Michigan is home to more than 650,000 veterans which is the 11th largest population of veterans nationally. According to the VA, Michigan veterans rank last on a per-capita basis as recipients of federal VA dollars for total veterans’ benefits.
Michigan Governor Richard Snyder issued an Executive Order 2013-2 (EO) during his State of the State address to help connect eligible veterans with their benefits and at the same time improve customer service. The EO creates the Michigan Veterans Affairs Agency within the state Department of Military and Veterans Affairs and the state will now have a new agency solely dedicated to the needs of veterans.
The functions of the new Veterans Affairs Agency will be to:
- Review, investigate, evaluate, and assess all programs within the executive branch of government related to services and benefits for veterans
- Serve as the coordinating office for all agencies of the executive branch of government responsible for programs related to veterans
- Analyze and make recommendations to the Governor on proposes program and policies related to veterans
- Function as a clearinghouse for information received from all departments and agencies of the executive branch of government
- Serve as the Governor’s liaison with the Secretary of State, the Michigan Economic Development Corporation, Michigan Strategic Fund, and with all other departments and agencies with respect to programs, services, and benefits for veterans
- Request advice and assistance to re-engineer business processes and establish inter-agency and intra-agency data sharing requirements, policies, procedures, and standards to improve services
- Execute contracts and other instruments necessary to function
To view the EO, go to www.michigan.gov/documents/synder/EO_2013-2_408988_7.pdf.