New Jersey Senate Republicans

08/23/2019 | Press release | Distributed by Public on 08/23/2019 11:54

Pennacchio Bill Expanding Veteran Benefits to Discharged National Guard Members Signed

Legislation by Senator Joe Pennacchio making discharged members of the New Jersey National Guard eligible for county veterans' benefits is now law.

Sen. Joe Pennacchio's legislation making discharged members of the New Jersey National Guard eligible for county veterans' benefits is now law. (Flickr)

Pennacchio's measure, S-2538, allows former Guard members discharged with an NGB-22 to access veterans' benefits, including a county veteran identification card and a 'veteran' designation on their driver's license. Previously, a DD-214 form from the military was required.

'For years, National Guard members have had a hard time getting recognition for their service,' said Pennacchio (R-26). 'All veterans, regardless of how they have served our country, deserve access to the benefits they earned. This bill ensures equal access for our valued Guard members to the resources and tools they need to live and thrive at home in New Jersey.'

A county veteran identification card can provide various benefits, including money-saving discounts and special 'veterans only' deals.

'Thousands of National Guard members serve our state and country honorably, and many have been deployed overseas where they served in combat zones,' Pennacchio said. 'The new law makes it clear we are committed to helping all of New Jersey's veterans, not just a select few, for their sacrifices and service.'

Currently, New Jersey has more than 8,000 active National Guard members serving on foreign or domestic missions.