Wednesday, March 16, 2016 - Updated: 2:13 PM
Kentucky is home to an estimated 24,000 female veterans who answered the call to serve their country.
Now, lawmakers have a chance to help pay them back.
Despite videos from the Governor’s Office to the contrary, Kentucky lawmakers are in session and considering a number of bills. Among them is Senate Bill 128.
The bill — sponsored by state senators Albert Robinson and C.B. Embry Jr. — was introduced Jan. 26, where it passed 37-0 and went on to the House.
And that’s where it’s been, waiting for a decision by the Veterans, Military Affairs, & Public Safety Committee.
The bill looks to make a number of changes to how the state addresses the needs of those 24,000 women who served in the military.
According to the copy available through the Legislative Research Commission, SB 128 will perform “outreach to improve women veterans’ awareness of eligibility for federal and state veteran’s services and benefits” in addition to reviewing programs, “research projects and other initiatives designed to” meet their needs.
The bill also calls for “strategic planning concerning benefits and services.”
Its goals will be achieved through creation of a Kentucky Women Veterans Program, a state agency with its own commissioner to make sure it stays specific to the purpose of ensuring women have equitable access to federal and state veteran’s services and benefits.
In other words, it’s advocacy, education, collaboration and facility funding for those women who served.
That’s not a bad thing at all.
But so far, the bill has spent a few weeks in the House committee without a vote, and that is a shame.
There’s nothing to say the committee won’t vote on it, but too often good bills never get before the full body of elected officials on both sides of the chamber.
For those who would like to voice their support of the bill, committee members (listed below with their extension number) may be reached by phoning 502-564-8100.
Chairman Will Coursey (Lyon County’s Sixth House District), Ext. 659
Linda Belcher, Ext. 651
David Floyd , Ext. 664
Jeff Greer, Ext. 603
Tim Moore, Ext. 702
Dean Schamore, Ext. 704
Robert Benvenuti III, Ext. 628
Regina Bunch, Ext. 683
Tom Burch, Ext. 601
Larry Clark, Ext. 699
Leslie Combs, Ext. 669
Tim Couch, Ext. 632
Ron Crimm, Ext. 706
Myron Dossett, Ext. 657
Jim Glenn, Ext. 705
David Hale, Ext. 642
Kenny Imes, Ext. 611
James Kay, Ext. 736
Martha Jane King, Ext. 618
Donna Mayfield, Ext. 630
David Meade, Ext. 661
Terry Mills, Ext. 684
Rick G. Nelson, Ext. 612
Tom Riner, Ext. 606
Rita Smart, Ext. 607
Russell Webber, Ext. 663
Some of these women took out years of their life in service.
Take out a few minutes and call in support of them.