Veterans going to school under the G.I. bill are getting the short end of the stick after the Department of Veterans Affairs announced that it will not be making up for short payments caused by a computer error.
The problem stems from the Forever GI Bill, which was signed into law in 2017, and ostensibly poor computer programming on the part of the V.A. which didn’t calculate the new way disbursements are structured under the bill.
How many veterans receive GI Bill assistance for college?
Hundreds of thousands of veterans received short payments for their schooling and housing allowance, which are certified by designated staff at each university. The VA claims fixing past payments would create a huge backlog for faculty and staff at the Department of Veterans Affairs. They claim doing so will delay future payments.
So veterans relying on the funds that are legally owed to them are expected to just write that money off as the department plans to give themselves a mulligan and start fresh in 2019.
“They are essentially going to ignore the law and say that that change only goes forward from Dec. 2019,” a committee aide told NBC.
The individual in charge of the education services, Robert Worley, was simply “reassigned” after pressure was laid on the VA over the issue.
What does the Dept. of Defense have to say about the underpayments to veterans?
“Each and every Veteran on the post-9/11 GI Bill will be made 100 percent whole — retroactively if need be — for their housing benefits for this academic year based on the current uncapped DoD rates,” VA spokesman Curtis Cashour said, “and, beginning in spring 2020, we’ll be in a position to provide Veterans the new rates where applicable to meet the law known as the Forever GI Bill.”
“Current” being the operative word.
The idea that non-essential federal employees are back-paid whenever the government shuts down over the federal budget makes this tactic by the VA utterly infuriating. Our veterans should be taken care of first!