Montgomery County, Maryland Commission on Veterans Affairs Annual Report 2016



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Montgomery County, Maryland 

Commission on Veterans Affairs Annual Report 2016

 

Daniel J. Bullis, Chairman 

 

Randy Stone, Vice-Chairman 

 

Isiah Leggett, County Executive

 


 

 

 



 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

M



EMBERSHIP

 L

IST

 2015 - 2016 

Letter of Transmittal 



VA Strengthens Commitment to County Veterans Establishing Community-Based Outpatient Clinic 

4 - 5 

How to Enroll in VA Healthcare 



Mike Love, Founder of the Beach Boys, Shares Message of Healing with Commission 



Councilmember George Leventhal Announces That Montgomery County Effectively Ends Veterans 

Homelessness 



HUD-Veterans Administration Supported Housing (VASH) Vouchers 



MCTV Documentary on Vietnam Veterans 

10 - 11 

DAR Commemorates Vietnam 50th Anniversary with Wreath Laying 

12 

Montgomery County, MD Employment Data on Hiring of Veterans, Disabled Veterans, and People 

with Disabilities 

13 

FY18 Operating Budget Priorities 

14 

Annual Meeting with County Executive 

15 

VA Silver Spring Vet Center Services 

16 

Key Contacts for the VA and Other Resources 

17 

Maryland Department of Veterans Affairs 

18 

Projected Number of Veterans in Montgomery County, MD 

19 - 20 

How Many Uniformed Services Retirees Live in the County? 

20 

2015 - 2016 Year In Review 

21 - 22 

Connect with the Commission 

23 

Commission Presentations For 2015 - 2016 

23 

How to Contact Your Elected Officials 

24 

T

ABLE

 

OF

 C

ONTENTS

 

G

ENERAL

 P

UBLIC

 M

EMBERS

 

Dan Bolling 

Marek Posard - Resigned 

Vacancy 


Vacancy 

S

TAFF

 

Betsy Luecking, Community Outreach Manager 

Carly Clem, Administrative Specialist I

 

N



ON

-V

OTING

 C

ONGRESSIONAL

 R

EPRESENTATIVES

 

Austin Morris, Office of Congressman Chris Van Hollen 



Commission on Veterans Affairs 2016 Annual Report  Page 2 

V

ETERANS

 R

EPRESENTATIVES

 

Henry Bockman, Veteran 



Daniel Bullis, Disabled American Veterans 

James Campbell, Military Officers Association of America 

Octavia Dixon, Veterans of Foreign Wars 

Ron Drach, Veteran 

Elizabeth (Jane) McCarthy, American Legion 

Wayne Miller, Disabled American Veterans 

Randy Stone, American Legion 

E

X

-O

FFICIO

 M

EMBERS

 

Michael L. Subin, Office of the County Executive 

Joanna L. Starling, Montgomery College 

Vacancy - Department of Health & Human Services 

Vacancy - Department of Economic Development 


 

 

 



 

 

 

 

L



ETTER

 

OF

 T

RANSMITTAL

 

Commission on Veterans Affairs 2016 Annual Report  Page 3 

 

 



 

 

 



COMMISSION ON VETERANS AFFAIRS 

 

November 1, 2016 



 

Via Letter of Transmittal Electronically to: 

The Honorable Isiah Leggett, Montgomery County Executive 

The Honorable Nancy Floreen, President, Montgomery County Council 

Uma S. Ahluwalia, Director, Montgomery County Department of Health and Human Services 

 

 

The Commission on Veterans Affairs is pleased to present a summary of its activities for the past year. We continue 



to advise and consult with you on issues of concern to the estimated 42,000 Veterans, and their families, who live in the  

County.  Under your leadership and with your support, the Commission is mandated to research, assemble, analyze and  

disseminate information that will assist in meeting the needs of Veterans and their families. 

 

 



 

 Since 2009, the Commission had been advocating along with Congressman Van Hollen’s  and Senator Ben Cardin’s 

office to have the Veterans Administration (VA) open a VA Community-Based Outpatient Clinic (CBOC) in the County.  On  

September 19, 2016 we were pleased to be part of a “Golden Hammer” event put on by the District of Columbia VA Medical 

Center to mark the beginning of the build out of this clinic to be located at 15810 Gaither Road, Rockville, MD.  At this time 

we pay tribute in memory of Gregory Hamilton, Navy, Vietnam Veteran, who met with  County Executive Isiah Leggett  

about 10 years ago and requested that he establish a Commission on Veterans Affairs to work on establishing a CBOC.  

 

 



We continue to encourage cooperation, coordination and collaboration among all agencies and non-profits that serve 

Veterans so that our community works together to honor and provide the best services possible to Veterans and their families.  

