Some Veterans to Get Increase in Mileage Reimbursement - NBC Right Now/KNDO/KNDU Tri-Cities, Yakima, WA |

Some Veterans to Get Increase in Mileage Reimbursement

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PASCO, Wash.-- The Department of Veterans Affairs will now reimburse veterans more money for miles they drive to get health care.  Some veterans will get a 13 cent increase for their mileage reimbursement if they have to drive for medical care.

Starting Tuesday they'll receive 41.5 cents per mile, compared to 28.5 cents.  This is only the second mileage reimbursement in veterans have received in the past 30 years.  It was just 11 cents one year ago.

Geoff Smith is a veteran who has been reimbursed before and he says every bit helps.  He works at the Columbia Basin Veterans Coalition in Pasco and says other veterans he helps find care will surely benefit from this increase.  "It's an appreciated gesture.  I'm sure that vets who need to go to far places like Walla Walla or perhaps American Lake, down in the Seattle area, could definitely use this benefit."

The deductible amounts, what a veteran must pay before reimbursement begins, will stay the same until January.  Then it will decrease to $3 for a one way trip or $6 for a round trip. 

VA staff say more than one-million veterans  will benefit from this increase.