[Senate Report 113-110]
[From the U.S. Government Printing Office]


                                                       Calendar No. 197
113th Congress                                                   Report
                                 SENATE
 1st Session                                                    113-110

======================================================================



 
                 HELPING HOMELESS VETERANS ACT OF 2013

                                _______
                                

               September 23, 2013.--Ordered to be printed

                                _______
                                

         Mr. Sanders, from the Committee on Veterans' Affairs,
                        submitted the following

                              R E P O R T

                         [To accompany S. 287]

    The Committee on Veterans' Affairs (hereinafter, ``the 
Committee''), to which was referred the bill (S. 287), to amend 
title 38, United States Code (hereinafter, ``U.S.C.''), to 
expand the definition of homeless veteran for the purposes of 
benefits under the laws administered by the Secretary of 
Veterans Affairs, and for other purposes, having considered the 
same, reports favorably thereon with an amendment in the nature 
of a substitute, and an amendment to the title, and recommends 
that the bill, as amended, do pass.

                              Introduction

    On February 12, 2013, Senator Mark Begich introduced S. 
287, the proposed bill to amend title 38, U.S.C., to expand the 
definition of homeless veteran for purposes of benefits under 
the laws administered by the Secretary of Veterans Affairs and 
for other purposes. Senators Blumenthal, Boozman, Pryor, and 
Tester were original cosponsors. Senator Shaheen was later 
added as a cosponsor. The bill was referred to the Committee.
    On April 25, 2013, Committee Chairman Bernard Sanders 
introduced S. 825, the proposed ``Homeless Veterans Prevention 
Act of 2013.'' Ranking Member Burr was an original cosponsor. 
Senators Blumenthal, Murray, and Murphy were later added as 
cosponsors. S. 825 would amend title 38, U.S.C., to improve 
assistance to homeless veterans, and for other purposes. The 
bill was referred to the Committee.
    On May 23, 2013, Senator Dean Heller introduced S. 1058, 
the proposed ``Creating a Reliable Environment for Veterans' 
Dependents Act.'' Senator Murray was an original cosponsor. S. 
1058 would authorize per diem payments under comprehensive 
service programs for homeless veterans to furnish care to 
dependents of homeless veterans, and for other purposes. The 
bill was referred to the Committee.

                           Committee Hearing

    On May 9, 2013, the Committee held a hearing on pending 
legislation, including S. 287 and S. 825. Testimony was offered 
by: Dr. Robert Jesse, Principal Deputy Under Secretary for 
Health, representing the Department of Veterans Affairs 
(hereinafter, ``VA'' or ``the Department''); Rick Weidman, 
Executive Director for Policy & Government Affairs, Vietnam 
Veterans of America; and Matt Gornick, Policy Director, 
National Coalition for Homeless Veterans.

                           Committee Meeting

    After carefully reviewing the testimony from the foregoing 
hearing, the Committee met in open session on July 24, 2013, to 
consider, among other legislation, an amended version of S. 
287, consisting of provisions from S. 287, as introduced, and 
the legislation noted above. The Committee voted by voice vote, 
without objection, to report favorably S. 287, as amended, and 
as further amended, to the Senate.

                     Summary of S. 287 as Reported

    S. 287, as reported (hereinafter, ``the Committee bill''), 
consists of 13 sections, summarized below:

    Section 1 would provide a short title.
    Section 2 would expand the definition of homeless veteran 
for purposes of benefits under the laws administered by the 
Secretary of Veterans Affairs.
    Section 3 would improve the grant program for comprehensive 
service programs for homeless veterans.
    Section 4 would increase per diem payments for transitional 
housing assistance that becomes permanent housing for homeless 
veterans.
    Section 5 would authorize per diem payments for furnishing 
care to dependents of certain homeless veterans.
    Section 6 would require VA to assess comprehensive service 
programs for homeless veterans.
    Section 7 would expand VA authority to provide dental care 
to homeless veterans.
    Section 8 would authorize partnerships with public and 
private entities to provide legal services to homeless veterans 
and veterans at risk of homelessness.
    Section 9 would require requests for data to evaluate and 
improve services provided to veterans at risk of homelessness.
    Section 10 would repeal the sunset on authority to carry 
out a program of referral and counseling services for veterans 
at risk for homelessness who are transitioning from certain 
institutions.
    Section 11 would repeal the requirement for annual reports 
on assistance to homeless veterans.
    Section 12 would provide extensions of authorities.
    Section 13 would extend reduced pension for certain 
veterans covered by Medicaid plans for services furnished by 
nursing facilities.

                       Background and Discussion


Sec. 2. Expansion of definition of homeless veteran for purposes of 
        benefits under the laws administered by the Secretary of 
        Veterans Affairs.

    Section 2 of the Committee bill, which is derived from S. 
287, as introduced, would expand the definition of homeless 
veteran, for purposes of eligibility for benefits through VA, 
to include a veteran or veteran's family fleeing domestic or 
dating violence, sexual assault, stalking, or other dangerous 
or life-threatening conditions in their current housing 
situation.
    Background. Congress has authorized several initiatives in 
an effort to provide VA with the tools necessary to end veteran 
homelessness. Those who meet the definition of homeless veteran 
are eligible to participate in these initiatives. Section 
2002(1) of title 38, U.S.C., defines ``homeless veteran'' as a 
veteran who is homeless as that term is defined in section 
11302(a) of title 42, U.S.C. A homeless veteran is thus defined 
as a veteran who meets the criteria of lacking a fixed, 
regular, and adequate place to sleep at night; has a primary 
nighttime residence that is a public or private place not 
designed for or ordinarily used as a regular sleeping 
accommodation, including a car or park; lives in a transitional 
housing setting; resides in a location not meant for human 
habitation; will imminently lose his or her housing; or has 
experienced persistent housing instability.
    The Department of Housing and Urban Development's 
(hereinafter, ``HUD'') definition of homeless encompasses the 
aforementioned definition, but also includes an additional 
class of individuals, as defined by section 11302(b) of title 
42, U.S.C., which is comprised of

        any individual or family who is fleeing, or is 
        attempting to flee, domestic violence, dating violence, 
        sexual assault, stalking, or other dangerous or life-
        threatening conditions in the individual's or family's 
        current housing situation, including where the health 
        and safety of children are jeopardized, and who have no 
        other residence and lack the resources or support 
        networks to obtain other permanent housing.

In July 2011, a team led by Dr. Melissa E. Dichter, Research 
Health Scientist at VA's Center for Health Equity Research and 
Promotion, published a study entitled ``Intimate Partner 
Violence Victimization Among Women Veterans and Associated 
Heart Health Risks.'' The study found almost one-third of the 
veteran participants had experienced intimate partner, domestic 
or dating violence, as compared with less than one-quarter of 
civilian participants. Within that sample, veterans experienced 
intimate partner violence at a higher rate than civilians.
    Committee Bill. Section 2 of the Committee bill would 
expand the definition of homeless veteran by amending section 
2002(1) of title 38, U.S.C., to include veterans and their 
families who may be homeless based on the circumstances defined 
in section 11302(b) of title 42, U.S.C. It is the intent of the 
Committee to bring VA's homeless definition in line with HUD's 
ensuring that veterans fleeing domestic or dating violence and 
other life-threatening situations are eligible to participate 
in VA's programs for homeless veterans.

Sec. 3. Improvements to grant program for comprehensive service 
        programs for homeless veterans.

    Section 3 of the Committee bill, which is derived from S. 
825, would require VA to meet physical privacy, safety, and 
security needs in its Homeless Grant and Per Diem (hereinafter, 
``GPD'') program and would authorize VA to provide capital 
improvement grants for repairs toward this end.
    Background. Public Law (hereinafter, ``P.L.'') 102-590, the 
``Homeless Veterans Comprehensive Service Programs Act of 
1992,'' established VA's GPD program. The grant program assists 
public and nonprofit private entities in establishing, 
modifying or expanding programs that provide homeless veterans 
with outreach, rehabilitative services, vocational counseling 
and training, and transitional housing assistance. The per diem 
program provides per diem payments, or in-kind assistance in 
lieu of per diem payments, to assist eligible entities that 
established programs after November 10, 1992, with the daily 
costs associated with providing supportive services and housing 
for homeless veterans.
    Section 2011 of title 38, U.S.C., sets forth the authority, 
criteria, and requirements for capital grants under VA's GPD 
program. The law requires VA to establish criteria and 
requirements for grants awarded under this section. Eligible 
entities for these grants are restricted to public or nonprofit 
private entities with the capacity to administer the grant 
effectively. An eligible entity must also agree to meet, as 
well as have the capacity to meet, the applicable criteria and 
requirements established by VA. Currently, grants can be used 
to assist eligible entities with costs associated with 
acquiring, renovating, or altering facilities to establish new 
programs and service centers to furnish supportive services and 
housing for homeless veterans, or to procure vans to transport 
homeless veterans.
    The law requires VA to provide to grant recipients under 
section 2011 of title 38, U.S.C., per diem payments for 
services furnished to any homeless veteran whom VA has referred 
to the grant recipient, or for whom VA has authorized the 
provision of services. Section 2012 of title 38, U.S.C., sets 
forth the authority, criteria, and requirements for VA's per 
diem program. The per diem rate is defined as the estimated 
daily cost of care, not in excess of the per diem rate for VA's 
State Home Per Diem Program.
    A September 2011 report by VA's Inspector General 
(hereinafter, ``IG''), entitled ``Safety, Security, and Privacy 
for Female Veterans at a Chicago, IL Homeless Grant Provider 
Facility,'' found safety issues at a GPD facility that was 
housing both male and female veterans in close proximity 
without adequately addressing the unique needs of women 
veterans. The review found that women veterans had clinical 
histories that detailed instances of domestic abuse and sexual 
trauma, yet they were placed alongside male veterans with 
criminal backgrounds, and substance abuse and mental health 
issues in a facility that lacked adequate lighting, proper 
locking mechanisms on doors, and adequate surveillance.
    In a March 2012 report entitled ``Audit of the Homeless 
Providers Grant and Per Diem Program,'' the IG noted that ``an 
incomplete grant application evaluation process, a lack of 
safety, security, health, and welfare standards, and an 
inconsistent monitoring program impacted the GPD Program's 
effectiveness.'' To resolve these issues, VA is in the process 
of developing gender-specific safety and security standards, as 
well as a training program and written guidance for both 
homeless program staff and community providers.
    According to VA, its GPD program, as described above, 
provides transitional housing for up to 20,000 homeless 
veterans annually. The Government Accountability Office 
(hereinafter, ``GAO'') found, in a December 2011 study entitled 
``Homeless Women Veterans: Actions Needed to Ensure Safe and 
Appropriate Housing,'' that privacy, safety, and security 
concerns were a barrier to homeless women veterans who might 
otherwise make use of the facilities. The ability to ensure the 
safety of all veterans in GPD housing is critical to their 
participation in the program.
    Committee Bill. Section 3(a) of the Committee bill would 
amend section 2011(a) of title 38, U.S.C., by allowing VA to 
offer capital grants under the GPD program to offset a portion 
of the costs of facility maintenance in conjunction with 
physical privacy, safety, and security. It is the view of the 
Committee that the opportunity to apply for renovation grants, 
in limited amounts and for limited purposes, will help 
interested facilities provide safe transitional housing for 
homeless women veterans who may need this type of care to exit 
homelessness.
    Section 3(b) of the Committee bill would amend section 
2011(f) of title 38, U.S.C., by requiring grantees to meet the 
physical privacy, safety, and security needs of homeless 
veterans receiving services through their program. It is the 
view of the Committee that addressing these safety concerns 
will allow more homeless veterans to safely and comfortably 
take advantage of the GPD program to improve their quality of 
life.

