone allowance, flags and bronze flag holders, emergency assistance payments, real estate tax exemptions (see above), disability pensions, State Vet Homes, fishing license discount, etc. For more info, contact the Philadelphia Adjutant General's office at 215-381-3040 or go to the PA Dept of Vet Affairs website at: www.milvet.state.pa.us or go to http://mcva.montcopa.org to access links to many different programs. One such link provides up to date info about the three levels of VA Pensions: Basic, Household and Aid & Attendance.
Vets can get free tickets to sporting events. Go to: www.vettix.org
NEWS YOU CAN USE
The Army-Airforce Exchange Service (AAFES) is now opening up to ALL veterans to use their online website to order items from them tax free and shipping free (over $49). Go to: ShopMy Exchange.com to verify your eligibility and sign up to start shopping.
The Legion Insurance Trust is accidental life insurance of $1000 (or $5000 if you are on Legion business) for NO COST TO YOU. It can be had for life by signing up just one time. Go to: https://thelit.com/no-cost-legioncare to sign up for life. This also applies to Sons and Auxiliary members as well. You can also call 1-800-235-6943.
The Dept of Motor Vehicles has a place on their new Driver's License applications to designate you as a Veteran with a "V" on your driver's license. You must check the box on your application or tell the clerk when you renew your license.
The Montgomery County and Bucks County Recorder of Deeds office in Norristown will record your DD214 in it's official records so that you will always have access to it. They will also issue you a Veteran's ID card which will get you discounts in hundreds of retail locations. They will provide a list of them to you. Call 610-278-3294 or go to www.montcopa.org/ROD for more info.
How to subscribe to DISPATCH, the National Legion newsletter. This newletter is delivered digitally by email to you. Go to www.legion.org/media and click on "subscribe" under "e-newsletters". From there, you can choose to receive an email link for electronic DISPATCH. The e-newsletter will be published with fresh links on a monthly basis and at other times as warranted.
Veterans who have asbestos-lung related problems can find info they need with regard to claims at: www.asbestos.com/va-claim.php
Pennsylvania passed a law which permits residents to place a "security freeze" on their credit reports. This goes a long way in preventing identity thief because only YOU can unfreeze access to obtain credit. The freeze costs $10 but is free to those over 65. Call the credit bureaus for the forms to sign up.
Who and when and what can be saluted is very confusing. Here are the up to date regulations.
Members of the Department of Defense in uniform are only allowed to salute the National Ensign, and on six days of the year, they also can salute the POW/MIA flag. Those six days are: Armed Forces Day, Memorial Day, Flag Day, Independence Day, POW/MIA Recognition Day and Veteran's Day.
Veterans, in addition, can salute Organizational flags as well and they can do so whether in uniform or not, indoors and outdoors, with or without head cover. Legionnaires recognize as Organizational flags: POW/MIA, Post, Sons, Auxiliary, Riders, Blue Star, Gold Star, the States, Commonwealths, and Territories of the USA, President and Vice-Presidential flags. When you are wearing Legionnaire apparel (such as a hat) and you salute, you do so representing the American Legion. When you salute without uniform, you do so as a veteran citizen.
Whether in uniform or not, you can salute the National Ensign during the playing of the National Anthem or hold your hat or hand over your heart. You hold your hat or hand over your heart when reciting the Pledge of Allegiance.
VOLUNTEER HOURS INFO NEEDED
Each year, I have to send a report to Department about its activities regarding community service. Department then passes this info on to National which uses it in its annual report to Congress in order to get funding.
It is very difficult for me to know about all that our members are doing, so I need input from each of you if you are in any way engaged in community service. I basically need the number of hours you spent performing such activity. Examples of what I mean are: election poll worker, mentoring, scouting, community/church committees, donating blood, volunteerism, helping the sick or needy, etc. Just give me a call or email or let me know when you see me at the Post.
MY CONTACT INFO
You can contact me , Ron Stone, at 215-836-7184 or by email at: firstname.lastname@example.org