The Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) plans to spend nearly $700 million in new “State Veterans Home construction projects,” the department announced on Wednesday in a press release.
This is the largest appropriation given to the VA for the State Veterans Homes Program in the program’s 50+ year history.
“This program has been operating with a backlog of applications for construction projects,” said VA Acting Secretary Robert Wilkie. “This new allocation will let us fund projects on our priority list, many of which have been waiting for years. We thank Congress for its commitment and support of Veterans across the country.”
Federal funding for the State Home Program began in 1964, and according to the VA, these homes provide housing for “veterans disabled by age, disease, or otherwise, who by reason of such disability are incapable of earning a living. State homes may provide nursing home care, domiciliary care, and/or adult day health care.”
The VA is planning on constructing several new State Homes, as well as making repairs and modifications to existing ones.
The VA’s ability to invest in this program comes from the $186.5 billion that President Trump recommended the VA receive from Congress.
“As the largest appropriation in the more than 50-year history of this program, it demonstrates just how strongly President Donald Trump cares for and is keeping his promises to our nation’s Veterans,” Wilkie said.
Hopefully, the influx of cash into the State Veterans Homes Program will combat some of the issues the program has been plagued be over the years. In 2014 a State Veterans Home in California remained half-empty after officials failed to install kitchens in the units. Another Veterans Home in St. Louis was plagued with management issues and failed to retain qualified staff.