Sec. 4. Increased per diem payments for transitional housing assistance 
        that becomes permanent housing for homeless veterans.

    Section 4 of the Committee bill, which is derived from S. 
825, would authorize VA to award per diem grants to providers 
that offer veterans transitional housing units and allow 
homeless veterans to transition into permanent housing in the 
same unit.
    Background. A veteran's ability to successfully exit 
transitional housing into independent living can be curtailed 
by the availability of low-income housing in the area. As VA 
continues to work toward ending homelessness among veterans, it 
is important to focus on ways to ease a veteran's exit from 
transitional housing into stable, independent housing in order 
to break the cycle of homelessness.
    The traditional GPD model is intended to provide a homeless 
veteran with time-limited transitional housing assistance, 
focused on housing readiness, in a congregate living or 
individual unit setting. When the assistance ends, the goal is 
for the veteran to leave this setting and move into permanent 
housing in the community. In many communities, it is difficult 
for veterans who have completed this program to find stable, 
permanent housing that is affordable and safe. According to 
VA's Fiscal Year (hereinafter, ``FY'') 2011 Annual Report on 
Specialized Programs Offering Assistance to Homeless Veterans, 
approximately 53 percent of homeless veterans discharged from 
this program in FY 2011 moved into independent housing.
    Several GPD grantees partner with housing developers to 
create permanent housing near transitional housing sites, in 
order to provide continuity of services and improve housing 
stability once program assistance is complete. In September 
2012, VA's GPD program awarded 31 grants to GPD providers who 
agreed to implement a new GPD model, known as transition-in-
place (hereinafter, ``TIP''). Under the TIP model, grantees 
provide time-limited transitional housing assistance, focused 
on maintaining stable housing, in an apartment-like setting. 
The goal is for the veteran to assume the responsibility of the 
lease instead of moving into another location when transitional 
housing assistance is complete. Grantees are responsible for 
finding additional housing to replace the units and maintain 
the ability to serve the number of veterans identified in the 
grant application.
    Implementing the TIP model can lead to additional expenses 
that traditional GPD providers may not encounter, such as 
housing search specialists, additional life safety code 
inspections and compliance issues, increased staffing needs due 
to travel time to case manage veterans, and a shift in economy 
of scale. In March 2013, the National Coalition for Homeless 
Veterans published the results from a survey of GPD grantees to 
determine their ability to implement the TIP model. The results 
found that grantees perceived challenges around the physical 
footprint of their facilities, added expenses to implement the 
TIP model, and an inability to replace housing units after 
conversion.
    Committee Bill. Section 4 of the Committee bill would amend 
section 2012(a)(2) of title 38, U.S.C., to authorize VA to 
offset a portion of the added cost to implement the TIP model 
for GPD grantees by allowing VA to provide up to 150 percent of 
the per diem rate for the duration of a veteran's participation 
in the TIP program. It is the view of the Committee that the 
GPD program, whether the traditional or TIP model, should focus 
the transitional housing assistance provided on the skills 
required to ensure housing stability upon program exit. All GPD 
grantees should receive sufficient per diem payment to provide 
quality services to homeless veterans. It is the intent of the 
Committee to incentivize GPD grantees to invest in housing 
stability by reducing potential barriers to the implementation 
of a TIP model for transitional housing.

Sec. 5. Authorization of per diem payments for furnishing care to 
        dependents of certain homeless veterans.

    Section 5 of the Committee bill, which is derived from S. 
825 and S. 1058, would modify requirements relating to per diem 
payments for furnishing services to homeless veterans by 
authorizing such services to include care of their dependents.
    Background. In a December 2011 study entitled ``Homeless 
Women Veterans: Actions Needed to Ensure Safe and Appropriate 
Housing,'' GAO found the number of homeless women veterans more 
than doubled between FYs 2006 and 2010, and many of those 
veterans have minor children. GAO also found that ``over 60 
percent of the GPD programs that serve homeless women veterans 
did not house children,'' and those that did had restrictions 
such as the ages and number of children allowed. The cost of 
housing children was cited as the primary reason they could not 
be accommodated. VA does not have the statutory authority to 
reimburse GPD programs for these costs, yet Committee oversight 
has found the prospect of having to separate from their 
children is often cited by veterans as a disincentive to 
participate in VA's homeless programs.
    P.L. 112-154, the ``Honoring America's Veterans and Caring 
for Camp Lejeune Families Act of 2012,'' modified VA's Special 
Needs Grant Program to include male homeless veterans with 
minor dependents as an eligible population, and to authorize VA 
to fund transitional housing for dependents of veterans 
receiving services funded by this grant. VA has historically 
been authorized to utilize $5,000,000 annually to run the 
Special Needs Grant Program. Approximately one in five grant 
recipients under this program serve women or veterans with 
minor dependents.
    In contrast, a significant number of women veterans are 
served by the larger GPD program, rather than the Special Needs 
Grant Program. According to VA, women received over 185,000 bed 
days of care through the GPD program in FY 2011. VA's report 
entitled, ``Community Homelessness Assessment, Local Education 
and Networking Group (CHALENG) for Veterans Fiscal Year (FY) 
2011: Services for Homeless Veterans Assessment and 
Coordination,'' (hereinafter, ``CHALENG report'') found a 75 
percent increase in the number of homeless families served 
between FYs 2010 and 2011. One of the barriers to housing cited 
by survey respondents was the ability to place veteran families 
in emergency or transitional housing.
    Committee Bill. Section 5 of the Committee bill would 
modify section 2012(a) of title 38, U.S.C., by adding a new 
paragraph that allows per diem payments to be used for 
dependents of homeless veterans. It is the view of the 
Committee that taking care of veterans also means taking care 
of their families. Fear of separation and even permanent loss 
of their children to the foster care system is a major 
deterrent to homeless veteran families who may have otherwise 
sought out assistance from VA, and one that must be removed. 
The Committee is aware that not every GPD facility can safely 
accommodate the children of homeless veterans, but intends that 
VA fund this service at facilities that can appropriately 
provide these services.

Sec. 6. Requirement for Department of Veterans Affairs to assess 
        comprehensive service programs for homeless veterans.

    Section 6 of the Committee bill, which is derived from S. 
825, would require VA to assess comprehensive service programs 
to ensure they meet the needs of homeless veterans.
    Background. VA's GPD program is its second largest program 
focused on ending homelessness among veterans. While VA's grant 
evaluation process evaluates clinical, environmental, and other 
important attributes, there seems to be little, if any, focus 
on the necessity of a particular type of transitional housing 
in a particular community. Committee oversight has found a 
disconnect between the type of GPD beds available and the 
nature of the homeless population that would be best served by 
the program in certain communities. For example, a community 
may have an excess of empty beds reserved for homeless veterans 
with substance abuse issues, along with a growing population of 
homeless single parents who may not be appropriate candidates 
for housing provided by that GPD grantee.
    In a December 2011 study entitled ``Homeless Women 
Veterans: Actions Needed to Ensure Safe and Appropriate 
Housing,'' GAO found that VA does not have information needed 
to plan services effectively, allocate grants to providers, and 
track progress toward its overall goal of ending veteran 
homelessness by 2015. In addition, in its March 2012 report 
entitled ``Audit of the Homeless Providers Grant and Per Diem 
Program,'' VA's IG concurred with the GAO finding, by noting 
that the GPD program lacked mechanisms to measure bed capacity 
against needs associated with underserved populations and 
geographic areas or against funding priorities.
    VA has developed a national homeless registry to better 
understand the characteristics and needs of homeless veterans 
served by the VA health care system and its grantees. The 
registry is intended to improve care for homeless veterans, 
standardize data collection across VA's homeless veteran 
programs, increase coordination of care, and enhance outcomes 
by providing a better means to track and monitor improvement.
    Committee Bill. Section 6 of the Committee bill, in a 
freestanding provision, requires VA to develop mechanisms to 
measure the capacity of the GPD and Special Needs Grant Program 
in order to determine whether existing capacity is sufficiently 
meeting the needs of local homeless veterans, meeting goals set 
forth through national level funding priorities, and able to 
implement the TIP model for GPD.
    The Committee understands that grant awards under the GPD 
program are limited by the number of qualified applicants in 
any given area and grant cycle. However, there are several 
locations across the country where programs have few to no 
admissions or where transitional housing programs funded 
through the GPD program do not meet the needs of homeless 
veterans in the community. The Committee intends that, to the 
extent practicable, the capacity of the GPD program be right-
sized to fit the needs of each community, based on information 
collected through the homeless registry, each community's 
projected progress toward ending homelessness, and the mix of 
other services to end homelessness among veterans. Further, the 
Committee's intent is that population and capacity information 
be used to set specific goals regarding the availability of 
services provided to veterans and underserved populations of 
homeless veterans; to evaluate progress toward reaching those 
goals; to inform the grant award process; and to improve 
referral patterns of homeless veterans to appropriate GPD 
grantees.

Sec. 7. Expansion of Department of Veterans Affairs authority to 
        provide dental care to homeless veterans.

    Section 7 of the Committee bill, which is derived from S. 
825, would expand VA's authority to provide dental care to 
homeless veterans.
    Background. P.L. 107-95, the ``Homeless Veterans 
Comprehensive Assistance Act of 2001,'' (hereinafter, ``P.L. 
107-95'') authorized VA to develop the Homeless Veterans Dental 
Program (hereinafter, ``HVDP''). Section 2062 of title 38, 
U.S.C., sets forth the authority, criteria, and requirements 
for obtaining a medically necessary, one-time course of 
outpatient dental care through this program. Services are 
considered medically necessary if they are needed to 
successfully gain or regain employment, to alleviate pain, or 
for treatment of moderate, severe, or severe and complicated 
gingival and periodontal pathology. Allowable treatments 
include examinations and x-rays, oral hygiene instructions, 
nutritional and tobacco counseling, prophylaxis, deep cleaning, 
fillings, extractions, removable partial dentures, and 
dentures.
    Eligible veterans include those who are enrolled for a 
minimum of 60 days in a Domiciliary Residential Rehabilitation 
Program; a Compensated Work Therapy-Transitional Residence; a 
Community Residential Care Program home, if placed by VA; a 
community-based treatment program funded by the Health Care for 
Homeless Veterans (hereinafter, ``HCHV'') program; or a GPD 
program. According to VA, over 100 of its facilities 
participate in the funded initiative. VA's FY 2011 CHALENG 
report found, of the veterans surveyed, dental care ranked as 
the ninth highest need among the street homeless and number one 
need among formerly homeless veterans who moved into permanent 
housing.
    Historically, VA has pursued the housing-ready model of 
homeless rehabilitation, where a veteran participates in 
transitional housing while dealing with the issues that led to 
housing instability and is then moved into permanent housing. 
With the recent shift toward the housing first model, where 
obtaining permanent housing is the catalyst for a veteran being 
able to deal with issues causing housing instability, the 
number of veterans moving from chronic homelessness directly 
into permanent housing is increasing. VA continues work to 
ensure that, as often as practicable, the Department of Housing 
and Urban Development-Veterans Affairs Supportive Housing 
(hereinafter, ``HUD-VASH'') vouchers continue to be targeted 
toward the most vulnerable veterans. An unintended consequence 
of this shift is that chronically homeless veterans who are 
moved directly into permanent housing are made ineligible for 
participation in the HVDP. These veterans have been homeless 
for longer than others and likely have more complex dental 
conditions.
    In some instances, organizations who provide transitional 
housing to veterans do not apply for VA funding, for a number 
of reasons. Homeless veterans, who may be referred there by VA, 
are not included in the population of HVDP-eligible veterans 
because their housing is not paid for by the Department. This 
creates further unintended consequences, for the sole reason 
that VA is not paying for their care.
    Committee Bill. Section 7 of the Committee bill would amend 
section 2062(b) of title 38, U.S.C., by expanding the 
eligibility requirements for HVDP to include veterans who, for 
a period of 60 consecutive days, are receiving assistance 
through the HUD-VASH program. Section 7 also expands 
eligibility requirements to include veterans who are residing 
in transitional housing that is not paid for by VA, if they 
cannot reasonably access free dental care in their community 
and their housing provider verifies they have resided there for 
a period of 60 consecutive days. It is the intent of the 
Committee that veterans participating in the HUD-VASH program 
and in non-VA funded transitional housing also be eligible for 
services provided through the HVDP.

