VA Awarded Millions in Bonuses Last Year, Even at ‘Worst’ Office in the Country

Cortney O'Brien
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Posted: Nov 11, 2015 12:00 PM
VA Awarded Millions in Bonuses Last Year, Even at ‘Worst’ Office in the Country

I apologize in advance for this unfortunate news on Veterans Day. The scandalized Veterans Affairs agency, which left former service members in the hands of degenerate care, has awarded $142 million in bonuses to employees serving in corrupt clinics throughout the country.

Perhaps most upsetting to Americans will be the monetary gifts awarded to employees at the Philadelphia benefits office, dubbed the “worst” in the nation by a VA investigator in April.

Among the recipients were claims processors in a Philadelphia benefits office that investigators dubbed the worst in the country last year. They received $300 to $900 each. Managers in Tomah, Wis., got $1,000 to $4,000, even though they oversaw the over-prescription of opiates to veterans – one of whom died.

Or how about the facilities in Denver and Minnesota, where executives overseeing costly, wasteful projects and mismanaged offices were granted thousands of dollars in bonuses?

The VA also rewarded executives who managed construction of a facility in Denver, a disastrous project years overdue and more than $1 billion over budget. They took home $4,000 to $8,000 each. And in St. Cloud, Minn., where an internal investigation report last year outlined mismanagement that led to mass resignations of health care providers, the chief of staff cited by investigators received a performance bonus of almost $4,000.

Because of these obvious failures, vets were none too happy when Hillary Clinton dismissed the VA scandal as not as widespread as has been reported. Shortly after that gaffe, she announced her plan to reform the VA, starting with its computer system.

“More than 35,000 combat veterans have been waiting as long as seven months to get health care because of a computer glitch,” she said as the crowd groaned. “We need to lead the VA system to the 21st century when it comes to technology.”

If you think a new VA Secretary would solve the problem, think again. Despite the resignation of Eric Shinseki, long wait times are still a reality and little to no disciplinary action has occurred under new Secretary Robert McDonald. Some veterans have even lost their VA benefits because they were wrongly declared dead. McDonald’s explanation for the persisting problems: “It takes time” to fix a broken system

Happy Veterans Day. Sincerely, the federal government.