CORTLANDT, N.Y. -- Sen. Greg Ball (R,C,I-Patterson) joined veterans organizations and businesses on Monday, Feb. 10 to host the "Jobs For Heroes" Lobby Day in Albany.
Ball, the chairman of the senate Veterans, Homeland Security and Military Affairs committee, helped groups lobby for the passage of the "NY Jobs For Heroes" program. The initiative aims to create a 5 percent state contract preference for service-connected disabled veteran-owned small businesses. The program recently received support in Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s State of the State address. Ball organized the lobby day to ensure that set aside is included in Governor Cuomo’s 30 day amended budget.
“For years, we have been working to pass the ‘NY Jobs For Heroes’ program. I am so excited to partner with Governor Cuomo to make 2014 the year that we provide this 5 percent set aside," Ball said. "We do a very good job in this country of getting young men and women to raise that right hand and say that they are willing to fight and die for the United States of America, but we do not do a great job, either as a state or a nation, in transitioning those men and women back into the workforce. With Governor Cuomo’s leadership, New York is finally going to join the 44 other states and the federal government that have already successfully implemented this program."
Governor Andrew Cuomo announced his support for the initiative in a statement.
“Supporting small businesses owned by New York’s service-disabled veterans is just one way that we can honor the tremendous sacrifice that these brave individuals have made for our State and nation,” Cuomo said, according to the release. “This legislation will help us meet the goal of awarding five percent of all State contracts to service-disabled veteran-owned small businesses, and will play a large part in our ongoing efforts to create new economic opportunities for the men and women of the U.S. armed forces.”
Senator Greg Ball’s legislation has repeatedly passed in the Senate since it was introduced in 2007. New Yorkers can sign the “Jobs For Heroes” petition by visiting the group's webpage.