Sec. 8. Partnerships with public and private entities to provide legal 
        services to homeless veterans and veterans at risk of 
        homelessness.

    Section 8 of the Committee bill, which is derived from S. 
825, would authorize VA to develop partnerships with public and 
private entities to provide legal services to homeless veterans 
and veterans at risk of homelessness.
    Background. VA's FY 2011 CHALENG report revealed that legal 
assistance ranked among the top four unmet needs, as identified 
by homeless veterans for the last 4 years. A number of legal 
issues can contribute to and result from homelessness, 
including outstanding warrants, outstanding fines, an inability 
to obtain identification, an inability to prevent eviction, and 
an inability to successfully negotiate manageable child support 
payments, among others.
    VA offers two programs for these purposes, which combined 
serve about 40,000 veterans annually. The Health Care for 
Reentry Veterans (hereinafter, ``HCRV'') program prepares 
veterans for release from institutions by providing the 
information and resources they need to prepare for reentering 
society. It also provides follow up services to ensure that 
they continue to have access to the necessary medical and 
social resources to avoid homelessness.
    The Veterans Justice Outreach (hereinafter, ``VJO'') 
program is tasked with locating and assisting veterans in the 
early stages of involvement with the justice system. Each VA 
Medical Center has at least one VJO Specialist who ensures 
justice-involved veterans have access to VA services, 
particularly mental health services, including treatment for 
substance abuse, as well as housing and employment assistance. 
VJO Specialists serve as advocates to identify instances where 
veterans may have broken the law due to service-connected 
mental illnesses that can be better addressed by treatment 
programs than imprisonment. These specialists also work to 
educate law enforcement, judges and other relevant community 
groups about the unique experiences and resulting challenges 
faced by this population. The goal is to avoid prison sentences 
in the first place, which will make finding gainful employment 
and stable housing a much easier process for these veterans.
    A lack of statutory authority to provide legal services to 
homeless veterans has led to nearly 40 VA Medical Centers 
providing office space to non-VA legal providers such as law 
school clinics, private pro bono lawyers, and Legal Aid clinics 
to provide onsite services to homeless and at-risk veterans. 
Currently, VA's Regional Counsels and local VJO Specialists 
facilitate partnerships with these legal service providers. 
According to VA, the ability to strengthen partnerships with a 
financial component would ``significantly enhance VA's ability 
to address this widely unmet need among homeless and at-risk 
veterans.''
    Committee Bill. Section 8 of the Committee bill would 
modify chapter 20 of title 38, U.S.C., by adding a new section 
after section 2022 that authorizes VA to enter into 
partnerships with public and private entities to fund a portion 
of the legal services provided to homeless veterans and 
veterans at risk of homelessness. This section also requires VA 
to ensure, to the maximum extent possible, these partnerships 
are distributed evenly across the country, including in areas 
that are considered rural or tribal lands.
    It is the intent of the Committee that VA partner with both 
legal service providers and housing providers who offer legal 
services to develop networks of pro bono legal assistance 
providers and for purposes related to improving outcomes of the 
legal assistance provided. Further, the Committee recognizes 
that these funds may have the most impact for communities that 
have already begun to help justice-involved veterans through 
the establishment of Veterans Treatment Courts or Pro Bono 
Networks of legal services for veterans. The Committee intends 
that VA, to the extent practicable, prioritize the award of 
grants for legal services to communities with an existing 
programmatic framework for preventing homelessness among 
justice-involved veterans.
    Further, it is the intent of the Committee that VA consult 
with organizations that may be able to assist the Department 
with identifying organizations that are capable of partnering 
with VA to provide these services to homeless and at-risk 
veterans. In the Committee's view, consulting with the 
Department of Interior regarding outreach to organizations that 
serve Native Americans and Native Hawaiians, for the purposes 
of this program, would be of particular benefit to ensure these 
underserved populations of homeless veterans are benefiting 
from partners that may be overlooked.

Sec. 9. Requests for data to evaluate and improve services provided to 
        veterans at risk of homelessness.

    Section 9 of the Committee bill, an original provision, 
would require VA to periodically evaluate its programs for 
justice-involved veterans and request data from the Federal 
Bureau of Investigation, the Bureau of Prisons, and other 
appropriate law enforcement agencies to do so.
    Background. Among the populations most at risk for 
homelessness are those veterans who have become involved in the 
justice system. In order to avoid homelessness, these 
individuals need access to counseling and other supportive 
services that specifically address the added difficulties they 
will have in finding employment and stable housing upon their 
release.
    VA operates several programs, such as the HCRV and VJO 
programs, targeted at meeting the complex needs of this 
population. It is critical that the Department conduct periodic 
program evaluations to ensure that the programs remain relevant 
and are meeting the needs of the veterans they serve. VA 
currently reviews these programs on a triennial basis to 
determine whether they are successful or whether improvements 
are needed. It is critically important that the Department is 
able to access the data needed from other Federal agencies to 
determine whether these programs continue to be effective.
    Committee Bill. Section 9 of the Committee bill would amend 
section 2022 of title 38, U.S.C., by adding a new subsection 
that would require VA to request data on recidivism and other 
relevant information from the Bureau of Prisons, the Federal 
Bureau of Investigation, and other law enforcement agencies to 
evaluate the effectiveness of homeless prevention programs for 
justice-involved veterans. Any federal agency receiving a 
request for data related to these programs would be compelled, 
within reason, to comply. The Committee believes this change 
will ensure VA has the data it needs to evaluate and improve 
upon these programs.

Sec. 10. Repeal of sunset on authority to carry out program of referral 
        and counseling services for veterans at risk of homelessness 
        who are transitioning from certain institutions.

    Section 10 of the Committee bill, which is derived from S. 
825, would repeal the sunset on authority to carry out programs 
of referral and counseling services for veterans at risk of 
homelessness who are transitioning from certain institutions.
    Background. Congress has authorized several initiatives in 
an effort to provide VA with the tools it needs to end veteran 
homelessness. Referral and counseling services for veterans at 
risk of homelessness are an invaluable tool that has been found 
to effectively assist veterans facing such problems.
    P.L. 107-95, the ``Homeless Veterans Comprehensive 
Assistance Act of 2001,'' created several programs to assist 
veterans transitioning from prison or jail, codified in section 
2023 of title 38, U.S.C. The Department of Labor (hereinafter, 
``DOL'') uses the authority provided to operate the 
Incarcerated Veterans Transition Program, which provides 
employment services such as job training and placement 
assistance, job readiness and life skills support, and 
referrals for housing, health care and other benefits to 
incarcerated and transitioning veterans who are at risk of 
homelessness. VA uses the authority provided to operate the 
HCRV and VJO programs. According to VA, the VJO program serves 
over 30,000 justice-involved veterans annually and the HCRV 
program serves over 9,000 reentry veterans annually. The 
authority under this section is set to expire on September 30, 
2013.
    Committee Bill. Section 10 would provide VA and DOL 
permanent authority to carry out programs of referral and 
counseling services for veterans at risk for homelessness who 
are transitioning from certain institutions. It is the view of 
the Committee that these programs are necessary to help these 
particular veterans, who face more barriers than most to 
achieve housing stability.

Sec. 11. Repeal of requirement for annual reports on assistance to 
        homeless veterans.

    Section 11 of the Committee bill, which is derived from S. 
825, would repeal the requirement for annual reports on 
assistance to homeless veterans.
    Background. P.L. 107-95, the ``Homeless Veterans 
Comprehensive Assistance Act of 2001,'' required VA to submit 
to the Committees on Veterans' Affairs of the Senate and House 
of Representatives a report on the activities conducted by the 
Department to assist homeless veterans during the calendar year 
preceding the report. Each report contained detailed data from 
the previous year about general, health care related, and 
benefits related content.
    The large amount of time needed to gather the appropriate 
information for the reports has the unintended result of 
requiring VA to provide data that is outdated and unresponsive 
to the Committees' needs.
    Committee Bill. Section 11 would repeal the requirement for 
annual reports on assistance to homeless veterans. It is the 
intent of the Committee that the time and resources used to 
compile the annual reports can be better used by VA to complete 
more focused program evaluations and strategizing to improve 
services offered to homeless and at-risk veterans.

Sec. 12. Extensions of authorities.

    Section 12 of the Committee bill, which is derived from S. 
825, would authorize continued operation of programs to help 
homeless veterans.
    Background. Congress has authorized several initiatives in 
an effort to provide VA with the tools it needs to address 
veteran homelessness. According to HUD and VA, there were 
62,619 homeless veterans in January 2012. This number 
represents a 17 percent decrease since 2009. While the number 
has continued to decrease, continued support is needed to 
ensure that VA can eliminate homelessness among veterans.
    Section 2013 of title 38, U.S.C., authorizes funding to be 
appropriated to VA to carry out the GPD program. $250,000,000 
is authorized to be appropriated for FY 2013, and $150,000,000 
is authorized to be appropriated for FY 2014 and each 
subsequent FY.
    Section 2021 of title 38, U.S.C., authorizes the DOL to 
carry out the Homeless Veterans' Reintegration Program 
(hereinafter, ``HVRP''), subject to the availability of 
appropriations. HVRP is a competitive grant program that awards 
funding to eligible applicants to provide employment assistance 
and case management to homeless veterans while linking them to 
supportive services available in the community. Section 2021 of 
title 38 authorizes up to $50,000,000 to be appropriated for 
each fiscal year, beginning in FY 2002 through FY 2013.
    Section 2031 of title 38, U.S.C., authorizes VA to provide 
outreach services, care, treatment, rehabilitative services, 
and certain other assistance to veterans suffering from serious 
mental illness. The two main health care programs administered 
by VA pursuant to this section are the HCHV program and the 
Domiciliary Care for Homeless Veterans program. The authority 
under this section is set to expire on December 31, 2013.
    Section 2033 of title 38, U.S.C., authorizes VA, subject to 
the availability of appropriations, to operate a program to 
expand and improve its provision of benefits and services to 
homeless veterans. VA administers this program through its 
Community Resource and Referral Center (hereinafter, ``CRRC'') 
program. The authority for this program is scheduled to expire 
on December 31, 2013.
    Section 2041 of title 38, U.S.C., authorizes VA to sell, 
lease, or donate property acquired through default on a direct 
loan or guaranty to community-based and governmental 
organizations in order to assist homeless veterans and their 
families in acquiring shelter. No agreements may be entered 
into after December 31, 2013.
    Section 2044 of title 38, U.S.C., authorizes funds to be 
appropriated for supportive services for very low-income 
veteran families in permanent housing. VA carries out these 
services through its Supportive Services for Veterans Families 
(hereinafter, ``SSVF'') Program. $300,000,000 is authorized to 
be appropriated for FY 2013. $1,000,000 is authorized to be 
appropriated through FY 2012 to provide technical assistance 
grants to eligible entities to train participating grantees on 
planning, development, and provision of services to 
participating veteran families.
    Section 2061 of title 38, U.S.C., authorizes appropriations 
for the grant program for veterans with special needs through 
FY 2013. $5,000,000 is authorized to be appropriated for this 
program from FYs 2007 through 2013.
    Section 2064 of title 38, U.S.C., authorizes appropriations 
for technical assistance for nonprofit and community groups 
applying for grant funding through VA's homeless programs. 
$1,000,000 is authorized to be appropriated for this program 
from FYs 2007 through 2012.
    Section 2066 of title 38, U.S.C., establishes within VA the 
Advisory Committee on Homeless Veterans (hereinafter, 
``ACHV''). Membership is comprised of a range of stakeholders, 
including formerly homeless veterans, veterans service 
organizations, State veterans affairs officials and experts on 
mental health and substance abuse. Currently, section 2066 of 
title 38 requires the Committee to cease to exist on December 
31, 2013.
    The authorities described in this section have been 
extended several times, most recently in 2012, pursuant to P.L. 
112-154, the ``Honoring America's Veterans and Caring for Camp 
Lejeune Families Act of 2012.''
    Committee Bill. Section 12 of the Committee bill would 
extend the authorities of many of VA's programs to address 
veteran homelessness.
    Section 12(a) of the Committee bill would amend section 
2013 of title 38, U.S.C., to authorize $250,000,000 to be 
appropriated for the GPD program in FY 2014. It is the intent 
of the Committee to maintain the program's current level of 
funding.
    Section 12(b) of the Committee bill would amend section 
2021(e)(1)(F) of title 38, U.S.C., by authorizing up to 
$50,000,000 to be appropriated for HVRP in FY 2014.
    Section 12(c) of the Committee bill would amend section 
2031(b) of title 38, U.S.C., to extend the HCHV program and the 
Domiciliary Care for Homeless Veterans program through December 
31, 2014.
    Section 12(d) of the Committee bill would amend section 
2033(d) of title 38, U.S.C., to extend the CRRC program through 
December 31, 2014.
    Section 12(e) of the Committee bill would amend section 
2041(c) of title 38, U.S.C., to extend VA's authority to sell, 
lease, or donate property to house homeless veterans through 
December 31, 2014.
    Section 12(f)(1) of the Committee bill would amend section 
2044(e) of title 38, U.S.C., by authorizing up to $300,000,000 
to be appropriated for FY 2014 for financial assistance and 
supportive services through SSVF.
    Section 12(f)(2) of the Committee bill would amend section 
2044(e) of title 38, U.S.C., by authorizing for FY 2014 
$1,000,000 to be appropriated for technical assistance for SSVF 
grantees.
    Section 12(g) of the Committee bill would amend section 
2061(d)(1) of title 38, U.S.C., to authorize $5,000,000 to be 
appropriated for FY 2014 for VA's Special Needs Grant Program.
    Section 12(h) of the Committee bill would amend section 
2064(b) of title 38, U.S.C., to authorize $1,000,000 to be 
appropriated for technical assistance to grant applicants in FY 
2014.
    Section 12(i) of the Committee bill would amend section 
2066(d) of title 38, U.S.C., to extend the ACHV through 
December 31, 2014.

