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Expert Testimony Supports Manning's Bill to Help Vets with Emergency Expenses

March 23, 2022
Nathan H. Manning News
COLUMBUS—The Ohio Senate Local Government and Elections Committee heard compelling testimony yesterday in support of State Senator Nathan Manning's (R-North Ridgeville) bill to provide help for veterans facing urgent and necessary expenses. The bill would allow county veterans service offices to use a country credit card to pay for temporary and necessary assistance for veterans.

Jacob Smith, Executive Director of Lorain County Veteran Service Commission, explained how the bill makes a strictly administrative change that would result in enormous benefits for veterans with unexpected needs.

"First, in an emergency, a credit card allows the county Veterans Service Commission to react quickly to meet the needs of our clients. For example, if a veteran's house burns down, the Veterans Commission could utilize a credit card to arrange for emergency services while providing other needed items immediately. Second, suppose a veteran requests items such as clothing to start a new job. In that case, a credit card allows for immediate purchases. The ability of our agency to obtain items such as work boots or uniforms allows a client to re-enter the workforce quickly."

Lorain County Commissioner David Moore, who also provided proponent testimony, believes that the administrative change in Senate Bill 287 presents an opportunity for veteran service offices to better respond to the needs of veterans in their county. “Other county agencies have similar authority; as a County Commissioner, this seems to be a common sense approach for the veterans in my county.”

Senator Manning echoed those sentiments. "I am proud to sponsor this bill because it can make a big difference for many of Ohio's veterans who have sacrificed so much for our country," he said. "It provides greater flexibility for county veteran service offices to utilize county funds to meet a veteran’s necessary needs such as housing, clothing, and work equipment."

Senate Bill 287 is currently up for consideration in the Senate Local Government and Elections Committee.