TEMPLE, Texas (AP) -

Leaders of the Texas Veterans Commission say pending claims have almost doubled in two years and more employees are needed.

Executive director Tom Palladino said Texas offices are getting more local calls since the VA began using national centers that instead direct callers online. State officials also cite aging World War II veterans and more Iraq and Afghanistan vets making claims.

Palladino appeared Monday before a Texas Senate panel at a veterans home in Temple.

Commission officials said pending claims in Texas have grown from about 46,000 in July 2010 to nearly 90,000 now.

Sen. Leticia Van de Putte, who chairs the Senate Committee on Veteran Affairs and Military Installations, said Texas needs to earmark more resources to the commission. The agency has nearly 110 counselors to help file claims.