Tester announces assistance for Montana’s veterans

Senator praises investment in veterans’ transportation services

(BIG SANDY, Mont.) – Senator Jon Tester today announced a major investment to improve transportation services for Montana’s veterans.

The assistance, worth nearly $400,000, will improve transit services for veterans living across Montana by increasing access to information sharing and coordinating services.

Veterans transportation providers, including Montana Health and Human Services and Disabled American Veterans, will now be able to work to provide scheduled trips to service members, veterans, and their families.

Previously, if a transportation provider could not arrange both the departure and return legs of the trip, it could not provide either leg.

“In order to fulfill the promises that we made to our veterans, we have to make sure they can access the services they earned,” Tester said.  “This award makes it easier for Montana veterans to get to work, to the doctor’s office, and back home to see their families.”

“This award gives Montana Transit Association the ability to maximize its resources and reduce the difficulties our service members, veterans and their families have in traveling throughout Montana,” said Lyn Hellegaard, executive director of the Montana Transit Association.  “We appreciate Senator Tester’s support for veterans and transit programs throughout Montana.”

Tester, Montana’s only member of the Senate Veterans’ Affairs Committee and the Senate Banking Subcommittee on Transportation, has worked to improve transportation services for veterans in Montana.

Tester is pushing a bill that includes his provisions to reimburse veterans for travel to and from vets centers and to get the Department of Veterans Affairs to drop copayments for rural veterans who use telehealth and telemedicine services.

Tester’s bill also includes housing assistance to veterans affected by natural disasters like wildfires and flooding.