Heineman criticizes vet service officer's letter

Oct 10, 2013

LINCOLN, Neb. (AP) — Gov. Dave Heineman is criticizing a local veterans service officer who wants to block federal funding for a new veterans home, after the state decided to move it from Grand Island to Kearney.

Heineman called the request "outrageous" in an open letter Thursday, and urged state and local officials in Grand Island to condemn it.

The Sept. 6 letter was sent to the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs by Donald Shuda, a veterans service officer based in Grand Island. Shuda urged the federal government to withhold funding until further study is completed. The letter also noted that Heineman will leave office in less than 1 ½ years because of term limits.

The Department of Veterans Affairs says it will respect the governor's right to choose the facility's location.

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