Pennsylvania closer to honoring vets on licenses

By Keith Goble, Land Line state legislative editor | Monday, October 22, 2012

Pennsylvania truckers and others who have served their country are one step closer to getting access to a simple form of ID showing their military service.

The Pennsylvania Senate voted unanimously to advance a bill to the governor that would entitle military veterans to a special designation on their driver’s licenses, or identification cards. House lawmakers already approved the bill – HB2428 – by unanimous consent.

Sponsored by Rep. Jeff Pyle, R-Armstrong, the bill would require the Pennsylvania Department of Transportation to make the designation available to persons who have served in the U.S. Armed Forces or National Guard and who were discharged or released from such service under conditions other than dishonorable.

The program is expected to take 12 to 18 months to implement. At that time, people renewing their driver’s licenses can request that the designation be included.

“The cost of the regular license renewal will remain the same, but there is no additional cost to the veteran for the special designation mark,” Pyle said in a statement.

Advocates also point out that the designation will simplify the process for veterans to apply for government services or qualify for discounts offered by stores and restaurants.

A fiscal note attached to the bill puts the expense to the state at $660,000 for the first full year. Annual expenses would be about $40,000. Costs would be covered through the Pennsylvania Veterans Trust Fund.

To view other legislative activities of interest for Pennsylvania, click here.

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