A bill that requires all public colleges and universities in the state to refund fees and tuition to members of the military who had their college education interrupted due to service or deployment was signed into law on Thursday.
The law, sponsored by Senate Minority Leader Tom Kean (R-Westfield), requires colleges and universities to waive late fees and requires them to allow registration from veterans or service members who are returning from an assignment.
“It is challenging enough to work and attend classes, but for those in the military, juggling schedules and maintaining deadlines is even more cumbersome,” said Kean. “The law will ease some of the burden of earning college credit for members of the military by offering them the flexibility when registering for classes or when military obligations conflict with course schedules.”
Brian Stack (D-Union City) said that his bill to extend the disabled veteran’s property tax exemption to disabled veterans and their spouses who live in public housing helps more veterans benefit.
“Our veterans put their lives on the line to protect our country, and this extension will be a valuable aid for many more living within our state,” stated Stack.
This bill is part of a package that aims to make college more accommodating and affordable for all who serve the country that includes a grant program to send veterans to college.
“Our veterans and servicemembers have put their lives on the line for their state and for their country, Gov. Phil Murphy said. “The least we can do for them is to make their lives easier by expanding access to higher education, broadening eligibility for the disabled veterans’ property tax exemption, and encouraging higher education institutions to provide needed services. This legislation will doubtlessly help our veterans and servicemembers in their civilian lives and recognize their service properly.”
In addition to Kean and Stack, State Sens. Troy Singleton (D-Delran), Nilsa Cruz Perez (D-Barrington) and Christopher Connors (R-Lacey) and Assembly members Vince Mazzeo (D-Northfield), John Armato (D-Buena), DiAnne Gove (R-Long Beach), Brian Rumpf (R-Little Egg Harbor), Sterley Stanley(D-East Brunswick), Wayne DeAngelo (D-Hamilton), Joseph Danielsen (D-Franklin), Andrew Zwicker (D-South Brunswick), and Anthony Verrelli (D-Hopewell) were sponsors of bills in the veterans package.