Sec. 13. Extension of reduced pension for certain veterans covered by 
        Medicaid plans for services furnished by nursing facilities.

    Section 13 of the Committee bill would extend current law 
regarding pension payments received by veterans who reside in 
nursing facilities covered by Medicaid.
    Background. Section 5503 of title 38, U.S.C., sets forth 
the criteria under which eligibility for income-based pension 
payments and aid and attendance allowances are affected by 
domiciliary or nursing home residence. In instances where a 
veteran, or surviving spouse, has neither a spouse nor a child, 
and is receiving Medicaid-covered nursing home care, the 
veteran or surviving spouse is eligible to receive no more than 
$90 per month in VA pension or death pension payments. Under 
current law, this authority shall cease to exist on November 
30, 2016. This authority has been extended several times, most 
recently pursuant to P.L. 112-260, the ``Dignified Burial and 
Other Veterans' Benefits Improvement Act of 2012.''
    Committee Bill. Section 13 of the Committee bill would 
amend section 5503(d)(7) to extend, through March 31, 2018, 
current eligibility restrictions for recipients of a VA pension 
who receive Medicaid-covered nursing home care. It is the view 
of the Committee that the VA pension program should not be used 
to subsidize other federal benefits programs. The Committee 
also intends that pension recipients have available funds for 
incidentals and personal expenses.

                      Committee Bill Cost Estimate

    In compliance with paragraph 11(a) of rule XXVI of the 
Standing Rules of the Senate, the Committee, based on 
information supplied by the Congressional Budget Office 
(hereinafter, ``CBO''), estimates that enactment of the 
Committee bill would, relative to current law, have a 
discretionary cost of $842 million over the 2014-2018 period, 
assuming appropriation of the estimated amounts. In addition, 
CBO estimates that enacting the bill would decrease net direct 
spending by $294 million over the 2014-2023 period. S. 287, as 
amended, contains no intergovernmental or private-sector 
mandates as defined in the Unfunded Mandates Reform Act.
    The cost estimate provided by CBO, setting forth a detailed 
breakdown of costs, follows:

                               Congressional Budget Office,
                                   Washington, DC, August 23, 2013.
Hon. Bernard Sanders,
Chairman,
Committee on Veterans' Affairs,
U.S. Senate, Washington, DC.

    Dear Mr. Chairman: The Congressional Budget Office has 
prepared the enclosed cost estimate for S. 287, the Helping 
Homeless Veterans Act of 2013.
    If you wish further details on this estimate, we will be 
pleased to provide them. The CBO staff contact is Ann E. 
Futrell.
            Sincerely,
                                      Douglas W. Elmendorf,
                                                          Director.

  Enclosure.

S. 287--Helping Homeless Veterans Act of 2013

    Summary: S. 287 would reauthorize and expand several 
programs for homeless veterans that are administered by the 
Department of Veterans Affairs (VA). CBO estimates that 
implementing the bill would cost $842 million over the 2014-
2018 period, assuming appropriation of the specified and 
estimated amounts.
    In addition, CBO estimates that enacting the bill would 
decrease net direct spending by $294 million over the 2014-2023 
period; therefore, pay-as-you-go procedures apply to the bill. 
Enacting S. 287 would not affect revenues.
    S. 287 contains no intergovernmental or private-sector 
mandates as defined in the Unfunded Mandates Reform Act (UMRA).
    Estimated cost to the Federal Government: The estimated 
budgetary impact of S. 287 is summarized in Table 1. The costs 
of this legislation fall within budget function 700 (veterans 
benefits and services).
    Basis of estimate: For this estimate, CBO assumes the 
legislation will be enacted early in fiscal year 2014, that the 
necessary amounts will be appropriated for each year, and that 
outlays will follow historical spending patterns for similar 
and existing programs.

           Table 1.--Estimated Budgetary Effects of S. 287, The Helping Homeless Veterans Act of 2013
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                                                      By fiscal year, in millions of dollars--
                                                                   ---------------------------------------------
                                                                     2014   2015   2016   2017   2018  2014-2018
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                  CHANGES IN SPENDING SUBJECT TO APPROPRIATION

Estimated Authorization Level.....................................    598     82     54     56     58        850
Estimated Outlays.................................................    493    156     75     58     58        842

                                          CHANGES IN DIRECT SPENDING a

Estimated Authorization Level.....................................      0      0      0   -198    -96       -294
Estimated Outlays.................................................      0      0      0   -198    -96       -294
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
aEnacting S. 287 would not affect direct spending beyond 2018.

Spending subject to appropriation

    CBO estimates that implementing S. 287 would have a 
discretionary cost of $842 million over the 2014-2018 period, 
assuming appropriation of the specified and estimated amounts 
(see Table 2). Most of those costs stem from extending certain 
authorities for programs to assist homeless veterans.
    Extension of Certain Programs for Homeless Veterans. 
Section 12 would extend and modify certain programs 
administered by VA to assist homeless veterans. CBO estimates 
that implementing this section would cost $599 million over the 
2014-2018 period, assuming appropriation of the specified and 
estimated amounts.
    Specified Authorizations. Section 12 would authorize the 
appropriation of $457 million for fiscal year 2014 by extending 
for 1 year the expired or expiring authorities for the 
following programs, or by increasing their existing 
authorization levels:

     Comprehensive Service Programs,
     Homeless Veterans Reintegration Programs,
     Financial assistance for supportive services for 
very low-income veteran families in permanent housing,
     Grant program for homeless veterans with special 
needs, and
     Technical assistance grants for nonprofit 
community-based groups.


                  Table 2.--Estimated Changes in Spending Subject to Appropriation Under S. 287
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                                                       By fiscal year, in millions of dollars--
                                                                    --------------------------------------------
                                                                                                          2014-
                                                                      2014   2015   2016   2017   2018    2018
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                  CHANGES IN SPENDING SUBJECT TO APPROPRIATION

Extension of Certain Programs for Homeless Veterans
    Estimated Authorization Level..................................    564     37      0      0      0       601
    Estimated Outlays..............................................    463    112     22      2      0       599
Referral and Counseling Services
    Estimated Authorization Level..................................     34     34     35     36     37       176
    Estimated Outlays..............................................     30     34     35     36     37       172
Dental Care
    Estimated Authorization Level..................................      *     11     18     19     20        68
    Estimated Outlays..............................................      *     10     17     19     20        66
Legal Services for Homeless Veterans
    Estimated Authorization Level..................................      *      *      1      1      1         3
    Estimated Outlays..............................................      *      *      1      1      1         3
Definition of Homeless Veteran
    Estimated Authorization Level..................................      *      *      *      *      *         1
    Estimated Outlays..............................................      *      *      *      *      *         1
Assessment of Homeless Service Programs
    Estimated Authorization Level..................................      *      *      *      *      *         1
    Estimated Outlays..............................................      *      *      *      *      *         1
                                                                    --------------------------------------------
    Total Changes
        Estimated Authorization Level..............................    598     82     54     56     58       850
        Estimated Outlays..........................................    493    156     75     58     58       842
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Notes: Details may not add to totals because of rounding; * = less than $500,000.

