Mobility for vets

Some of the men and women who serve us in uniform suffer wounds or other injuries that lead to a lifetime of sacrifice for us. In return, taxpayers help the most severely affected purchase specially adapted motor vehicles — once.

U.S. Sens. Joe Manchin, D-W.Va., and Susan Collins, R-Maine, want to rectify that. They have introduced the Advancing Uniform Transportation Opportunities for Veterans Act.

Under current law, the Department of Veterans Affairs can provide eligible injured veterans with one-time grants of about $21,400 to purchase vehicles adapted so they can drive. If the Manchin-Collins bill is enacted, such grants could be provided once every 10 years.

“Access to an adapted vehicle is essential to the mobility and health of catastrophically disabled veterans who need a reliable means of transportation to get them to and from work, meet family obligations and attend medical appointments,” pointed out Morgan D. Brown, national legislative director for the Paralyzed Veterans of America.

What might that cost taxpayers? A few million dollars a year? Contrast that with the lifelong price paid by some veterans for serving their country.

The Manchin-Collins bill is little enough thanks to injured veterans. It should be enacted.


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