By Marty Griffin

NEWCASTLE, Pa. (KDKA) – What a difference a dollar can make.

A local veteran learned that the hard way when one dollar led to his V-A pension being cut. And it was a significant cut.

“It makes me ashamed to call myself an American. I’m ashamed to be a veteran,” said 74-year-old Newcastle resident Carl Robertson.

Robertson is a Vietnam veteran. He volunteered to serve on a Naval Intelligence ship during the war. A month ago the VA sent Robertson a letter he describes as “disturbing.”

carl robertson Get Marty: $1 Leads To Veteran’s Pension Being Cut

Photo Credit: KDKA

Under a banner headlined “What we have been told”, the VA writes “We thought you were receiving Social Security for yourself of $798. Now Social Security tells us that you have been receiving Social Security of $799 per month.”

“A dollar. They are sending me a letter over a dollar,” Robertson said.

Turns out the dollar made a difference. Carl Robertson’s pension payment was reduced by nearly four hundred dollars per month.

“It’s devastating,” Robertson said. “It’s all I live on.”

Get Marty reached out to the VA. The agency responded immediately. The VA says the pension is a supplement to a veterans “other” monthly income. It is designed to bring a vets income up to what congress determines to be a livable wage. The VA says the extra dollar a month income pushed Robertson into a higher income bracket.

“That’s just plain ridiculous,” says Robertson.

The VA did tell Get Marty it looked closely at his records and additional documents. As a result, the veteran will be getting a nearly five thousand dollar retroactive payment from the VA.

Robertson is pleased. However, he believes the VA owes him more money.

Meantime, the VA says it has apologized to Robertson.

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