The Joint Committee on Finance (JCF) continues its work this week on the 2011-13 biennial budget, using Governor Scott Walker’s budget recommendations as a starting point.
Budget items relating to veterans issues are peppered throughout the process, which usually is spread across several grueling weeks.
Of concern to many within DAV has been the annual $100,000 Veterans Trust Fund grant to DAV-Wis. to help offset the high costs associated with providing medical appointment transportation services to Wisconsin veterans. There have been no proposals at any stage thus far that would impact this grant program, meaning it remains safe at its current funding level thus far. And, it appears highly unlikely that there will be any further proposals regarding this program from this point forward.
Other issues of concern are veterans homes issues and funding for various programs.
For those interested in reading the details, up this week Thursday in JCF are the following:
765 Overview of the Veterans Trust Fund
766 Assistance to Needy Veterans, Veterans Assistance Program, Personal Loan Program, Museum Funding, Payments to Veterans Organizations, and Transfers to the Veterans Trust Fund
767 Transfer State Approving Agency Functions
Last week, the following were considered. Important to DAV was the elimination of the bed tax that would have significantly raised rates at the Wisconsin Veterans Homes at King and Union Grove had it been implemented. The vote to eliminate the bed tax was a unanimous, bipartisan vote of JCF.
775 Veterans Home at Chippewa Falls
776 Licensed Bed Assessment
777 Restore One-Time Financing for King Master Lease Payments
778 Veterans Home Transfers to the Veterans Trust Fund
779 Transfer Geriatric Program Budget and Position Authority