WASHINGTON D.C. -- U.S. Sen. Patty Murray of Washington has introduced a new bill this week to help veterans get better access to mental health care. The Mental Health ACCESS Act of 2012 would require the Department of Defense to do a better job identifying and treating soldiers with post traumatic stress disorder and other mental health issues. Michael Novotny with the Bellingham Veteran Affairs center says many veterans today wait too long to get help... Novotny says about 10 percent of Whatcom County residents have served in the military. He says their staff of five at the Bellingham V.A. Center sees about 4,000 visits from service members each year. Local veterans in need of counseling can contact the Bellingham Vet Center at 360-733-9226.