Monday, August 22, 2011

Johnson, Coughlin & Conners Bill to Help Families of N.J. Soldiers on Active Duty Signed Into Law

(Trenton) - Legislation Assembly Democrats Gordon Johnson, Craig J. Coughlin and Jack Conners sponsored to promote donations to a fund that helps the families of New Jersey soldiers called into active duty was signed into law on Friday.

"These families are heroes," said Johnson (D-Bergen).  "They too have sacrificed to defend our freedom, coping while a loved one ships out to faraway places and providing crucial support to our soldiers, even as they struggle financially with lost income and increased stress.  The least we can do is offer them our support, too."

The new law (A-2286) will establish the New Jersey National Guard State Family Readiness Council Fund and provide for a spot on the state's gross income tax return to permit taxpayers to make voluntary contributions to the fund.  The measure was approved 77-0-1 by the Assembly in March and 38-0 by the Senate in June.

"I am confident that New Jerseyans will be generous enough to donate a few dollars here and there to help these families," said Coughlin (D-Middlesex).  "This law will make it easy to do just that, and that's a good thing for everyone involved."

"This fund will provide support to members of the New Jersey National Guard and their families," said Conners (D-Burlington/Camden).  "This support is intended to help members and their families cope during difficult times when a wage-earner has temporarily left civilian employment to be placed on active military duty.  The council provides education, counseling and financial planning so the spouses of deployed Guard members have what they need to cope."

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