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2013 State Legislative Update

Mike McElhiney
Legislative Director, MDVA

MN FlagOnce again another budget year has come to an end - but not without challenges.  The Legislature literally finished their work in the eleventh hour - minutes before midnight on May 20 – and achieved much in order to keep Minnesota moving ahead. It was a strong year for Veterans.  Initiatives that were necessary and supported by the Governor and the legislature was able to put the final linchpin in several Veterans initiatives.  Governor Dayton delivered a budget that invests in Minnesota Veterans, ensuring they receive the education, opportunities, and benefits they earned through their service.

Veteran-Related Highlights:
» Minneapolis Veterans Home. The budget includes $18.9 million in the bonding bill to complete Phase 3 of the Minneapolis Veterans Home replacement project. With this state funding, the Minnesota Department of Veterans Affairs hopes to leverage $35.2 million in federal funds through a compflagetitive grant process and will provide high-quality skilled nursing services for Minnesota’s Veterans. 

» Expansion of the Minnesota GI Bill. With an additional $1 million investment, the Minnesota GI Bill program will expand to include all generations of veterans – not just those serving on or after 9/11. This expansion will help ensure all Minnesota veterans have access to the education and training they need to get good-paying jobs.

» One-on-One Help for Veterans. The budget provides $2 million in increased grant funding for County Veteran Services Offices, which help veterans and their families obtain the benefits and services they earned through military service.


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