The VA needs more money like a drowning man needs a drink of water.
The Senate democrats want to throw $20 BILLION extra dollars at an organization that has roughly $4.5 BILLION in carry over from the last 5 years. That will help how exactly? They already can’t fraud, corrupt, bonus or misuse the money fast enough so we will add an additional $2 BILLION per year for the next 10 years.
I do realize we are talking about Senate democrat, but really. Who possibly thinks that is a good idea? Show of hands. Anyone?
Didn’t think so.
Now, lets set down some basic figures then do some basic math.
Annual VA budget 68.3 BILLION in discretionary resources — 95.6 BILLION in mandatory funding or $163.9 BILLION 2015 presidential request numbers from the VA site. An increase of roughly $2 billion from last year
There are currently about 23 million people in the VA system. That means the per capita expense is roughly $7200 per person / per annum. The increase would be roughly equal to $87 per capita / per anum.
The $87 is fairly meaningless when you look at it that way. What is important is if you look at a VA alternative.
One such option is to Close the VA effective immediately. Sell the assets to private companies: hospitals, equipment etc. Then take the budget and use it to fund / subsidize insurance vouchers for the Vets to purchase their own private insurance coverage to be used in private healthcare systems.
At $7200 per year, that provides $600 per month in premiums per Veteran. It also allows for self determination of benefit levels required. It allows the vet to shop for services and pick the provider and time frame of their choice. There may need to be some scaling of premium voucher based on injury / age / … but the basics are there. The rest is just fiddly bits.
I realize my idea is not as simple as I have stated it. I realize that a federal agency has NEVER been closed, so the likelihood of it happening is approaching ZERO. But I see way more upside to my plan then I do with the socialized disaster that VA is.