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Senate Passes Veterans’ bill to fund Redwood Falls Cemetery, re-enlistment bonuses, housing options, and service bonuses

ST. PAUL, MN —With unanimoussupport, the Minnesota Senate on Thursday passed legislation that makes critical investments into Veteran services across the state. This bill includes provisions that provide post-service resources, expand housing options, and fund enlistment and re-enlistment bonuses. The sole focus of this bill is to meet the needs of Veterans across Minnesota.

“I thank all our brave men and women who have served in the armed forces,” Senator Gary Dahms (R-Redwood Falls) said. “This legislation will go a long way in helping support our veterans across the state. We owe this bill to our veterans who have sacrificed so much for our country.”

 

Senator Dahms’ provision to fund operations at the Redwood Falls State Veterans Cemetery was included in the bill. The 77-acre cemetery will serve as the final resting place for roughly 22,000 veterans and their spouses.

Notably, this bill includes funding for upgrades and completion of the three new veterans’ homes across the state. Last year, homes in Bemidji, Preston, and Montevideo secured federal funding necessary to complete construction. Funding in this bill serves as the final capstone to make these homes operational by providing upgrades and improvements to strengthen the structures, and medical equipment and internal fixtures needed to make the homes operational.

To compete with the modern workforce, the bill also provides necessary funding for an enlistment and re-enlistment bonus program, which will serve as an incentive for retaining and recruiting servicemembers.

The bill includes language to honor the historical tradition of providing bonuses to service members that served during global conflicts. With the end of the Global War on Terror last year, the bill allocates $24 million for post-war bonuses to Minnesota Veterans that served after September 11, 2001.



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