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Wisconsin Secretary Of Veterans Affairs says they are trying to restore federal funding to Cottage 16 homeless Vets program

Secretary Daniel J. Zimmerman of the Wisconsin Department of Veterans Affairs says he is trying to get federal authorities to reverse their decision to cut Veteran Housing and Recovery Program funding to Cottage 16 in Union Grove.

But in an interview Friday with CBS 58 News Milwaukee he also said he didn't want to give false hope.

"I want to keep the programs going," Secretary Zimmerman told CBS 58's Michele McCormack. "But I can't promise them we're going to be able to do that."

Secretary Zimmerman says Congressman Paul Ryan is also part of the effort.

Zimmerman says he was never given any specific reasons why the funding was cut.

But he says funding and programs were being reassessed after Wisconsin proved to be a leader in providing homeless and at risk Veterans housing and other services.

He reports a 22% decrease in homelessness among Veterans between 2015 and 2016. 

He says the state submitted three identical grant applications for the Veteran Housing and Recovery Programs at King in Waupaca County, Cottage 16 in Union Grove and in Chippewa Falls.

Only the Chippewa Falls program received conditional funding.

The Combat Veteran Motorcycle Association has been trying to drum up public outcry.

Zimmerman says he's been trying to appeal to the federal secretary of Veterans Affairs.

"I do have access to his liaisons and staff to get this reviewed by them."

To hear extended portions of the interview click here


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