BEATRICE – Nebraska Governor Pete Ricketts wants to merge some veterans services that currently are provided by two agencies……the Department of Veterans Affairs and Health and Human Services.
:16 “get answers”
Senator John Murante, the Chairman of the Legislature’s Government, Veterans and Military Affairs Committee, plans to sponsor legislation that if passed, would accomplish the merger.
:05 “step forward”
Last session, efforts were made to create a Commission on Military and Veterans Affairs, focused on retaining Offutt Air Force Base in Nebraska…..and made efforts aimed at keeping retiring veterans in Nebraska.
Department of Veterans Affairs Director John Hilgert says the merger of the Veterans Home Division and the Nebraska Department of Veterans Affairs is “a natural next step”.
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Hilgert says the merger also carries the prospect of saving state money.
:21 “in general funds”
Several representatives of veterans’ organizations attended a news conference Monday, to announce the merger legislation. Doug Whitaker, Department Commander of the Nebraska Veterans of Foreign Wars, said the initiative could improve delivery of veterans’ services at a time when state revenues are projected to be lower.
Murante plans to formally introduce legislation to facilitate the merger following Governor Ricketts’ State of the State address, to be given at 10 a.m., Thursday.