KING – The state veterans home in King will be undergoing an $80 million facelift.
While at the home Friday, Republican Governor Scott Walker signed a bill to create a new skilled nursing facility.
The veterans home at King is more than 125 years old. The facility currently serves more than 700 veterans.
But despite the age of the building, some veterans like resident Mike Kloehn say the care is second-to-none.
“We get 24-hour care, LPNs, RNs, aides, it’s excellent care here,” said Kloehn.
Governor Walker says he wants to make sure that care continues well into the future. He signed a bill to set up a new 200-bed building on the campus.
“This new building will add tremendous value not only to the veterans but their families going forward and as we have more and more baby boom generation veterans we need more ways to care for them,” said Walker.
The home’s Commandant Jim Knight says the new John R. Moses Hall will do just that.
“It’s obsolete from the standpoint of design. There is very little storage room and as you can see we have everybody in these electric scooters and there is just no room for them,” said Knight.
The new building will replace Stordock Hall which was built in 1968 and Knight says the new facility will be better equipped to handle a new generation of incoming veterans.
“We recognize now that a lot of the new veterans we get are Vietnam veterans and sociologically they are not the same as the World War II vets or the Korean War vets. And there are some issues that are specific to them and we want to accommodate that,” said Knight.
The new Moses Hall will not be ready until 2019. But Kloehn says veterans appreciate the support.
“It’s very important because the veterans take care of the people and now it’s time for the people to take care of the veterans,” said Kloehn.
The last new building at King went up in 1993.
While at the veterans home, the governor also signed other veteran-related bills. Those include creating a special license plate with the words “In God We Trust” on them. The $15 fee from those plates goes into the state veterans trust fund.