Wyoming Veterans' State Home Level I/II Study
What is this project about?
During the 2018 Budget Session, the Wyoming Legislature passed Senate Enrolled Act 21 requiring the Wyoming Veterans' Commission, the Wyoming Department of Health, and the State Construction Department to pursue a Level I and Level II study regarding the feasibility of constructing a Veterans' State Home Skilled Nursing Facility (SNF).
The study, however, cannot happen in a vacuum. Veterans, elected officials, long-term care providers, medical providers, and the general public all have a stake in the process, which will ultimately inform:
- Whether or not the facility will be built;
- Who it will serve; and
- Where it will be located.
This site serves to provide information to the public on how the process is going and to solicit additional information through online comments and surveys.
What is a VA State Home?
A "State Home" is a State-operated long-term care facility for eligible veterans that is partially funded by the federal Department of Veterans Affairs (VA). The VA has supported Veterans' State Homes throughout the country since 1888.
VA funding supports both facility construction (65% matching funds to 35% State funds) and ongoing operations. Operational funds can be either:
- A per diem for all honorably-discharged veterans (or National Guard members who were disabled on duty). The per diem today is approximately $107, and is intended to reduce the private-pay requirement for veterans.
- Contracts to pay for the full cost of care for veterans with a service-connected disability rating of 70% or more.
What is a "Level I" and "Level II" study?
The Veterans' State Home study will be conducted in accordance with W.S. § 9-5-108(a), which includes the following minimum requirements:
(i) Level I reconnaissance studies shall, to the extent possible:
(A) Describe the project;
(B) Identify the need for the project;
(C) In cooperation with appropriate local, county and state agencies, assess the status of proposed site ownerships, including existing conflicts and recommendations for resolution of the conflicts and other potential obstacles;
(D) Assess and describe local, state and federal permits required for construction;
(E) Assess environmental considerations and constraints;
(F) Identify legal constraints to development;
(G) Identify alternate sources of space to purchase and lease;
(H) Summarize public testimony received at meetings held by the commission in the county of the proposed construction; and
(J) Contain the commission’s recommendation to the legislature whether to terminate further consideration of the proposed project or to continue the project at its current level of study, or to proceed with further activity under paragraph (ii), (iii) or (iv) of this subsection.
(ii) Level II feasibility studies shall to the extent possible:
(A) Include a detailed analysis of factors relevant to development, construction, operation and maintenance;
(B) Identify major problems and opportunities concerning development and the environmental, social and economic effects of development;
(C) Identify the desired sequence of events, including commencement of local, state and federal permitting activities and acquisition of land;
(D) Summarize testimony received at public hearings held by the commission in the county of the proposed construction;
(E) Include soils and other site test drilling procedures;
(F) Contain final concept design and cost estimates;
(G) Include the project financing plan;
(H) Identify the interests in land to be acquired and the proposed means and costs of acquisition. An "interest in land" may include the fee simple title or any other interest in land less than a fee simple; and
(J) Include draft legislation describing in detail the construction, operation and financing of the proposed project.
How else can I get involved?
Comments regarding the Veterans' State Home study may be provided online via this site , or in-person at public informational meetings being held throughout the State. Please check the "Calendar" tab to locate an upcoming meeting in your area. For convenience, the presentation provided at each public meeting is embedded below.
As noted in feedback, we're including a running list of acronyms here, since it does get pretty heavy when bureaucracy, health care and military issues combine.
- VA - U.S. Department of Veterans' Affairs. Includes the Veterans Health Administration (VHA), which runs all the health care facilities, the Veterans Benefits Administration (VBA) which administers various benefits, and the National Cemetery Administration (NCA), which provides burial and memorial benefits.
- SNF - Skilled Nursing Facility. A Medicare-certified facility that performs both short-term rehabilitative services and longer-term custodial services.
- NF - Nursing Facility. Typically Medicaid-only. Performs long-term custodial services.
- ALF - Assisted Living Facility. Lower level of care than skilled nursing.