Governor Signs Executive Order To Give Free SUNY Tuition To Children Of Injured/Slain Vets

April 17, 2019

Statement From Assembly Woman Marjorie Byrnes:
“Although it took over 10 years, a great deal of public outcry and one presidential tweet, our fallen military men and women will be honored greatly with the passage of this proposal. I am proud to be a part of a conference that stands up for our military and their families. This will relieve so many financial stressors that are associated with attending college and bring hope to those that have dealt with such a tragic loss.”

Statement From Assemblyman Joe Giglio:
Seeing such an immediate response from the governor for our call to enact this proposal is a breath of fresh air. I thank everyone who joined their voices with mine, from my peers in the Legislature all the way up to President Trump. I am proud of my colleagues in the Republican Conference of the Assembly who brought this legislation forward to assist our service men and women. I also applaud Gov. Cuomo for his swift action to ensure our Gold Star Families get the best opportunity and future possible. The sacrifices of our armed forces are not partisan, and I am thrilled to see that everyone recognizes the importance of this issue. This is a great step for New York and for honoring our heroic fallen. We will continue to work to protect our service members and their families.”

Statement From Assemblyman Phil Palmesano:

“I want to thank Gov. Cuomo for listening and doing the right thing for our heroes, the brave men and women who serve to protect us and our freedoms. The governor’s actions today help correct the Assembly Democrats’ egregious error. When they blocked our bill to provide cost-free tuition to the children of service members who die or become severely disabled in the line of duty, it was an insult to our values and an example of politics at its worst. Make no mistake, though, this should not have taken eleven years, and it shouldn’t have taken a public outcry to get this done. I want to thank Assemblyman Steve Hawley, the chief sponsor of this legislation, for his perseverance and steadfast leadership. I also want to stress to residents the importance of signing our petition and urge them to voice their support for this important legislation and tell Assembly Democrats to finally pass it and permanently codify this into law. I’m very pleased that the governor supports this action and has found the resources for this year, but let’s not make this dependent on who’s in the governor’s mansion. Let’s pass this bill, get it signed into law and do this right. Palmesano’s petition can be accessed here, or on his Facebook page.

Statement From Assembly Woman Nichole Molliotakis:
“It’s unfortunate that it took a lot of media scrutiny for the Gold Star tuition program to become a reality. This year’s budget was already a tough battle for veterans, with the governor and Assembly Democrats’ proposed cuts to our veterans’ peer-to-peer counseling and mental health services. Thankfully, on both these misguided attempts to shortchange our military community, Assembly Republicans pushed back, fought hard and won, but it’s still a sad commentary that it took battles to begin with,” said Malliotakis.