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Gubernatorial Candidates Talk Veterans Policy Initiatives

Pence’s plan involves supporting veteran-owned businesses. Gregg says his policies would clear the backlog of claims in the Department of Veterans Affairs.

Veterans

Photo: Stan Jastrzebski/WFIU-WTIU News

A Monroe County "stand down" event in October 2011 helped Veterans apply for assistance services and job placement programs.

Indiana’s gubernatorial candidates Friday unveiled policy initiatives aimed at helping Hoosier veterans.

One of the keys to GOP candidate Mike Pence’s plan involves state contracts and veteran-owned businesses.  As governor, the 5th district congressman says he would set a goal that at least three percent of all state business contracts should be awarded to veteran-owned businesses.

Pence says while the state tries to get the best cost for its taxpayers, there’s no reason why veterans can’t be given an extra boost.

“I think that by providing a boost specifically to veteran-owned businesses, this would also provide a needed jolt in hiring more veterans,” he says.

Indiana is one of only three states whose veterans affairs agency is not fully accredited by the federal government, which handcuffs county veterans service officers from accessing the full range of benefits for Hoosier veterans.  Pence says seeking that accreditation is one of his goals.

Democratic gubernatorial candidate John Gregg says his policy initiative is aimed at clearing the backlog of claims in the Department of Veterans Affairs.

Gregg says adding more Veterans Service Officers to the department will accelerate the process and ensure Hoosier veterans receive the help and rehabilitation they need as soon as possible.

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