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10:43 am, September 30, 2014

Veterans Affairs News

Veterans group calls for legislative fix to VA contracting rule

Vietnam Veterans of America alleges the Veterans Affairs Department's service-disabled veteran-owned business set aside program is keeping legitimately qualified companies from competing for VA contracts. The group advocates loosening a rule that requires service-disabled veterans maintain unconditional control of all business decisions.

Monday - 08/13/2012, 05:16am EDT
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Veterans charity accused of squandering millions

The California-based charity came under scrutiny four years ago, when its founder and then- president was hauled before Congress to answer tough questions about his management of millions of dollars in private donations. Roger Chapin vehemently defended his actions, and his group went on to raise millions more to support its mission of providing arts and craft kits to homebound and hospitalized veterans.

Friday - 08/10/2012, 03:30am EDT

Johnson planning bill to change VA small business contracting process

Rep. Bill Johnson (R-Ohio) believes a VA contracting program that requires service-disabled vets control 100 percent of their company's decision-making to qualify is too onerous. And he wants to ease the requirements.

Tuesday - 08/07/2012, 05:34am EDT
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Lawmakers say VA contracting rule squeezing out vet-owned firms

The rule, aimed at preventing fraud in the VA service-disabled veteran-owned small business program, requires that veterans control 100 percent of company decisions, even if they maintain just partial ownership. VA is taking suggestions for changing its rules.

Friday - 08/03/2012, 07:35pm EDT
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Encrypted laptops ease VA's concerns about data breaches

Department says 99 percent of laptops now are encrypted. Of the 21 laptops reported stolen or missing in the last two months, all were secured with security software.

Friday - 08/03/2012, 05:17am EDT
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VA not doing enough to verify service-disabled veteran owned firms

GAO highlights a need for tighter controls to fix the contracting program.

Thursday - 08/02/2012, 05:11am EDT

VA, DoD release mobile app to help PTSD patients

New mobile application helps military personnel and veterans undergoing post-traumatic stress disorder treatment to relieve stress and work through traumatic memories.

Tuesday - 07/31/2012, 02:15pm EDT

VA, GSA each pushes major IT acquisitions to next steps

The Veterans Affairs Department will award a $5 billion IT hardware contract in the next two months. GSA will release a request for information for cybersecurity tools in the coming days. Both are examples of a healthy and busy fourth quarter for acquisition.

Friday - 07/27/2012, 06:01am EDT

DoD, VA encouraged to do more for returning soldiers

The secretaries of the departments of Defense and Veterans Affairs testified about how the two agencies are collaborating to make it easier for military members to return to civilian life. Members of the Armed Services and Veterans Affairs House committees questioned them about various programs designed to help the process.

Thursday - 07/26/2012, 05:22am EDT
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New bid to train social workers on military issues

A new program is being launched to train thousands of social workers on how to aid troops coming home from Iraq and Afghanistan.

Wednesday - 07/25/2012, 12:04pm EDT

Thousands of service members transition to private sector jobs

Some 250,000 service members leave the military each year and all must attend counseling on finances and other issues whether they served six years or 26 years, whether they saw the battlefield or not.

Wednesday - 07/25/2012, 03:04am EDT

FACT CHECK: Romney ignores other budget players

As he blames the president for the prospect of large cuts in defense spending next year, Republican Mitt Romney is ignoring the role that Congress and members of his own party played in setting up that possibility.

Tuesday - 07/24/2012, 05:32pm EDT

HUD, VA test revamped performance management system

HUD is one of five agencies piloting a performance management system, called GEAR. The new approach aims to eliminate a disconnect between organizational goals and employee performance.

Tuesday - 07/24/2012, 05:34am EDT
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Report finds mixed progress on plain language

A new report details mixed progress on a law requiring agencies to write using plain language when dealing with the public. The Center for Plain Language awarded the Agriculture Department an "A" for its efforts, the highest score of 12 large agencies and departments it surveyed. The Veterans Affairs Department, however, earned an "F" for its mostly incomplete progress.

Friday - 07/20/2012, 09:28pm EDT
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Obama memo bolsters protections for vets reentering workforce

President Barack Obama issued a memorandum Thursday calling on agencies to comply with protections laid out in The Uniformed Services Employment and Reemployment Rights Act of 1994 when hiring returning veterans.

Friday - 07/20/2012, 11:17am EDT

Lawmakers tell VA 'no more hollow promises' to fix the claims backlog

The Department of Veterans Affairs has made strides toward increasing the number of disability claims it can process every year. But new claims from veterans are growing even faster than ever. House legislators are frustrated by the VA's lack of progress over the years.

Thursday - 07/19/2012, 05:54am EDT
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VA redoubles effort to combat homelessness

The Veterans Affairs Department is giving $100 million in grants to help community organizations support at-risk veterans so they have stable housing. Leaders of the homeless veteran initiative at the VA and Department of Housing and Urban Development are among the Service to America Medal finalists for their work on the problem.

Tuesday - 07/17/2012, 04:22pm EDT
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2012 Causey Awards Winner - Mary Santiago

Mary Santiago, director of VA's Veteran Employment Services Office, was nominated for her work with the VA for Vets program.

Monday - 07/16/2012, 05:02am EDT
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VA tackles claims backlog with new priority approach

The agency will organize incoming claims into one of three categories based on the difficulty in solving them as part of an effort to increase efficiency. The Veterans Benefits Administration also is seeking other ways to reduce the number of backlogged cases such as new training for employees, said VA's Allison Hickey, the undersecretary for benefits.

Wednesday - 07/11/2012, 06:12pm EDT

5 vet aid groups to benefit from new fundraising

Three families are starting an effort to raise $30 million for troops and veterans through a new organization called Veteran Support Fund. It will be a portal for distributing money to five groups already working to help America's military community.

Thursday - 07/05/2012, 03:12am EDT
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