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Money Dispute at USVEI

Some local people feel like they've been taken in after working for months without pay.
ALTOONA, BLAIR COUNTY - Some local people feel like they've been taken in after working for months without pay.

Back in January the United States Veteran’s Educational Institute made a big announcement about a plan to train veterans right here in Altoona. They hired local people to start making it happen, but now some of those people say they haven't been paid. And they don't think that project will ever actually happen.

Joe Hughes took a position with USVEI back in October. He spent about 27 years in the PA National Guard, and he was told he could help veterans in this new organization. He says he signed a contract for a salary, but he quit in January because he never got a paycheck.

Cindy Estep actually left a job of ten years because she wanted to help teach veterans and help one’s with PTSD. She says she wasn't paid either.

Dennis Butts is the chairman of USVEI. He told WTAJ he didn't want to talk about the dispute with former employees. But he did say, "we are on our mission opening the USVEI learning center.

We are doing 24 major cyber security courses there this spring for 10 weeks each and are still doing the college.  We're also opening the new 165 room culinary academy in Johnstown for the homeless women veterans.  I'm focused on the positive."

But Joe Hughes and Cindy Estep are worried with the projects going forward other people will end up working without ever getting paid, like they did.
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