    CBO estimates that extending those authorities will cost 
$455 million over the 2014-2018 period.
    Other extended authorities. Section 12 would extend, for 1 
year, the authority for VA to provide outreach services, 
medical and psychiatric examinations, and community-based 
residential treatment to veterans suffering from chronic mental 
conditions or homelessness. It also would authorize the 
Advisory Committee for Homeless Veterans to continue to operate 
through the end of calendar year 2014. The authority to provide 
those services is scheduled to expire on December 31, 2013. 
Based on spending levels for programs providing similar 
services, CBO estimates that extending those provisions would 
cost $144 million over the 2014-2018 period.
    Referral and Counseling Services. Section 10 would make 
permanent the authority for VA to provide referral and 
counseling services for incarcerated veterans who are at risk 
of homelessness. The Veterans Justice Program (VJP), which is 
scheduled to expire on September 30, 2013, offers outreach, 
referrals to VA services, and short-term case management. Based 
on information from VA on their anticipated costs for the VJP 
program if it were extended--$30 million for 2014--and 
adjusting for inflation, CBO estimates that implementing this 
provision would cost $172 million over the 2014-2018 period.
    Dental Care. Section 7 would expand the eligibility for 
one-time dental care to certain veterans. Under current law, 
veterans who receive short-term housing assistance may receive 
dental care to alleviate pain, as part of treatment for a more 
severe periodontal disease, or to aid in getting a job.
    This section would provide that same out-patient dental 
care to certain veterans receiving longer-term housing 
assistance through the Department of Housing and Urban 
Development-VA Supportive Housing (HUD-VASH) program and 
transitional housing through a non-VA entity. Based on 
information from VA, CBO estimates about 6,000 HUD-VASH 
participants and veterans in transitional housing would take 
advantage of this benefit in 2014, growing to nearly 9,000 by 
2018. At an average cost of about $2,000 per veteran in 2014, 
and adjusting for medical inflation and a 1-year delayed 
implementation, CBO estimates that providing the dental care to 
additional homeless veterans would cost $66 million over the 
2014-2018 period.
    Legal Services for Homeless Veterans. Section 8 would allow 
the VA to collaborate with public and private entities to 
provide legal assistance (in areas such as housing, family law, 
and criminal defense) to veterans at risk of homelessness. 
Based on existing participation in the Supportive Service Low 
Income Vets and Families program, CBO estimates that roughly 
15,000 veterans would take advantage of the proposed legal 
assistance. Based on the stipends provided to the health 
professional trainees (which includes fellows, residents and 
students) rotating through VA, CBO determines that VA would 
award stipends of $20,000 (adjusted by inflation, annually) to 
about 50 legal fellows to provide services to veterans. Because 
of the time necessary to write regulations and to develop 
partnerships, CBO expects that this program would not be fully 
implemented for several years. As a result, CBO estimates that 
implementing section 8 would cost $3 million over the 2014-2018 
period.
    Definition of Homeless Veteran. Section 2 would expand the 
definition of a homeless veteran to include veterans who are 
fleeing or attempting to flee domestic violence, dating 
violence, sexual assault, stalking, or other life threatening 
conditions. This expansion would make veterans who are victims 
of such conditions eligible for services provided to homeless 
veterans by VA. CBO anticipates this expansion in benefits 
would primarily affect female veterans.
    According to the Bureau of Justice Statistics (BJS), 80 
percent of the victims of domestic abuse between 1994 and 2010 
were female. Based on information from BJS on the incidence of 
domestic abuse--less than half a percent of the U.S. population 
in 2010--and adjusting for the number of female veterans 
enrolled in VA health care, CBO estimates that the current 
costs for homeless benefits for transitional housing and 
supportive services would increase slightly. In total, CBO 
estimates that implementing section 2 would cost about $1 
million over the 2014-2018 period.
    Assessment of Homeless Service Programs. Section 5 would 
require VA to conduct, at a national and local level, an 
assessment of the comprehensive services provided to homeless 
veterans. CBO estimates such an assessment would cost $1 
million over the 2014-2018 period.

Direct spending

    Section 13 would extend from November 30, 2016, to March 
31, 2018, the expiration date of a provision of current law 
that sets a $90 per month limit on pensions paid to any veteran 
who does not have a spouse or child and who is receiving 
Medicaid benefits in a Medicaid-approved nursing home; that 
provision also applies to any survivor of a veteran who is 
receiving such coverage. Using data provided by VA, CBO 
estimates that about 15,000 veterans and 19,000 survivors would 
be affected by this provision in both fiscal year 2017 and 2018 
and that the average monthly savings to VA in those years would 
be about $1,800 per veteran and $1,200 per survivor. (Those 
projections account for inflation, mortality rates, and new 
nursing home patients.) On that basis, CBO estimates that 
enacting the provision would reduce VA spending by about $763 
million over the 2014-2023 period.
    Higher Medicaid payments to nursing homes would offset some 
of those savings. We estimate that those costs would total $468 
million over that same time period, resulting in a net 
reduction in direct spending of $198 million in 2017 and $96 
million in 2018.
    Pay-As-You-Go Considerations: The Statutory Pay-As-You-Go 
Act of 2010 establishes budget-reporting and enforcement 
procedures for legislation affecting direct spending or 
revenues. The changes in outlays that are subject to those pay-
as-you-go procedures are shown in the following table.

      Table 3.--CBO Estimate of Pay-As-You-Go Effects for S. 287 as ordered reported by the  Senate Committee on Veterans' Affairs on July 24, 2013
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                                                                         By fiscal year, in millions of dollars--
                                                                ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                                                 2013  2014  2015  2016   2017  2018  2019  2020  2021  2022  2023  2013-2018  2013-2023
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                                       NET INCREASE OR DECREASE (-) IN THE DEFICIT

Statutory Pay-As-You-Go Impact.................................     0     0     0     0   -198   -96     0     0     0     0     0     -294       -294
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

    Intergovernmental and private-sector impact: S. 287 
contains no intergovernmental or private-sector mandates as 
defined in UMRA. As a condition of federal assistance, local 
governments that provide housing or housing services to 
eligible veterans would be required to meet the privacy, 
safety, and security needs of veterans receiving such services. 
Any costs to those governments would be incurred voluntarily.
    Estimate prepared by: Federal Costs: Ann E. Futrell and 
Dwayne M. Wright; Impact on State, Local, and Tribal 
Governments: Lisa Ramirez-Branum; Impact on the Private Sector: 
Elizabeth Bass.
    Estimate approved by: Theresa Gullo, Deputy Assistant 
Director for Budget Analysis.

                      Regulatory Impact Statement

    In compliance with paragraph 11(b) of rule XXVI of the 
Standing Rules of the Senate, the Committee on Veterans' 
Affairs has made an evaluation of the regulatory impact that 
would be incurred in carrying out the Committee bill. The 
Committee finds that the Committee bill would not entail any 
regulation of individuals or businesses or result in any impact 
on the personal privacy of any individuals and that the 
paperwork resulting from enactment would be minimal.

                 Tabulation of Votes Cast in Committee

    In compliance with paragraph 7 of rule XXVI of the Standing 
Rules of the Senate, the following is a tabulation of votes 
cast in person or by proxy by Members of the Committee on 
Veterans' Affairs at its July 24, 2013, meeting. Pursuant to 
rule I(G) of the Committee Rules, Senator Hirono offered an 
amendment to section 8 of S. 287, as amended, which would 
include as eligible partners, organizations that serve Native 
Hawaiians, Alaska Natives, and Native Americans, for the 
provision of legal services to homeless and at-risk veterans. 
The Committee accepted the amendment by voice vote, without 
dissent. The Committee voted, without dissent, to report S. 
287, as amended, and as further amended, to the Senate.

                             Agency Report

    On May 9, 2013, Robert L. Jesse, M.D., Ph.D., Principal 
Deputy Under Secretary for Health, Department of Veterans 
Affairs, appeared before the Committee on Veterans' Affairs and 
submitted testimony on, among other things, S. 287 and S. 825. 
In addition, on September 11, 2013, VA provided views on 
various bills incorporated into the Committee bill. Excerpts 
from both the testimony and Department views are reprinted 
below:

   STATEMENT OF ROBERT L. JESSE, M.D., Ph.D., PRINCIPAL DEPUTY UNDER 
          SECRETARY FOR HEALTH, DEPARTMENT OF VETERANS AFFAIRS

    Good Morning Chairman Sanders, Ranking Member Burr, and 
Members of the Committee. Thank you for inviting me here today 
to present our views on several bills that would affect 
Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) benefits programs and 
services. Joining me today is Susan Blauert, Deputy Assistant 
General Counsel.
    We do not yet have cleared views on sections 4, 10, 11, or 
12 of S. 131, S. 287, section 3 of S. 522, S. 800, S. 832, S. 
845, S. 851, S. 852, or the draft bill described as ``The 
Veterans Affairs Research Transparency Act of 2013.'' Also, we 
do not have estimated costs associated with implementing S. 
131, S. 422, S. 455, or S. 825. We will forward the views and 
estimated costs to you as soon as they are available.

           *       *       *       *       *       *       *


            S. 825, HOMELESS VETERANS PREVENTION ACT OF 2013

    This bill would amend title 38 to improve the provision of 
services for homeless Veterans and their families. VA supports 
many of the sections of this bill, including increasing the 
amount of per diem payments for Veterans that are participating 
in the Grant and Per Diem (GPD) program through a ``transition 
in place'' grant, providing permanent authority for VA's 
Veteran Justice Outreach program, authorizing VA to fund 
entities to provide legal services to Veterans who are homeless 
or at risk of homelessness, and extending a number of VA's 
existing homeless authorities, provided that any additional 
resources necessary to implement these provisions are enacted. 
However, we do have reservations concerning the following 
sections.
    Section 4 would amend 38 U.S.C. section 2012(a) to permit a 
grantee receiving per diem payments under VA's Homeless 
Provider GPD program to use part of these payments for the care 
of a dependent of a homeless Veteran who is receiving services 
covered by the GPD program grant. This authority would be 
limited to the time period during which the Veteran is 
receiving services under the grant.
    VA supports the intent of section 4. We feel that this 
authority is needed to fully reach the entire homeless 
population. However, we are concerned that full implementation 
of the legislation would require additional funding to avoid 
diminished services for the population of homeless Veterans now 
being served by VA.
    Section 5 would require the Secretary to assess and measure 
the capacity of programs receiving grants under 38 U.S.C. 
section 2011.
    VA does not support section 5 because it would be an 
unnecessary and duplicative reporting requirement. VA already 
monitors occupancy rates and geographic distribution of GPD 
grantees through a number of resources. Furthermore, section 5 
would impose a new reporting requirement on GPD grantees, a 
burden that would be felt by community providers not just the 
Department.
    Section 9 would extend dental benefits under 38 U.S.C. 
section 2062 to a Veteran enrolled in VA's health care system 
who is also receiving for a period of 60 consecutive days 
assistance under section 8(o) of the United States Housing Act 
of 1937 (commonly referred to as section 8 vouchers).
    VA supports the intent of section 9, but must condition 
this support on assurance of the additional resources that 
would be required were this provision enacted. VA recognizes 
the need for dental care and supports the improvement of oral 
health and well-being for Veterans experiencing homelessness. 
Studies have shown that after dental care, Veterans report 
significant improvement in perceived oral health, general 
health, and overall self-esteem; thus, supporting the notion 
that dental care is an important aspect of the overall concept 
of homeless rehabilitation. Increasing access to dental care 
for HUD-VA Supportive Housing program participants is, 
therefore, an important step in VA's Plan to End Veteran 
Homelessness.
    Additionally, to help clarify that subsection (c) of 
section 8 describes legal services provided, rather than the 
organizations that provide them, we recommend adding the phrase 
``capable of providing the legal services'' after the word 
``organizations'' in section 8(d)(1).
    Mr. Chairman, this concludes my statement. Thank you for 
the opportunity to appear before you today. I would be pleased 
to respond to questions you or the other Members may have.
                                ------                                



                               Enclosure
                                VA Views

        S. 287, EXPANSION OF THE DEFINITION OF HOMELESS VETERAN

    VA supports S. 287, which would broaden the definition of 
``homeless Veteran'' in 38 U.S.C. Sec.  2002(1). Section 
2002(1) currently defines homeless Veteran by reference to the 
definition of homeless person found in subsection (a) of the 
McKinney-Vento Homeless Assistance Act, 42 U.S.C. Sec.  11302. 
The bill would amend Sec.  2002(1) to also refer to subsection 
(b) of Sec.  11302, which includes in the definition of 
homeless person ``any individual or family who is fleeing, or 
is attempting to flee, domestic violence, dating violence, 
sexual assault, stalking, or other dangerous or life-
threatening conditions in the individual's or family's current 
housing situation, including where the health and safety of 
children are jeopardized, and who have no other residence and 
lack the resources or support networks to obtain other 
permanent housing.''
    VA serves Veterans fleeing from domestic violence and 
intimate partner violence (DV/IPV) when they otherwise meet the 
definition of homeless and when it is clinically appropriate to 
do so. Even when it is not clinically appropriate to place a 
Veteran affected by DV/IPV in a VA homeless program, VA works 
closely with local community organizations to identify 
resources that would most effectively address the needs of the 
Veteran. S. 287 would more closely align the definitions of 
homeless used by VA and the Department of Housing and Urban 
Development. This would facilitate data sharing and promote 
comprehensive interagency program evaluation.
    Although VA supports the bill, we note that it may not 
always be clinically appropriate to merely place a victim of 
DV/IPV in a VA homeless program. VA clinical experience and 
empirical research has shown that effective DV/IPV intervention 
involves collaboration among many programs and agencies. An 
array of services, from crisis intervention to long-term 
assistance, is needed to serve Veterans fleeing violent 
relationships. Immediate crisis intervention may include 
medical care and assistance with food, shelter, child care and 
general safety. Long-term assistance may include ongoing 
medical care, counseling to cope with the lasting emotional and 
psychological effects of DV/IPV, and services to address 
economic and housing stability.
    In recognition of the complex needs of Veterans affected by 
DV/IPV, VA recently chartered a Domestic Violence Task Force. 
The Task Force will develop a national plan to address DV/IPV 
issues in depth. However, as noted, effectively addressing the 
problem of DV/IPV will require collaboration between many 
programs and local, State, and Federal agencies.
    Within VA, there is a continuum of care with homeless 
services ranging from rapid stabilization to permanent 
supportive housing. VA's homeless programs may help prevent 
future DV/IPV by providing Veterans with alternative housing 
options so that they can safely exit abusive relationships. VA 
is committed to Veterans affected by DV/IPV, and VA programs 
addressing DV/IPV specifically will continue to collaborate 
with VA homeless programs to ensure those fleeing DV/IPV get 
the care and support they need.
    VA is not able to provide an accurate cost estimate for S. 
287 because we lack detailed data regarding the size and 
characteristics of this population. We do note that many VA 
providers have limited training related to DV/IPV, and that S. 
287 would likely require additional training. This would 
generate additional costs and a commensurate requirement for 
funding.
    The definition of ``homeless veteran'' in 38 U.S.C. 2002(1) 
also applies to the Homeless Veterans Reintegration Programs 
(HVRP) administered by the U.S. Department of Labor. VA defers 
to the Secretary of Labor on the application of the new 
definition of homelessness to the HVRP program.

