Minnesota Veteran - August

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Desk of the Commissioner - August

Commissioner Herke new

‘Burn pit’ legislation expands Veterans’ healthcare benefits

After a lengthy fight by Veterans and their advocates, the U.S. Congress passed and President Biden recently signed the PACT Act, also known as the “Burn Pit Bill.”

According to media reports, “President Joe Biden called the PACT Act the ‘biggest expansion of benefits for service-connected health issues’ in 30 years, adding that it’s the largest bill ever addressing exposure to burn pits. Those burn pits have caused rare respiratory conditions and cancers with service members who served in Iraq and Afghanistan. Veterans have faced challenges getting coverage for those related illnesses, but this bill will change that, impacting about 3.5 million Veterans across the nation.”

It’s the right thing to do. And it’s overdue.


The Countdown is Underway: New Homes Resident Applications to be Accepted Beginning Sept. 15

new homes

Another major milestone is approaching for our three new Veterans Homes in Bemidji, Montevideo and Preston: starting on Thursday, Sept. 15 at 8 a.m. (CST), Resident admission applications will begin to be accepted.

We’ve worked to make the application process as easy as possible. Click here for answers to the questions we've heard the most during our community visits.


State Veterans Homes Receive $50,000 Donation from American Legion - MN Chapter

legion donation

The Minnesota Department of Veterans Affairs (MDVA) was honored to accept a very generous donation of $50,000 from the American Legion - Minnesota Chapter to be used for recreational programming at the five current State Veterans Homes. The presentation was made to MDVA Public Affairs, Development and Community Engagement leaders on July 15 at the American Legion (AL) annual convention; approximately 200 Legionnaires were in attendance.

This significant donation was rooted in the fundraising work of Past Department Commander (and current Adjutant for Waite Park American Legion Post 428) Tom Fernlund’s 2021-2022 Commander’s Project. Each year, the AL Commander is given the opportunity to raise funds for a project that they are passionate about. The Commander’s Project helps bring recognition to needs that exist in the community for Veterans and their families. The COVID-19 pandemic inspired Tom to select recreational programming as his project’s focus.


MDVA Helps Veterans Prepare for Another School Year

higher ed

The Minnesota Department of Veterans Affairs (MDVA) is gearing up to assist Veterans for another academic year. Oftentimes Veterans are non-traditional students and have earned a unique benefits package. The admissions process and accessing their benefits can seem overwhelming for Veterans beginning a career in higher education. This may discourage Veterans to start or continue the higher education process all together, but MDVA is here to help!

“Veterans have to maneuver through all of the traditional student requirements that come with starting at a college or university, in addition to understanding all of the earned Veteran benefits and aid offered federally and by the State,” explained Dave Bellefeuille, MDVA Director of Education and Employment.


Post 9/11 Veteran Service Bonus Available

post 9-11

The Minnesota Department of Veterans Affairs (MDVA) has a long history of awarding service bonuses to Minnesota Veterans who served in America’s wars. Starting in 1919 after World War I, through World War II, the Korean War, Vietnam War, Persian Gulf War, and now the Global War on Terrorism. MDVA recognizes the sacrifices and courage Minnesotans took to defend our country.

The 2022 Legislature passed and Governor Walz signed the first-ever Veterans Omnibus Bill that included funding for a service bonus payable to eligible Veterans who served from 9/11/01 to 8/30/21. MDVA is honored to facilitate this program for eligible Veterans, currently serving service members, or Veterans' beneficiaries.

The application period began on July 7, 2022. The last day to apply is June 30, 2024, unless the funds have been exhausted by then.


MDVA is Hiring

mdva is hiring

Interested in serving Veterans? Looking to make a difference in your community? Consider a career with the Minnesota Department of Veterans Affairs! Roles in healthcare, nursing, facilities management and program management are featured below.

We proudly offer competitive pay, generous benefits as a State of MN employee, welcoming and supportive teams, and most importantly, meaningful careers.

To see full job posting and apply:
1. Go to https://mn.gov/mmb/careers/ and select your applicant type: External Applicants or Current Employees or Accessible Applicant Portal.
2. On the Careers landing page, enter the Job ID in the Search Jobs field. Click on the posting.
3. Select “Apply for Job” button. New users will need to create an applicant account to apply.