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Governor Jindal Announces New Legislative Proposals

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Governor Jindal Announces New Legislative Proposals to Support Louisiana Veterans

February 20, 2012

At the Grand Opening of the Central Louisiana Veterans Cemetery in Leesville on February 15, Governor Jindal announced two new proposals he will pursue in the 2012 Regular Legislative Session in support of Louisiana veterans.

First, Governor Jindal will propose legislation to allow an official “Veteran” designation on the driver’s licenses for Louisiana veterans. Veterans in Louisiana have no picture ID available for proof of their veteran status, except for a TRICARE veteran’s insurance card available mostly to retired veterans. The Governor said that means most veterans are forced to carry cumbersome paperwork with them to prove their veteran status when applying for jobs or for discounts and services provided by retail stores.

With this legislation, Louisiana will join states like Arkansas, Florida, Georgia, Indiana, Minnesota, North Dakota, and Ohio with laws permitting veterans a designation on their driver’s licenses for proof of their military service. This new designation will also help the state improve outreach to veterans in order to update them regarding services and benefits that may be available. The Governor noted that maintaining an up-to-date database of veteran Louisiana citizens has been a challenge, as expensive mailings for veteran outreach by the state to old addresses has been ineffective.

Governor Jindal said, “This new designation is a simple way to ensure that all of our veterans are recognized for their sacrifices and that they have convenient proof of their service when applying for jobs, making use of veteran discounts, and requesting assistance for benefits. Veterans should not be burdened with red tape to benefit from the services and discounts that they deserve. Additional staffing and funding has been included in our budget.”