Sen. Foley, Suffolk Vets Call on Gov. Paterson to Sign Foley's Veterans Foreclosure Bill

Brian X. Foley

July 14, 2009

Legislation would allow veterans of Iraq & Afghanistan wars in Suffolk to reclaim homes lost to foreclosure 

Senator Brian X. Foley (D – Blue Point) called on Governor David Paterson to sign his veterans foreclosure bill, which passed in the state senate by a 62-0 vote. The legislation helps veterans in Suffolk County whose homes have been foreclosed on during deployment to Iraq or Afghanistan.

If signed into law, the legislation will allow local governments in Suffolk County to waive penalties, interests payments, and fees that are owed by military personnel or their spouses and pave the way for veterans to reclaim foreclosed property.

Standing with veterans outside American Legion Post 269 in Patchogue, Foley commended the bi-partisan support his legislation has received and urged Governor Paterson to sign the bill as quickly  as possible.

“Our veterans are real-life heroes who put their lives on the line for our freedoms. The least we can do is make sure they have homes to come back to when they return from the battlefield,” said Foley. “This legislation will help veterans of the Iraq and Afghanistan wars deal with this terrible foreclosure crisis. I am grateful for the bi-partisan support this bill has garnered so far and hope Governor Paterson will move swiftly in making this law a reality.”

The legislation will apply to veterans who are deployed to Iraq or Afghanistan for at least six months. In the unfortunate case of a veteran being killed in action, their spouse will also be eligible to benefit from this bill.

"This legislation will provide invaluable help to our returning veterans from Iraq and Afghanistan who are trying to reclaim homes that have been lost due to economic hardships faced as a result of service to our country," said Dennis Sullivan, Commander of Suffolk County Veterans of Foreign Wars (VFW).

The legislation has also passed in the assembly, where it was sponsored by Assemblyman Robert Sweeney (D – Lindenhurst). "As veterans of the Iraq and Afghanistan wars come home, it is critical that we support them in every way possible,” said Sweeney. “The veterans' foreclosure bill will help veterans reclaim homes lost to foreclosure and make their transition into civilian life a little smoother. I join veterans across Suffolk County in urging the governor to sign this bill into law.”

“The men and women who bravely serve our country when called for active duty deserve our support when they return home,” said Assemblywoman Patricia Eddington (D – Medford), who co-sponsored the bill in the assembly.  “Military members may face greater financial hardships - including the risk of losing their home - and in a difficult situation like this, the last thing they should face is burdensome penalties and fees from the county.”

Town of Brookhaven Supervisor Mark Lesko expressed his support for the legislation, calling the bill “a giant step forward,” and thanked our veterans for their service to the country. “This is fantastic legislation that is much needed at this time. We will take care of our heroes thanks to the leadership of Senator Foley.”

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