News Releases

  • Print

September 20, 2007 -

Barrasso to VA: Fill Critical Sheridan VA Job

Urges VA Secretary to take action to fill Benefits Service Officer position

WASHINGTON In response to loud concerns expressed by Wyoming veterans, U.S. Senator John Barrasso today strongly urged Veterans’ Affairs Secretary James Nicholson to take immediate action necessary to fill a critical staff position at the Sheridan VA Medical Center.

In a phone call to Secretary Nicholson, Barrasso said the long term needs of current and future Wyoming veterans outweigh all other short-term staffing issues.

“It is our responsibility as a country to set a standard of excellent care for our Wyoming veterans who have sacrificed for us all,” Barrasso said. 

“I don’t believe that providing a phone and a toll-free number, instead of a full-time Benefits Service Officer sets that standard. In fact it is completely unacceptable.”

Barrasso learned of the Sheridan VA staffing problem from VFW State Service Officer Bob Craft Jr., and others during a town meeting in Sheridan . Not only has the Benefits Service Officer been in place for years, it serves a tri-state area, and must continue to be a key part of serving our area veterans.

Secretary Nicholson is leaving office on Oct. 1, and a new nominee for VA Secretary will face Senate confirmation shortly. 

“I will keep the Sheridan VA situation and other important Wyoming veteran issues, at the forefront of the confirmation process for Nicholson’s replacement,” Barrasso said.

The Wyoming state veterans associations are supportive of the effort to retain a full-time Veterans Benefits Administration (VBA) Service Officer at the Sheridan VA Medical Center.