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HOMELESS VETERANS COMMITTEE REPORT
The Resolutions

BY SANDY MILLER, CHAIR
HTF-1-07 Homeless Veterans as a “Special Needs Population”: Resolved, That: Vietnam Veterans of America urges the Presidential Interagency Council on Homelessness to recognize homeless veterans as a Special Needs Population. Further, we urge Congress to require all entities and agencies, including nonprofit or governmental, that receive or use federal program funding dollars to report statistics on the number of veterans they serve, their residential status, and the services needed.

VVA strongly urges its members, at the chapter and state council level, to work with their state and federal legislators to enhance services to homeless veterans and encourage them to recognize these veterans as a Special Needs Population. Additionally, VVA supports legislation that would incorporate a Fair Share approach for the federal funding of all homeless programs and services to target homeless veterans.

The Homeless Veterans Committee continues to argue that homeless veterans are indeed a Special Needs Population with special and unique experiences and mental health and medical needs that the VA is charged with addressing.

HTF-4-07 Homeless Veteran HUD Transitional and Supportive Services Only Funding: Resolved, That: VVA urges HUD to communicate the importance of transitional residential and supportive-service-only programs in their approach to placing the homeless in permanent housing. This approach will discourage local continuums from eliminating these entities as viable components to a successful transition to permanent housing.

Additionally, that HUD reiterates the sense of Congress in its proposal process and seeks set-aside HUD funding in its McKinney-Vento grant cycle for transitional housing, supportive-service-only, and supportive-service dollars within the Shelter Plus Care grant programs. The committee continues to work toward the goal of transitional and supportive-services-only funding for veterans in programs such as Shelter Plus Care.

HTF-5-07 Homeless Veteran HUD/VA Supportive Housing Funding: Resolved, That: VVA urges HUD to comply with Section 710 of PL 109-461 by requesting the allocation of funds at the level necessary to provide for the total number of rental assistance vouchers for homeless veterans.

The committee applauds the Senate Appropriations Committee for funding the HUD VASH voucher program for homeless veterans at $75 million. This committee has championed HUD VASH funding as a major legislative issue for years. Through hard work and persistence, these vouchers are now a reality.

HTF-6-07 VA Homeless Grant and Per Diem Funding: Resolved, That: VVA urges the Department of Veterans Affairs, Homeless Grant and Per Diem Program to provide payment for services rather than the reimbursement for services it presently provides. Additionally, VVA supports and seeks legislation to establish Supportive Services Assistance Grants for VA Homeless Grant and Per Diem Service Center Grant Awardees.

The Homeless Veterans Committee continues to encourage the VA Homeless Grant and Per Diem Program offices to address the issue of payment for services. We continue to work in the direction of establishing Supportive Services Assistance Grants for the non-profit Service Center Grant awardees.

I would like to remind those interested in nominating someone for the Bobby J Award to forward the nomination letter to me through the VVA National Office.

Committee members: Sandy Miller, Chair; Marsha Four, Vice Chair; Tom Berger, Pat Bessigano, Cheryl Beversdorf, Ed Chow, Terry Hubert, John Neuman; Special Advisers: Kathleen Aylward-Barnes, Melvin Colston, Diane Nicholson, Suzanne Weber; Staff Liaison: Sharon Hodge.

 

 

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