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Military and Defense
Dispatches from public radio's correspondent at the Oregon Legislature. This is a venue for political and policy coverage of the state government in Salem and its impact on the people of Oregon.

Republicans Say Legislative Budget Undercuts Voter Intent On Veterans Funding

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File photo of the Oregon House chamber

The Oregon House approved a funding plan Monday for the Oregon Department of Veterans Affairs. It came over the objections of some Republicans who said the proposal undercuts the will of voters.

Last fall, nearly 84 percent of Oregon voters approved a measure to give a portion of state lottery proceeds to programs that support veterans. But with the influx of new dollars came the temptation to reduce general fund dollars flowing to the agency.

Republicans including Bill Post said that's exactly what happened.

"This is not what Oregonians intended when they passed the ballot measure last year,” he said. “And it's not what I believe we as a body intend. I believe we can do much better." ??

But the House Democrats' chief budget-writer, Nancy Nathanson said veterans are being supported by sending more money to other agencies, including those that provide housing and mental health care for veterans.

The bill now heads to the Oregon Senate.