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Democracy Awards

Congressman Mark DeSaulnier

Representing the 11th District of California

Congressman DeSaulnier’s Statement on the Forced Repayment of Signing Bonuses by California National Guard Soldiers

October 24, 2016
Press Release

Washington, D.C. – Congressman Mark DeSaulnier (CA-11) issued the following statement after thousands of California soldiers were ordered to repay enlistment bonuses more than a decade after re-enlisting to serve in Iraq and Afghanistan.

“It is outrageous that California’s veterans, who have served our country and experienced personal sacrifice, are expected to go through financial hardship in order to repay signing bonuses which they believed were rightfully earned. The responsibility for the overpayment of these bonuses should not fall on the backs of our servicemembers. The State of California did the right thing in auditing its books for any inconsistencies, and now the American people deserve a full audit of the Department of Defense’s finances. Action must be taken to do right by our veterans and determine how something like this could have occurred. No veteran should be penalized for answering the call for duty,” said Congressman Mark DeSaulnier.