Eddyville, KY

Opinion

Bill aims to support women veterans

Wednesday, March 16, 2016 - Updated: 2:13 PM
By Jody Norwood

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.


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