Eastern NC Lawmakers Praise House-Passed Bill to Support Military Families and Veterans

Raleigh, NC – House Majority Leader John Bell(R-Wayne), Sen. Don Davis (D-Pitt), Rep. Chris Humphrey (R-Lenoir) and Sen. Jim Perry (R-Lenoir) praised House passage of the NC Military and Veteran Act of 2019 (SB 230). The bipartisan bill, which passed the House on Wednesday, takes several important steps to further improve the care and support of North Carolina military families and veterans.

Among other things,the bipartisan legislation would allow excused absences for military children,provide in-state tuition for more military veterans and expand college scholarships for children of veterans. The bill now goes back to the Senate for a concurrence vote.

“This legislation will go a long way in further solidifying North Carolina as the ‘Nation's Most Military Friendly State,’” the lawmakers said in a joint statement. “In Eastern North Carolina, we are the proud home to some of our nation’s most premier military installations, and we have worked hard to make sure these service members and their families get the support they need and deserve.

"By providing additional time for children to spend with their parents before they go or comeback from a combat zone and expanding access to college for veterans and their children, these are just a few small things we can do to show our appreciation for those who have sacrificed so much for our freedom.”

The NC Military and Veteran Act does the following:

- Allows students at least 2 excuseda bsences per school year to spend time with parents who are called to duty, on leave or returning from deployment in a combat zone.

- Expands the definition of"child" for the purposes of determining college scholarship eligibility for children of veterans to include stepchildren, adopted children,and certain illegitimate children.

- Provides in-state tuition for more military veterans even if they haven't met the 12-month residency requirement.

- Requires a study if a new state law has helped improve the ability for veterans and military spouses to obtain certain occupational licenses.

Requires the Department of Social Services to collect data on military affiliation during an abuse, neglect or dependency assessment and to report any substantiated abuse to the military.