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Posts Tagged ‘Military Families’

S.C. Legislature Approves Seven Bills Aiding Service Members, Veterans

  • August 18, 2015
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A measure establishing a committee to assess the state’s delivery of veterans services was one of seven bills the South Carolina General Assembly approved this year that support service members and their families, and veterans. The veterans services bill directs the committee to study state and local veterans issues, and to recommend legislation to improve the structure, delivery and coordination of veterans services in South Carolina, reported the State. Another measure requires state colleges and universities to charge in-state tuition to veterans as soon as they become residents. The bill waives the requirement that individuals must live in South Carolina for a year to receive in-state tuition …

Barksdale AFB to Consider Opening Charter School

  • August 18, 2015
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Officials at Barksdale Air Force Base are considering opening a charter school, according to D.C. Machen, superintendent of Bossier Parish schools. Only eight military installations in the United States have charter schools, including Naval Air Station Joint Reserve Base New Orleans in Belle Chasse. A charter school could be opened on-base in two years; the local school board would need to approve its charter, reported KTBS. It also would need to admit the children of civilian families, which would require civilians to obtain security clearances …

District Finds Room for Homeless Veterans at Walter Reed

  • August 14, 2015
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Help USA, a national group founded almost 30 years ago by current New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo, plans to renovate a series of single-occupant apartments at the former Walter Reed Army Medical Center, under a deal being negotiated by the Army and the District of Columbia. The project, slated to include 75 efficiency apartments, would be the only component of the city’s redevelopment plan for 66.5 acres at the medical campus aimed at veterans, reported the New York Times. “It’s an iconic setting,” Thomas Hameline, president and CEO of the nonprofit which has launched veterans programs in four states, said of the historic hospital in northwest Washington …

State Lawmakers Eye Military Retirees

  • August 11, 2015
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Maryland and Connecticut this year enacted legislation exempting some or all of military pensions from state income tax, furthering a keen competition among states to attract military retirees. Military retirees are highly desirable, as they typically seek civilian employment, generating income taxes and bolstering the economies of the states they live in, reported Stateline.org. The legislation signed by Maryland Gov. Larry Hogan (R) exempts the first $10,000 of retirement pay from state taxation. Only retirees’ first $5,000 of pay had been exempt previously …

Veterans Court Movement Gains Momentum

  • July 31, 2015
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If there was any doubt as to how far the push for communities to offer veterans treatment courts has come, this week’s national convention at Maryland’s National Harbor provided a resounding answer. About 1,000 judges, mentors, advocates and graduates of veterans courts attended the conference, which devoted a day for court supporters to lobby senators to match $15.5 million in funding recommended by the House for veterans court programs, reported Stars and Stripes. “This is an exciting time for the veterans treatment court movement,” said Melissa Fitzgerald, senior director for Alexandria, Va.-based Justice for Vets, an advocacy group trying to increase the number of veterans courts around the country. “The courts are working and they’re returning healthy veterans to their families and their communities …

Officials Mark 50th Anniversary of Army Community Service

  • July 29, 2015
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At a celebration of the 50th anniversary of Army Community Service last week, Lt. Gen. David Halverson, assistant chief of staff for installation management and commander of Installation Management Command, recounted the initiative’s founder. Lt. Col. Emma Baird changed the Army philosophy about what families mean to the Army and its readiness, he said. Halverson called the year 1965 “a turning point for us,” reported the Army News Service. The need for the program started to become apparent by 1960 when Army family members outnumbered uniformed members for the first time as marriage rates among soldiers soared. After the creation of the All-Volunteer Force in 1973, the Army again reassessed its family programs after recognizing the strong link between a quality force and family support …

Encouraging Signs Revealed in Veteran Employment Survey

  • July 29, 2015
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Transitioning service members and veterans are showing greater confidence in their abilities, a feeling that is shared by employers, according to the results of the latest Veterans Talent Index, a survey sponsored by Monster and Military.com. “Generally, the process of changing attitudes and building confidence in a population tends to be slow,” said Greg Smith, president of Military.com. “However, in four short years, both employers and veterans have done so with great results. Veteran unemployment is down and confidence in their ability to achieve success in the civilian sector is up, thanks to the tireless efforts of many,” Smith said. Employers are hiring veterans because they are the best qualified candidates and because of their prior work experience, not because they served in the military …

Service Providers Strive to End Veteran Homelessness in Chattanooga

  • July 26, 2015
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Nearly a dozen social service agencies supporting the Chattanooga, Tenn., region met last week to coordinate their efforts to end veteran homelessness by next year. Chattanooga is among 75 cities striving to end homelessness among veterans as part of the Zero: 2016 initiative. “We’re going to get veterans housed,” said Donna Maddox, director of Joe Johnson Mental Health Center, reported the Times Free Press. Chattanooga has 80 homeless veterans according to the most recent annual point-in-time count. The city has housed 37 veterans in the past six months …

Legislation Easing Way for Veterans to Access Local Services Reintroduced in Senate

  • July 17, 2015
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Transitioning veterans could more easily gain access to services and benefits available in their communities, such as health care and housing, employment and education assistance, under bipartisan legislation introduced Thursday by Sens. Heidi Heitkamp (D-N.D.), Jerry Moran (R-Kan.), Angus King (I-Maine) and John Boozman (R-Ark.). The Connect with Veterans Act, first introduced last year by Heitkamp, would require the Department of Veterans Affairs to establish a voluntary national directory of veterans that would be available to communities and state veterans affairs departments. Currently there is no mechanism for local governments to contact veterans and transitioning service members who already reside there or plan to relocate to link them with support services …

Education Overhaul Calls for Tracking Military Kids’ Performance

  • July 15, 2015
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Language in the House and Senate versions of legislation to overhaul the No Child Left Behind law would require states for the first time to track the academic progress of military children.
Tracking the performance of military children in school would help policymakers assess whether the nation’s education laws are working, said Sen. Patty Murray (D-Wash.), who sponsored an amendment in committee in April to add a military child identifier to the Senate bill. The House passed its version of the bill replacing the current K-12 education law last week; the Senate is debating its measure this week. Both versions contain language requiring states to collect data on military children …

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