Veteran notation on driver’s licenses advanced

Senators advanced a bill from general file April 29 that would amend the Motor Vehicle Operator’s License Act.

LB93, as introduced by Fullerton Sen. Annette Dubas, would allow eligible veterans to request that their veteran status be indicated on their driver’s licenses or state ID cards.

Veterans currently must provide discharge papers or other forms that contain their social security number and other private information to verify their status and receive certain benefits offered to them, Dubas said, and it is not likely that they carry such forms with them on a regular basis.

Under a Transportation and Telecommunications Committee amendment, adopted 29-0, the state Department of Veterans Affairs would be required to create and maintain a registry that would include veterans’ active duty records, status, discharge and retirement information. Those who submit fraudulent applications would have their driver’s licenses or state IDs revoked until their eligibility is verified with the department.

The amendment also included provisions from three other bills heard by the committee dealing with veterans’ license plates.

LB378, introduced by Papillion Sen. Jim Smith, would eliminate the $5 fee charged for Pearl Harbor survivor, prisoner of war, disabled veteran and Purple Heart license plates.

LB383, introduced by Fremont Sen. Charlie Janssen, would permit the issuance of Nebraska Armed Forces Pride license plates.

And LB596, introduced by Bellevue Sen. Scott Price, would require the state Department of Motor Vehicles to manufacture specialty plates for military associations when the department receives 150 prepaid license applications rather than the required 500.

Dubas offered an amendment, adopted 26-0, that eliminated provisions originally included in the bill that would have offered Military Honor License Plates for an additional $5 fee, to be remitted to the Veteran Cemetery Systems Operation Fund.

Omaha Sen. Ernie Chambers had objected to the use of license plates for such purpose, Dubas said, and she did not want that opposition to hinder the passage of other components of the bill.

The bill advanced to select file on a 32-0 vote.

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