April 9, 2008
Washington, DC— Nevada Senator Harry Reid sent a letter to the Department of Veteran Affairs addressing Nevada’s need for a remote benefits delivery pilot program in Nevada, which would ensure that veterans in rural or remote parts of Nevada receive benefits as quickly, conveniently, and efficiently as those near the department’s regional office in Reno.
The full text of the letter is below:
April 8, 2008
The Honorable James B. Peake, MD
Dear Secretary Peake:
I noted with interest a recent Veterans Administration press release describing the remote benefits delivery pilot program established in Montana. I believe that the program is well suited to address the unique needs of the Nevada veteran population.
As you are no doubt aware, Nevada is home to the fastest growing population of veterans in the United States. According to the Veterans Administration, over 240,000 veterans call Nevada home. Many of these veterans live in remote areas of the state, far from the Regional Office in Reno. As a result, services of the Regional Office are generally unavailable to these veterans in rural areas, a problem that would be solved by the videoconferencing program in place in Montana. I am confident that Nevada veterans organizations and the Nevada Office of Veterans Services will be able to provide local access to videoconferencing facilities in order to bring this valuable service to Nevada’s rural veterans.
I ask that you consider expanding the remote benefits delivery pilot program to Nevada, and if this is not feasible, please recognize the unique and pressing need for such a service, so that Nevada is given the appropriate priority for the permanent establishment of this program.
I welcome your thoughts on the matter and look forward to your response. Please feel free to contact Bob Herbert of my staff at (202) 228-4578 if you have any questions about this request.
Thank you for your consideration of this request.