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As a veteran myself, I recognize the sacrifices that our military men and women make every day, both during and after their service. I intend to honor them through my work, and fight for them every chance I get.  

In the 115th Congress, I have cosponsored:

  • Ensuring Veteran Enterprise Participation in Strategic Sourcing Act, a bipartisan bill that directs the Department of Veterans Affairs to work with the General Services Administration (GSA) to increase the number of Service-Disabled Veteran and Veteran-Owned Small Businesses represented on GSA contracts.
  • "The GI Bill for Life" The Harry W. Colmery Veterans Educational Assistance Act of 2017, a bipartisan bill that would close current gaps in the existing Post 9/11 GI Bill and guarantee that veterans have access to their hard-earned GI Bill benefits beyond the current 15-year time limit.
  • The WINGMAN Act, a bipartisan bill aimed at helping veterans through the claims process with the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA).
  • The Reserve Component Benefits Parity Act, which addresses unequal compensation for reserve-component members who deploy.
  • The VA Employee Fairness Act of 2017, to modify authorities relating to the collective bargaining of employees in the Veterans Health Administration.


For more information concerning work and views related to Veterans issues, please contact our office.

More on Veterans

September 22, 2017 In The News

CONGRESSMAN JIMMY Panetta last week honored three Monterey County motorcyclists who made a journey across 21 states to carry an American flag to Arlington National Cemetery, where it will be flown over the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier next week.

A group of riders, including Rick Phinney, Steve Culver, and Hy Libby, representing American Legion Post 31 in Salinas, made the trip to “raise awareness” and funds for the Central Coast Veterans Cemetery at Fort Ord, Panetta said.

August 26, 2017 Press Release

SALINAS, CA – Today, Congressman Jimmy Panetta (D-Calif.) released the following statement in response to President Donald Trump's memorandum ordering the Pentagon to ban transgender Americans from enlisting or commissioning in the military. The memorandum also halts some medically necessary transition-related health care for transgender service members.

July 31, 2017 In The News
Rep. Jimmy Panetta, D-Calif., a naval reservist who served in Afghanistan: “Last night I went to Arlington National Cemetery. I took my two daughters, who are here in town. We saw what people normally see, the changing of the guard, the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier, the tomb of President Kennedy. “But I made it a point to go to area 60, the area where there are many recent interments from the people, from our veterans, from our brethren, who have served in the Global War on Terrorism. “On that hallowed ground, I made it a point to seek out someone I served with, a gentleman by the name of Brendan Looney. I served with Mr. Looney in Korea. He was an intelligence officer back then. Both of us made sure that we wanted to do more. I went forward, but Brendan Looney wanted to do more than just that: he wanted to become a SEAL, and he did. He served in Iraq and he served in Afghanistan. “It was in 2010 when the Blackhawk he was riding in went down and crashed, killing everybody onboard … “The men and women who served in the global war on terrorism did not shrink from that responsibility. They did not run away. They ran forward.”
July 28, 2017 In The News
and weighs in on Trump’s tweet about transgender troops
July 27, 2017 In The News

California and Central Coast lawmakers are speaking out against President Trump’s decision to ban transgender soldiers from serving in the military.

Trump announced this decision in a series of tweets Wednesday morning.

He tweeted “After consultation with my Generals and military experts, please be advised that the United States Government will not accept or allow…transgender individuals to serve in any capacity in the U.S. Military.”

July 26, 2017 In The News

Congressman Jimmy Panetta (CA-20), a member of the House Armed Services Committee and a member of the House Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender (LGBT) Equality Caucus, issued the following statement today after President Donald Trump tweeted that transgender Americans will no longer be able to serve in the U.S. military:

July 26, 2017 In The News

After President Trump tweeted that transgender Americans will no longer be able to serve in the U.S. military, Congressman Jimmy Panetta (D-Carmel Valley) issued the following statement:

July 26, 2017 In The News

MONTEREY, Calif. - President Trump announced in a series of tweets Wednesday that transgender people will be banned from serving in the armed forces "in any capacity."

This decision reverses a policy that the Defense Department approved under President Obama last year. Ash Carter, Defense Secretary under Obama, ended the ban on trans people openly serving in the military in June 2016, granting the Pentagon a year-long review period to determine how it would accept transgender recruits into the military.

July 25, 2017 Press Release

WASHINGTON – Last night, the U.S. House of Representatives passed H.R. 2781, the Ensuring Veteran Enterprise Participation in Strategic Sourcing Act. This legislation expands government contract opportunities for veteran-owned small businesses and ensures that the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) is complying with federal law. The bipartisan bill, coauthored by Congressman Neal Dunn (R-FL-02) and Congressman Jimmy Panetta (D-CA-20), passed with unanimous consent.

June 16, 2017 In The News

ACTIVE DUTY soldiers and veterans who commit misdemeanors in Monterey County and are suffering from mental health problems or other issues related to their military service will now have a chance to resolve their cases in a special court instead of facing jail or other penalties.

On June 7, the Monterey County Superior Court launched what it calls the “military diversion calendar,” which allows military defendants charged with relatively minor crimes to undergo counseling and treatment under the direction of the Veterans Administration and Monterey County Behavioral Health.