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New Law Establishes Pennsylvania Veterans’ Trust Fund

Fund set up to support veterans' programs.

 

Pennsylvania is home to more than 900,000 military veterans. Their tremendous service to our nation stands as a point of pride for our commonwealth. It takes a special person to be a soldier, a sailor, a Marine, a member of the Air Force or a member of the Coast Guard. How many people would want to or be able to face the threats and uncertainties that our service members have and still do on a daily basis?

We have an obligation to these brave men and women who have fought to keep our nation safe and free to ensure they have the necessary assistance and support when they return home from duty and adjust back into their everyday lives. 

That is why I recently voted for a new law that will help generate additional dollars for support services for our veterans through private donations.

Act 194 of 2012 creates a new Pennsylvania Veterans’ Trust Fund (PVTF) to supplement state appropriations for veterans’ programs. The legislation provides additional dollars through voluntary donations to enhance current programs, services and benefits our state already offers, without asking taxpayers to contribute significant new funding.

Funding for the Trust will come from donations made via a voluntary check-off box on driver's license renewals and vehicle registrations, proceeds from the sale of special license plates for veterans and other motorists who wish to honor their service, as well as other private donations. The Trust will fund a variety of programs, such as grants for veterans' organizations, support for county veterans' programs and housing assistance for veterans.

To ensure this proposal creates the greatest benefit for our veterans, the legislation also supports new partnerships between the state and a number of charities and veterans' service organizations. It is important to note that money from the Pennsylvania Veterans’ Trust Fund is not intended to replace existing government funding.

State, federal and county governments offer a number of helpful resources for our veterans, and it is important to ensure that all men and women who have served our country are aware of the benefits available to them. A list of helpful informational links is available on my website under the Resources/Links tab at http://senatorbrowne.com/veterans.htm.

Additional information is also available by contacting the Pennsylvania Department of Military and Veterans Affairs online at www.dmva.state.pa.us or calling toll-free 1-800-547-2838.

It is vital that our men and women in uniform know that they have our deepest gratitude and appreciation. This program allows us a way to show it.

This post is contributed by a community member. The views expressed in this blog are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Patch Media Corporation. Everyone is welcome to submit a post to Patch. If you'd like to post a blog, go here to get started.

Allan Bach November 10, 2012 at 08:50 PM
I think it's a shame that we Veterans have to rely on a driver's license application check box and other voluntary donations to fund any benefit for serving. Most of the freedoms we have are due to some Veteran who gave part or all of his/her life in service to this great country. Sorry, Pat Browne doesn't get a hand shake from me for this effort.
Bruce Wlazelek November 12, 2012 at 02:32 AM
Those in uniform deserve this law and better. My only question is how much of the money will go to the Allentown arena, or has Mr. Brown finally moved on.
Elizabeth DelBacco November 12, 2012 at 04:50 AM
more welfare for the uneducated military "volunteers"
John Reynard November 12, 2012 at 01:27 PM
I'm glad PA veterans have something available to them and I thank State Senator Browne for letting us know about this law. However, I'd like to see better laws in place which have funding from the General Fund rather than a very small amount from check-off boxes. 1 in 12 homeless people in PA is a veteran. We can do better than that for our veterans.
Carol November 15, 2012 at 04:46 PM
The "new partnerships" that the Senator refers to are probably run by his wife, family, and donors.

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