OLR Bill Analysis

HB 6349

AN ACT CONCERNING THE STATE MILITARY RELIEF FUND.

SUMMARY:

Under current law, the Military Family Relief Fund provides grants to help the immediate family members of Connecticut-domiciled armed forces members pay for essential household goods or services, if paying for them would be a hardship for the family because of the member's service. This bill (1) expands the group of eligible grant recipients to include armed forces members and (2) caps the amount of any grant at $5,000. It changes the name of the fund to the Military Relief Fund.

The bill requires, rather than allows, the Military Department to adopt regulations governing the fund. It also requires the department to report on the status of the fund to the Veterans' Affairs Committee annually, on or before February fifteenth, instead of quarterly.

The bill also makes technical and conforming changes.

EFFECTIVE DATE: July 1, 2013

DEFINITION OF ELIGIBLE MEMBER OF THE ARMED FORCES

Under the law and bill, eligible members of the armed forces are members of the U.S. Army, Navy, Marine Corps, Coast Guard, Air Force, any reserve component thereof, and the Connecticut National Guard performing active or full-time National Guard duty, who are domiciled in Connecticut.

BACKGROUND

Military Family Relief Fund

This fund is a separate, nonlapsing General Fund account administered by the state treasurer. The Military Department uses it to make grants to eligible servicemembers' immediate family members to pay for essential personal or household goods or services in Connecticut, if paying for them is a hardship because of a member's service. “Immediate family members” are an eligible member's spouse, child, or parent domiciled in Connecticut or other relatives living in his or her household. “Essential personal household goods or services” include repairs, uninsured medical services, transportation, babysitting, clothing, school supplies, and other goods or services essential to the relatives' well being.

COMMITTEE ACTION

Veterans' Affairs Committee

Joint Favorable

Yea

11

Nay

0

(02/22/2013)