The New York State Senate today passed two bills that help veterans with disabilities afford their homes and also guide the state in developing services for aging veterans. The measures provide property tax exemptions for certain veterans classified as 100-percent disabled and create a new advisory panel to help formulate effective policies and programs that address aging veterans’ issues.
A bill (S4627B) sponsored by Senator Andrew Lanza (R-C-I, Staten Island) allows municipalities to offer a full property tax exemption for a veteran classified as 100 percent disabled or their unmarried surviving spouse when the veteran’s injuries were sustained as a result of military service. Veterans would be eligible for the exemption by having served in a combat theater or combat zone of operations documented with a United States campaign ribbon or service medal, armed forces expeditionary medal, navy expeditionary medal, marine corps expeditionary medal, or global war on terrorism expeditionary medal.
Senator Lanza said, “This tax exemption is an appropriate and meaningful way to support those who have served our country and sacrificed to protect our freedom and way of life. Providing a worthwhile means to help disabled veterans maintain home ownership allows us to honor their sacrifices and show our gratitude for their service. Our veterans deserve no less.”
The Senate also passed a bill (S877) sponsored by Senator Mike Ranzenhofer (R-C-I, Amherst) to create a Veterans Gerontological Advisory Committee. The Committee would advise the Director of the state Office of the Aging on policies, programs, services and trends affecting New York's aging veteran population. Members would include experts on aging, senior, and veteran issues including medical researchers, practitioners, academia, and veterans organizations.
Senator Ranzenhofer said, “I am pleased that this important legislation has passed the Senate. The Veterans Gerontological Advisory Committee is critical to ensuring that our aging veterans receive the care they deserve. At no cost to the taxpayers, the advisory committee will be able to provide crucial recommendations aimed at improving the care and support available to aging veterans. New York has the second highest veteran population in the United States, and older veterans represent a population whose needs and problems pervade multiple geriatrics and gerontology disciplines. I hope the Assembly will follow the Senate’s lead and pass this important legislation.”
The bills will be sent to the Assembly.