House chairman calls delayed payment to veterans ‘an insult’

By Michael O’Brien – 11/11/09 02:40 PM ET

Delays in disability benefit payments are “an insult” to military veterans, the chairman of the House Veterans Affairs Committee said Wednesday. Committee Chairman Bob Filner (D-Calif.) urged the federal government to cut through red tape in deploying benefits.  “People have died before they’ve gotten their benefits or they’ve lost their houses because they didn’t have a check coming in,” Filner said during an interview on Federal News Radio. “What I would like to do is just cut through all [the] red tape.”  The chairman said that the government’s slowness to respond to claims from disabled veterans is “an insult.”  Filner called on the Department of Veterans Affairs to process claims as quickly as the IRS handles tax returns, guaranteeing a three-week turnaround in benefits payments.  “Why don’t we do the same thing with our veterans?” Filner asked. “We send out a check as soon as we get their application, and audit it whenever we … as much time as we have to take. But at least recognize that the soldiers that deserve compensation, we ought to get it to them quickly.”


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