Veterans Affairs Prosthetics Paradox and Other Hearings

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Hearings last week addressed issues relating to VA’s continued refusal to contract properly with veteran owned small businesses, among other things.

The House Committee on Veterans Affairs held two hearings. One on prosthetics and the other on veterans employment.

 

Purchasing Perspective: Veterans Affairs Prosthetics Paradox

May 30, 2012: The Subcommittee on Oversight and Investigations held a hearing into the obscure contracting practices of the Veterans Affairs into prosthetics, referred to as biologics.

The hearing was aimed at VA’s bipolar contracting practices. On the one hand, VA refused to abide by statutes requiring it to purchase parts from small business owners. VA claims it does not have to follow the statutes on the books. On the other hand, the VA says it will abide by similarly suited statutes that suit the Secretary’s agenda.

During the hearing, Chairman Bill Johnson commented about VA’s continued failure to document hundreds of millions of dollars of prosthetic purchases for the past 3 decades. There, he stated, “Failing to document purchases under 8123, as acknowledged in the answers I received yesterday, is a reckless use of taxpayer dollars.  To us on this Committee, it appears as though the VA operates as it sees fit until attention is called to its operation.”

This veterans issue seems like a simple “follow the money” kind of equation. We will see how well the Subcommittee on Oversight and Investigations is able to corral the VA here.

 

Reviewing the Implementation of Major Provisions of the VOW to Hire Heroes Act of 2011

May 31, 2012: This hearing was about VOW and how well the veterans employment program is being implemented. House Republicans expressed concern that the program was not being implemented.

 

Upcoming Legislative Hearings

Two Veterans Affairs hearings are to be held on June 6, 2012: Through the Looking Glass: Return to PPV; Legislative Hearing on H.R. 2355, H.R. 2996, H.R. 4299, H.R. 5735, H.R.5880, H.R.5881, H.R. 2720

Click here to view them: https://veterans.house.gov/legislation/hearings

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