The U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) is reviewing comments made to the proposed rule for implementation of the new statutory authority provided in section 101 of Public Law 112-260, the "Dignified Burial and Other Veterans' Benefits Improvement Act of 2012." When finalized, the rule will establish the procedures to provide reimbursement for privately purchased caskets or urns for burial of deceased eligible Veterans in a VA national cemetery if the Veterans have no identifiable next-of-kin and insufficient resources are available to pay for a casket or urn.
The National Cemetery Administration graduated its eighth class from the National Cemetery Director Intern Program August 8. The ceremony, held at VA Central Office in Washington, celebrated 14 members who spent the last 12 months at the NCA National Training Center in St. Louis.
The National Training Center prepares employees to manage and operate cemeteries as national shrines for America’s Veterans and military personnel. No other federal training facility provides training in cemetery management. In the weeks to come, the interns will begin work as directors and assistants to directors at national cemeteries around the country.
For more information on the Cemetery Director Intern Program, click here.
For the fifth time since 2001, NCA has received the highest rating in customer satisfaction for any federal agency or private corporation surveyed, according to a prestigious, independent survey of customer satisfaction.
The American Customer Satisfaction Index (ACSI) is the only uniform, national, cross-industry measure of satisfaction with the quality of goods and services available in the United States. In 1999, the federal government selected ACSI to be a standard metric for measuring citizen satisfaction. More than 100 Federal government agencies have used ACSI to measure citizen satisfaction with more than 200 services and programs. The Index was founded at the University of Michigan’s Ross School of Business and is produced by ACSI, LLC.
NCA participates in the ACSI every three years, previously in 2001, 2004, 2007 and 2010. Each time it has participated, NCA has received the top rating in the nation. For 2013, NCA achieved a customer satisfaction index of 96, 28 points above the average for federal government agencies and well above such companies as Coca-Cola, Apple Computers and the H.J. Heinz Co.
NCA created a webpage to enable funeral directors to quickly find the most pertinent information to help families plan burials and apply for VA memorial benefits. It provides information about eligibility, benefits and services, VA forms, and features four videos on casket and cremain services offered with and without military funeral honors. The videos are narrated in English and Spanish and show what a family can expect on the day of their loved-one's funeral at a VA national cemetery.
There are also quick links to download VA forms for ordering headstones and markers, the bronze medallion, the Presidential Memorial Certificate, and other benefits.