Sen. Bill Nelson, Sen. Marco Rubio Team Up To Help Homeless Veterans
By Sunshine State News // April 25, 2018
NELSON: We have a responsibility to provide them with the very best care
(SUNSHINE STATE NEWS) – Florida’s two U.S. senators–Democrat Bill Nelson and Republican Marco Rubio–teamed up on Wednesday to unveil a proposal to help homeless veterans.
Nelson and Rubio are working together to improve a project managed by the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) and the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD). The current HUD-VASH program offers homeless veterans a voucher to help rent a home or an apartment.
The bill Nelson and Rubio filed ensures money from the HUD-VASH program will not be used to fund anything besides helping homeless veterans. The Trump administration has mulled plans to move $460 million out of HUD-VASH into VA general funds. While the administration did not do so, under current law, HUD-VASH is funded until October.
Nelson’s and Rubio’s bill would keep the program funded and also change the hiring process for the VA. These changes include having a case manager for every 35 veterans and expediting the hiring process.
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In some regions, case managers are assigned up to 70-100 veterans at once, making it nearly impossible to effectively manage them all. The bill would also ensure case managers live closer to the veterans they work with.
The two senators weighed in on Wednesday why they had brought out the bill.
“The brave men and women who have served in our armed forces have made incredible sacrifices to protect our freedoms,” Nelson said. “We have a responsibility to provide them with the very best care that we can.”
“We must continue to provide our nation’s veterans the quality care they were promised and deserve,” said Rubio.
“This legislation would make much needed improvements to the HUD-VASH program so that it can more effectively assist homeless veterans and their families.”
The bill has been sent to the Senate Veterans Affairs Committee.
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