           *       *       *       *       *       *       *


            S. 825, HOMELESS VETERANS PREVENTION ACT OF 2013

    S. 825 would amend title 38 to improve the provision of 
services for homeless Veterans and their families. In our May 
9, 2013 testimony, VA indicated that it supported many of the 
sections of S. 825 but did not provide detailed views on all 
sections. Outlined below are VA's views and costs on sections 
2-3 and 5-10 of S. 825. VA is working to develop a cost 
estimate for section 4.
    Section 2(a) of S. 825 would amend current law to authorize 
the Secretary, when awarding grants under the Grant and Per 
Diem (GPD) Program, to assist eligible entities not only in 
establishing, but also in maintaining programs to furnish 
services for homeless Veterans (i.e., outreach services; 
rehabilitative services; vocational counseling and training; 
and transitional housing assistance). VA supports Section 2(a). 
As VA works toward ending Veteran homelessness, VA does not 
anticipate a pressing need to create additional transitional 
housing beds. Consequently, rehabilitating and maintaining 
current GPD beds would be a more cost effective way of 
maintaining GPD transitional beds nationwide.
    Section 2(b) would amend current law to prohibit the 
Secretary from making a grant under the GPD Program unless the 
prospective grantee agrees to maintain the physical privacy, 
safety and security needs of homeless Veterans receiving 
services though the project. VA supports Section 2(b). This new 
requirement would reinforce the GPD Program's inspection 
efforts and ensure that grantees comply with VA's ongoing 
efforts to meet the privacy, safety and security needs of 
Veterans participating in the program. As a practical matter, 
current GPD grantees would absorb the costs of these 
improvements because VA lacks authority to remodel or renovate 
existing GPD facilities.
    VA does not anticipate that section 2(a) would lead to 
additional costs beyond the current authorization of 
appropriations (38 U.S.C. 2013). The provision would allow VA 
to allocate existing funds to support rehabilitating and 
maintaining existing GPD projects. Section 2(b) also would not 
result in any additional costs. If subsequent legislation 
provided more specific definitions of physical, privacy, safety 
and security, however, it is possible that VA could incur costs 
or costs that cannot presently be determined.
    Section 3 would amend current law to increase the per diem 
payments for Veterans who are participating in the GPD Program 
through a ``transition in place'' (TIP) grant. The per diem 
payments under GPD TIP would be increased by 150 percent of the 
VA State Home rate. VA supports Section 3. Supporting Veterans' 
transition from homelessness to permanent housing is 
fundamental to ending homelessness among Veterans. By allowing 
Veterans to ``transition in place'' to permanent housing, the 
Department would provide a valuable alternative for Veterans 
who may not need or be interested in participating in the 
Housing and Urban Development--VA Supportive Housing (HUD-VASH) 
program.
    VA estimates that section 3 would be cost neutral since the 
funds would come from existing appropriations to the GPD 
program.
    As indicated in our testimony on May 9, 2013, VA supports 
the intent of section 4. VA has not yet completed its cost 
analysis for this provision, however, and will provide the 
completed cost estimate as soon as it is completed.
    Section 5 would require VA to assess and measure the 
capacity of programs receiving grants under 38 U.S.C. 2011 or 
per diem payments under 38 U.S.C. 2012 and 2061 and to use the 
information to set goals, inform funding allocation decisions, 
and improve the referral of homeless Veterans to programs 
receiving funding. VA supports the intent of section 5 but does 
not believe legislation is needed because VA conducts internal 
assessments of service programs.
    VA estimates that section 5 would cost approximately 
$21,000 to gather and analyze the required information, and to 
draft the required report.
    Section 6 would repeal section 2065 of 38 U.S.C. to remove 
the requirement that VA report to the Senate and House of 
Representatives Veterans' Affairs Committees on VA's activities 
during the preceding calendar year related to VA's programs 
homeless assistance programs.
    VA supports section 6. Time spent on this reporting 
function would be better used by VA personnel to internally 
asses the programs and implement changes to enhance the 
benefits and services provided to homeless Veterans. VA 
conducts ongoing data analysis of VA homeless programs and 
remains committed to reporting data to the Committees upon 
request.
    Section 6 would result in a small cost savings for VA. In 
fiscal year 2013, VHA Homeless Programs prepared the fiscal 
year 2012 VA Specialized Homeless Programs Report to Congress. 
At that time, VHA Homeless Programs estimated that it cost 
approximately $2,800 to produce the report. If Section 6 were 
enacted, VA expects that this would save at least $2,800 in 
each subsequent FY.
    Section 7 would strike section 2023(d) of 38 U.S.C. and 
replace it with section 2023(e). This would eliminate the 
September 30, 2013 end date for VA's Veteran Justice Outreach 
(VJO) Program and VA's Health *Care for Reentry Veterans (HCRV) 
Program, programs that provide referral and counseling services 
for Veterans who are transitioning out of penal institutions 
and are at risk of homelessness. VJO's goal is to avoid the 
unnecessary criminalization of mental illness and extended 
incarceration among Veterans by ensuring that eligible Veterans 
involved with the criminal justice system have timely access to 
VA's mental health and substance use services when clinically 
indicated, and other VA services and benefits as appropriate. 
Similarly, HCRV's goals are to prevent homelessness, reduce the 
impact of medical, psychiatric, and substance abuse problems 
upon community readjustment, and decrease the likelihood of re-
incarceration for Veterans leaving prison.
    VA supports section 7. Making these programs permanent 
would recognize the crucial role these programs play in 
preventing and ending Veteran homelessness.
    Section 7 would not result in any new costs. The provision 
permanently authorizes VA's Veterans Justice Programs, 
including VJO and HCRV, but does not require direct spending 
and would be subject to available appropriations.
    Section 7 would also eliminate the September 30, 2013 end 
date for the Department of Labor's Incarcerated Veterans 
Transition Program. VA defers to the Secretary of Labor for his 
views on the extension of this program.
    Section 8 would authorize the Secretary to fund entities to 
provide legal services to Veterans, particularly those who are 
homeless or at risk of homelessness. Section 8 recognizes that 
the Secretary may partner with a wide variety of organizations 
for the provision of services. Additionally, the language 
authorizes VA to fund only a portion of the cost of legal 
services; VA may not pay for all of these services. This would 
require VA to properly leverage any expenditure under this 
authority by finding viable public or private entities capable 
of providing legal services.
    VA supports section 8. Homeless and at-risk Veteran access 
to legal services remains a crucial but largely unmet need. 
Lack of access to legal representation for outstanding warrants 
or fines, child support arrearages, driver's license 
revocation, and other legal matters continues to contribute to 
Veterans' risk of becoming and remaining homeless. A 
demonstration project conducted by the Department of Veterans 
Affairs, the Department of Health and Human Services' Office of 
Child Support Enforcement, and the American Bar Association 
indicates that legal services are instrumental in assisting 
Veterans who have child support arrearages.
    VA estimates that section 8 would cost $750,000 in fiscal 
year 2014; $3.9 million over 5 years; and $8.2 million over 10 
years.
    Section 9 would extend dental benefits under 38 U.S.C. 
Sec.  2062 to enrolled Veterans who are receiving, for a period 
of 60 consecutive days, assistance under section 8(o) of the 
U.S. Housing Act of 1937 (commonly referred to as section 8 
vouchers). Section 9 would also amend current law to permit 
breaks in the continuity of assistance or care for which the 
Veteran is not responsible.
    VA supports the intent of section 9, conditioned on the 
availability of additional resources that would be required if 
the provision is enacted. VA recognizes the need for dental 
care and supports the improvement of oral health and well-being 
for Veterans experiencing homelessness. Studies have shown that 
after dental care, Veterans report significant improvement in 
perceived oral health, general health and overall self-esteem, 
thus, supporting the notion that dental care is an important 
aspect of the overall concept of homeless rehabilitation. 
Increasing access to dental care for HUD-VASH program 
participants is, therefore, an important step in VA's Plan to 
End Veteran Homelessness.
    VA estimates that section 9 would cost $88.6 million in 
fiscal year 2014; $148.5 million over 5 years; and $216 million 
over 10 years.
    Section 10 contains extensions to various existing VA 
authorities in U.S. Code. Section 10(a) would authorize 
appropriations of $250,000,000 for fiscal year 2014 and 
$150,000,000 each fiscal year thereafter for VA's GPD Program.
    VA supports Section 10(a) in part. Under current law, the 
amount authorized to be appropriated for fiscal year 2014 will 
be reduced from $250,000,000 to $150,000,000 and then remain 
the same for each subsequent fiscal year. We support section 
10(a) to the extent that it would retain the program's current 
level of authorization for fiscal year 2014. We have concerns, 
however, about decreasing the authorization level to 
$150,000,000 for fiscal year 2015 and each subsequent year. 
Such a decrease would be highly problematic. At the current 
rate, GPD expenditures would far exceed the amount authorized 
to be appropriated for the program for fiscal year 2015 and 
thereafter. VA would require additional funding to support the 
existing projects at anticipated per diem and occupancy rates 
in fiscal year 2015 and beyond. Otherwise, VA would be forced 
to cut per diem payments to GPD community providers or to 
summarily terminate GPD projects presently serving homeless 
Veterans.
    Section 10(b) would extend the authorization of annual 
appropriations of $50,000,000 for the U.S. Department of 
Labor's Homeless Veterans Reintegration Programs through fiscal 
year 2014. We defer to the views of the Secretary of Labor on 
this provision.
    Section 10(c) would extend VA's general treatment and 
rehabilitation authority (codified at 38 U.S.C. 2031(a)) for 
seriously mentally ill and homeless Veterans from December 31, 
2013 to December 31, 2014. VA supports reauthorizing VA's 
Health Care for Homeless Veterans program, VA's program 
offering outreach services and contract therapeutic housing, 
but suggests that section 2031 be amended in subsection (b) by 
striking ``2013'' and inserting ``2016.'' VA does not 
anticipate any additional costs associated with this section.
    Section 10(d) would extend VA's operation of comprehensive 
service centers for homeless Veterans under section 2033 of 38 
U.S.C. from December 31, 2013 to December 31, 2014. VA supports 
section 10(d), which would re-authorize VA's Community Resource 
and Referral Centers but suggests that section 2033 be amended 
in subsection (d) by striking ``2013'' and inserting ``2016.'' 
VA does not anticipate any additional costs associated with 
this section.
    Section 10(e) would extend through December 31, 2014, the 
Secretary's authority under section 2041 of 38 U.S.C. to sell, 
lease, or donate properties to nonprofit organizations that 
provide shelter to homeless Veterans. Under current law, the 
authority will expire on December 31, 2013. VA supports section 
10(e) because it will help VA meet the Secretary's goal of 
ending Veteran homelessness by 2015. While any extension of 
authority under 38 U.S.C. 2041 would result in a reduction in 
property sales proceeds, neither a 1-year, nor a 5-year 
extension would result in any significant loan subsidy costs.
    Section 10(f) would require VA to make available (from 
amounts appropriated for Medical Services) $300,000,000 for 
fiscal year 2013 for its program under section 2044 of 38 
U.S.C. offering financial assistance for supportive services 
for very low-income Veteran families in permanent housing 
(Supportive Services for Veterans Families, or SSVF). VA has 
already budgeted $300 million for the SSVF Program in fiscal 
year 2014. VA supports section 10(f), which would re-authorize 
appropriations for the SSVF Program, VA's premier prevention 
and rapid re-housing program. However, VA suggests that 38 
U.S.C. 2044(e)(1) be amended by adding after subparagraph (E): 
``(F) Such sums as may be necessary for fiscal year 2014, and 
thereafter.'' This change would provide VA with the flexibility 
to devote the necessary funding to operations under the SSVF 
Program. SSVF is an essential part of VA's plan to end Veteran 
homelessness, and VA may need to devote more resources to SSVF 
as VA concludes the Veteran homelessness initiative. There are 
no costs associated with this section as it provides 
authorization for appropriations beginning in fiscal year 2014.
    VA also suggests that 38 U.S.C. 2044(e)(3) be amended to 
read: ``From amounts appropriated to the Department for Medical 
Services, there shall be authorized $1,500,000 for each fiscal 
year to carry out the provisions of subsection (d).'' These 
changes would allow VA to devote more resources to technical 
assistance for SSVF grantees. By the beginning of fiscal year 
2014, VA will have more than tripled the number of SSVF 
grantees from the first grant round. With this influx of 
grantees, VA needs a larger authorization so that VA can 
provide ongoing training and assistance to these grantees.
    Section 10(g) would extend VA's GPD Program for homeless 
Veterans with Special Needs through 2015. VA supports this 
measure but suggests that 38 U.S.C. 2061 be amended in 
subsection (d) by striking ``for each of fiscal years 2007 
through 2013.'' VA does not anticipate any additional costs 
associated with this section.
    Section 10(h) would extend VA's authority under 39 U.S.C. 
2064 to offer technical assistance grants for non-profit 
community-based groups. VA supports this measure. VA does not 
anticipate any additional costs associated with this section.
    Section 10(i) would extend VA's Advisory Committee on 
Homeless Veterans from December 31, 2013, to December 31, 2014. 
VA supports this measure but suggests that 38 U.S.C. 2066 be 
amended in subsection (d) by striking ``2013 and inserting 
``2016.'' This technical change would authorize the Advisory 
Committee through the end of the Veteran homelessness 
initiative so that the Committee can assess the successes of 
the initiative and identify actions that could be taken to 
improve other VA Programs as well as other homelessness 
programs across the country. VA does not anticipate any 
additional costs associated with this section.

