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New San Diego Hires Expected to Help Resolve Veterans' Backlogged Claims

SAN DIEGO (CNS) - The California Department of Veterans Affairs announced Friday that it is hiring a dozen staffers for its San Diego office to help reduce a backlog of claims that have kept some veterans waiting nearly two years.

According to the Center for Investigative Reporting, nearly 23,000 San Diego veterans are waiting for their disability claim to be processed.

The new hires were authorized by Gov. Jerry Brown's 2013-14 budget.

Claims representatives will review claims pending for 125 days or longer and work to make them fully developed and ready for VA rating. Once a claim has been adjudicated and a disability rating has been assigned, compensation or pension payments can be properly calculated and sent out to the veteran, according to the VA.

CalVet Secretary Peter J. Gravett said that by immediately reviewing claims that have been pending the longest and working forward, "we will reduce the waiting time veterans have had to face.''

To date, 14 of 36 positions authorized statewide, including a dozen in Los Angeles, have been filled, according to the VA.

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