As Veterans Day approaches, the Linn County Veterans Affairs Department thanks all veterans for their service and wants veterans and their families to know about the services the department provides.
Linn County Veterans Affairs has three certified County Veterans Service Officers who help veterans navigate the complexities of the VA system to get the most benefits they have earned. This free service is available for all Linn County veterans and their dependents. In FY19 (the most current figures available), staff submitted more than 1,100 veteran compensation claims and more than 350 pension claims resulting in $43.7 million in federal veterans benefits for Linn County veterans.
County Veterans Service Officer Phillis Pittman has worked in the Veterans Affairs office for 15 years and wants more veterans to know about this service provided by Linn County.
“I hear from veterans and their family members regularly that they’ve never heard of our office before, or they really don’t know what services we can provide,” Pittman said. “We are a County department and we are here to help our veterans and their dependents apply for the benefits they have earned through serving our country. We offer many resources and help navigate the benefit application process. We can follow through with the veteran if they have any questions during an application or after a claim has been filed. We often help veterans file successful appeals on benefits. Our satisfaction comes from knowing we have helped change our veterans’ lives and improved their livelihoods.”
The veterans benefits program is always changing and making improvements, which is why it is important that veterans contact Veterans Affairs to get the latest information on any regulation changes or increase in benefits available to them.
In addition to federal programs for compensation and pension, additional benefits to veterans can include:
- Temporary rent and utility assistance
- Obtaining military DD 214 discharge, military medical records, and awards
- VA medical registration
- Networking with other VA agencies
- Applying for Iowa Veterans Home
- Applying for Iowa Veterans Trust Fund
- Indigent burial
- Grave flag holders for veterans buried in Linn County
- Federal headstone and grave markers
If you or someone you know may be eligible for veterans’ benefits, call 319-892-5160. Due to COVID-19, Linn County Veterans Affairs is scheduling appointments only and is not taking walk-ins. You may also email Veterans Affairs or visit LinnCounty.org/Veteran. A contact form is also available on the Veterans Affairs website.
Linn County Veterans Affairs is a department within Linn County government. Its budget is reviewed and approved annually by the Linn County Board of Supervisors. The Department operations are guided by the Veterans Affairs Commission, a five-member volunteer board appointed by the Board of Supervisors.