On Thursday, June 13th, Senator Dale Fowler held a Veteran's Advisory Meeting with local area veterans. Several area Veteran's Service Organizations were present for this even. Below is an outline of the topics covered during this meeting, along with information sheets, flyers, and a brochure which were handed out. Please be sure to scroll all the way to the end of the page to get all the information available. If you have a question you would like asked at any upcoming event, or would like to attend as a representative for our organization, please contact the Post.
** Two questions were asked from our Post:
------The first question was regarding Property Taxes. There was concern that our state's congress was putting forth legislation to decrease the Property Tax benefit that disabled veterans receive. The concern is that some in Springfield felt that veterans were buying high value homes and either not having to pay taxes on them, or were receiving too much of a discount on their property tax bill. The answer to this was that, yes, there was concern among some that veterans were getting too much of a discount and this benefit needed to be reduced. However, this died in discussion. There is currently no legislation pending which would decrease this benefit. It was said how the Property Tax law is being interpreted between the current administration and the previous one is different. This difference in interpretation has resulted in some counties to tax differently than others. If you have a question about your property tax, the best thing to do is to contact your local Tax Assessor's Office and ask them about your specific situation.
------The second question asked was regarding the Illinois Veteran's Fund. This is a state sponsored college benefit for Illinois Veterans. The question was; is Illinois going to follow the model of the Post 9-11 GI Bill and allow veterans to pass on this benefit to their spouse or children. When the federal government began to allow this, some other states began to do the same with their state's college benefit. The answer given was that over a year ago this was brought up. It was discussed to allow Illinois veterans to pass on the Illinois Veteran's Fund to their spouse or children, but no Bill was ever presented and currently there is no legislation pending which would allow this to happen.
** Below is a list of the proposed Bills from this year that relate to veterans. At the time of this meeting it was not known which of these Bills had been signed, or which ones would be signed. The ones which are signed into law will take effect January 2020
** Veteran's Honor Flight of Southern Illinois is looking for World War 2 Veterans to go on the flight. This is a free trip for the veteran. An order of precedence is being used, such as age of the veteran or terminal illness, to determine who goes on the flights first. The cost to be a Guardian on the flight is $600. There has been some cases where a family member of a veteran wanted to go on the flight as a guardian, but could not afford to. To ensure these family members can join their veteran on the flight, several local area organizations have raised money to cover the cost for them to be a Guardian. To recommend a veteran or to learn more about this program, click the link provided to go to Veteran's Honor Flight of Southern Illinois' website. https://www.veteranshonorflight.org/
** Black Diamond RV Superstore has donated a 2019 Forest River 177BH RV to be raffled off. The proceeds will go towards the Honor Flight. The RV will be at the Benton La Fiesta restaurant this weekend, June 14th and 15th, to sell raffle tickets. Over the next few weekends the RV will be at other La Fiesta locations selling tickets as well. The drawing for the RV will take place at the Southern Illinois Made Expo on Sunday, July 28th at 4pm. Below is more information regarding the raffle.
** The Southern Illinois Made Expo will be held on Saturday July 27th and Sunday July 28th from 10 am to 4 pm at The Pavilion located at 1602 Sioux Drive in Marion. Below is a flyer for this event.
** Veteran's Smile will be at the Marion VFW on Saturday, June 22nd. Below is the brochure for this event.
Copies of the flyers, brochure, and hand-outs are located on the bulletin board at the Post and they are also available in the Gallery section of this website under the "Veteran's Advisory Meeting" folder.