Contact Information 

District Office
1555 Highlands Drive
Suite 110
Lititz, PA 17543
Phone:  (717) 626-1776
FAX:  (717) 626-4234

Capitol Office
51A East Wing
PO Box 202097
Harrisburg PA 17120-2097
Phone: (717) 787-1776

E-Mail:  
smentzer@pahousegop.com

Helping Veterans and Boosting Our Economy
12/9/2016
By State Rep. Steve Mentzer (R-Lititz)
After honorably serving our country, many veterans are having difficulty finding private sector employment. During the height of the Great Recession, the unemployment rate among veterans was nearly 25 percent higher than the general population.

That gap has narrowed significantly, largely thanks to programs encouraging employers to hire former service members. Still, employment for one group of veterans continues to lag: those who enlisted after 9/11. These post-9/11 veterans generally have less job experience than older veterans, making it more difficult to compete in the employment marketplace.

To address this shortfall and encourage job creation, I voted for legislation which created a program called “Startups for Soldiers.” This program would waive state business startup fees for individuals transitioning to the civilian workforce from the United States Armed Forces, including reserve units and the National Guard. It’s based on a similar program that’s been successful in Missouri.

Promoting entrepreneurship among veterans benefits everyone. Removing barriers to business startups would empower veterans to become their own bosses while creating good-paying, family-sustaining jobs for their fellow Pennsylvanians. It would also foster innovation, allowing them to apply the extensive leadership and organizational skills learned in the military.

I am pleased that Startups for Soldiers, House Bill 1600, was signed by the governor on Nov. 3 as Act 135 of 2016. I am hopeful this new law will be as beneficial to Pennsylvania veterans as it has proven to be elsewhere.
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