Governor Pat McCrory was joined by veterans, active duty military members and legislators at the Department of Military and Veterans Affairs today as he signed legislation to support veterans in North Carolina.
"This bill is about making sure we are doing everything we can at the state level to support military members, veterans and their families," said Governor McCrory. "Allowing people to voluntarily indicate if they are a veteran can help us better serve those who have fought to defend our state and nation."
Senate Bill 105 directs the Secretary of Revenue to add space to income tax forms so a person can voluntarily indicate if they or their spouse are a veteran. The Department of Revenue will compile that information and annually report the number of veterans filing tax returns in North Carolina to the Department of Military and Veterans Affairs. This information can help the state determine information on how veterans and their families reside in North Carolina to offer insight on services or resources veterans in North Carolina may require.
More than 770,000 veterans reside in all of North Carolina's 100 counties. To better serve veterans, active duty military and their families in North Carolina, Governor McCrory created the Department of Military and Veterans Affairs. The governor has also initiated in-state tuition for veterans at North Carolina community colleges and universities, funded Veteran Treatment Courts to ensure veterans get the unique care they deserve, and signed legislation to give credit for military experience when veterans apply for positions like law enforcement and truck drivers. Since 2013, these initiatives have helped cut the unemployment rate among veterans in half.
Governor McCrory has also signed the following bills:
Senate Bill 886 - Establishes survivorship benefits for a member killed in the line of duty for the North Carolina Firefighters' and Rescue Squad Workers' Pension Fund. The law honors firefighter Captain Bradley Long who was killed in the line of duty in June 2016.
Senate Bill 865 - Makes administrative changes to the State Health Plan for teachers and state employees statutes; increases the number of local governments able to participate in the State Health Plan; and makes changes to State Health Plan premiums paid by local government employees.
Senate Bill 815 - Authorizes the Longleaf School of the Arts to elect to participate in the State Health Plan.
Senate Bill 667 - Makes omnibus changes to election laws.
Senate Bill 508 - Makes various amendments to the bail bond, collection agency, and criminal mediation laws.
House Bill 1080 - Establishes the Achievement School District (ASD), a State-level and statewide school administrative unit for low-performing schools from across the state. The bill passed with bipartisan support and authorizes the creation of innovation zones for local school administrative units (LEA) that transfer a qualifying school into the ASD.
House Bill 742 - Clarifies the requirements for initial licensure as a professional engineer and allows North Carolina Public Schools to reduce costs by allowing the employment of licensed school maintenance plumbers.
House Bill 483 - Makes changes to land-use regulatory laws to support multi-phased development.