Measure provides $250 million to improve health care for veterans in rural areas
Congresswoman Mazie K. Hirono (D-Hawaii) today voted in favor of bipartisan legislation that reaffirms the Congresswoman's support for America's veterans. The Military Construction-Veterans Affairs Appropriations Act for FY 2012 (H.R. 2055) will provide $129.7 billion for medical services, disability payments, pensions, survivors' benefits, and education benefits to veterans. H.R. 2055 passed the U.S. House by a vote of 411 yeas to 5 nays.
"I represent more than 50,000 veterans who live in the rural areas of our island state. Hawaii's veterans have shared with me their difficulties in getting medical care, especially when treatment requires travel to Honolulu from the neighbor islands. This bill will provide $250 million to improve health care access for veterans in rural communities across the country," said Congresswoman Hirono.
Continuing the stable funding established by the Democratic Congress in 2009, this bill funds medical services for our veterans for the next two fiscal years. This ensures that the VA health system serving four million veterans will have advance funding through FY2013.
The measure also provides $11.5 billion for military construction across the country, a four percent increase over current levels. Military bases in Congresswoman Hirono's district include Marine Corps Base Hawaii (Kaneohe), Pacific Missile Range Facility (Kauai), Schofield Barracks (Wahiawa), and Wheeler Army Airfield (Wahiawa).
H.R. 2055 now goes before the U.S. Senate for consideration.