(U.S. Senate) – Following sustained efforts from U.S. Senator Jon Tester, the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) today announced it will build a new Miles City Community Living Center to replace the existing long-term care veterans facility. As Chairman of the Senate Veterans’ Affairs Committee and a senior member of the Senate Appropriations Committee, Tester helped secure the funding that will be used to build this new facility and pushed VA leadership for years to ensure delivery of the project. He was also the only member of the Montana delegation who voted for the funding used to establish this new facility.
“Veterans in Miles City and across Eastern Montana deserve the best possible care and services, and that starts with making sure the facilities that serve them are top-notch,” said Tester. “This new Community Living Center will help deliver Montana veterans the quality long-term care they earned, and I’m proud to have worked with the community to secure funds to build this new, modern facility. It’s a big victory for Miles City, and I’ll keep holding VA accountable in ensuring this important project stays on track and opens its doors as soon as possible.”
VA expects the new facility to offer a range of long-term care and rehabilitative services for up to 17 beds. VA currently estimates the new facility will open its doors in fall 2025 and will be located at 2300 Wilson Street in Miles City.
Tester worked for years to secure the new Community Living Center. In March 2021, the Senator brought VA Secretary Denis McDonough to tour Montana and the two discussed infrastructure improvements that needed to be made to the Miles City Community Living Center. Following McDonough’s visit, Tester sent a letter to the Secretary in April 2021 following up on the important topics and projects they discussed, including projects at Miles City’s Community Living Center and VA clinic. The Senator pressed McDonough again in June 2022 about the work towards building a new Miles City Community Living Center. In 2022, Tester also led the bipartisan charge alongside Republicans and Democrats to successfully buck VA’s proposals under the Asset and Infrastructure Review Commission including one that would have shut down the Miles City Community Living Center—helping ensure that a new long-term care facility would be built.
In addition to securing this new Community Living Center, the Senator also helped secure the new, state-of-the-art VA primary care clinic in Miles City that opened its doors in December 2021 and began providing improved services and care to area veterans, including primary care and lab services, women’s health-focused services, and telehealth services.
As Chairman of the Senate Veterans’ Affairs Committee, Tester has led the way in expanding veterans’ access to care in Montana—securing resources and federal approval to build new and modernized facilities across the state. Through years of focused work with multiple Administrations of both parties, and working across the aisle in Washington, D.C. and with Montana communities, Tester’s efforts resulted in new 12 facilities opening or in planning for construction in the last several years—two at Fort Harrison in Helena, Missoula, Bozeman, Great Falls, Havre, two in Butte, Hamilton, Kalispell, and now two in Miles City.