Stuart, Fla. – U.S. Congressman Brian Mast (FL-18) yesterday introduced two bills to help those who have dedicated their lives to serving our country. The bills would expand service eligibility to reserve physicians or reserve chaplains beyond the age of 68 and expand military housing benefits for Foreign Service Officers.

“It takes a special kind of person to put on the uniform and dedicate their life to serving our country,” Rep. Mast said. “We shouldn’t have artificial barriers or needless bureaucracy getting in the way of those who want to serve. That’s what these bills are all about.”

The first bill, H.R. 3045, would expand military housing benefits to Foreign Service Officers who temporarily lose housing allowance while on mandatory Home Leave Status. Currently, Foreign Service Officers forced to take leave status upon returning to the United States are often left without any means of housing. If passed, this bill would provide financial relief to Foreign Service Officers by expanding access to temporary housing provided by the Department of Defense.

The second bill is H.R. 3046. Under current law, active-duty military physicians are eligible to serve beyond the “mandatory retirement age” of 68 if they are deemed “necessary for the needs of the military department concerned.” This bill would expand this waiver to any reserve physicians or reserve chaplains who meet this same criteria already in place for active-duty servicemembers.