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Rep. Joyce Beatty Wants VA Claims Processed Faster
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Ohio’s 3rd district congresswoman Joyce Beatty says her office is working aggressively with the Veterans Administration to help veterans receive overdue benefits.
By its own admission the VA’s compensation claims backlog is a decades old problem. Representative Beatty says the wait is significant in her district which lies entirely in Franklin County.
“We found out with our cases that 85 percent of them – it doesn’t matter what the number is – but to have 85 percent of those individuals with case waits of more than 125 days and then to look at the number that are over two years – almost 70 percent of those cases. So I knew that I needed to do something,” Beatty says.
Beatty says she’s met with the head of the VA and has also signed a letter of concern which carries the signatures of the rest of the Ohio congressional delegation.
The VA has promised, and Congresswoman Beatty has endorsed, the implementation of a new 60-day initiative.
“If you had a backlog of a year or more they were going to institute a plan within 60 days they would at least start processing your claim,” Beatty says.
Doctor Dennis Agin is a Vietnam Veteran who’s been fighting for benefits on behalf of other vets. He’s doubtful that the newly elected Beatty has enough political clout to bring about change quickly. He also does not place a lot of faith in the VA.
“The VA is totally inept and the people that they hire. And when they decide, ‘We’re not going to talk to you,’ and give you a reason that is totally wrong and you can’t do anything about it,” Agin says.
The VA predicts it will eliminate the backlog of claims by 2015.