Sen. Amy Klobuchar stopped by the Minneapolis Veterans Home campus Sunday to call for federal funding for veterans’ homes hit hard by the COVID-19 pandemic.
That funding is part of the American Rescue Plan Act, which includes $80 million in federal funding that will go towards helping homes buy PPE, rollout vaccines and pay overtime costs to staff during the pandemic.
That money, and $32 million in state funding, will help the VA build three new veterans' homes in Montevideo, Bemidji and Preston, Minnesota.
The commissioner of the Minnesota Department of Veteran Affairs says it’s important to build these homes in communities where vets can be close to their families.
"We’re trying to do with both our homes and cemeteries, get them within a two-hour timeframe from family," said Commissioner Larry Herke. "We’re finding that contact is important."
The commissioner says they expect to start building the three new homes this fall.