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Disabled veterans bill resubmitted

WASHINGTON — A bill that would allow disabled veterans to qualify for more government housing aid was resubmitted Tuesday in Congress.

The bill would allow former servicemen not to count “aid and attendance” benefits as income when they apply for housing assistance. The benefit is a special pension for low-income retirees who require assisted living care.

Veterans can receive up to $8,191 in aid and attendance benefits annually. Rep. Joe Heck, R-Nev., the bill sponsor, said the money “isn’t disposal income,” but is earmarked for medical care and shouldn’t count against recipients when they apply for housing.

Heck said exempting aid and attendance benefits “could be the difference between a veteran staying in a home or apartment and being forced to live on the streets.”

The bill, co-sponsored by Rep. Jim Renacci, R-Ohio, passed the House last year but failed in the Senate.

Contact Stephens Washington Bureau Chief Steve Tetreault at stetreault@stephensmedia.com or 202-783-1760. Follow him on Twitter @STetreaultDC.

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