We have established a close relationship with Serving Together which is a resource and referral source for Veterans and their 

families.  The Office of Human Resource’s merit hiring initiatives has led to as of October 20, 2016 the hiring of 191  

Veterans, including 13 who have a disability.   

 

 



We are pleased with the County’s efforts to end homelessness amongst Veterans and to assist in obtaining permanent 

housings with the Zero:16 campaign.  We are working to increase outreach to the general Veteran population regarding  

programs, services and enrollment in VA Health Benefits. We are supporting Veterans through our Veterans Education  

Partnership which includes Montgomery College Combat to College, Universities at Shady Grove and the University of  

Maryland Terp Vets. 

 

 



We wish to recognize and give our personal thanks to all Commissioners, the many community members, and the 

agency staff who participate in our meetings for their commitment and dedication.  We would like to acknowledge DHHS  

Director Uma Ahluwalia for her role in meeting with the Boards, Commissions and Committees to keep us informed of  

important health and human services issues, Dr. Jay Kenney, Chief, Aging and Disability Services, Betsy Tolbert Luecking,  

Community Outreach Manager, and Carly Clem, Administrative Specialist, for their outstanding support in providing the 

Commission with the resources needed to carry out our mission.  This report is the result of our combined efforts. 

 

 

It has been a pleasure to work with you and members of the Commission during our term of service.  We are  



confident that you will continue to support the Commission’s efforts to enhance the lives of our Veterans.  Our meetings are 

open to the public, and we invite you to join us for any meeting. 

 

Sincerely, 



Daniel J. Bullis, Chairman 

Randy Stone, Vice-Chairman 



 

 

Press Release - September 16, 2016 



  

Montgomery County Executive Ike Leggett will be joined by County, State, and Federal officials for the official  

ceremony to redevelop space for a new County Community-Based Outpatient Clinic (CBOC). The ceremony will be held 

Monday, September 19, 2016 at 10:30 a.m. at 15810 Gaither Drive in Gaithersburg. 

 

It will be the first Department of Veterans Affairs community clinic in Montgomery County offering health care services 



to the more than 42,000 Veterans living in the area. 

 

The newly renovated building space will offer 11,600 square feet with room for primary-care and mental-health clinics as 



well as space for tele-health, patient education, hearing aid fittings and specialty care. 

 

Expanding health care access to Veterans in Maryland is a high priority for the Washington DC Veterans Affairs Medical  



Center, which operates five other community clinics in the District of Columbia, Maryland and Virginia. 

 

The CBOC is scheduled to open in December 2017 and will be a welcomed addition for Veterans in the community. The  



County’s CBOC will have ample parking and is in close proximity to the Shady Grove Metro Station and Ride On bus 

#43. 


 

Commission on Veterans Affairs 2016 Annual Report  Page 4 

VA S

TRENGTHENS

 C

OMMITMENT

 

TO

 C

OUNTY

 V

ETERANS

 

E

STABLISHING

 C

OMMUNITY

-B

ASED

 O

UTPATIENT

 C

LINIC

 

 

Washington DC VAMC ● Montgomery County CBOC Construction Kickoff  



Program of Events  

10:30  Welcome - Captain Michael Subin, USN, Retired, Master of Ceremony 

 

10:35  Opening Remarks - Mr. Brian A. Hawkins, Medical Center Director 



 

10:40  The Honorable Benjamin Cardin, Senator 

 

10:45  The Honorable Christopher Van Hollen, Jr., Congressman 



 

10:55  The Honorable John Sarbanes, Congressman 

 

11:00  Mr. Joseph A. Williams, Jr., Network Director, VISN 5 



 

11:05  Mr. George W. Owings III, Secretary of Maryland Department of Veterans Affairs 

 

11:10 


Mr. Isiah (Ike) Leggett, Montgomery County Executive 

 

11:15 



“What the MoCo CBOC Means and How It Benefits Local Veterans” 

Mr. Dan Bullis, Chairman, Montgomery County Commission on Veterans Affairs 

 

11:20 


Golden Hammer Ceremony 

 


 

 

 



 

Commission on Veterans Affairs 2016 Annual Report  Page 5 

VA S

TRENGTHENS

 C

OMMITMENT

 

TO

 C

OUNTY

 V

ETERANS

 

E

STABLISHING

 C

OMMUNITY

-B

ASED

 O

UTPATIENT

 C

LINIC

 

 

From left to right: Dan Bullis, Chairman, Commission on Veterans Affairs; Joe Williams, VISN 5 Network Director; Brian 



Hawkins, DC VA Medical Center Director; Secretary George W. Owings III, Maryland Department of Veterans Affairs

Congressman Christopher Van Hollen; County Executive Isiah Leggett; Senator John Sarbanes; Dr. Ross Fletcher, Chief 

of Staff Emeritus, DC VA Medical Center; and Sidney Katz, Member, Montgomery County Council. 

