Potential Veterans' Home in the Works
The House Community Development, Housing and Tribal Affairs voted unanimously today to approve a measure that would create a new Walla Walla Veterans’ Home as a branch of the Washington Soldiers’ Home.
Rep. Terry Nealey introduced House Bill 1782.
The proposed veterans' home would be a skilled nursing facility, providing long-term care for honorably discharged veterans, many of whom are disabled. It would also serve families of veterans and Gold Star parents whose children died while serving in the armed forces.
Nealey recently received word that the federal government has approved nearly $21.8 million for the home.
A companion measure, Senate Bill 5691, was introduced by Sen. Mike Hewitt and approved Tuesday by the Senate Governmental Operations Committee.
Both measures cleared their respective committees before the Friday, Feb. 22 deadline.
Last year, the state Legislature approved a capital budget that included a $14.4 million appropriation for its construction.
According to the U.S. Census Bureau, more than 5,600 veterans live in Walla Walla County. It’s estimated nearly 50,000 veterans live in southeast Washington.
The House bill now heads to the Rules Committee for further consideration.