Governor Patrick Announces New Plan for Helping MA Veterans Find Employment

Posted by erik devaney

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Governor Deval Patrick recently announced a new, comprehensive plan for increasing employment opportunities and services for veterans in the Bay State.

One of the principal components of the plans is that the Commonwealth will be partnering with major trade associations to encourage the hiring of veterans. These associations include the Massachusetts Association of Chamber of Commerce Executives (MACCE), the Greater Boston Chamber of Commerce, and the Retailers Association of Massachusetts.

Further initiatives outlined in the plan include:

  • Partnering with the Massachusetts Registrar of Motor Vehicles to provide an optional veteran designation on the front of all driver’s licenses and state identification cards to increase awareness about available resources and benefits.
  • The collaboration of military, state, and community resources to establish a Military Child Educational Awareness Program.
  • Create a Student Veterans sub-committee of the Governor’s Advisory Council on Veterans’ Services.
  • Create a Veterans’ Re-Employment and Training sub-committee of the Governor’s Advisory Council on Veterans’ Services.

Governor Patrick, image courtesy of

“Massachusetts is proud to support our veterans, and these new initiatives will increase access to jobs and critical services,” said Governor Patrick. “By partnering with the business community, we can encourage and increase the hiring of more Massachusetts veterans, including those returning from Iraq and Afghanistan.”

Governor Patrick plans to file legislation as part of the Fiscal Year 2013 budget proposal to provide the Massachusetts Manufacturing Extension Partnership (MassMEP) with $500,000 in funding to train and employ veterans who qualify for state benefits. Through the Mobile Outreach Skills Training (M.O.S.T) program, MassMEP also plans to immediately use $200,000 in existing state funds to offer a new training class for veterans during this fiscal year.

Governor Patrick’s Administration will also offer Massachusetts businesses an option to post an official state logo designating the company as a “Proud Employer of Massachusetts Veterans,” if the company employs a certain percentage of their workforce with Massachusetts veterans.

Along with partnering with the business community, Governor Patrick is proposing up to $2.86 million in his upcoming budget proposal for Fiscal Year 2013. In addition to proposing $500,000 in funding to MassMEP, Governor Patrick will file legislation that will allow the Administration to:

  • Provide $700,000 per year to support the Department of Public Health’s Veterans Quit Smoking Patch Initiative, building on the success of two previous rounds of patch giveaways to veterans and their families.
  • Fully fund the annuities account so that DVS can eliminate the pro-rating on the first payments to 100% disabled veterans and gold star parents.
  • Reimburse cities and towns 100% for the homeless shelter benefits DVS provides, relieving the burden on cities and towns that currently cover the cost.
  • Extend the property tax abatement for Gold Star Spouses. Currently spouses are only exempt for the first five years with a cap of $2,500 for the remaining years; however, this bill, estimated to cost $135,000 in the first year, would make the tax exemption permanent until the Gold Star dies or remarries.

The comprehensive plan also includes a $325,000, two year, annual grant to DVS that will provide community based outreach treatment to veterans in the Metro Boston area, which complements Lt. Governor Murray’s work as chair of the Governor’s Advisory Council on Veterans’ Services, Interagency Council on Substance Abuse and Prevention, and the Interagency Council on Housing and Homelessness.

Awarded by the U.S. Department of Veterans’ Affairs, the annual grant will provide support to veterans who are in need of psychiatric evaluation, mental health services, peer support, and emergency shelter.  With this funding, four Peer Outreach Specialists will be hired to work at DVS and perform one-on-one outreach to homeless veterans.

Related posts:

  1. Governor Patrick Announces Seven Appointments to UMass Board of Trustees
  2. Governor Patrick Seeks to Pump Up MA Economy Through Trade Mission to Brazil
  3. Patrick-Murray Administration Awards $10 Million in Youth Violence Prevention and Trauma Response Training Funding to Municipalities
  4. Governor Patrick Breaks Ground on Massachusetts College of Liberal Arts Center for Science and Innovation
  5. Governor Patrick Busted During Massachusetts Car-Free Week

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Posted by erik devaney on Nov 3 2011. Filed under Politics. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0. You can leave a response or trackback to this entry

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