Friday, July 10, 2009

House Passes Advance Appropriations for Veterans Health Care in Veterans Funding Bill


House Passes Advance Appropriations for Veterans Health Care in Veterans Funding Bill

Enactment of veterans’ funding bill will amount to a 58% increase in the past 2.5 years under Democratic leadership

Washington, D.C. – House Veterans’ Affairs Committee Chairman Bob Filner (D-CA) released the following statement upon House passage of H.R. 3082, the Military Construction and Veterans Affairs spending bill:

“Today, the House of Representatives passed H.R. 3028, a bill to fund the Department of Veterans Affairs for Fiscal Year 2010. The bill provides $108.9 billion, the same as the President’s request and $14.5 billion above 2009, for veterans medical care, claims processors, and facility improvements. This is the third budget in a row that exceeds the request of the Independent Budget, which is formulated by a coalition of veterans’ organizations!

“Unlike any veterans funding bill before it, this legislation provides funding for medical-related accounts for the next fiscal year one year in advance. Responding to 19 late budgets over the course of the last 22 years, this bill delivers adequate and timely funding for veterans’ health care and offers a historic new approach to caring for our veterans.

“To be sure, great strides have been made to increase VA health care funding under the leadership of the New Democratic Congress - $17.7 billion provided over the last two years. Regardless of efforts to provide sufficient resources, veterans’ funding continues to get caught up in the political wrangling of the federal budget process. H.R. 3028 provides $48.2 billion in advance appropriations for Fiscal Year 2011 for three medical accounts: medical services, medical support and compliance, and medical facilities. This is an eight percent increase over Fiscal Year 2010 and will allow VA officials to plan spending levels for the coming year, meet the continuing wave of new patients, and maintain operations at VA facilities.

“As Chairman of the House Committee on Veterans’ Affairs, I am committed to assisting the VA in its goal of becoming a model 21st Century organization. I want to thank Chairman Edwards for crafting bipartisan legislation and Chairman Obey for his leadership, as well as their Republican counterparts. The House of Representatives joins the Obama Administration’s commitment to improving health care for all veterans, increasing access to mental health services, addressing and preventing homelessness among veterans, and honoring the veterans of previous generations. President Obama has proven that veterans are a top priority by requesting a record veterans’ budget, and the New Direction Congress has answered.”





House Approves Filner Amendment to Support Paralympic Program for Injured Vets

Washington, D.C. – Bob Filner (D-CA), Chairman of the House Committee on Veterans’ Affairs, announced that the House of Representatives approved a critical funding increase for a paralympic program for veterans and members of the Armed Services. Hundreds of injured veterans now actively participate in paralympic sports and training programs that enhance their rehabilitation and promote healing from the wounds of war.

Last year, Congress authorized $10 million to fund the Office of National Veterans’ Sports Programs and Special Events to oversee rehabilitative adaptive sports programs for severely injured service members and veterans. The severely injured service members and veterans tend to be traumatic brain injury veterans, amputees, paraplegic, and quadriplegic veterans. Today, the House voted to approve Chairman Filner’s amendment to provide full funding for the program in H.R. 3028, the Military Construction and Veterans Affairs Appropriations Act of 2010.

“When severely injured military began returning from Iraq and Afghanistan, the United States Olympic Committee began offering Paralympic Military Sports Camps at its training facilities, including the USOC training facility in my district in Chula Vista, California,” said Filner. “I strongly believe that providing this dynamic program the needed funding to assist our injured service members and veterans will enrich the quality of life of our severely injured service members and veterans as they explore new limits.”

Sphere: Related Content