VA announces new plan to fix GI Bill payment problems
WASHINGTON – At a congressional hearing earlier this month, lawmakers pleaded with Department of Veterans Affairs officials to give them a date when a severe technology problem that caused payment delays and incorrect payments to thousands of student veterans would be fixed.
On Wednesday, they gave one: Dec. 1, 2019.
The VA is scrapping its current efforts to fix the IT system and plans to contract another company to do the work. A new system will be in place by the spring 2020 semester, the agency said in a news release. The decision means further delay in implementing part of the “Forever” GI Bill – a major extension of veterans’ education benefits that Congress passed in 2017.
Though it’s another in a series of implementation setbacks, veterans groups and lawmakers were mostly pleased with the decision Wednesday. They were previously concerned that an ongoing effort to fix the IT problem could lead to more payment delays and disruption for student veterans in the near term.
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