Washington, D.C. — U.S. Senators Marco Rubio (R-FL), Kirsten Gillibrand (D-NY), Mike Braun (R-IN), Jim Risch (R-ID), Marsha Blackburn (R-TN), Tom Cotton (R-AR), and Rick Scott (R-FL) introduced the Free Veterans from Fees Act, which seeks to allow veterans to hold special events at Washington, D.C. war memorials without fees. The companion legislation, H.R. 1029, was led by Congressman Gregory Steube (R-FL) and passed the U.S. House of Representatives on October 19, 2021.
“This legislation is simple: veterans should not have to pay fees to hold special events at memorials that are meant to honor them,” Rubio said. “Veterans sacrificed so much to serve our country, and waiving these administrative fees is the least we can do to thank them for their service.”
“We owe a great deal to the men and women who have risked their lives to protect and defend our freedom. I am so pleased this bill will guarantee veterans’ groups free access to the many great memorials that live right here in our nation’s capital,” Gillibrand said. “We are thankful to the National Park Service for their generosity and partnership in working with our veterans to waive permit application fees and this bill will make sure that veterans always receive that benefit.”
"Our veterans should not be forced to pay application fees for special events at the memorials recognizing the wars they fought in," Blackburn said. "Fly-in visits are incredibly meaningful for Tennessee World War II, Vietnam War, and Korean War veterans to pay tribute to their fallen brothers in arms, and this legislation will waive the administrative costs for these events."
“Our veterans are true heroes and it is because of their selfless sacrifice that we are able to enjoy our freedoms,” Scott said. “We owe them endless gratitude for their dedicated service to our great nation. That is why I am proud to support the Free Veterans from Fees Act so that we can give back to the brave men and women in uniform who have given so much to our country.”
“We build war memorials to commemorate the legacy of our fighting men and women,” Cotton said. “But charging a fee to hold veterans events at those memorials contradicts their purpose. This bill removes those application fees so that there is no longer a tax on honoring our veterans.”
“Our veterans have made countless sacrifices to protect our freedoms, and the least we can do is ensure that they are not subjected to burdensome fees when visiting memorials built in their honor,” Steube said. “I am honored that Senator Rubio is championing my legislation in the Senate to free our veterans from these unnecessary fees and make their lives a little easier.”