WASHINGTON, D.C. - After the Department of Justice dropped its appeal of a federal court decision, disability benefits may now be awarded to Navy veterans who claim exposure to cancer-causing chemical defoliants while serving in the seas within 12 miles of Vietnam.

Nobles County Veterans Service Officer Bill Brockberg said Monday he has had two reversals from previously denied clams from Navy veterans because of the change in the Department of Veterans Affairs rating policy. He now expects to receive more requests to reopen claims from Blue Water Navy veterans.

The decision could impact up to 90,000 veterans nationwide who have petitioned VA officials for disability payouts for years.

Vietnam veterans who would like more information are invited to contact Brockberg at 295-5292.