Governor Jay Nixon toured parts of the state this week signing new legislation into law that benefits veterans living in Missouri. Click to hear KMZU’s Mike Stone talk with Senator David Pearce about the new laws.
Senator David Pearce of Warrensburg applauds the Governor’s signatures and says laws like House Bill 159, which waives certain school district residency requirements for children of a deployed parent, are ideas from veterans and active service members alike. “Well, all of these are common sense things. They don’t really require a lot of money, it’s just seeing what the needs are. And one of the good things about this, is they’ve come from veterans themselves. Or, from those who are active duty guard and reserve, in their course of serving in other parts of the country… and said ‘let’s try this in Missouri.’ So, that’s where a lot of these ideas came from.” Pearce goes on.
Senate Bill 186 contains provisions on medals and releasing remains of veterans while SB 118 allows for more veterans’ treatment courts in the state.
Senate Bill 116, requiring the formation of an electronic registration and voting system, will also allow for an extended time period for counting military ballots.
Senator David Pearce of Warrensburg also touts SB 106 which deals with professional licenses. “When someone is deployed and they have a professional license in the state of Missouri, a CPA, Beautician or Nursing license…if it expires while they’re deployed, then they have a certain grace period when they return back to the United States,” Pearce said. “And also, in the military if you receive certain training for a nursing program, when you come back and if you decide to go to school at our higher education institutions, those colleges should accept some of those credits that someone might have received in the military, because military training is some of the best in the world,” he adds.
Other veterans’ legislation includes Senate Bill 117 and House Bill 702. SB 117 will qualify veterans for lower tuition at public colleges and universities in Missouri immediately after leaving service and HB 702 is designed to help the state treasurer identify owners of unclaimed military medals. The treasurer will also be able to create photos and list information for the public. This in turn will increase the likelihood of returning the property to veterans or their family members.