Veterans

Northwest Florida is home to strategic military installations such as Eglin AFB, Hurlburt Field, and Pensacola NAS. Home to diverse mission sets like Special Operations, Test and Evaluation, and training the next generation of pilots, we owe our freedom to the brave men and women that serve in Florida’s First District. As a member of the Armed Services Committee, Matt has fought for increased funding for the F-35 program to ensure its extraordinary capabilities are protecting our Nation as quickly as possible. He has also worked to enhance readiness by securing $27.4 million to fund Gulf Coast Test Range enhancements that will enable our aviators to train on up-to-date technology as well as continue critical testing of air-to-air missiles, drone targeting, and hypersonic weapons.
In the FY19 National Defense Authorization Act passed by the House of Representatives in May, Matt secured authorization for $31.9 million in further funding for Gulf Coast Test Range Enhancements, $10 million for an Air Traffic Control Tower at NAS Whiting Field, and $60 million for F-35 spares. He will continue to be an advocate for our military to ensure it is ready and able to fight the wars of today and tomorrow.
When it comes to caring for our veterans Matt has worked diligently to improve the quality of care America’s heroes receive. He supported the Choice Act which provided an additional $2.1 billion in mandatory funding for the Veterans Choice Program. This program allows veterans to be seen by a community provider if the VA cannot provide care in a timely manner. Matt has also worked with the VA on reducing missed appointments by using ride share apps, using Hyperbaric Oxygen Treatment for Traumatic Brain Injuries and PTSD, and using Telemedicine options for treating mental health.

More on Veterans

March 21, 2020 Press Release

 

Washington, D.C. — Congressman Matt Gaetz (FL-01) issued the following statement today in response to the Air Force’s announcement that a servicemember from the 24th Special Operations Wing out of Hurlburt Field, Florida, had passed away during a training exercise in Panama City:

 

February 13, 2020 Press Release

Washington, D.C. — Congressman Matt Gaetz (FL-01) today applauded Secretary of the Air Force Barbara Barrett for signing two basing decisions directly impacting military installations in the First Congressional District of Florida, acknowledging that they are best equipped to accommodate a rapidly-developing military mission.

 

February 10, 2020 In The News

More pension benefits might become available for veterans over the age of 99.

New legislation was introduced by Congressman Matt Gaetz this week.

February 6, 2020 Press Release

Washington, D.C. — U.S. Congressman Matt Gaetz (FL-01) today introduced legislation to allow centenarian military veterans to qualify for full pension benefits from the Department of Veterans’ Affairs regardless of their net worth. The “Joseph Ainsworth Act” would change the Net Worth Limitation in Section 1522 of Title 38 by creating an age exemption for veterans older than 99 years old.

 

February 3, 2020 Page

The Veterans History Project was created by the United States Congress to preserve veterans’ first-hand accounts of their time in military service. The project was initiated in an effort to preserve veterans’ unique experiences and document their stories for future generations.

 

January 8, 2020 Press Release

Washington, D.C. — Today, US Congressman Matt Gaetz (FL-01) issued the following statement in response to President Trump's address to the nation on developments in Iran:

"President Trump’s decision to advance peace through mindful restraint with Iran represents his full commitment to an American First foreign policy. Our strength will not be weakened by Iran's provocations. I am thankful that President Trump will keep us out of another forever war," Congressman Gaetz said. 

 

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December 13, 2019 Press Release

Washington, D.C. — As a member of the House Armed Services Committee, U.S. Congressman Matt Gaetz (FL-01) applauded the U.S. House of Representatives for passing the FY 2020 National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) this week. Congressman Gaetz secured numerous provisions for Florida’s First Congressional district in the NDAA, including $124 million in military construction and also an amendment posthumously promoting Lt. Colonel Dick Cole of the Doolittle Raiders to Colonel.

 

December 11, 2019 Press Release

Washington, D.C. — Today, in a House Armed Services Committee hearing, U.S. Congressman Matt Gaetz (FL-01) questioned Secretary of Defense Mark Esper about the current status of the flight program training Saudi Arabian students in the United States and what steps the Department of Defense is taking to address Saudi Arabian students currently at NAS Pensacola.

 

March 26, 2019 Video

Captain Nathan Nelson, Congressman Gaetz' Military Legislative Director, appears on Fox & Friends with his wife Jennifer.

January 17, 2019 Press Release

Washington, D.C. — Congressman Matt Gaetz (FL-01) released the following statement in response to Florida Governor Ron DeSantis’ major announcement today regarding medical marijuana. During the press conference this afternoon, Gov. DeSantis announced his administration’s plans to address the issue of medical marijuana in the state by first pushing the Florida legislature to pass legislation to fix the current anti-marijuana laws in place, before ultimately stepping in and dropping the state’s appeal that seeks to overturn Florida’s ban on smoking medical marijuana.