UTICA – State Senator Joseph Griffo announced today that legislation he has co-sponsored that will allow all veterans to purchase additional state pension credits has been signed by the Governor.
The legislation was signed into law on Tuesday, so now all military service men and women can be eligible to purchase additional pension credits after completing at least five years of public service for New York State. Previously under state law, these pension credits could only be received by veterans who served in certain conflicts, like World War II, the Vietnam War and the Korean War.
This measure (S7160) has been vetoed twice by the Governor, so Senator Griffo is pleased to see the bill finally enacted to ensure that all veterans are recognized for their active service, regardless of where they participated in military operations.
“I am proud to have stood with our veterans in supporting this legislation to honor those men and women who courageously risked their lives to defend our nation,” said Senator Griffo, R-Rome. “It’s one thing to say we stand by our veterans, but it means so much more to actually show how much their service means to all of us by implementing a program that benefits their lives. Finally, the Governor has come around to join the Senate in doing what needed to be done to express this proper appreciation for our veterans.”
In New York State, this legislation will encourage veterans to continue their public service in careers such as teachers, firefighters, police officers, or municipal and state employees.
Previously, troops that have participated in active combat in Somalia, Bosnia, Haiti, Kosovo, Afghanistan, Pakistan and the Korean Demilitarized Zone were not eligible for this military service credit. Additionally, military personnel aiding in any of these operations from other locations, such as Israel, Turkey and Germany, or veterans who served around the world in dangerous situations during the Cold War, have also been excluded from receiving this credit.
“All of these military men and women have answered the call to duty and shown their willingness to sacrifice themselves for the sake of protecting our nation and its interests, so every veteran’s honorable service should be recognized with the same level of gratitude,” Griffo added.