Washington, D.C. (KINY) – To ensure continuous support for the nation’s veterans, caregivers, and their families, Senators Jon Tester (D-Mont.) and Lisa Murkowski (R-Alaska) are introducing bipartisan legislation to extend essential Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) programs and authorities currently set to expire May 11th.
The Senators’ Critical Health Access Resource and Grant Extensions (CHARGE) Act of 2023 would protect measures currently being implemented by VA to curb veteran homelessness, support caregivers, and assist State Veterans Homes dealing with staffing shortages.\
“These resources have been a critical lifeline for so many Montana veterans, and we simply can’t let them fall to the wayside,” said Senate Veterans’ Affairs Committee Chairman Tester. “That’s why I’m joining Senator Murkowski to protect these services on behalf of veterans and their families relying on steady access to quality care and housing. This bill honors the promises made to our men and women who served, and I’ll keep pushing to get it across the finish line as quickly as possible.”
“I’m proud to be working on this effort to improve services to help homeless and aging veterans. I stand united with my colleagues in ensuring that those who served to protect us have the support they deserve and have earned. The lessons of the pandemic are not forgotten—we cannot forget about our veterans by allowing this authority expire,” said Senator Murkowski. “This bipartisan effort will make a positive impact for Alaskans and the great organizations who dedicate their time and effort to serving veterans.”
Among its many priorities, the CHARGE Act specifically:
Increases the maximum reimbursement amount for VA grant recipient organizations providing temporary and transitional housing for homeless veterans. This is especially essential for organizations in rural areas with limited access to alternative funding sources;
Allows VA to continue providing gap services and support to homeless veterans when other supportive programs are not available—including shelter, transportation, landlord incentives for permanent housing, and more;
Extends authority to allow veterans and caregivers in the VA’s Program of Comprehensive Assistance for Family Caregivers to elect for virtual home visits through September 30, 2023 or until VA finalizes their new regulations for the program;
Extends the State Veterans Homes’ occupancy rate requirement waiver until September 30, 2024 so that state homes are not financially penalized for staffing shortages; and
Makes permanent an authority that allows VA to share personal protective equipment, vaccines, medical supplies, and other resources with State Veterans Homes.
The Senators’ efforts received strong backing from Veterans Service Organizations (VSOs) and stakeholders nationwide.
Juneau, Alaska (KINY) - On Sunday one of the hardest athletic events around the world will begin on the shores of Auke Lake in Juneau with a cannon blast that will signify the first official full IRONMAN race in Alaska.
Juneau, Alaska (KINY) - The Juneau-Douglas High School: Yadaa.at Kalé and Thunder Mountain High School basketball teams, coaches, cheerleaders and officials will wear purple during their games tonight and Saturday night at the JDHS gym to raise awareness for mental health, suicide prevention and positive messaging for young adults and community members.
Juneau, Alaska (KINY) - It takes something special to supplement a high caliber activity without taking away from that activity and that challenge has been met every basketball season by the pep bands of Thunder Mountain High School and Juneau-Douglas High School: Yadaa.at Kalé.
Juneau, Alaska (KINY) - The Juneau-Douglas High School Yadaa.at Kalé Crimson Bears hockey team fell by the score of 4-2 to the Palmer Moose on Monday night at Treadwell Arena in a spirited and physical Railbelt Conference battle around the rink.
The Juneau School District is allowing their high school basketball and hockey players to play unmasked if certain testing requirements are met. Juneau School District Superintendent Bridget Weiss noted that the change only applies to players who are actively participating in one of the two sports and that coaches and athletes seated on the bench still have to wear face coverings.
Juneau, Alaska (KINY) - Angoon’s Betty Samato likes to walk. A lot. She has traveled on foot more than 7,000 miles in just over a year and much more since the coronavirus pandemic first began spreading through her home community.
Anchorage, Alaska (KINY) - In the final leg of his final race as a high school senior, in the last event of the 2021 State Swimming & Diving Championship at Bartlett High School, Juneau-Douglas Yadaa.at Kalé senior Tytan Frawley touched the pool wall to clinch the state championship for the Crimson Bears boys' 400 yard relay. A few lanes down, Kodiak’s Jackson Krug also stretched to the finish with the identical time.
Anchorage, Alaska (KINY) - Seward senior Lydia Jacoby and Thunder Mountain High School sophomore Patrick Foy were named the outstanding female and male swimmers at Saturday’s 2021 State Swimming & Diving Championship at Bartlett High School.