Tomorrow is Flag Day. The original U.S. flag was authorized by Congress on Saturday, June 14, 1777. It remains today as one of the main symbols of our nation and our ideals.
The flag has 13 stripes - 7 red and 6 white - that represent the original 13 states. The original flag had 13 white stars in a blue field representing a new constellation. Since 1777, there have been different versions of the flag that have been adopted. The red and white stripes with blue constellation have remained the same. A star has been added with each new state. Of course, there are currently 50 states and 50 stars. Something to think about as you fly your flag!
This week's highlight of the First Session of the 97th General Assembly takes a detailed look at some legislation concerning veterans' issues.
The Missouri Legislature strives to give honor where honor is due. One thing everyone can agree on is that honor is due the young women and men who have served in our nation's armed forces. In the military, these young people gain technical and leadership skills that surpass many of their peers. Therefore, it is only fitting that we provide our veterans with opportunities to transfer their military skills to the college classroom.
Senate Bill 106 requires public colleges and trade schools to accept credits for equivalent courses that veterans already passed as part of their military training. This act also exempts military members in the medical field from having to renew professional licenses while they are on active duty. These servicemen and women are often updating their medical knowledge through military courses, and, if they are stationed in a combat zone, they are learning under pressure in the classroom of experience.
SB 117 allows any individual who is separating from the military forces of the United States with an honorable discharge or a general discharge to be considered a resident student for admission and in-state tuition purposes at approved 4-year and 2-year colleges and universities. This is just another way of thanking veterans for their service and giving them more opportunities for their civilian careers.
SB 116 ensures that military members on active duty have fair access to exercising their right to vote. This act requires the Secretary of State to establish an electronic transmission system for uniformed voters stationed overseas. Through this system, military members may apply and receive voter registration materials and military-overseas ballots.
SB 110 gives active military members more options for visiting their children of whom they don't have full custody. This act allows a deploying parent to have access to his or her child, and protects the best interests of the child.
SB 186 ensures the unclaimed remains of veterans are interred with the due respect they deserve.
Detailed summaries and complete copies of all legislation can be found at www.house.mo.gov.
It is an honor to serve the 51st District in the Missouri House of Representatives. Each week I will issue a capitol report to keep you informed of activities in Jefferson City. Any concerns or issues you might have are of great interest to me. I look forward to your input and thoughts, so please feel free to contact me at any time if you have questions, concerns, or ideas to improve our state government and the quality of life for all Missourians. My telephone number is 573-751-2204 or you may contact me by email at firstname.lastname@example.org. Thank you for working me to make Missouri a great place to live.
Serving the Constituents of the 51st District,
State Representative Dean Dohrman.