The New York State Senate unanimously passed multiple bills recently that expanded on veterans’ benefits. Included in the package is a bill sponsored by Senator John Brooks that adds property tax exemptions for active duty military.
“We owe veterans a debt of gratitude that can never truly be repaid,” said Brooks, who resides in Seaford. “Helping these heroes rejoin civilian life is a top priority for me, my committee, and the entire senate majority.”
The legislation was passed on the annual 10th Mountain Division and Fort Drum Day, which honors the contributions made by the men and women of the North Country’s military installation to the region and state.
“We must do our part to support active-duty service members as they serve our country,” said Senator Kevin Thomas, who represents Old Bethpage. “This bill recognizes the invaluable contributions and sacrifices made by our military personnel by providing financial relief to them and their families.”
Other bills passed by the senate includes expanding licensed veterans employment, establishing a toll-free help and crisis line, increasing the tax exemption if two veterans live in the same household, allowing full-time undergraduate students at state-run institutions to get academic credit for their military service, eliminating the provision that a veteran must serve in a time of war to receive credits for civil service and allowing military voters to vote in school district election by returning absentee ballots over postal mail.
Senator Jim Gaughran, who represents parts of Plainview, was proud to have a hand in moving these bills forward. The New York State Assembly will vote on these bills next.
“These bills affirm our commitment to providing military service members full resources and opportunities that they have earned,” said Gaughran. “It is our duty to support our active duty personnel during their time of service and continue to support our veterans when they return home and transition back to civilian life.”
“I am proud that the senate has acted on this legislation to ensure the security of our service members at home, so they can ensure ours abroad,” Thomas said.