David Jolly asks Congress to move ACA ad money to Veterans Affairs

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U.S. Rep. David Jolly asked the House Committee on Appropriations today to consider taking funding from programs supporting the Affordable Care Act and redirect the money to the Department of Veterans Affairs.

The funds, slated for the 2015 fiscal year, would come from advertising and marketing the ACA. Jolly wants the money used for outreach programs identifying veterans who have earned, but not received, federal benefits.

In a letter to Rep. Hal Rogers, chair of the House Committee on Appropriations, Jolly writes:

“We have veterans who have rightfully earned benefits in service to our nation but have fallen through the cracks of bureaucracy.  We should do more to reach these heroes who are eligible for benefits.”

Jolly believes the millions of dollars used by the Department of Health & Human Services to educate people of a possible fine for not having health insurance would be better used in “finding American heroes” to provide them with services from a “grateful nation.”

Citing the nearly $700 million spent on outreach and marketing of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, Jolly estimates that in 2014, $52 million has already been spent on “paid media,” including $4.4 million during the recent Winter Olympics.

Letter to Chairman Rogers redirecting ACA funds

Phil Ammann is a St. Petersburg-based journalist and blogger. With more than three decades of writing, editing and management experience, Phil produced material for both print and online, in addition to founding HRNewsDaily.com. His broad range includes covering news, local government and culture reviews for Patch.com, technical articles and profiles for BetterRVing Magazine and advice columns for a metaphysical website, among others. Phil has served as a contributor and production manager for SaintPetersBlog since 2013. He lives in St. Pete with his wife, visual artist Margaret Juul and can be reached at phil@floridapolitics.com and on Twitter @PhilAmmann.