H.R. 3562, a bill to amend title 38, United States Code, to authorize the Secretary of Veterans Affairs to furnish assistance for adaptations of residences of veterans in rehabilitation programs under chapter 31 of such title, and for other purposes
As ordered reported by the House Committee on Veterans’ Affairs
on October 12, 2017
Through the Vocational Rehabilitation and Employment program, the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) provides assistance to veterans whose disabilities prevent them from working. That assistance can include the cost of modifying veterans’ homes to enable them to live independently. The cost of those benefits are paid from mandatory appropriations.
H.R. 3562 would cap payments for housing modifications at $79,874 per beneficiary in 2018; that amount would be adjusted annually for inflation. However, the bill would allow VA to waive the cap if higher amounts are necessary. The bill also would transfer the management of those benefits to a related program that pays for housing adaptions for severely disabled veterans.
On the basis of information from VA regarding how it would implement the bill, CBO expects that very few veterans would be affected. Over the last four years, an average of eight veterans a year have received housing adaptations under the vocational rehabilitation program in amounts that would exceed the limit in H.R 3562. In addition, the department indicates that it would likely waive enforcement of the cap in most cases.