U.S. Congresswoman Herrera Beutler | E-Newsletter
District Update | March 31, 2015
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U.S. Congresswoman Herrera Beutler
VA expands eligibility for "Veterans Choice Program"

The VA has just announced that it will expand the Veterans Choice Program. Under this change, veterans who live over 40 miles driving distance from a VA health care facility can qualify to receive care from an outside provider. The VA says changes are expected “in the coming weeks.” Click here for more info.

A lifeline for rural communities
It’s with great relief that the U.S. House of Representatives voted last Thursday to pass a two year extension to the Secure Rural Schools program. I fought hard to make sure that Congress made this a priority in order to provide relief to residents in Skamania, Cowlitz and Lewis Counties.

However, a two year solution is like throwing a life preserver to our rural counties: it is absolutely necessary to keep them afloat, but at some point very soon we need to get them back on solid footing with a return to responsible forest management. I’ll continue to work for a long-term solution for rural Southwest Washington communities that have had their livelihoods put on hold by failed forest policies. Click here to read more about my efforts.
Last week in DC:
IRS Accountability, FBI anti-trafficking efforts

 

 On Thursday, I spoke with the FBI director about the need to combat the demand side of sex trafficking and protect victims. Click here to watch the video.
 Last week I had the opportunity to press the IRS commissioner about his plans to use the Inspector General’s recommendations to improve service to American taxpayers. Also, our committee demanded the agency provide its plans to focus on priorities that serve the taxpayers, rather than waste, unnecessary bonuses, and political targeting after we cut more than $340 million from its 2015 budget. We also pressed the IRS to cease from singling out small businesses and citizens without justification.
Protecting homes from being washed away

A year ago, Wahkiakum County officials contacted my office about the rapid erosion on Puget Island—an imminent threat to many homes. We got to work with the Army Corps, the county and residents to find a solution. I’m pleased to report the Army Corps just announced they will be entering into a Memorandum of Agreement with the county that will start the process towards a long-term permit for placement of sand at the erosion sites on Puget Island—a huge relief to many residents!


TOP NEWS
CHRONICLE: Secure Rural Schools Bill Clears U.S. House, Moves to Senate
READ MORE HERE

REFLECTOR: Herrera Beutler announces Congressional Art Competition
READ MORE HERE

LONGVIEW DAILY NEWS: Cowlitz tribal casino plans move forward, but myriad hurdles abound
READ MORE HERE

WAHKIAKUM EAGLE: Community gathers to welcome Oscar B.
READ MORE HERE
RESIDENT SPOTLIGHT
Lyle veteran sought assistance for long trip to VA
Greg Mathews, a veteran living in Lyle, regularly drove to American Lake VA for a pain management program. The VA informed him that they were no longer going to reimburse him for his travel and he would be required to visit Portland instead. Without reimbursements, Mr. Mathews was not be able to afford the regular trip to continue his program and contacted my office for help.

My staff and I worked with the VA to change the classification of care so Mr. Mathews could continue attending his program and receive reimbursements for his travel.
Washington, DC Office
1130 Longworth HOB
Washington, DC 20515
Phone: (202) 225-3536
Fax: (202) 225-3478
Vancouver Office
O.O. Howard House (Officers' Row)
750 Anderson Street, Suite B
Vancouver, WA 98661
Phone: (360) 695-6292
Fax: (360) 695-6197
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