Monday, February 20, 2017
Governor Terry McAuliffe
House Bill 1582 reflects an incomplete understanding of weapons qualification practices within our military and is an unwarranted expansion in the number of people allowed to carry handguns in the Commonwealth. It would do nothing to protect the safety of our citizens.
It would allow any person 18 years of age or older and on active military duty or honorably discharged from the United States Armed Forces or the Virginia National Guard who has completed basic training to apply for a concealed handgun permit.
Contrary to the assumption of House Bill 1582, weapons familiarization training as a component of an individual’s military basic training does not qualify that
Virginia Attorney General Ken Cuccinelli
In a press release Friday evening Attorney General Ken Cuccinelli announced “a new level of veterans advocacy” in the attorney general’s office. In a Thursday night town hall meeting for veterans and active duty military he took questions from callers. His office plans to train state agencies on using the law to better advocate for their clients when obtaining federal veterans benefits.
On the call with Cuccinelli was Virginia’s Commissioner of Veterans Services, former Vietnam prisoner of war and retired Navy Commander Paul Galanti – who was also on the call. Cuccinelli committed to developing strategies for “determining which veterans are homeless and how best to assist them.”
Cuccinelli called it a campaign promise he plans to keep. “As veterans too often know, their benefits can be delayed by federal red tape,” Cuccinelli said.
Cuccinelli set as a priority opportunities for veterans “to become and remain gainfully employed in Virginia.” To achieve this goal he will ensure that state state agencies and localities receive training related to the federal Uniformed Services Employment and Reemployment Rights Act (USERRA), and Virginia Code Title 44 as it relates to employment and reemployment rights.
Cuccinelli tasked Senior Assistant Attorney General Cindy Norwood these efforts. Norwood is also a Lieutenant Colonel in the Judge Advocate General’s Corps with the 80th Training Command Army Reserve and is a trained ombudsman with the Department of Defense’s Employer Support of the Guard and Reserve.
Cuccinelli said he would also work with the Virginia judiciary to educate judges on how Post Traumatic Stress Disorder and Traumatic Brain Injury issues affect veterans.
“Many veterans who get into trouble with the law after returning from combat zones need medical help, not jail time,” said Cuccinelli.
Posted By Valerie Garner
Categories: Politics, State Politics
Tags: attorney_general, cuccinelli, veterans