Rep. Johnson supports three key veterans' benefit bills

March 30, 2009
Press Release

The measures could provide a cost of living increase for veterans’ disability benefits, expand employment services for homeless veterans and fully reimburse veterans for emergency care. 

Johnson, a member of the House Armed Services Committee, said it’s a step – or three – in the right direction. 

“For those who gave this country so much, we in turn should be doing everything we can to help make sure our Veterans are taken care of,” said Johnson. “All three bills will help Vets make ends meet, find housing if they’re homeless and help cover emergency medical expenses.”

“The fact that more than 150,000 veterans are homeless in this country is unacceptable and borders on the criminal,” said Johnson. “It’s time we wake up to our responsibilities.”

A closer look:

  Veterans Cost of Living Increase (H.R. 1513) – Provides a cost of living increase for veterans’ disability benefits and to dependency and indemnity compensation for veterans’ families, effective December 1, 2009.  The cost-of-living increase is based on the cost-of-living adjustment made annually for Social Security payments.       

  Homeless Veterans Reintegration Program Reauthorization Act (H.R. 1171) –  Reauthorizes for five years the Homeless Veterans Reintegration Program for five years, which provides employment assistance to homeless veterans.  HVRP provides services to homeless veterans with special problems such as legal issues, HIV, substance abuse, and post-traumatic stress disorder and provides them with the specialized assessment and counseling that they need.  The bill provides dedicated services for homeless women veterans and homeless veterans with children. Grants would be made available to provide job training, counseling, placement services, and child care services to expedite the reintegration of veterans into the labor force.   

  Veterans Emergency Care Reimbursement (H.R. 1377) -- Requires the Secretary of Veterans Affairs to reimburse veterans receiving emergency treatment in non-Department of Veterans Affairs facilities, if a third party is not responsible for paying for the full cost of care.

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