           *       *       *       *       *       *       *


                        Changes in Existing Law

    In compliance with paragraph 12 of Rule XXVI of the 
Standing Rules of the Senate, changes in existing law made by 
the bill, as reported, are shown as follows (existing law 
proposed to be omitted is enclosed in black brackets, new 
matter is printed in italic, existing law in which no change is 
proposed is shown in roman).

Title 38. Veterans' Benefits

           *       *       *       *       *       *       *


Part II. General Benefits

           *       *       *       *       *       *       *


               Chapter 20. Benefits for Homeless Veterans

SEC.

           *       *       *       *       *       *       *


                 SUBCHAPTER III. TRAINING AND OUTREACH

2021. HOMELESS VETERANS REINTEGRATION PROGRAMS.

2021A. HOMELESS WOMEN VETERANS AND HOMELESS VETERANS WITH CHILDREN 
                    REINTEGRATION GRANT PROGRAM.

2022. COORDINATION OF OUTREACH SERVICES FOR VETERANS AT RISK OF 
                    HOMELESSNESS.

2022A. PARTNERSHIPS WITH PUBLIC AND PRIVATE ENTITIES TO PROVIDE LEGAL 
                    SERVICES TO HOMELESS VETERANS AND VETERANS AT RISK 
                    OF HOMELESSNESS.

           *       *       *       *       *       *       *


SUBCHAPTER VII. OTHER PROVISIONS

           *       *       *       *       *       *       *


[2065. ANNUAL REPORT ON ASSISTANCE TO HOMELESS VETERANS.]

           *       *       *       *       *       *       *


Subchapter I. Purpose; Definitions; Administrative Matters

           *       *       *       *       *       *       *


SEC. 2002. DEFINITIONS

    In this chapter:
          (1) The term ``homeless veteran'' means a veteran who 
        is homeless (as that term is defined [in section 103(a) 
        of the McKinney-Vento Homeless Assistance Act (42 
        U.S.C. 11302(a))] in subsection (a) or (b) of section 
        103 of the McKinney-Vento Homeless Assistance Act (42 
        U.S.C. 11302)).

           *       *       *       *       *       *       *


             Subchapter II. Comprehensive Service Programs

SEC. 2011. GRANTS

    (a) Authority to make grants.--Subject to the availability 
of appropriations provided for such purpose, the Secretary 
shall make grants to assist eligible entities in establishing 
programs to furnish, and expanding [or modifying] , modifying, 
or maintaining existing programs for furnishing, privately, 
safely, and securely, the following to homeless veterans:

           *       *       *       *       *       *       *

    (f) * * *

           *       *       *       *       *       *       *

          (5) * * *
          (6) To meet the physical privacy, safety, and 
        security needs of homeless veterans receiving services 
        through the project.

           *       *       *       *       *       *       *


SEC. 2012. PER DIEM PAYMENTS

    (a) * * *
          (1) * * *
          (2)(A) [The rate] Except as otherwise provided in 
        subparagraph (B), the rate for such per diem payments 
        shall be the daily cost of care estimated by the grant 
        recipient or eligible entity adjusted by the Secretary 
        [under subparagraph (B). In no case may the rate 
        determined under this paragraph exceed the rate 
        authorized for State homes for domiciliary care under 
        subsection (a)(1)(A) of section 1741 of this title, as 
        the Secretary may increase from time to time under 
        subsection (c) of that section.] under subparagraph 
        (C).
          (B)(i) Except as provided in clause (ii), in no case 
        may the rate determined under this paragraph exceed the 
        rate authorized for State homes for domiciliary care 
        under subsection (a)(1)(A) of section 1741 of this 
        title, as the Secretary may increase from time to time 
        under subsection (c) of that section.
          (ii) In the case of services furnished to a homeless 
        veteran who is placed in housing that will become 
        permanent housing for the veteran upon termination of 
        the furnishing of such services to such veteran, the 
        maximum rate of per diem authorized under this section 
        is 150 percent of the rate described in clause (i).
          (C) [(B)] The Secretary shall adjust the rate 
        estimated by the grant recipient or eligible entity 
        under subparagraph (A) to exclude other sources of 
        income described [in subparagraph (D)] in subparagraph 
        (E) that the grant recipient or eligible entity 
        certifies to be correct.
          (D) [(C)] Each grant recipient or eligible entity 
        shall provide to the Secretary such information with 
        respect to other sources of income as the Secretary may 
        require to make the adjustment [under subparagraph (B)] 
        under subparagraph (C).
          (E) [(D)] The other sources of income referred to [in 
        subparagraphs (B) and (C)] in subparagraphs (C) and (D) 
        are payments to the grant recipient or eligible entity 
        for furnishing services to homeless veterans under 
        programs other than under this subchapter, including 
        payments and grants from other departments and agencies 
        of the United States, from departments or agencies of 
        State or local government, and from private entities or 
        organizations.
          (3) * * *
          (4) Services for which a recipient of a grant under 
        section 2011 of this title (or an entity described in 
        paragraph (1)) may receive per diem payments under this 
        subsection may include furnishing care for a dependent 
        of a homeless veteran who is under the care of such 
        homeless veteran while such homeless veteran receives 
        services from the grant recipient (or entity).

           *       *       *       *       *       *       *


SEC. 2013. AUTHORIZATION OF APPROPRIATIONS

    There is authorized to be appropriated to carry out this 
subchapter amounts as follows:

           *       *       *       *       *       *       *

          [(4) $250,000,000 for fiscal year 2012.
          [(5) $250,000,000 for fiscal year 2013.
          [(6) $150,000,000 for fiscal year 2014 and each 
        subsequent fiscal year.]
          (4) $250,000,000 for each of fiscal years 2012 
        through 2014.
          (5) $150,000,000 for fiscal year 2015 and each 
        subsequent fiscal year.

           *       *       *       *       *       *       *


                 Subchapter III. Training and Outreach

SEC. 2021. HOMELESS VETERANS REINTEGRATION PROGRAMS

           *       *       *       *       *       *       *


    (e) * * *
          (1) * * *

           *       *       *       *       *       *       *

                  (F) $50,000,000 for each of fiscal years 2007 
                through [2013] 2014.

           *       *       *       *       *       *       *


SEC. 2022. COORDINATION OF OUTREACH SERVICES FOR VETERANS AT RISK OF 
                    HOMELESSNESS

           *       *       *       *       *       *       *


    (f) Requests for Data To Evaluate and Improve Services 
Provided to Veterans at Risk of Homelessness.--(1) The 
Secretary shall from time to time request from the Federal 
Bureau of Investigation, the Bureau of Prisons, the Bureau of 
Justice Statistics, and other appropriate Federal law 
enforcement agencies data in the possession of such agencies 
useful for the evaluation and improvement of the services 
provided to veterans at risk of homelessness under this section 
and section 2023 of this title.
    (2) Such agencies shall make reasonable efforts to comply 
with any such request by the Secretary.
    (g) [(f)] Reports.--

           *       *       *       *       *       *       *


SEC. 2022A. PARTNERSHIPS WITH PUBLIC AND PRIVATE ENTITIES TO PROVIDE 
                    LEGAL SERVICES TO HOMELESS VETERANS AND VETERANS AT 
                    RISK OF HOMELESSNESS

    (a) Partnerships Authorized.--Subject to the availability 
of funds for that purpose, the Secretary may enter into 
partnerships with public or private entities to fund a portion 
of the general legal services specified in subsection (c) that 
are provided by such entities to homeless veterans and veterans 
at risk of homelessness.
    (b) Locations.--The Secretary shall ensure that, to the 
extent practicable, partnerships under this section are made 
with entities equitably distributed across the geographic 
regions of the United States, including rural communities, 
tribal lands of the United States, Native Americans, and tribal 
organizations (as defined in section 3765 of title 38, United 
States Code).
    (c) Legal Services.--Legal services specified in this 
subsection include legal services provided by public or private 
entities that address the needs of homeless veterans and 
veterans at risk of homelessness as follows:
          (1) Legal services related to housing, including 
        eviction defense and representation in landlord-tenant 
        cases.
          (2) Legal services related to family law, including 
        assistance in court proceedings for child support, 
        divorce, and estate planning.
          (3) Legal services related to income support, 
        including assistance in obtaining public benefits.
          (4) Legal services related to criminal defense, 
        including defense in matters symptomatic of 
        homelessness, such as outstanding warrants, fines, and 
        driver's license revocation, to reduce recidivism and 
        facilitate the overcoming of reentry obstacles in 
        employment or housing.
    (d) Consultation.--In developing and carrying out 
partnerships under this section, the Secretary shall, to the 
extent practicable, consult with public and private entities--
          (1) for assistance in identifying and contacting 
        organizations capable of providing the legal services 
        described in subsection (c); and
          (2) to coordinate appropriate outreach relationships 
        with such organizations.
    (e) Reports.--The Secretary may require entities that have 
entered into partnerships under this section to submit to the 
Secretary periodic reports on legal services provided to 
homeless veterans and veterans at risk of homelessness pursuant 
to such partnerships.

