Press Releases

Washington, D.C. — U.S. Senator Marco Rubio (R-FL) reintroduced legislation to improve and protect a joint U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) and U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) program designed to help homeless veterans find permanent housing. Rubio first introduced this legislation in April 2018. 
 
The HUD-VASH program provides homeless veterans with a voucher to help them offset the cost of renting a home or apartment in the private market. Among other things, Rubio’s bill would help to protect the program from any potential future budget cuts by preventing the administration from using funds specifically designated for the program for anything other than helping to provide housing to homeless veterans.
 
“Our nation’s veterans have given so much to our country, and we must continue to provide them with the quality care they were promised and deserve,” Rubio said. “This legislation would protect and make much needed improvements to the HUD-VASH program to improve its ability to provide assistance to homeless veterans and their families.”
 
Specifically, the legislation would:
 
  • Prohibit the VA from moving HUD-VASH funds to a general purpose account.
  • Require the VA to hire one case manager for every 35 veterans. In some regions, case managers are assigned up to 70-100 veterans at once, making it nearly impossible to effectively manage them all.
  • Require the VA to expedite the hiring of new case managers. If a case manager position is vacant for 180 days or more, the VA will be required to contract out to a local service provider.
  • Require case managers to be located within a reasonable distance from the veterans they are assigned to help. Some case managers are located as far as two hours away from their assigned veterans.