Councilmember Sidney Katz and Mike Subin, Special Assistant 

to the County Executive and Commissioner 

County Executive Isiah Leggett and Dan Bullis, Chairman,  

Commission on Veterans Affairs 

Photos courtesy of Office of Public Information - David Jeo 

 

 

There are 42,000 Veterans living in the County and only an estimated 8,000 are enrolled in the VA Healthcare system.  



Given that the County will be having its first Community Based Outpatient Clinic in 2017, the Commission is encouraging 

Veterans to enroll now.  The very first step in obtaining access to your VA Health Benefits is to apply for enrollment.  

Effective immediately, Veterans who served in a theater of combat operations after November 11, 1998, can complete  

applications for enrollment in VA health care by telephone without the need for a signed paper application. All other  

Veterans may apply by phone starting July 5, 2016. 

 

When Veterans choose to enroll, VA offers an enhancement to their enrollment experience through “Welcome to 



VA” (W2VA).  W2VA enhances communication by reaching out to newly enrolled Veterans through personal phone calls 

upon enrollment, providing assistance with health care inquiries and assisting with their initial appointment at their preferred 

VA healthcare facility. In addition, VA sends each new enrollee an introductory letter and personalized Veterans Health 

Benefits Handbook in the mail. 

 

For more information about the Veterans Health Benefits Handbook, visit 



ww.va.gov/HEALTHBENEFITS/vhbh/index.asp



 



Here are the convenient ways to apply for enrollment:

 

 

 



 

Commission on Veterans Affairs 2016 Annual Report  Page 6 

H

OW

 

TO

 E

NROLL

 

IN

 VA H

EALTHCARE

 

 

By Telephone 

The telephone application option is a more convenient 

way to apply for enrollment, and eliminates the need for  

a signed paper application. 

 

VA staff members will collect the needed information 



and process the enrollment application for an  

enrollment determination. 

 

To apply, call 1-877-222-VETS (8387), Mon-Fri  



between 8 am and 8 pm, EST. 

Apply Online 

Fill out the application online and electronically submit it to 

VA for processing. No need for additional documents to 

verify military service. If you were recently discharged, we 

will get your military information for you. 

 

To complete the healthcare application, visit  



www.vets.gov/healthcare/apply

 



Once you complete the application, you may submit 

your application online. 

 

You will immediately receive a confirmation message 



notifying you that your application has been received. 

 

A signature is not required for online registration. 



 

For more information about the application process, 

visit 

www.va.gov/healthbenefits/apply/



application_process.asp

 



You will also receive information about the appeals 

process, if you do not agree with the enrollment  

decision. 

Apply in Person 

You may apply in person at your local VA health care  

facility. 

 

Complete the healthcare application online. 



 

For more information about the application process, 

visit 

www.va.gov/healthbenefits/apply/



application_process.asp

 



You will also receive information about the appeals 

process, if you do not agree with the enrollment  

decision. 

By Mail 

Pick up an application at your local VA or download, print, 

and fill out the 10-10EZ, Application for Health Care. 

Complete the application (be sure to sign it) and mail to: 

Health Eligibility Center 

2957 Clairmont Road, Suite 200 

Atlanta, GA 30329-1647 

Obtaining an Appointment: 

You may request a doctor’s appointment when you apply 

for enrollment by checking ‘yes’ to the question asking if 

you want an appointment on the application. An  

appointment will be made with a VA doctor or provider and 

you will be notified via mail of the appointment. If you need 

health care before your scheduled appointment, you may 

contact the Enrollment Coordinator, Urgent Care Clinic or 

the Emergency Room at your local VA. 

Required Signature 

When you apply in person or by mail, you or the person acting as your Power of Attorney must sign and date the form.  

If your Power of Attorney signs and dates the form you must submit a copy of the Power of Attorney with the form. If  

you sign with an “X”, then two people that you know must witness you as you sign the form. They must also sign and 

print their names on the form. 


