PROVIDENCE – Gov. Lincoln D. Chafee and members of the General Assembly are backing legislation designed to improve benefits and services for veterans and their families.
The legislative package expected to be announced last week totals nine bills introduced in both chambers of the assembly. The bills are designed to assist with the reintegration of veterans back into society through increased access to benefits, state-purchasing preferences for veteran-owned businesses, increased access to educational opportunities and streamlined availability of essential medical and human service benefits.
The legislation includes the Veterans Strategic Service Plan, which requires the R.I. Division of Veterans Affairs to work in conjunction with the R.I. Statewide Planning Division to convene a variety of state agencies to develop, maintain and annually update a five-year, department-wide Veterans Strategic Service Plan. Another bill would make it easier for military-service members and their spouses to obtain certification and licenses to perform regulated professional services.
Full information about the bills can be found at www.rilin.state.ri.us/. •