Commissioner Rebeca Sosa sponsors resolution urging the Federal Government to provide additional funding for disabled veterans
Miami-Dade County Commissioner Rebeca Sosa sponsored a resolution which was adopted by the Board of County Commissioners during a September 2012 meeting, urging the Federal Government to provide additional programs and funding for disabled veterans. The resolution calls for the passage of H.R. 6111, Vulnerable Veterans Housing Reform Act of 2012, which allows certain disabled veterans to qualify for additional federal housing benefits.
The U.S. Department of Veteran Affairs (VA) estimates that there were over 60,000 homeless veterans living in the United States in 2011, many with disabilities. According to the VA, veterans eligible for the aid and attendance benefit are defined as those requiring the aid of another person in order to perform his or her activities of daily living, such as bathing, feeding, dressing, using the restroom, adjusting prosthetic devices, or protecting themselves from the hazards of their daily environment.
In order to receive aid and attendance benefits, severely disabled veterans must first establish their eligibility for a low income pension, which requires an adjusted gross annual income of less than $12,256 for a single veteran with no dependents. Once eligibility is determined, that same veteran can receive $8,191 in aid and attendance benefits annually to supplement the cost of their medical care. However, the Congressional Research Service estimates that the median annual cost for a licensed home health aide is $18,179. The cost of an assisted living facility is $39,600, and the median cost of a room in a nursing home is between $73,000 and $81,000 annually.
"We will forever be indebted to those heroic men and women who were wounded while serving our country," said Commissioner Sosa. "We must ensure that our disabled veterans returning home from battle are provided with every opportunity for medical care, housing and any other type of assistance."
For more information on this resolution, please contact Commissioner Sosa's office at 305-267-6377.