Gov. Snyder takes interim tag off director of vets agency

Photo - Michigan Department of Military and Veterans Affairs

LANSING, Mich. (AP) – The interim director of Michigan’s Veterans Affairs Agency is dropping the temporary tag.

James Redford was named director Wednesday, two months after he replaced Jeff Barnes in the wake of a troubling audit at the Grand Rapids Home for Veterans.

Redford is a former Kent County judge and was Gov. Rick Snyder’s chief lawyer before moving to the agency in February. He served in the Navy for 28 years.

Snyder says Redford has quickly addressed problems in the department.

Barnes, Snyder’s former campaign manager, left government last Friday. Despite his ouster as director in February, he stayed on the state payroll as an adviser. His annual salary, about $148,000, didn’t change during that time.

An audit of the Grand Rapids Home for Veterans found inadequate care and other problems.

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