Friday, November 05, 1999

Portman: Nursing home for Southern Ohio veterans in works




BY PAUL BARTON
Enquirer Washington Bureau

        WASHINGTON — A Veterans Administration nursing home to serve Southern Ohio veterans, including those from Hamilton County, could soon be a reality, Rep. Rob Portman said Thursday.

        The VA has put a 168-bed facility proposed for Georgetown in Brown County on its list of high-priority projects, said Mr. Portman, R-Terrace Park.

        The facility would be near the Brown County Airport, a site recommended by a state panel.

        Construction of the $13 million facility, to be built with $7.8 million in federal funds, could begin within the next 12 months, said Portman press aide Brian Besanceney.

        Mr. Portman has lobbied Veterans Affairs Secretary Togo West to get a southern Ohio office and has worked with the House Appropriations Committee to make the funds available.

        Southern Ohio has no VA nursing home, despite nearly 150,000 veterans living in Southwest Ohio and close to 400,000 living south of Interstate 70, Mr. Portman's office said.

        “This is great news for Georgetown, for Brown County and for veterans throughout southern Ohio,” Mr. Portman said.

        The only nursing home facili ty now serving Ohio veterans is in Sandusky, on Lake Erie. Of its 600 beds, only eight are occupied by veterans from Southern Ohio, said Mr. Besanceney. There also is a veterans' nursing home in Fort Thomas.

        Veterans immediately applauded the news.

        “It would be great for veterans of Southern Ohio,” said Howard “Shorty” Kabler of Ripley.

        Mr. Kabler, 76, is an activist on veterans' issues in Brown County and formerly served on the board of directors of the Sandusky facility. He fought in France after the 1944 D-day invasion.

        Even if a Southern Ohio veteran can get into Sandusky, he said, the distance to it creates a hardship for relatives who want to visit.

        Mr. Portman credited Brown County commissioners, state Rep. Rose Vesper, R-New Richmond, and state Sen. Doug White, R-Manchester, with helping to persuade state officials to agree to the Georgetown site.

       



HMO to re-empower MDs
Flynt vows to remain downtown
For sale: One grand landmark
Getting real about online privacy
I-71/75 S-curve project ending
Big earthquake in Midwest's future
Diabetes care looks beyond cost
Father accused of shaking 8-week-old son to death
Judge keeps player off team
New school board members stress reforms, funding
School safety report inaccurate
The special voice of Morning Edition
The Morning Edition regulars
WWII vet has had 77 years of 'luck, luck, luck, luck'
Dr. Brazelton answers
Enter our Dress A Turkey contest
GET TO IT
Hindus to light up new year at biggest holiday
CONCERT REVIEW
Pat Barry gets WKRC-AM show
Shepherd rocks Bogart's with sound of his own
Bill widens business tax credit
Butler Co. buses gaining ridership
Cheerleader's visitation at school
Company, union bicker over picketing
Court might sue county so it can hire more staff
Covington mobilizes against gangs, dealers
Effects of drugs, alcohol driven home to students
Hyland will run again for county commission
Jail inmates to pay for meals, lodging
Lakota considers levy for projects
Man indicted on legal-sham charge
Policemen found not liable in killing
- Portman: Nursing home for Southern Ohio veterans in works
Rash of violence shakes up Ohio town
Stations pull ads on Lucas' complaint
Three Tristaters convicted of $14M Medicare scheme
Tornado victims find a home and friends
TRISTATE DIGEST
Wyoming neighbors say 'no' to trail