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Veterans Cemeteries: You May Have to Keep Grandpa on Ice if the Shutdown Continues

Reduced schedule at national cemeteries, interments restricted to eight per day.

by
Paula Bolyard

Bio

October 15, 2013 - 5:38 am
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Just when you thought the intentional infliction of public pain during the partial government shutdown could not possibly get any worse, the Obama administration is now threatening dead people:

Each national cemetery will conduct a reduced number of burials each day. This could cause some families to pay for storage of their loved ones’ remains until burials can be scheduled. Although there may be possible delays in scheduling internments [sic], NCA will continue to provide services to our Veterans and their families during their time of need with the utmost dignity, respect and compassion.

The VA says it will run out of money in late October and will begin to implement its “lapse in appropriation shutdown plan,” furloughing up to 1,063 of 1,809 National Cemetery Administration (NCA) employees. A Veterans Field Guide to Government Shutdown, posted on the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs website, lists interments  under “Services to Veterans Impacted by a Lapse in Appropriations,” saying “Interments at National Cemeteries will be conducted on a reduced schedule.” (Incidentally, the “play” and “pause” buttons on the Veterans Field Guide are not operational — has the Canadian programmer group hit again?)

Sean Baumgartner, director of the Ohio Western Reserve National Cemetery in Rittman, said there will be a “reduced interment schedule” at the Ohio cemetery. Ohio Western Reserve Cemetery (where my husband’s grandfather is buried) ordinarily conducts eight or nine burials a day. Last week there were 17 burials on Monday. The NCA will restrict the number of interments to eight per day at mid-level cemeteries if the shutdown drags on beyond the end of October.

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The GOP has been passing spending bills in the House, practically non-stop. The Senate refuses to address any of them, and the President has made it clear he will not consider any of them.

So who needs to "learn to compromise with the folks across the aisle"? Hint: it's not the Republicans.

Yes, elections have consequences. The most recent election kept a Republican majority in the House of Representatives. They are now doing their job, exerting control of the purse strings. Live with it.
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Noah Z --come on Barry, we know its you.

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