SEC. 2023. REFERRAL AND COUNSELING SERVICES: VETERANS AT RISK OF 
                    HOMELESSNESS WHO ARE TRANSITIONING FROM CERTAIN 
                    INSTITUTIONS

    (a) * * *
    [(b) Location of program.--The program shall be carried out 
in at least 12 locations. One location shall be a penal 
institution under the jurisdiction of the Bureau of Prisons.]
    (b) [(c)] Scope of program.--
          (1) [To the extent practicable, the program] The 
        program shall provide both referral and counseling 
        services, and in the case of counseling services, shall 
        include counseling with respect to job training and 
        placement (including job readiness), housing, health 
        care, and other benefits to assist the eligible veteran 
        in the transition from institutional living.

           *       *       *       *       *       *       *

    [(d) Duration.--The authority of the Secretaries to provide 
referral and counseling services under the demonstration 
program shall cease on September 30, 2013.]
    (c) [(e)] Definition.--In this section, the term ``eligible 
veteran'' means a veteran who--
          (1) * * *
          (2) is at risk for homelessness absent referral and 
        counseling services [provided under the demonstration 
        program] (as determined under guidelines established by 
        the Secretaries).

           *       *       *       *       *       *       *


 Subchapter IV. Treatment and Rehabilitation for Seriously Mental Ill 
                         and Homeless Veterans

SEC. 2031. GENERAL TREATMENT

           *       *       *       *       *       *       *


    (b) The authority of the Secretary under subsection (a) 
expires on [December 31, 2013] December 31, 2014.

           *       *       *       *       *       *       *


SEC. 2033. ADDITIONAL SERVICES AT CERTAIN LOCATIONS

           *       *       *       *       *       *       *


    (d) The program under this section shall terminate on 
[December 31, 2013] December 31, 2014.

           *       *       *       *       *       *       *


                    Subchapter V. Housing Assistance

SEC. 2041. HOUSING ASSISTANCE FOR HOMELESS VETERANS

           *       *       *       *       *       *       *


    (c) The Secretary may not enter into agreements under 
subsection (a) after [December 31, 2013] December 31, 2014.

           *       *       *       *       *       *       *


SEC. 2044. FINANCIAL ASSISTANCE FOR SUPPORTIVE SERVICES FOR VERY LOW-
                    INCOME VETERAN FAMILIES IN PERMANENT HOUSING

           *       *       *       *       *       *       *


    (e) * * *
          (1) * * *

           *       *       *       *       *       *       *

                  (F) $300,000,000 for fiscal year 2014.

           *       *       *       *       *       *       *

          (3) There is authorized to be appropriated $1,000,000 
        for each of the fiscal years 2009 through [2012] 2014 
        to carry out the provisions of subsection (d).

           *       *       *       *       *       *       *


                    Subchapter VII. Other Provisions

SEC. 2061. GRANT PROGRAM FOR HOMELESS VETERANS WITH SPECIAL NEEDS

           *       *       *       *       *       *       *


    (d) Funding.--
          (1) From amounts appropriated to the Department for 
        ``Medical Services'' [for each of fiscal years 2007 
        through 2013, $5,000,000 shall be available] for each 
        of fiscal years 2007 through 2014, $5,000,000 shall be 
        available for each such fiscal year for the purposes of 
        the program under this section.
          (2) * * *

SEC. 2062. DENTAL CARE

    (a) * * *

           *       *       *       *       *       *       *

    [(b) Eligible Veterans.--Subsection (a) applies to a 
veteran--
          [(1) who is enrolled for care under section 1705(a) 
        of this title; and
          [(2) who, for a period of 60 consecutive days, is 
        receiving care (directly or by contract) in any of the 
        following settings:
                  [(A) A domiciliary under section 1710 of this 
                title.
                  [(B) A therapeutic residence under section 
                2032 of this title.
                  [(C) Community residential care coordinated 
                by the Secretary under section 1730 of this 
                title.
                  [(D) A setting for which the Secretary 
                provides funds for a grant and per diem 
                provider.
          [(3) For purposes of paragraph (2), in determining 
        whether a veteran has received treatment for a period 
        of 60 consecutive days, the Secretary may disregard 
        breaks in the continuity of treatment for which the 
        veteran is not responsible.]
    (b) Eligible Veterans.--(1) Subsection (a) applies to a 
veteran who--
          (A) is enrolled for care under section 1705(a) of 
        this title; and
          (B) for a period of 60 consecutive days, is 
        receiving--
                  (i) assistance under section 8(o) of the 
                United States Housing Act of 1937 (42 U.S.C. 
                1437f(o)); or
                  (ii) care (directly or by contract) in any of 
                the following settings:
                          (I) A domiciliary under section 1710 
                        of this title.
                          (II) A therapeutic residence under 
                        section 2032 of this title.
                          (III) Community residential care 
                        coordinated by the Secretary under 
                        section 1730 of this title.
                          (IV) A setting for which the 
                        Secretary provides funds for a grant 
                        and per diem provider.
                          (V) A setting--
                                  (aa) in which the veteran is 
                                receiving transitional housing 
                                assistance;
                                  (bb) for which funding is not 
                                provided for transitional 
                                housing assistance under the 
                                laws administered by the 
                                Secretary;
                                  (cc) for which the Secretary 
                                receives verification from the 
                                provider of care that the 
                                veteran is receiving care for a 
                                period of 60 consecutive days; 
                                and
                                  (dd) from which the Secretary 
                                determines that the veteran 
                                cannot reasonably access 
                                comparable dental services at 
                                no cost and in a reasonable 
                                period of time.
    (2) For purposes of paragraph (1), in determining whether a 
veteran has received assistance or care for a period of 60 
consecutive days, the Secretary may disregard breaks in the 
continuity of assistance or care for which the veteran is not 
responsible.
    (c) * * *

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SEC. 2064. TECHNICAL ASSISTANCE GRANTS FOR NONPROFIT COMMUNITY-BASED 
                    GROUPS

    (a) * * *
    (b) Authorization of appropriations.--There are authorized 
to be appropriated $1,000,000 for each of fiscal years 2007 
through [2012] 2014 to carry out the program under this 
section.

[SEC. 2065. ANNUAL REPORT ON ASSISTANCE TO HOMELESS VETERANS

    [(a) Annual report.--Not later than June 15 of each year, 
the Secretary shall submit to the Committees on Veterans' 
Affairs of the Senate and House of Representatives a report on 
the activities of the Department during the calendar year 
preceding the report under programs of the Department under 
this chapter and other programs of the Department for the 
provision of assistance to homeless veterans.
    [(b) General contents of report.--Each report under 
subsection (a) shall include the following:
          [(1) The number of homeless veterans provided 
        assistance under the programs referred to in subsection 
        (a).
          [(2) The cost to the Department of providing such 
        assistance under those programs.
          [(3) The Secretary's evaluation of the effectiveness 
        of the programs of the Department in providing 
        assistance to homeless veterans, including--
                  [(A) residential work-therapy programs;
                  [(B) programs combining outreach, community-
                based residential treatment, and case-
                management; and
                  [(C) contract care programs for alcohol and 
                drug-dependence or use disabilities.
          [(4) The Secretary's evaluation of the effectiveness 
        of programs established by recipients of grants under 
        section 2011 of this title and a description of the 
        experience of those recipients in applying for and 
        receiving grants from the Secretary of Housing and 
        Urban Development to serve primarily homeless persons 
        who are veterans.
          [(5) Information on the efforts of the Secretary to 
        coordinate the delivery of housing and services to 
        homeless veterans with other Federal departments and 
        agencies, including--
                  [(A) the Department of Defense;
                  [(B) the Department of Health and Human 
                Services;
                  [(C) the Department of Housing and Urban 
                Development;
                  [(D) the Department of Justice;
                  [(E) the Department of Labor;
                  [(F) the Interagency Council on Homelessness;
                  [(G) the Social Security Administration; and
                  [(H) any other Federal department or agency 
                with which the Secretary coordinates the 
                delivery of housing and services to homeless 
                veterans.
          [(6) Any other information on those programs and on 
        the provision of such assistance that the Secretary 
        considers appropriate.
    [(c) Health care contents of report.--Each report under 
subsection (a) shall include, with respect to programs of the 
Department addressing health care needs of homeless veterans, 
the following:
          [(1) Information about expenditures, costs, and 
        workload under the program of the Department known as 
        the Health Care for Homeless Veterans program (HCHV).
          [(2) Information about the veterans contacted through 
        that program.
          [(3) Information about program treatment outcomes 
        under that program.
          [(4) Information about supported housing programs.
          [(5) Information about the Department's grant and per 
        diem provider program under subchapter II of this 
        chapter.
          [(6) The findings and conclusions of the assessments 
        of the medical needs of homeless veterans conducted 
        under section 2034(b) of this title.
          [(7) Other information the Secretary considers 
        relevant in assessing those programs.
    [(d) Benefits content of report.--Each report under 
subsection (a) shall include, with respect to programs and 
activities of the Veterans Benefits Administration in 
processing of claims for benefits of homeless veterans during 
the preceding year, the following:
          [(1) Information on costs, expenditures, and workload 
        of Veterans Benefits Administration claims evaluators 
        in processing claims for benefits of homeless veterans.
          [(2) Information on the filing of claims for benefits 
        by homeless veterans.
          [(3) Information on efforts undertaken to expedite 
        the processing of claims for benefits of homeless 
        veterans.
          [(4) Other information that the Secretary considers 
        relevant in assessing the programs and activities.]

SEC. 2066. ADVISORY COMMITTEE ON HOMELESS VETERANS

           *       *       *       *       *       *       *


    (d) Termination.--The Committee shall cease to exist 
[December 31, 2013] December 31, 2014.

           *       *       *       *       *       *       *


               Part IV. General Administrative Provisions

           Chapter 55. Minors, Incompetents, and Other Wards

SEC.

5501. COMMITMENT ACTIONS.

5502. PAYMENTS TO AND SUPERVISION OF FIDUCIARIES.

[5503. HOSPITALIZED VETERANS AND ESTATES OF INCOMPETENT 
                    INSTITUTIONALIZED VETERANS.]

5503. REDUCED PENSION FOR CERTAIN HOSPITALIZED VETERANS AND CERTAIN 
                    VETERANS RECEIVING DOMICILIARY, NURSING HOME, OR 
                    NURSING FACILITY CARE.

           *       *       *       *       *       *       *


[SEC. 5503. HOSPITALIZED VETERANS AND ESTATES OF INCOMPETENT 
                    INSTITUTIONALIZED VETERANS]

SEC. 5503. REDUCED PENSION FOR CERTAIN HOSPITALIZED VETERANS AND 
                    CERTAIN VETERANS RECEIVING DOMICILIARY, NURSING 
                    HOME, OR NURSING FACILITY CARE

           *       *       *       *       *       *       *


    (d) (1) * * *

           *       *       *       *       *       *       *

    (7) This subsection expires on [November 30, 2016] March 
31, 2018.

           *       *       *       *       *       *       *