The House of Representatives today passed the fiscal year 2014 Military Construction and Veterans Affairs Appropriations bill. It provides $73.3 billion in funding for military infrastructure as well as veterans' benefits and programs.
Congressman Alan Nunnelee (R-Miss), a member of the Military Construction-Veterans Affairs Subcommittee, made the following statement after passage of H.R. 2216:
"The men and women of our armed forces have more than held up their end of the bargain, this bill upholds ours. We do not give our veterans anything; they have earned every penny of their benefits defending our freedom," Nunnelee said.
The legislation includes funding to deal with the disability claims processing backlog - $155 million for a paperless claims process system and $136 million for the digital scanning of health records. Additionally, strict reporting requirements have been included to track the performance of each regional office that processes disability claims.
"The disability claims backlog is unacceptable and it is long past time to end it. Our veterans deserve better," Nunnelee said.
H.R. 2216 also requires the use of E-Verify for federal contractors, prevents funding for ACORN, and stops the Obama Administration from spending money to move terrorists detained at Guantanamo into the United States.