Press Release from Sen. Lowe Finney, D-Jackson, and Sen. Tim Barnes, D-Adams, March 26, 2010:
Legislation would expand hiring benefit to all Tennessee veterans
NASHVILLE – This week the General Assembly passed a bill by Sen. Lowe Finney (D-Jackson) and Sen. Tim Barnes (D-Adams) to help Tennessee veterans obtain jobs by expanding preference-points eligibility to all veterans.
“I have watched many great men and women depart for service in some of the most dangerous places in the world,” Finney said. “When our veterans come home after serving our country, they deserve the opportunity to support their families.”
Under the bill (SB3857/HB3819), preference points for civil service position applicants would be expanded to all honorably discharged Tennessee veterans. Preference points are used in civil service hiring to give a leg up to veterans looking for jobs after leaving the armed forces.
Under current law, veterans from only certain conflicts are awarded preference points.
All honorably discharged Tennessee veterans would receive two preference points under the bill, with increased points given to veterans of wars and those with service-connected disabilities. The preference points will be awarded to veterans who are registered Tennessee voters or have been Tennessee residents for at least two years.
Spouses of veterans disabled or killed in the line of duty would also receive preference points under the bill.
The bill would cover veterans of the current Iraq and Afghanistan wars, including members of the 101st Airborne in Clarksville and the 1/230th Air Cavalry Squadron of the Tennessee Army National Guard in Jackson.
“Our veterans have sacrificed everything to serve our country and keep us safe. We must support them in the same way they have supported us,” Barnes said.
The House passed the bill Monday and the Senate followed suit on Wednesday. The bill will go to Gov. Phil Bredesen for his signature next week.