NORFOLK, Va. (WAVY) - Thousands of Veterans Affairs employees were placed on furlough Tuesday due to the government shutdown.
WAVY.com spoke with the President of one of Hampton Roads' local American Legion Posts, Tony Moore. He said that despite the bad news, claims will continue to be processed for now. But things could slow down, if the shutdown lingers.
“It gives them a monetary thing, provides healthcare so they can go to the VA hospital,” said Moore, who leads Post 327. “A lot of the people depend on VA benefits.”
New to the list of groups caught in the crossfire of the budget debate are 7,000 employees of the Veterans Benefits Administration who were furloughed Tuesday. Phones won't be answered, and in many cases, the voluntary offices of veterans organizations who help file claims could be restricted.
Moore's American Legion Post will remain open and continue processing claims.
“We process between 80 and 100 a year,” said Moore.
He said if the shutdown lasts too long they could definitely experience a backlog, at least in the claims process. A spokesperson for Veterans Affairs said Tuesday It remains unclear whether the they'll be sending out compensation checks on Nov. 1 to about 3.8 million veterans who rely on them.
And as the President turns his attention to the looming debt ceiling, he said at a White House briefing Tuesday that the American people shouldn’t be caught in between two political parties.
“Members of Congress and the House of Republicans in particular don't get to demand ransom in exchange for doing their jobs," said President Barack Obama.
The North Carolina Department of Transportation said work to secure the Bonner Bridge could take anywhere from a week to 90 days.
WAVY News 10's Andy Fox sat down with outgoing Virginia Governor Bob McDonnell for a one-on-one interview.
A van crashed into a house in Virginia Beach Wednesday, and fire officials said an elderly driver was behind the wheel.