Congress Fails to Pass MilCon/VA BudgetCONTACT: Chrissy Stevens (212) 982-9699 or chrissy[@]iava.org
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Thursday, October 1, 2009
Congress Fails to Pass The MilCon/VA Budget
THE ISSUE IN 30 SECONDS:
- The Military Construction and Veterans Affairs Appropriations Act, 2010 (MilCon/VA budget) is the appropriation of money to the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA), related agencies, and for military construction for the fiscal year ending September 30, 2010.
- The Senate version (S.1407) introduced by Senator Tim Johnson on July 7, 2009 is currently on the Senate Legislative Calendar under General Orders. The budget was not voted on before the October 1 fiscal year deadline.
- The proposed FY2010 VA budget represents a 15 percent increase over FY2009 levels. It also includes funds for 2011, which achieves IAVA's number one legislative priority for this year - advance appropriations.
WHY IT MATTERS:
- Without a timely budget, thousands of veterans' hospitals and clinics nationwide are forced to ration care. They are unable to plan forward and address critical infrastructure, staffing and equipment needs.
TAKE A QUOTE FROM AN EXPERT:
Paul Rieckhoff, Founder and Executive Director of Iraq and Afghanistan Veterans of America (IAVA) quotes:
"For the twentieth time in twenty-three years, Congress has again failed to pass the VA budget on time. This is completely unacceptable. A late VA budget means Congress is failing veterans. This year, the VA is not alone. The only budget that did pass on time was the one that funds salary checks to members of Congress.
In the last two weeks especially, veterans have become victims of government inefficiency at its worst. First, thousands of late GI Bill checks, and now, a late VA budget.
When the VA budget is late, the nation's largest healthcare provider is forced to wait in limbo, relying on a stop-gap measure. VA hospitals and clinics can't properly address critical staffing and equipment needs. When Congress bickers and delays, it's our veterans who are left paying the price.
IAVA calls on lawmakers to move swiftly to pass the VA budget so that the men and women who have served our country aren't forced to wait any longer for the care they have earned."
- MilCon/VA budget
- House Veterans Affairs Committee
- Senate Veterans Affairs Committee
- MSNBC's The Rachel Maddow Show: IAVA's Storm the Hill and Advance Funding
- CNN: Paul Rieckhoff on Advanced Funding of VA Healthcare
- The Virginian-Pilot: Budget would expand veterans' health care
- Marine Corps Times: Is VA budget increase enough to assist influx of new vets?
Paul Rieckhoff, Storm the Hill '09. Speech.
Iraq and Afghanistan Veterans of America (www.IAVA.org) is the country's first and largest nonprofit, nonpartisan organization for veterans of the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan and has more than 150,000 veteran members and civilian supporters nationwide. Its mission is to improve the lives of this country's newest generation of veterans and their families.
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