Leiu VA Bill Passes House

WASHINGTON Today, the House Committee on Veterans’ Affairs unanimously passed two bills authored by Congressman Ted W. Lieu (D-Los Angeles): H.R. 3484, the “Los Angeles Homeless Veterans Leasing Act of 2016” and H.R. 4334, the “Fiscal Year 2016 Department of Veterans Affairs Seismic Safety and Construction Authorization Act.”

H.R. 3484 grants the Secretary of Veterans Affairs leasing authority to construct permanent supportive housing on the West Los Angeles VA Medical Center campus and H.R. 4334 provides $35 million for critical seismic retrofits for buildings on the campus.

On the favorable Committee markup of these important bills, Congressman Lieu issued the following statement:

“I thank Chairman Jeff Miller, Ranking Member Corrine Brown, and the members of the House Committee of Veterans’ Affairs for unanimously supporting these important pieces of legislation today.  They each address urgent needs for our local Veterans.  Los Angeles County has the highest number of homeless Veterans in the nation.  One immediate need is to build a proportionate number of permanent housing units for our homeless Veterans. H.R. 3484 will grant the VA the authority to begin implementing this key component of the West LA VA Master Plan.”

“H.R. 4334 would authorize an additional $35 million for seismic retrofits for buildings on the West LA VA campus.  This comes on top of the $35 million that Senator Dianne Feinstein and I helped to secure last year for the same purpose.”

“I want to acknowledge the leadership of VA Secretary McDonald and the tireless work of his team this past year in developing the Draft Master Plan which calls for 1,200 units of permanent supportive housing at the West LA VA.  The VA’s plan—which needs this legislation—is our down payment in restoring this property to its intended use as an Old Soldiers’ Home.”

“I also want to thank the leadership of Senator Feinstein, who has authored companion legislation in the U.S. Senate.  My expectation is that the Senate Committee on Veterans’ Affairs will take up our legislation soon.”

“And finally I want to recognize the contributions from vital local stakeholders, including Veterans, Veterans Service Organizations, the plaintiff partners, providers, and the community for their collaborative effort and unprecedented support this past year.  Without it, the Draft Master Plan and progress on legislation would not have been possible.”

“I am so pleased these bills have passed favorably. They will put us on the course of repaying the debt we owe our nation’s Veterans.”