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Rep. Zeldin Votes for VA Accountability

July 29, 2015
Press Release

Washington, DC –Congressman Lee Zeldin (R, C- NY 1), member of the House Veterans Affairs Committee, the Subcommittee on Disability Assistance and Memorial Affairs and the Subcommittee on Economic Opportunity, voted for The VA Accountability Act of 2015 (H.R. 1994), legislation that he cosponsors, which passed the House of Representatives today by a vote of 256 to 170.

The VA Accountability Act makes commonsense reforms to the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA). The legislation would provide the Secretary of the Department of Veterans Affairs with the authority to remove a VA employee based on misconduct. Among other aspects of the bill, the legislation also establishes an 18 month probationary period for new employees and further protects whistleblowers, ensuring those who come forward about wrongdoings will be protected.

Congressman Zeldin said, “One of my top priorities in Congress is fighting for our veterans who fought for us, which is why I was proud to cosponsor and support the VA Accountability Act. I believe that 99% of VA employees genuinely care about the work they do and want to help veterans. This bill would ensure that the other 1% of those who are not acting in the best interest of veterans are held accountable.”

It was just recently reported that only 3 employees involved in the Phoenix VA scandal, which could have led to the deaths of up to 40 veterans, were held accountable for their role in the manipulation of wait times and secret wait lists. At the Denver VA hospital construction site, the project is now several hundred million dollars over budget, and no employees have been held accountable.

“This legislation makes important reforms to the VA system, which will provide the necessary resources and flexibility the VA system administration needs to hold poor performing employees accountable,” continued Congressman Zeldin. “Reforming our VA system is essential to protecting our veterans, and improving their quality of life and care."

Congressman Zeldin recently wrote an op-ed expressing his full support of this bill. You can read it here.