Veterans Groups Urge House to Reject VA Budget Plan


    Poor budget planning plus the demand of veterans seeking private care are among the major issues the VA needs to deal with in the current House budget plan cuts are to be offset by pension cuts and added fees – PB/TK

    Veterans Groups Urge House to Reject VA Budget Plan – By Hope Yen / July 23 2017

    Eight major veterans’ organizations on Saturday urged Congress to provide emergency money to the Department of Veterans Affairs — without cutting other VA programs — as the House moved quickly to address a budget shortfall that threatened medical care for thousands of patients.

    Their joint statement was issued after the House Veterans Affairs Committee unveiled a plan Friday that would shift $2 billion from other VA programs to continue funding the department’s Choice program. Put in place after a 2014 wait-time scandal at the Phoenix VA hospital, Choice provides veterans with federally paid medical care outside the VA.

    To offset spending, the VA would trim pensions for some veterans and collect fees for housing loans.

    The veterans’ groups criticized the plan as unacceptable privatization. They urged the House to embrace a bill that “ensures veterans’ health care is not interrupted in the short term, nor threatened in the long term.”

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