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Military Construction and Veterans Affairs, and Related Agencies Appropriations Act, 2014

Floor Speech

Location: Washington, DC


Mrs. ROBY. Mr. Chairman, I would like to rise in support of the gentleman's amendment and I just want to add--and you've heard the statistics--that the number of backlogged cases--each case represents a veteran who may have earned a benefit but is currently being denied because of bureaucratic delay.

In the last 4 years, the number of VA claims pending for longer than a year has grown by 2,000 percent.

An award of a bonus should be a special recognition of success and accomplishment, not a right or a routine payment.

Mr. Chairman, I don't consider a backlog of over 1.2 million cases to be cause for celebration or reward. I consider it a catastrophe that must be fixed. Restricting the ability to award bonuses until that backlog is cleared is a commonsense good-government policy. I'm pleased to support my colleague's amendment. It is a strong step in that direction.


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