What We Do
SLO County has more than 26,000 veterans and their dependents, and although the County’s Department of Veterans Services is the smallest County department with only six full-time staff members, it serves roughly 15,500 veterans and their families every year.
The department provides assistance to men and women who have served in the U.S. Armed Forces, their dependents, survivors, and the general public. The Veterans Services Office helps them obtain health, education, pension, compensation and other benefits from the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA), Department of Defense (DOD), California Department of Veterans Affairs and other programs for veterans and their families.
Approximately 2,500 claims for local vets are actively pending, which amounts to a case load of roughly 625 veterans for each veterans representative. Each representative is required to have a minimum of two years of college, four years for a senior level rep, attend training every year to maintain his/her accreditation through the state, so that they are up to date on all issues involved with filing claims with state and federal agencies for the veterans they advocate for.
The County’s Veterans Services office files 95 percent of all claims filed for veterans with the Department of Veterans Affairs in the county resulting in an average of $88 million being spent by the VA in San Luis Obispo County. Of this, $50.5 million is received in compensation and pension payments (the majority of what we do), $6.8 million in education benefits, $2 million in insurance payments, $28.6 million in medical, and $4.6 million in unique medical payments for patients (Specialty Care) direct payments to veterans, and medical services.