Brindisi Fights to Protect Bainbridge VA Clinic from Closure and Champions Rural Veterans
Congressman Anthony Brindisi (NY-22), a member of the House Committee on Veterans’ Affairs, secured a provision in the House Fiscal Year 2020 Military Construction and Veterans Affairs funding legislation (H.R. 3055) to protect the Bainbridge Community Based Outpatient Clinic. Brindisi’s legislative language will hold the Washington bureaucracy and Albany VA accountable to the law.
“The Washington bureaucracy doesn’t understand what it means to live in rural parts of our country,” Brindisi said. “They have an obligation to serve our veterans—and closing clinics in more rural parts of the country isn’t the solution. This language I secured will help protect Bainbridge for now, but let me be clear: a more permanent solution is needed to ensure veterans in Chenango County can access the services they’ve earned. I’ll do everything I can to keep this clinic open in Bainbridge.”
Brindisi inserted language requiring the VA to conduct a market area assessment and submit it to the Committee on Appropriations before funds can be used to close the Bainbridge clinic.
More than 3,600 veterans reside in Chenango County and any closure of the Bainbridge facility would result in a disruption in care for many of these veterans.
Brindisi testified before the Military Construction, Veterans Affairs, and Related Agencies Appropriations Subcommittee about this language in April. A pillar of Brindisi’s “Serving Upstate New York Veterans” plan is supporting rural veterans. Brindisi will continue to look for bipartisan solutions to improve care for all veterans.