2009-11-07 / News

Issue 1 payments about a year away

COLUMBUS – Voters overwhelmingly approved State Issue 1 on Tuesday.

Veterans are expected to start calling county veterans service offices about how to apply for the bonus.

The following information is from the Ohio Department of Veterans Services.

First, the application process has yet to be developed and nobody can predict how much time will pass between voter approval and the mailing of checks. A similar program in Pennsylvania began sending checks to their veterans 18 months after their bonus plan was established.

The following steps must be done before the bonuses are mailed to our qualified veterans.

1. The Issue One resolution will not take effect until the Ohio Secretary of State certifies the election results.

2. The Issue One resolution, states the Ohio Department of Veterans Services (DVS) “…shall adopt rules…including rules regarding the amounts to which beneficiaries are entitled, residency requirements…and any other rules necessary…”

3. The Ohio Joint Committee on Agency Rule Review (J-CARR) must review the DVS rules and work with DVS to make changes and/or adopt additional rules.

4. The Ohio Public Facilities Commission “…shall proceed to issue and sell, from time to time, bonds or other obligations of the state in such amounts as necessary…”

5. DVS will use some of that bond money to hire staff and rent the office space needed to implement the program. We also need time in which to train the new staff.

6. Once these systems are in place, eligible veterans will be invited to apply for their bonus.

7. Then, all applications must be screened in detail to determine eligibility. That screening includes confirming military active duty status, dates/era, service locations, honorable status, Ohio residency when deployed to active duty and when applying for the bonus, and so on.

Based on the experience of people accustomed to writing and selling investment bonds and the experiences of other states with similar bonus programs, we can estimate that, payments to the first eligible veterans will be about one year away.

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