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1.Care and Benefits for Veterans Strengthened by $153 Billion VA Budget. Continuing the transformation of the Department of Veterans Affairs into a 21st century organization, the President has proposed a $152.7 billion budget, a 10.2 percent increase over Fiscal Year 2013, that will support VA’s goals to expand access to health care and other benefits, eliminate the disability claims backlog, and end homelessness among Veterans. The budget includes $66.5 billion in discretionary spending, largely for healthcare, and $86.1 billion for mandatory programs – mostly disability compensation and pensions for Veterans.
2.Hagel: Budget Request Balances Many Needs. President Barack Obama’s fiscal year 2014 budget request for the Defense Department balances competing operational and strategic needs while ensuring the maximization of taxpayer dollars and addressing internal imbalances, Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel said today. In a joint news conference at the Pentagon with the chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, the secretary said the budget request takes …
3.South Korea raises alert level in anticipation of North Korea launch. South Korea has raised its military alert level and stepped up monitoring of North Korea, local news reports said Wednesday, amid indications that the Pyongyang regime could be preparing for a missile test.
4.Army budgets fall slightly, as does end strength. The Army would cut about 20,000 active-duty soldiers next year as it continues reducing toward a planned 2017 end strength of 490,000 troops, according to budget plans announced Wednesday at the Pentagon.
5.State House panel OKs Baker’s veterans bill. Wilkes Barre Times-Leader Acceptable training organizations include The American Legion, Veteran of Foreign Wars organizations and the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs, said Diane McNaughton, director of the Senate Committee on Veterans Affairs and Emergency Preparedness …
6. Boehner presses for specifics on VA backlog. Hyperlink to Story Seattle Post-Intelligencer (AP): U.S House Speaker John Boehner said Tuesday that he wants a coherent plan and more specifics from the head of the Department of Veterans Affairs on what is being done to reduce the growing backlog of veterans’ disability claims.
7. UC Expert Will Help Lead Study Comparing PTSD Treatments. Hyperlink to Story HealthCanal.com: A University of Cincinnati expert on posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) will play a leading role in a 17-site, $9 million study that will compare the two leading evidence-based treatments for PTSD.
8. Huge demand for veterans’ aid, but limited resources. Hyperlink to Story Green Bay Press-Gazette: Paying bills and having enough money left to provide for his children have been challenging for Appleton resident Phillip Burns since he returned home more than two years ago from his second tour of duty in Iraq.
9. More Arizona veterans report dealing with military sexual trauma. Hyperlink to Story Cronkite News: Luisa Valdez said she was 18 and new to the Army when knocks awoke her and four male service members pushed her back into her barracks room and onto the bed.
10.Care center puts vets and families under one roof. Hyperlink to Story Stars and Stripes: At a new VA mental health facility here, veterans go to the right, their families to the left — and their doctors meet in the middle.
Have You Heard?
A Valuable Guide to Long Term Care
Catharine’s story is a familiar one for anyone with aging parents. Her dad, an Air Force Veteran, and her mother, needed full time care. “It would have been easier if they had a game plan for aging.”