 

 

 



 

Commission on Veterans Affairs 2016 Annual Report  Page 7 

M

IKE

 L

OVE

, F

OUNDER

 

OF

 

THE

 B

EACH

 B

OYS

,  

S

HARES

 M

ESSAGE

 

OF

 H

EALING

 

WITH

 C

OMMISSION

 

Mike Love, Founding Member of the Beach Boys, gave a message of healing to local Veterans on May 31, 2016 by 

sharing  his experience with Transcendental Meditation (TM).  He was in town over  Memorial Day weekend to  

headline a PBS Concert on the lawn of the Capitol.  Former U.S. Senator Max Cleland, a U.S. Army Vietnam Veteran, 

was the facilitator of having him contact the Commission to meet with local Veterans.  Commissioners Bill Gray, Past 

Chair, and Wayne Miller, Team Leader, Silver Spring Vet Center, joined him in sharing their experience with TM as 

well. Veterans of all branches and members of the general public were welcome and encouraged to attend.  The Com-

mission sponsored the event and it was by the American Legion Hall, Post 41, in Silver Spring. There were over 50  

people in attendance.  

   


From left to right: Bill Gray, Mike Love and Wayne Miller 

 

 

 



 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

C



OUNCILMEMBER

 G

EORGE

 L

EVENTHAL

 A

NNOUNCES

 

THAT

  

M

ONTGOMERY

 C

OUNTY

 E

FFECTIVELY

 E

NDS

 V

ETERANS

 H

OMELESSNESS

 

Commission on Veterans Affairs 2016 Annual Report  Page 8 

 

Press Release: Friday, December 18, 2015 

Montgomery County Councilmember George Leventhal, who serves as chair of the Council’s Health and Human  

Services Committee, at 11 a.m. on Monday, Dec. 21, will host a press conference at the Council Office Building in  

Rockville in the third floor conference room announcing that $500,000 in funding appropriated by the Council was used to 

house 18 homeless Veterans and helped the County to provide housing for every identifiable homeless Veteran. The  

County has also submitted certification requests to the U.S. Interagency Council on Homelessness and the Zero 2016  

Campaign, and Councilmember Leventhal anticipates an announcement about the findings in the coming days.   

  

Councilmember Leventhal will be joined by Councilmembers Craig Rice and Sidney Katz; Susie Sinclair-Smith,  



executive director, Montgomery County Coalition for the Homeless; Susan Kirk, executive director, Bethesda Cares; Uma 

Ahluwalia, director, Department of Health and Human Services. Other invited guests include: Veterans who now have  

stable housing; Nan Roman, president and CEO, National Alliance to End Homelessness; Matthew Doherty, executive 

director, U.S. Interagency Council on Homelessness; and Stacy Spann, executive director, Housing  

Opportunities Commission of Montgomery County. 

  

The County committed to ending homelessness for Veterans by setting a goal to move 58 Veterans experiencing  



homelessness into permanent housing by December 31, 2015. So far this year, the County has provided housing for 53 

Veterans. By the end of the year, 58 Veteran households will have housing or a permanent housing plan. 

  

“Housing every identifiable homeless Veteran in Montgomery County has always been and continues to be one of my top 



priorities,” said Councilmember George Leventhal. “Montgomery County now has a coordinated and efficient system, 

which has been developed with our community partners to ensure that every Veteran in our County has access to the  

supports needed to move quickly from homelessness to permanent housing.  Providing a stable home for our Veterans is 

simply the right thing to do for those who have sacrificed so much for our country.”       

  

County funding to house homeless Veterans was in jeopardy because of proposed cuts recommended as part of the Fiscal 



Year 2016 Savings Plan. The Council’s Health and Human Services Committee and the Council restored $500,000 to fund 

the housing resources needed as part of Montgomery’s Zero 2016 Plan. 

  

Montgomery County’s Zero 2016 Plan was developed with a primary focus on the rapid exit of Veterans from  



homelessness to permanent, sustainable housing. This plan was developed as the result of collaborative discussions among 

the County’s Department of Health and Human Services, family and single adult shelter providers, Veterans groups, the 

U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs Supportive Services for Veterans Families and others. This group reviewed the 

homeless continuum of care to determine what federal, state and local resources were available and the strategies  

necessary to specifically address Veteran homelessness. 

  

Achieving a “functional zero” for homeless Veterans does not mean that there will never be a Veteran experiencing  



homelessness, but future homeless Veterans will be housed quickly because of the systems in place and the ability to  

mobilize resources. 

  

The community collaboration that has worked together to achieve this goal includes the Montgomery County Coalition for 



the Homeless, Bethesda Cares, the County’s Department of Health and Human Services, the Department of Housing and 

Community Affairs, the Housing Opportunities Commission of Montgomery County, the U.S. Department of Veterans 

Affairs DC Medical Center and others.   

  

County Cable Montgomery recently profiled one of the Veterans who received permanent housing on Veterans Day.  



The link to this story is 

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wqFJ2-LJlrc&feature=youtu.be

.

 


 

 


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