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Governor Whitmer Signs Bipartisan Bills Helping Veterans and their Families Continue their Careers in Michigan, Accelerating Michigan's Economic Recovery

LANSING, Mich. — Today, Governor Whitmer signed Senate Bill 157, Senate Bill 312, House Bill 4376, and House Bill 4377, which will remove barriers to help veterans and their families continue their careers in Michigan, accelerating Michigan's economic recovery.  

"I am proud to sign these bipartisan bills to clear the path for our military service members, veterans, and their dependents to enter a licensed profession," said Governor Whitmer. "This legislation will help us attract and retain talent in Michigan and boosts our broader effort to put Michigan back to work. Our veterans and their families have made countless sacrifices, and it is time that we give back to those who have bravely served our nation." 

"Combined with tuition assistance, job training and leadership development, these bills demonstrate the commitment we have made to ensure state government recognizes the tremendous sacrifice made by our military members, veterans and their families," said  U.S. Army Maj. Gen. Paul D. Rogers, adjutant general and director of the Michigan Department of Military and Veterans Affairs.  "These new laws will eliminate a significant burden often faced by our military families."

"As a veteran, the wife of a veteran and as a mother to a military spouse, I understand first hand many of the struggles veterans and military members face when they return home and seek employment", said Zaneta Adams, director of the Michigan Veterans Affairs Agency. "This is a huge step in the right direction of making Michigan more veteran friendly. I am proud to be a part of a mission to make our state a great place for veterans and their families, to live, work and call home." 

"The enactment of these new laws creates an expedited path for active and veteran personnel and their families to practice their licensed profession in Michigan, with their initial license and application fees waived," said LARA Director, Orlene Hawks. "LARA will also prioritize completed licensing applications received from our military families and we are committed to process those applications within 48 hours." 

"With these bills, we are helping our veteran and military families by removing the government red tape preventing them from continuing their careers here in Michigan," said Sen. John Bizon, R - Battle Creek. "Military spouses in professions that require licensure can be left jobless with a sudden move to a new state. These bills will cover all relevant individuals intended to be eligible for reciprocal licenses and waived fees and ease their transition and financial burdens by allowing military family members to pick up their careers in Michigan without unnecessary delay. I would like to thank the Governor and my Senate and House colleagues for their work on this legislation."

"Our state has faced our fair share of challenges over the last year and a half, but our position as a pro-worker state has never faltered," said Rep. Sarah Anthony, D - Lansing. "We wouldn't be where we are today without the contributions and sacrifices of Michigan's military families. I am proud to support them now by removing unnecessary and costly requirements to occupational licensing."

Senate Bill 157 and Senate Bill 312 will amend different acts to ease the process through which an active duty service member, a veteran, or their qualifying dependents can obtain an initial health profession or occupational license or certification of registration in a profession or occupation for which they hold a license or registration in another state or country; waive the fee for the initial health profession license or registration; and redefine terms. 

Senate Bill 157 was sponsored by Sen. John Bizon, R-Battle Creek, and a copy can be found here. Senate Bill 312 was sponsored by Sen. Marshall Bullock, D-Detroit, and a copy can be found here

House Bill 4376 expands the waiver of an initial license or registration fee for an occupational license to active servicemembers in the Armed Forces or the uniformed services and dependents of any of those of veterans and active servicemembers. Under current law, fee waivers were available only to veterans. 

House Bill 4376 was sponsored by Rep. Andrea Schroeder, R-Independence Twp., and a copy can be found here.

House Bill 4377 requires LARA to issue certain occupational licenses to members of the armed forces, veterans, and/or their dependents, without examination, as long as the individual is licensed or registered in that occupation in another state or country and certain conditions are met.

House Bill 4377 was sponsored by Rep. Sarah Anthony, D-Lansing, and a copy can be found here.  

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