Congressman Phil Hare (D-IL) today met with veterans at the VFW Hall in Rock Falls to discuss the selection of a location for a VA Community Based Outpatient Clinic in Whiteside County. Hare announced Tuesday the clinic would be located at 406 Ave. C in Sterling and open in August 2011.
"This VA outpatient clinic is now one step closer to becoming a reality," Hare said. "By the end of next summer, our veterans will be able to receive quality care closer to home."
The VA awarded a contract to Sterling Today, Inc for 10,000 square feet of clinic space in a building the company previously owned. The lease term is for ten years and this will be a VA staffed clinic. The clinic is expected to be full-service and have 20 full-time employees.
"First and foremost, this clinic will provide high quality care to our veterans," Hare said. "But it will also be an economic boon for the Whiteside County area. This includes a direct impact of approximately $1.5 million a year in salaries and an additional bump from those who will travel to the region and use local restaurants and shops."
Hare thanked local veterans for their support which he said was critical to getting the clinic approved. Many showed up to advocate for the project when Hare brought House Veterans' Affairs Committee Chairman Bob Filner (D-CA) to the Sauk Valley in September 2007.
"It was the veterans of this community who made the case for a clinic," Hare said. "I was just proud to be their voice in Washington DC."
Hare said he is looking forward to returning for the grand opening in August.