Verschoore Helps Veterans Find Job Opportunities

Staff Writer
Aledo Times Record

To help tackle high unemployment among veterans, state Rep. Pat Verschoore (D-Milan) and the Illinois House of Representatives passed legislation on Monday to help Illinois companies hire veterans who have served in active duty since September 11, 2001.

“On Memorial Day, we remember veterans and the sacrifices they have made to keep our families and our country safe,” Verschoore said. “I want to honor their service and their sacrifices by helping veterans find employment to use the considerable skills they have developed through their service.”

Senate Bill 3241, co-sponsored by Verschoore, expands the tax credits that businesses receive for hiring veterans. Currently, businesses can claim a 10 percent credit on the wages paid up to a maximum of $1,200 for hiring an unemployed Veteran who has served in Operation Desert Storm, Operating Enduring Freedom, or Operation Iraqi Freedom. Under Verschoore’s legislation, businesses would be able to claim 20 percent, up to $5,000, for any veteran who has served in active duty on or after September 11, 2001.

According to the 2010 U.S. Census and the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, national estimates put the jobless rate for post 9-11 veterans at 12.1 percent, well above the national average.  In Illinois, the unemployment rate for 18-34 year old veterans is on average four percent higher than non-veterans of the same age group.

“We simply cannot ask soldiers to fight and defend our freedoms, without providing them additional opportunities for success when they come home,” Verschoore said. “There will never be enough that we can do to thank veterans for their sacrifices, but I will continue to push legislation that helps provide an environment conducive to job growth.” 

Senate Bill 3241 passed the Illinois House overwhelmingly and it will move to the Senate and the Governor for consideration. For more information on this legislation, please contact Verschoore’s office at (309) 558-3612.