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Five More Bilirakis-Authored Provisions Pass the House

December 11, 2020
Press Release

CONTACT:  Summer Blevins 727-232-2921

 

Five More Bilirakis-Authored Provisions Pass the House

 

Florida’s Most Effective Lawmaker keeps adding to his legislative successes, with five more provisions co-authored by Congressman Bilirakis passing the House this week.  This now means that Bilirakis has 14 bills that have the passed the House this Congress and await final approval in the Senate.  A total of eleven Bilirakis-authored bills have already been signed into law this since 2019, while he served as a Member of the minority party.  This is a testament to Bilirakis’s ability to work across party lines and is a contributing factor to Bilirakis recently being ranked as Florida’s Most Bipartisan Member in the U.S. House of Representatives.  “I look forward to getting these initiatives across the finish line before the end of the year,” said Bilirakis.  “They will help seniors, our military, their families and Veterans.  I urge my Senate colleagues to expedite their passage so they can be signed into law.”

 

The Beneficiary Enrollment Notification and Eligibility Act of 2019 or the BENES Act, which Bilirakis co-authored, passed the House with overwhelming bipartisan support earlier this week. Complex and confusing Medicare enrollment rules combined with a lack of sufficient notification cause tens of thousands of seniors and people with disabilities to incur lifetime fines, coverage gaps, and other harmful consequences.  The BENES Act will provide advance notification to individuals approaching Medicare eligibility about basic enrollment rules while directing HHS to provide guidance to Congress on how best to align Medicare enrollment periods to help seniors avoid adverse consequences. 

 

A second bill co-authored by Bilirakis, the Provide Accurate Information Directly Act or PAID Act, also garnered bipartisan support when passing the House this week. The PAID Act addresses a problem with Medicare billing.  Medicare secondary payer laws enacted in the 1980s have failed to stay current with the needs of today’s beneficiaries, and the PAID Act requires improved information sharing and coordination by the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services.

 

The three additional Bilirakis co-authored provisions passed the House as part of the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) and are listed below:

  • The Welch/Bilirakis Burn Pit exposure and COVID-19 amendment requires the Tricare COVID-19 Registry to include any prior respiratory illnesses and information from the burn pit registry for the beneficiary.
  • The Increased Deployments to Greece Feasibility Study amendment provides a feasibility study on increased rotational deployments to Greece and enhanced United States-Greece diplomatic engagement.  Such an enhancement of the United States’ Strategic Partnership with Greece would be a benefit to both nations. 
  • The Crist/Bilirakis amendment requires the Government Accountability Office to conduct a feasibility study on the transferability of military certifications to civilian licensures.  Veterans learn valuable skills and gain incredible on-the-job training during their service; however, there is no mechanism currently in place to ensure these critical skill sets are recognized in civilian industries.  This study can identify barriers to achieving this goal.