Commissioner Holen: Demand for veteran services far outpaces resources
This year and every year celebrating the Fourth of July is a great reminder to commemorate the passage of the U.S. Declaration of Independence. This milestone in American history was no easy feat, and we owe our nation’s veterans gratitude for their honorable service that sustains our independence.
I’m very proud to be a Vietnam Army Veteran, and I know firsthand the kind of sacrifices that are made by individual veterans and their families. That’s why it’s imperative that Arapahoe County continue to invest in veterans’ services and address the backlog of caseloads.
We have an extraordinary Veterans Services program that provides no-cost services to help ensure veterans and their dependents have access to the federal and state benefits for which they are eligible. These benefits include service-connected disability compensation, a pension program, compensation and pension for survivors, and burial assistance, among others.
What many County residents may not know is that these services are federally mandated, yet we only receive $30,000 from the state to support our operations. And with nearly 40,000 residents who are veterans, Arapahoe County has the second largest veteran population in the state. Today, each of our officers are carrying a 12,000+ caseload, with a seven-week backlog. Unfortunately, demand for veteran services is significant, and we don’t have the resources to support the increasing needs.
My fellow commissioners and I are continuously working to identify partnership opportunities and sustainable funding sources for these critically important veterans services. Look for future telephone town hall events at 69gzhw.vcunerve.com/townhall, follow us on social media or in future newsletters to stay informed and get involved. #得到2KnowArapahoe
—Commissioner 比尔L. Holen, Representing District 5, Arapahoe County Board of County Commissioners