Defense Secretary Ash Carter on Wednesday ordered the Pentagon to suspend efforts to collect reimbursements from California National Guard members who were improperly given enlistment bonuses, and two Fresno lawmakers were swift to react:
Assemblyman Jim Patterson, R-Fresno: “The words from Secretary Carter aren’t good enough. His statement is weak, full of holes and didn’t offer anything more than a temporary pause in collections until they figure out what to do. There was no mention of paying back the bonuses that were grabbed already. That’s what must happen in order to right this terrible wrong.”
Rep. Jim Costa, D-Fresno: “Ensuring that U.S. service men and women are not held responsible for the mistakes and misconduct of the Department of Defense has been my top priority. I joined many of my House colleagues in urging Secretary Ash Carter to halt collections on enlistment bonuses immediately, and I welcome the news that payments have been suspended. When Congress reconvenes next month, I look forward to working with my colleagues on a bipartisan solution to fix the wrongdoings of the responsible parties at the Department of Defense. American soldiers sacrifice everything to serve our country in its greatest time of need, and it is crucial for the payments to be waived so the U.S. government can earn back the trust of those affected.”
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