Measure to Expand Business Opportunities for Veterans
State Senator Patty Ritchie has announced she is cosponsoring a measure that supports the brave men and women of our armed forces by giving preference for state contracts to businesses owned by disabled veterans.
The measure, (S.2803-B) also known as the “NY Jobs for Heroes” program, is an initiative that would amend the executive law to require state agencies to set a goal of awarding 3 percent of contracts to businesses that are owned by service-disabled veterans.
“After traveling the world in support of our country, many of our veterans decide to settle in New York State—especially in the region that surrounds Fort Drum,” said Senator Ritchie.
“Service-disabled veterans have made the ultimate sacrifice in putting their lives on the line to protect our freedom. The very least we can do to recognize them for their contributions is to stand with them and provide them with the support they need to succeed in their post-military life.”
The legislation mirrors a highly successful federal program and similar legislation that has been enacted in nearly 40 other states. It has repeatedly passed the Senate since its introduction in 2007. It passed both the Senate and Assembly in 2009, but was vetoed by then Governor David Paterson.
In New York State, unemployment among returning veterans is nearly 20 percent, and nearly 8,000 veterans under the age of 30 are without jobs. It’s estimated that one in 7 veterans are self-employed or small business owners.
Cosponsorship of the measure represents Senator Ritchie’s most recent effort to support current members and veterans of our armed services. Earlier this month, a measure Senator Ritchie supported to offer a new tax credit to businesses that hire veterans when they return home from military service went into effect.