Rancho Cordova detox center CEO begs VA ‘please pay your bill’

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RANCHO CORDOVA, Calif. (KTXL) -- This Veterans Day there was a plea for help from a local center that may soon have to close its doors.

D&A Detox Center Inc. in Rancho Cordova said the Department of Veteran Affairs has not been paying them for services for the past year. The financial strain is forcing them to cut services vital for homeless veterans.

“Because I was withdrawing and abusing crystal meth and heroin, it took four days just for me to be able to put sentences together,” said veteran Victor Johnson.

Without hyperbole, Johnson said without D&A “I’d be dead.” He has been clean and sober since checking in there on Feb. 1.

The Coast Guard veteran lives in one of the eight sober living homes adjacent to the center’s offices off Folsom Boulevard.

“The problem is me,” Johnson told FOX40. “I have a hard time living in your world without drugs and alcohol, and that’s what I’m learning now. Through the program, I’ve had recoveries in my past but never under that knowledge.”

However, Johnson may soon be one of the last veterans to get clean at the detox center. Three months ago, the center closed its detox facility and the treatment center may go next.

“I’ve drained my own personal savings accounts because I didn’t want to see it close,” said D&A CEO Zelda Troutman.

Troutman said she has funded the detox center for a year because the VA owes her more than $37,000 for previous services rendered.

“We detoxed them and then when we were done detoxing them we billed the VA,” Troutman explained.

But she said those bills have not been paid and some of them are now more than a year old.

“The VA does not work fast,” she said.

In that same year, D&A’s founder and Troutman’s husband, David, passed away.

A few months ago, she reached out to Congressman Ami Bera who was able to get the VA to send one check.

But Troutman said without the full amount, the detox center cannot operate and she can’t bay the bills.

“I’m asking you, I’m begging you, please pay your bill,” she said. “I want to open these doors and help the guys that ended up on the streets. Please.”

Johnson said D&A charges less than half what other detox centers do and private donations are few and far between.

“If there’s somebody out there that has an extra 10 or 20 bucks that wants to donate it, donate it to D&A and the money will be put to good use,” Johnson told FOX40.

FOX40 reached out to the VA to ask why the payments were not being processed. However, due to the Veterans Day holiday, there has yet to be a response.

To help D&A Detox Center Inc. go to their GoFundMe charity page.

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